Sea change

We came home to find Graves doing the Dead Fish’s Float at the bottom of the tank.

Graves, doing the Dead Fish's Float

He never was very good at swimming.

Graves says goodbye

Doesn’t it look almost as if he’s saying good bye?

We don’t know what happened – it was all too sudden.  It seems like only a week ago that we brought him home and made him a part of our family.  Perhaps that’s why he stayed in the bushes yesterday.  Why did he want to die alone?

At his funeral service, we (mostly I, as J was hysterical – with grief, understandably) said a few words in his memory before sending him to Davy Jones’ Locker.  He was definitely the best (only) goldblackfish I’ve ever had.  I hope he was happy in our tank, and that he gets to go to fishy heaven when Fish Jesus comes.  Do fish have souls?

Graves' watery grave

Evening mourning over Graves’ watery grave.

Since we saw Wicked last Friday, our elegy was “For Good”:

I’ve heard it said
that fishies come into our lives for a reason,
bringing something we must learn.
And we are led to those who help us most to grow
If we let them
And we feed them in return.
Well, I don’t know if I believe that’s true
But I know I’m who I am today
Because I watched you.

Like a comet pulled from orbit
as it passes a sun,
Like a stream that meets a boulder
halfway through the wood
Who can say if I’ve been changed for the better?
But because I watched you
I have been changed for good.

Rest in peace, Graves.
Pie Jesu, qui tollis peccata mundi, dona eis requiem.


Graves in his prime, with a fire in his eye.

You will be missed.

We also noticed PUFA not moving in his one-gallon tank, and almost flushed him, but we realized in time that he was alive.  Whew! That would’ve been two much tragedy for one day.



Yesterday, we noticed that Girlfriend was looking especially chubby. Her gravid spot was especially dark and looked ready to pop.

PUFA was reassigned to an old plastic 1-gal fish tank with glass beads, as the peanut’s proven himself unworthy of parole.


PUFA floating along looking innocent

Unfortunately, the stress of moving Girlfriend into the breeding net may have traumatized her and resulted in a few baby guppy abortions 😦

dead guppy alert: bottom left and top right

dead guppy alert: bottom left and top right

No new guppy babies yet, but we’re excited for their arrival 🙂

Graves’ eyes have been more pronounced. It was very difficult to get a good picture of him; he was in the mood for some hide-and-seek behind his bush.


Graves being camera shy


Finally got a good portrait!

Did we mention that Hamburglar has very attractive orange lips? We both find that mesmerizing. Can’t keep our eyes off him as he keeps sucking rocks and continually poops all day.


*smacks lips*

All these pictures of fish tend to make me hungry…. so we spent a good chunk of yesterday making macarons. As they have to mature for 24 hrs or so, I have been exercising extreme patience for some guilty goodness.


dark chocolate ganache filling – the perfect indulgence.

The reward was worth the wait.

Repeat Offender

PUFA, our little *pea-nut* (“pea” because he’s a pea-sized puffer and “nut” because he’s, well, a loony), has been looking a little lonely since we assigned him to solitary confinement. Upon tactical positioning of newly procured green leafies (to beautify and oxygenate the tank, which would also serve as hiding places for PUFA), we decided it would only be right to give PUFA a second chance at communal living.


I have decided PUFA is smart. A genius, in fact. He was the most well behaved fish in the first half hour, slowly drifting through and exploring the new plants. On our second check-up, we noticed all the tetras had stubs for fins. Not just one tetra, but all 4. Not little snippets missing, but chunky chomps gone from their once complete appendages. My beautiful neon tetras. My centerpiece(s). Of course, PUFA was floating innocently amidst the handicapped tetras.


I was mad. PUFA was immediately re-placed in solitary confinement. No more pity for the little pea-nut.

That’s a no-no!

Hamburglar is still pooping.  A long string of feces trails after him as he sucks rocks. He also seems to be teaching Graves how to swim (while pooping).


Hamburglar pooping.  Unashamed!

that trail is poop!

That trail is poop!

Boyfriend is still chasing Girlfriend!  Girlfriend went to Hamburglar with a job offer as a bodyguard (or possibly a love triangle is developing?), but he was too busy pooping/sucking rocks.  Boyfriend, briefly tired of chasing Girlfriend, tried tasting the foliage, but it wasn’t very good.

Today is really about PUFA though.  He slowly became more courageous.  Sometimes he tried to fit in with the tetras.  We noticed that he was the only fish who recognized our presences.  We think he might be a sociopath and/or psychopath and/or have Asperger’s and autism.

Then, all of a sudden, we saw him take a bite out of Sucka (now named Jack/Jacques)!  Then, we saw him try to do the same to Graves, but Graves held his ground.  PUFA kept harassing and biting the other fish, particularly the tetras, who are all now missing half their tails, so we had to intervene.  We arrested him and placed him in isolation.

PUFA's cell

PUFA’s cell

We read up on dwarf puffers, and it turns out they can be quite aggressive!  (And J thought they were cute!)  They also seem to not like pellets or flakes, which is all we have to eat.  I think he might’ve gotten hungry and cranky and taken it out on the other fish.  J is trying to teach him how to eat the food we have (using the “eat or die” method).

Parting thought: I wonder if fish think, “Food is falling from the sky!”

Even more friends!

I think we have FAS – Fish Acquisition Syndrome!  At my urging, and news that the store had a new shipment, we paid them a visit and brought home two new friends:

  • Sushi, another red zebra, so Sashimi has a buddy.
  • Graves, a black moor with not-yet-bulgy eyes.  We went through several name ideas, from Venice to Katchzsper to Big Baby Booty (BBB) to Niggababy.  We finally decided on “Graves” in reference to Graves’ hyperthyroidism, which causes exophthalmos (proptosis).

Graves is still learning how to swim, so he’s very clumsy, but he likes to move.

Sashimi is smaller than Sushi, and the two haven’t quite gotten along yet.

And Boyfriend is still chasing Girlfriend.

New neighbors!

We bought some new fish today!

Current tank residents:

  • NEW!  Hamburglar, the non-fancy goldfish.  He likes to suck on rocks.  He also poops a lot.
  • NEW!  A, B, C, D (names pending), neon tetras.
  • NEW!  PUFA, a dwarf puffer.  Named after polyunsaturated fatty acids, and because he poofs (supposedly).  PUFA is not the brightest crayon.  He likes hiding in the bushes with his tail bent.
  • NEW!  Boyfriend and Girlfriend, male and female guppies.  Boyfriend chases Girlfriend all day.
  • Sucka, a Cory who likes to suck on things at the bottom.  J came up with the name when I asked her, and we’ll change it soon!
  • Sashimi, a red zebra.  She is very calm.