Thursday, February 28, 2008

A Fishy Situation

It's been a busy week for me; Howling at the Moon is finally out (yea!), my children have come home with science projects that require parental assistance (enough said), and I'm working hard at getting another book written. So in the spirit of multitasking and time management, I decided to make a phone call while changing out some of the water for my son's Betta.

Of course, because I was on the phone, I didn't scoop the water out with a glass. I just poured a little of it out of the top of the tank.

Which would have been a triumph of efficiency, except for one minor detail that I'm guessing you've already deduced. That's right. The stupid fish went too. And let me tell you, there's no worse feeling than watching your son's favorite blue betta literally circling the drain -- particularly when you're the one who put him there.

I hung up (a tad late, alas) and spent the next ten minutes with my hand down the disposal, wondering (a) if it would be more humane to run the disposal or just keep the water going to send the fish downstream; (b) how quickly I'd have to drive to replace the betta before Ian got home from school (answer: not a legal or even physically possible speed); and (c) which slimy thing was old egg noodle or something even more disgusting and which was fish. Something did flip around from time to time, so I knew not all hope was lost, but all I kept coming up with was egg noodles. At least I think that's what they were. Although we haven't had egg noodles in weeks, come to think of it. Best not to think of it, actually...

Anyway, after the twelfth egg noodle, it finally occurred to me to use a flashlight. To my (massive) relief, there the poor thing was, blue and forlorn, marooned between two egg-noodle-like objects and the jaws of the disposal. After another few minutes of him squirting through my fingers to even more difficult corners of the disposal, I managed to extricate him.

Firetruck, I am happy to say, is back in his tank now, and despite the missing scales on his nose and a couple of places on his back, he's remarkably undamaged. And nobody has noticed. Thank God.

I'd stay and write more, but I have to go slice potato and apple chunks for a science experiment and then find a bug to feed the gecko now. Cheers, and hope you're having a great week!


At 10:39 PM, February 28, 2008, Anonymous Sarah said...

That is an amazing story!

At 7:43 PM, February 29, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Karen- I onced drove to Petsmart with my son's dead crab in my purse so that I could replace it with one that had the same shell. Jake was out of town and due back in mere hours. As he is now 20 years old, I must say it was a awhile back, but I remember it like it was yesterday...the panic...the sweating, etc. That was me, not the crab. --Melissa

At 10:18 AM, March 03, 2008, Blogger Mystery Robin said...

that is a priceless story!! I'm so happy the betta is ok! Oh the thing we do as mothers...

At 7:26 PM, March 06, 2008, Blogger Karen MacInerney said...


It would have been more amazing if Firetruck had survived... but we do what we can, right? Thanks for stopping by!

At 7:27 PM, March 06, 2008, Blogger Karen MacInerney said...



I figured it was you panicking, btw. :)

How was Xmas in the snowy north? (Like ages ago.)

At 7:28 PM, March 06, 2008, Blogger Karen MacInerney said...

Mystery Robin,

I totally agree. We do things we NEVER would have imagined -- and we don't think twice about it.

Someone once told me "You're only as happy as your least happy kid" -- true, isn't it?


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