Saturday, February 16, 2008

Fishy and Bubbles

We took Rachel to the pet store today while we were out running (a whole bunch of) errands. We had to look to see how expensive goldfish were. My sister is using them as the centerpieces at her wedding reception and I had looked online to see how much they cost. I couldn't find one cheaper than $5! but I knew that they sold little ones for really cheap so we went in to check. Sure enough, it's like 26 cents for a "big" one and 12 cents for a "small" one.

Rachel had a blast looking at all the fish! She was going crazy trying to keep track of them all.

She would scream at the birds when they sang to her, and enjoyed watching a rat run around on a wheel, but didn't find the reptiles terribly interesting, except one very excited lizard who apparently wanted to be taken home with Rachel and kept dancing around and trying to get her attention through the glass; and a snake that was busy climbing up the wall of its terrarium while tactfully ignoring us.

Rachel and her lizard buddy
The snake climbing up the wall
Watching the snake climb
We decided to get a few fish, spur of the moment, to see how long we could keep them alive, so we went back to the Fish Lady and asked her if we could purchase a few 26 cent goldfish. At first she tried to dissuade me from getting them because they don't live very long--but in the end she let us have our way. I'm not sure that we're in for a longterm commitment yet anyway. We only need them to live until Friday night, at least.

We figured that since Rachel had so much fun looking at them in the pet store that it would be a fun thing to watch and talk about at home.

Anyway, the Fish Lady asked me which ones I wanted and looked really offended when I mentioned offhand that I didn't really care. Seeing the look on her face I quickly corrected myself,

"What I mean is that I don't really know how to choose a fish."

She tried to explain to me that it was just like picking a kitten. Some are friskier than others, some are cuter than others, some have different markings on their tails. The problem with that analogy was that I care about kittens--their personalities make impressions on me. I suppose it would be the same thing with a puppy or a bird, even. But a fish? I'm not sure that I could really see their different personalities just by staring into their little eyes. Don't they just swim around, gloo, gloo? Pretty standard.

I tried my best to look at the fish intently.

"I don't know. What do you think?" I finally asked the Fish Lady, sighing a little and hoping it sounded like I was perplexed about the decision.

"Well, how about a white one? Those are a little less common."

"Sure," I said,and upon realizing she was going to force me to choose I pointed at the tank, "That one?"

"Good choice," said the Fish Lady.

I was relieved that I had finally made my selection and turned around to head to the counter, thinking I was done.

"He'll need a friend," the Fish Lady said, as if to remind me.

"Oh, ummmm... Just a minute." I scanned around for Andrew and Rachel. I didn't think it was fair that I should have to pretend to choose a fish all by myself. The Fish Lady was making it seem much too life-altering to approach the task alone.

"Andrew," I said, spying them over by a fancy breed of goldfish that probably cost a whole two fifty a piece, "Bring Rachel over here so that she can help choose a fish."

Having a six month old baby bail me out of choosing a fish might sound ridiculous, but it made me feel a little more comfortable and she did a better job looking like she was paying them due attention.

So with Rachel by my side I made the final selection.

"How about that solid gold one?" I asked, pointing blindly into the tank holding dozens of frisky fish, all of whom pretty much looked the same.

"Ahhh," the Fish Lady smiled, visibly pleased with my choice.

I'm not convinced that she could actually tell them apart, nor do I think that she gave us the fish that I chose. For all I know she could have chosen completely different fish behind my back.

We're home now, so I guess that doesn't matter and they will do just as well at swimming around their bowl (gloo, gloo) as the fish I originally selected.

We decided to name one Bubbles and call it "Buh-Buh" for short, since that is a name that Rachel can say. The other one we will call Fishy, to help teach Rachel what they are actually called. We don't know which one is which yet...what do you think?


  1. Just always remember to feed them and clean the tank, or it will all end in tears... ;) Deadly and Duddles... and Rachel will learn about death early in her young life. hee hee. :-D I'm very sleepy. Can you tell?

  2. Ian loves going to the pet store. We haven't given in and got him a fish yet. The fish are his favorite to look at. He also likes to try to talk to the birds by tweeting very loudly. I think he kinda scared the birds.

    Anyways good luck with your fish and I hope they las longer than a week.

  3. Fish are really fun especially for the kids. Maya loved her green anole, Pablo. But, Maya also loved looking at the fish too!

    I think the orange one should be Buh-Buh.

  4. White fish is buh buh. Bubbles - White. Yeah.
    Orange fish is fishy. Heh heh.
    Josie just said that that's what she was thinking too!

  5. This was so funny. I laughed outloud, which meant I had to then read it to Rob, who was wondering what caused me to laugh outloud.

    I've had a lot of fish in my life. I get them because I want to be in charge of something that is alive. It's not a good reason.

  6. No question. The white one has personality written all over him - definitely a Buh-buh. The orange one should be fishy because that's all there is to h/im/er (how do you tell what gender a fish is without cutting it open to see if there are eggs inside?)