Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Guppy Love

I’d like to introduce everyone to the newest addition to my office:

Not a very good picture, I know, and if you can’t tell, he is mostly purple in color. And then about half way down on his fins the color stops and they are white/clear. No, I had no intention of getting a beta. It just so happened that a couple of Saturdays ago we were in my favorite store to hate, Wal-Mart, (no I’m not capable of just calling it Wal-Mart from the get-go :-) ) and we had to get cat litter. Of course that puts us in the pet aisles, which Sweetpea immediately recognized as the place where the fish are. So, to avoid a serious fit of screaming in the middle of the store, we had to go look at the fish. Totally out of character for Wal-Mart, they had an amazing selection of betas, with some absolutely gorgeous coloring. Once I saw this one, I could not resist. Since purple is my favorite color, I just HAD to have him. And since we have a beta at home already, and I knew he and Mr. Fish would not get along, I decided he’d be perfect for my office.

I brought him in the following Monday. Once I got his bowl all set up and filled, and he was comfortable and fed in his new home, coworkers began noticing him and stopping by my office to check him out. One asked me what his name is. Name? What name? You mean I have to name him? Oh. It hadn’t even occurred to me that he needed a name. Since Mr. Fish was already taken, and I thought it needed to be something a little more creative than “that fish over there”, I was drawing a blank. I suggested to her that if the office wanted to contribute to the name, he could be an office mascot. She just laughed and left my office. Later, however, she came back in and said she thought his name should be Grape. Grape? Hmm. He may be purple but I just didn’t think that fit. I told her I’d think about it and let her know. Later it hit me. I emailed her my idea for the name, and upon her giggles from down the hall and “laughing” email response, “that fish over there” has now become: GILLbert Grape. Thank you, thank you. I’m here all week. Geez I crack myself up.

In further fish news, a friend of mine came to visit this past weekend from Idaho. We had a girls’ night out/slumber party at a local hotel. I’m sure many of you have heard of it, the Hotel Monaco. The Hotel Monaco is very pet friendly. In fact, it is so pet friendly that one of the amenities they offer is entitled “Guppy Love”. Upon request, and free of charge (very important), the hotel will provide you with a goldfish in a pretty clean bowl for you to “adopt” for the term of your stay in the hotel. This is a service provided so that you will not be lonely for your own fish, since they are the type of pet that doesn’t travel well.

I’ll try not to get into my thoughts on what kind of person gets lonely for a fish, as I have this image of Commandant Lassard from Police Academy in my head, carrying around his fish bowl with his little goldfish inside. But I digress…

When I sent my friend the link for the hotel’s website, I told her she HAD to check out the amenities section. It wasn’t long before I got a response saying we had a reservation, and that she couldn’t resist the Guppy Love, so we had a goldfish too. Since I didn’t really believe this whole thing to be more than some sort of sick marketing ploy, I was quite surprised when we arrived to find that there was, in fact, a goldfish ready for us in our room. He was quite a pretty little goldfish, too, but I did not think to snap a picture. My friend named him Sushi Bowl. Unfortunately we weren’t aware how appropriate that name would end up being.

We enjoyed Sushi Bowl’s company during our stay. He was a lively, interactive sort of fish, very curious about us and our goings on. We were therefore immensely dismayed and disappointed when we awoke the next morning to find that Sushi Bowl had gone belly-up. Our mention of this fact at the front desk brought swift, horrified apologies, but no compensation for our loss (after all, Sushi Bowl was a free amenity in the first place, and we were only foster owners, not adoptive parents). I warned my friend to watch her credit card bill to make sure they didn’t bill her for Sushi Bowl’s apparently untimely demise. Regrettably, I don’t believe our status as foster owners gives us the ability for sue for wrongful death, or even for loss of affection. Ah, well, rest in peace Sushi Bowl.

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