What do You Call a Fish with No I’s?

Okay, the answer is supposed to be “fsh,” but in our house, we call it Lightning, which is the name of our fsh.

Here’s the backstory on our two goldfish. Vincenzo won a goldfish at the state fair four years ago. It was handed to him in a plastic bag with a sticker that that said, “Get me in a tank within two hours or I die and your kid is permanently scarred forever and will blame you,” causing us to leave the fair in a mad dash to save the fish and our son’s life.

Kevin and I wanted to name the fish “Carny,” but Vincenzo went for “King Bob” because  ever since the name “Bob” was invented, elementary school children have found it hilarious to name things Bob.

Well, since we were getting a giant tank and all that, we decided to cough up an extra $.25 and buy a second fish for Rocco, which he named “Lightning Fast.” “Lightning” for short.

For several years these fish ate and pooped and grew in their tank, which Kevin occasionally cleaned and which instantly turned foggy again. It was a spiteful tank. A few months ago the water had gotten so dingy the fish were just shadows floating around, so Kevin went to clean it and when he pulled the fish out, he called us in. We were all rather shocked. The goldfish were no longer orange–they were white. They looked like those creatures you see on nature shows, the ones living in underground caverns that have never seen the light of day. They looked just like those creatures of the dark, except for their little black eyes. It was kind of creepy, but we got used to it.

When we went to Australia, we plopped a ten-day feeder in the tank, wished the fish good luck, and left. As soon as we got back  we checked on them. Whew! Alive. Only something wasn’t quite right. Lightning’s eyes seemed to be kind of sluffing off. Like, a whole bunch of scales around them were shedding in a horror-movie kind of way. Anyone who was curious to see what it looked like when your eyes melt off your face was unable to eat dinner that night.

The next day, we looked in on Lightning and it was like a magic trick had happened. POOF! Where did Lightning’s eyes go? Because they were no longer on Lightning’s person. His eyeballs had FALLEN OUT.

Rocco immediately diagnosed him. “He probably just has the flu.” Yes, because when you get the flu, it is perfectly normal for your EYEBALLS to FALL OUT. Good thing we all got flu shots this year! The boys wanted to take the fish to the vet. Kevin said, “Oh, Dr. Toilet? Let me see if she’s available.”*

So instead, Kevin went to the pet store to see if there were any magical fish eyeball regrowing flakes we could sprinkle in the water. He came back with a good news/bad news kind of thing. “Bad news,” he said. “Fish cannot regrow eyeballs.” Awwwww, we sympathized. “Good news!” he said. “Fish don’t actually need eyes to live a happy and fulfilling life.” Yay! we cheered.

And then Kevin asked us if we had any idea where Lightning’s eyeballs might be. No; none of us had any idea. Kevin said, “Most likely, they are in King Bob’s stomach.” Yes, it is quite probable that King Bob ATE the eyeballs off of Lightning. Or the eyeballs fell out and King Bob ate them off the ground. I mean, I guess it’s possible that Lightning ate his own eyeballs off the bottom of the tank, but it would have been tricky, since he wouldn’t have been able to see  his eyeballs. King Bob probably used his two beautifully attached eyeballs to eat Lightning’s eyes. The jerk.

So, for those of you who were looking for an excuse to skip dinner tonight, here is a picture of Lightning, the NotVeryGoldfsh, living a happy and fulfilling life.



Let me tell you, I’m glad I’m not the one who has to sleep in the same room as this thing.

Chicken noodle soup
Crusty bread

*Technically, he said, “Let me see if he’s available,” but I am working on fixing society’s gender stereotypes problem, one sentence of one blog post at a time.

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