What I want you to know. Which is everything.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Sammy the Fish

Sammy the Fish was a Beta fish bought at a PetSmart in Pasadena, Texas more than two years ago under the prerequisite that Sammy would reside at Amanda's school as a classroom pet. She had experimented with goldfish and other Betas all ending in fish deaths. Too many to name. It was quite a semester of doom for the small fish population. But, Amanda was becoming more adept as to what was killing the little things. The next Beta who she apparently called Sammy, although I only recently found this out, was to be different than the others. It was going to see, not just a record two months of life, but a full year? Nay, it kept living, and into it's third year no less! Sammy lived it's life in luxury being fed by second graders until the fall of 2005 when Amanda was told she could no longer keep a pet in her classroom. Sammy was sent packing into the constant torment of of two cats and no children to stare at it. All in all, it's life wasn't too bad. Three squares a day, plenty of space, a little thing that made bubbles.... Sammy wasn't doing so bad.

But, alas today as Amanda and I were preparing to get some lunch Amanda noticed that Sammy was not responding. Personally, I never thought much of the slimy little thing. I had saved it's life more than once as it took some skill to clean its tank and make the transfer from dirty tank to temporary cup of water without dropping the little bugger in the garbage disposal side of the kitchen sink. But, the feats of bravery were more for Amanda's sake than the fish. So, I typically didn't notice the thing very often. But, when I saw Sammy break into convulsions every so often and sink to the bottom of the tank upside down, only to struggle to flip back over, I couldn't help but feel just a little sorry for the fellow. I realized that we didn't have any record of our time with Sammy, so only minutes before he was sent to live within the bowels of the Great porcelain Graveyard, I snapped these final moments in the life of the fish. Amanda thought I was being cruel, exploiting Sammy's pain. In fact, this couldn't have been further from my intentions. I wanted to remember Sammy. In life I hadn't really cared about him or given as much as a second thought, so I knew that if I didn't take these photos, he would be forever erased from my memory. So we got these shots and then went and ate at Baytown Seafood.***

My mom, at times would feed Sammy, who she called Happy, because she always said he was happy to see her. Well, mom, Happy is swimming with the fishes now. Or, actually he's floating with the raw sewage. Which is pretty disgusting.

***Just kidding. We went to Chipotle.


the Mad Cowboy said...

That reminds me of the time my second beta died.

He had jumped out of his water at some point during the day. I came home and there we was all dried out. He was next to my daily Far Side Calendar. I hadn't changed it yet, so I ripped off the cartoon from the day before to read the current one. Two fish were in a fish bowl asking each other if they thought yet a third fish had made it out alive and on to freedom, but on the floor where they couldn't see was a dried out fish.

I'm not making that up.

Dwayne said...

When Wendy and I were at college, we had a goldfish that was a part of a biology class experiment, where various fish were deprived of oxygen for varying amounts of time, to see the effect. Our particular fish, which we creatively named "fishie," was rather severely retarded. He couldn't figure out that we were feeding him unless the food dropped RIGHT in front of his nose.

But that dumb fish survived for a long time. On the order of years, if I recall correctly.

Thanks for the memory. ;)

Kyle said...

Wow, mc, that story creeped me out a little. I'm a big Far Side fan, but I never realized it's cosmic significance.

Chad said...

Ah yes, the trials of life, survival of the fittest, hunters and the hunted, the contained and the free..Julia has had the same beta fish for about 2 years now. All other fish we have tried usually last 6-12 months before going home to that great aquarium in the sky.

MDH said...

RIP Sammy.

I've had a beta for about 6 months I guess. 3 tetras for about 18+ months. 1 recently got sick with some kind of fish-flesh-eating-fungus on his mouth. he is still in the Q-tanks recovering (I hope).

Fish are cool. If I was rich, I would have lots of tanks...big ones.

Maegan said...

... wow.

That's really all I have to say.

ML said...

Ah, Man! Poor Happy, He was such a sweet little swimmer. Always happy to see someone dropping a morsel of food in his tank.
He will be missed.