September 28, 2000
I dug a grave last night

My children had two fish. Peanut Butter & Pom Pom. I was never really sure which fish was Peanut Butter and which fish was Pom Pom, one was orange and another was black. The orange one, I'll call him Pom Pom, hadn't been looking to good lately. Droopy fins and what not. I had chalked it up to the long trip we took, when I placed the long term food cube in the tank and left the light on for 10 days.

Last night, while the children were taking a bath, Michele took me in to see Pom Pom. Pom Pom had no balance or orientation. He couldn't stay horizontal and keep bumping into things. He would swim a bit, then float toward the surface, then swim a little more. I'm no expert, but I could tell Pom Pom would soon shuffle of his mortal coil.

Rather than letting my children find a fish floating in the tank come the morning, I had to take action. My wife is not good with these things and left to wash the kids. I got a net and bowl and took Pom Pom from the fish tank. I expected him to quickly die by the time the I got outtside to dig a grave. I dug a shallow grave and looked in on Pom Pom. Mouth still gasping. I watched him for a minute, thinking happy thoughts to ease him out of this life. He didn't die. I decided not to bury him alive or let him linger on. I killed the little fish to end the ordeal. I thanked him again for being a good pet and making my children happy. I buried Pom Pom so he could return to the earth and feed the trees in our backyard.

Sometime soon, the girls will realize there is only one fish in the tank. I guess I should tell them Pom Pom died, but it would be easier to tell them that he went for a long trip. Being a parent isn't all diaper changing and mess cleanup.

Posted by michael at September 28, 2000 08:07 AM