Saturday, September 29, 2007

Crusty Bob the Pirate Fish

Several months ago, we bought fish. Again. We still had a few I hadn't managed to kill yet, but for a reason that escapes me, we needed more. Perhaps to pull the underwater plow and harvest the ripening sea kelp in their tank to help pay their way. Perhaps not.
Whatever - we each got one, even me. I chose an algae eater because it cleans the tank. It could be a nasty, slimy, giant toothy tentacled squid, but if it does windows it's my friend.
My two boys each chose Black Moor goldfish. Your average 25-cent goldfish is a sleek, shiny, eating machine designed to outlive dirt just to spite whoever cleans the tank. Black Moors are geeky, awkward-moving, and bug-eyed - the nerds of goldfish academia. They also cost the equivalent of a goldfish college fund. I doubt they've ever spent a moment of their lives earning their kelp.

My 8-year-old chose a big, hulking beast-fish that scares the bejeebers out of the rest of the herd/school/extended family. Nightmare is two and a half whopping ounces of intimidating fish. He flounders (sorry) about the tank staring down the other fish. With no eyelids and half his body weight composed of eyeball, he doesn't really have a choice.

Bwaaahaha! Get in me tummy!

My 10-year-old picked out a teeny, tiny, black dot that wiggles away from its own shadow. Blink and you'd miss him, but Crusty Bob is a stylin' contender. He may be at the bottom of the fishy totem pole, but he doesn't care a bit. He staked out his own puny corner of the tank and waddles about happily.
At some point, Crusty Bob got into a tussle with another fish or rock or vicious piece of kelp. He lived, but one of his eyes sorta disappeared. As in never to be seen again. Where his eye used to be are now flat, black scales.

His owner wailed, "Crusty Bob is a freak!" I tried to console him that Crusty Bob doesn't miss his eye at all, that now he was a Pirate Fish with a nifty black eyepatch. "Avast ye, Crusty Bob!" I said heartily, "Hoist that scurvy Nightmare and make him walk the plank!" That worried my son even more, since nothing is geekier than a 10-year-old boy whose mom talks like a pirate and chatters with one-eyed fish.

We've finally gotten used to Crusty Bob, and we've noticed he's slightly prone to accidents. Not sure if this caused him to lose an eye or he's just clumsy because he can't see very well. Either way, I'm hoping he doesn't poke the other one out, because our insurance doesn't cover a seeing eye dogfish.


Mad Scientist said...

wow the one eyed fish is very cool. A nerdy black moore was my first valentine's day gift for Weasel. Nothing says lovin like big eyed fish!

Hope you and the boys are doing well!

Annie said...

mad - I saw your pix on Dave Barry's blog - very fun! Although quite odd with the Valentine gift, it's perfect for Weasel. We are doing great - hope you are, too.