We go through comet goldfish like they were … um … comet goldfish. Every few months we stock up again, the kids give them all names, and one by one they meet their toilet fate. But one of them has lived through a few re-stockings and became the old geezer of the bunch. I can’t remember what Katie named him, so I’m going to call him “Him.”
I gave up on Him a long time ago because he started doing that fish-float thing where they don’t move their fins and just let the current of the other fish’s movements carry them around the tank. Isn’t that the equivalent of old people crapping their pants? They get this “you know, I’m old and I’ve worked hard and I don’t care anymore so I’m just gonna sit here and let someone else do the work” attitude, and then they croak or float to the top, as the case may be.
The odd thing is that Him would do that fish-float thing and I’d be all ready to get the net, but the next day he’d be swimming again, happy as can be, like he was a little puppy fish. A few weeks later, we’d see Him floating again.
This is how I found Him this morning. His fish-float seemed more grim than usual.
It’s hard to tell here, but his once pretty fins (for Him was a fantail, not just a 10-cent comet) have been nibbled upon. Notice the other fish, pretending to ignore him. They did that just for the camera, because as soon as I walked away they started eating Him’s fins again. Poor guy. It must suck to outlive your friends, poop your pants, and then watch everyone come in and take your stuff when they think you’re about to die.
I think what did Him in was bringing home the newest batch of comets a few weeks ago. He’d had the aquarium to himself for months. When I dumped the new guys in, I coulda sworn Him looked at me and mouthed “No. Effing. Way.”
Besides the three comets looking innocent about Him’s missing fins, they’re also playing dumb about what happened to the algae eater we brought home with them. We haven’t seen him for more than a week and the tank’s getting algae-y again. Comets are nasty little buggers. I guess when you’re bred to be feeder fish you have no reason to play nice.
I got home this afternoon and more of Him’s fins were missing. His gills were no longer laboring. He was gone. Well, after I flushed him he was gone. Before that he was his roommates’ food.
R.I.P., Him. Ye lived a long,
happy fish life.