Friday, June 21, 2013

Something’s Fishy

Since my good ol’ days in college (wow, that seems like forever ago) I have had Betta fish. They wouldn’t let me keep any other pet in the dorms, although one of my freshman year roommates did smuggle in a frog, so I had little choice when deciding on a tiny friendly companion. Little did I know how much I would love creating fun tank designs and hanging out with my fishy friend while I slaved away penning papers at my desk.

I have had them in all shapes and sizes, males and females, blues, greens, and reds. Each one has a different personality and daily habits, and I admire their ability to move about calmly without a care, fins floating fancy-free. Granted, they also forget where they are five seconds later, and everything in the tank is always like having a new toy, but the serenity of it all is strangely soothing.

When I met FM during my junior year, he became attached to my first finned friend, Sebastian, and even fish-sat for me while I was away for a long weekend. I had him hooked. As the years have passed we have continued to keep Bettas, replacing
our loss when they reached old age and decided to go belly up…literally. We have buried all of them, bar one, which FM insisted on callously banishing to a watery grave of human excrement in the Albany, NY sewer system. He does not share the same sentimentality I hold as burial rights for floating friends. (Plus, it is not so good for the water system either!)

I know, you are thinking “why not just get a dog if you want a long-term pet?” Well, there are multiple answers to that question, even though we would both absolutely LOVEEE a puppy:
A. For the past combined 5 years, we have been working students, therefore, we did not have the time to devote to training, and taking care of, a rambunctious Rover. Not fair to any of the involved parties.
B. Dogs are EXPENSIVE; Again, students = broke. We were lucky to afford the fixings for green salads no less Alpo or kibble.
C. When FM enlisted, we had no idea where we would end up, and a doggy divorce agreement was certainly not what we needed on top the everything else.

So overall, great suggestion in theory, but we will just stick with the fish until we can permanently live with one another again.

When FM departed for BCT, I packed up our apartment, including d’Artagnan, our two year old male Betta, a widower to Cordelia, his female counterpart (the one who got the porcelain altar treatment), and brought him to live with me in my childhood bedroom. Unfortunately, just before visiting FM at his graduation ceremony in April, d’Artagnan took a turn for the worse, developed Dropsy, the silent (and ugly) aquarium killer, and went to sleep with the fishes. I decided not to get another until we knew where we would be moving next.

Well, “'the time has come' the Walrus said," we know what is ahead of us in the next year (more on that later), so yesterday I decided to press on with our ritual and purchase a new aqua buddy (and some awesome tank décor as well, don’t tell FM!). However, due to my indecisiveness and FM’s not being around to assist, naming our little guy was a bit of a challenge.

I am a traditionalist, and all of our prior pets have been named after great literary characters (yes, I am a book nerd, and I am secure in admitting to it). So far we have had:
d’Artagnan (The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas)
Cordeila (King Leer, Shakespeare)
Hamlet (Hamlet, Shakespeare)
Ophelia (Hamlet, Shakespeare)
Sebastian (The Little Mermaid, Hans Christian Andersen)

Clearly this finned friend needed a nerdy name too. After presenting FM with some options via text, we decided to go with an All American classic and settled on “Huck” (Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain).

Sooo… meet Huck, our new coral colored, military life, swimming battle buddy!

And to celebrate an absolutely gorgeous Friday afternoon here on Long Island, I'm linking up with Whitney over at I Wore Yoga Pants to Work for #backthatazzup Friday, jamming to Will Smith. 

Happy Friday all!!

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