Sunday, January 6, 2008

Shell of a Cold Murder

Currently, my only pet resides in a simple basic starter aquarium. This has afforded me the luxury of conserving precious global energy while saving on my electric bill by turning off all household lights and the a/c heater unit before going to work daily. Noting, having any other pets one should never turn the ac heater unit completely off; instead set the unit thermostat at a low comfortable setting for the preservation of the pets essentially crucial wellbeing.

Recently I adopted a snail to keep my single beta fish company and help clean his vicinity. The name of my fish is Art. An ongoing joke between us and my Friends who are humored by the fact that all I need to do is say, ‘Art, where art thou’ and the fish will indeed come to the front of the aquarium. Then if I proceed to say ‘Art Arty Art-Art’, my fish will happily perform a flip flapping aquatic dance. Anyone who knows me or has followed some of my writings, will admit that I have an unusual close pet relationship with any of my aqua Friends. In-fact, I confessed in my 7 Weird or Random Facts Meme that “I once tried to save my pet aquatic frog by giving him CPR via administrating him air from a tube attached to the aquarium pump. Sadly he could not be resuscitated.”

I first became aware of my odd attachment when my ‘once upon a time’ pet cat, Sir Socrates brought me his most prized catch. That day, I thought nothing of having heard some minor clattering in the other room. At least not until later when I looked down at Sir Socrates. There he had rolled in from two other rooms and proudly laid at my feet, my pet fish! Needless to say, I was devastated and unable to revive the poor little finner. Sir Socrates on the other hand, well he lived to old age. And he was not punished for his natural instincts, instead I merely built a better aquarium lid.

Many a fish, frog, snail, and aquariums have come into my life since than and gone. The most fun is picking a name. My Mother is often kind to remind me of the time I brought two tree frogs inside for the night. Something I sometimes did for harmless entertainment. I would place tree frogs in a aired waterless goldfish bowl, add food, decorate with tree limbs and leaves. Observe their behavior and listen to their ribbits, then set them free the next morning, outdoors in a natural wooded arena. The two my Mom remembers most is Mr. Limpet (from the 1964 movie The Incredible Mr. Limpet starring Don Knotts) and Mrs. Tax a Daisy (because it was tax time). Par to tradition, now was the time to name my new snail.

So happen the night prior I had a dream, an unusual event for myself as a persistent lack of R.E.M. sleep remains a semi-medical mystery to my physicians. My rare dream began with brown and black horses lined in front of a smooth wired fence. Next, someone was parking my car beside these horses. I was briefly upset that anyone would be driving my car when suddenly the driver side door opened to reveal the now hopping out driver to be a brown Dachshund Weiner dog. Perhaps a pun on the Datsun Nissan auto, however; my car is an Oldsmobile. Nonetheless, in my dream I was to proceed with a delivery of herbs to a Lady whom lived in a nearby village. Legend had it, that there existed an elephant with feet of a three-toed sleuth and whom ever saw this elephant would go crazy. No, not a three toed sloth, definitely sleuth. So happened this Lady not only saw the elephant, she became its’ primary caregiver. However; to stop her insanity, she had to take a daily supply of certain herbs that a local root doctor concocted. My dream basically ended there. Needless to say; when I got my snail, I appropriately named it Sleuth.

Sleuth wasted no time inspecting the new surroundings and vacuuming. A week later in normal environmental conservation fashion, I turned off the ac heater unit. The temperature outside was below 20, so as an additional precautionary measure, I wrapped a towel around the small aquarium and left for work. When I arrived home to unwrap the towel, I found Art cuddled atop of Sleuth. Motherly thinking, how sweet they are keeping each other warm. Then guiltily wondering if the temperature inside my residence had become to cold for them. And just as quickly, panicked that perhaps they weren’t cuddling nor freezing. What if Sleuth accidently clamped down on one of Arts’ fins and the fish was trapped! Instantaneously, I reached my arm into the icy water and with my hand brushed the two apart. Fortunately, Art wasn’t ensnared. Unfortunately, Sleuth may have passed away by means of a cold murder. However; I’m still investigating as snails do have the tendency to hibernate inwardly for awhile. So for now, I have Sleuth in a temperature controlled liquid bowl, awaiting hopefully a resurrection. If not, I may in any case be thankful that in addition to escargot, I could have also had a frozen fish stick. Not that I would literally eat either one, just admittedly the guilt is starting to eat away at me.

Environmental lesson learned: to help save the planet, perhaps start with one aquatic pet at a time, assuring first and foremost that at least a heater is installed in even the smallest of fish bowls.


Anonymous said...

Very funny and warm post. It reminded me of my relationship with my mischievous feline Simon.

Have a great day Michelle~


Anonymous said...

LOL!! Thanks Ann :)

Jos said...

A great story, Michelle!

btw: I never heard of Mr. Limpet before (though his name quite resembles my family name - no pun intended, I hope ;)

Cats Rule, don't they?