Monday, February 28, 2005

let this be a lesson

I bought some fish yesterday. They are cichlids, F zero Altlamprologus Calvus v. "Cape Chaitika White." F zero = zero generations removed from the wild. These fish were hand captured from the shallows of lake Tanganyika by Zambian fisherman who painstakingly harvested the creatures in small hand nets, braving the region's many lethal guerilla squads. I had been searching for them for months. When I found a shop that had them, I was like a giddy little child.

They cost a fucking fortune and as such they were handled with care-- the shop packed them in a sedative solution so they wouldn't hurt themselves and filled the bag with pure oxygen. To acclimate them I put them in a bucket and poured in exactly four oz. of tank water every five minutes for an hour, lest they be shocked by the change in water chemistry.

When I finally netted them into the tank, they sank to the bottom and flopped over. They are going to die.

Let this be a lesson: anything I get excited about will always backfire. The excitement I feel seems like joy but is ultimately only a device to amplify pain.

I'm not saying nothing good ever happens to me, but rather that my anticipating a good thing curses it somehow.

a. calvus v. "chaitika"

2 Comments:

Blogger addledmom said...

Please accept my condolences for the untimely demise of your cichlids. My husband was totally into them for a while & we had a huge 6'x2' tank full of them for 3 years. Then we moved. If you really love African Cichlids, don't give up. They're difficult, but there are lots of Cichlid-related Websites, newsgroups, afficionados & other resources out there. I figure that since most things in life are beyond our control, we should at least be able to eventually master what goes on in our danged fish tanks! Sigh. Like you, I feel that anticipating joy somehow antagonizes the Powers-That-Be. Yet, perhaps the angst we feel seems like pain but is ultimately only a device to amplify joy. ;^)

8:43 AM  
Blogger vulkoqq said...

Thank you. What a lovely comment.

And you know what? They lived. I think they're going to be fine.

4:23 AM  

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