Freeing Exotic Fish is Hazardous

In the US the snakehead fish is a big problem. Any of them caught are to be kept out of the water, killed, eaten, turned into compost, etc. However, you can now buy them in pet stores and, of course, on the Internet. Take them home, set them up in a tank. Then, when they get too big for your tank, or when you’re just seen enough of them – what happens then? Want to take a guess? They go back into the water, not the water of the fish tank. Not the toilet tank (they’re too big to flush). They go back into the ecosystem, the very place we are trying to keep them out of.

How stupid are people to know this fish is a hazard (to buy it for that reason) and then dump it out to grow and breed in the lakes, rivers and other waters where it does not belong.

From the Invading Species website:

The release of aquarium pets into Ontario waters is illegal. You can help prevent the spread of non-native (exotic) aquatic species by doing the following:

  • Never release or flush unwanted aquarium pets or aquarium water into natural waters, drainage ditches or sewers.
  • Drain aquarium water on dry land.
  • Return or donate unwanted aquarium fish, reptiles, snails and plants to a pet store or a school.

Mermaid or Whale

From something forwarded to me in email this morning:

Recently, in a large city in Australia, a poster featuring a young, thin and tan woman appeared in the window of a gym. It said, “This summer, do you want to be a mermaid or a whale?”

A middle-aged woman, whose physical characteristics did not match those of the woman on the poster, responded publicly to the question posed by the gym.

To Whom It May Concern,
Whales are always surrounded by friends (dolphins, sea lions, curious humans.) They have an active sex life, get pregnant and have adorable baby whales. They have a wonderful time with dolphins stuffing themselves with shrimp. They play and swim in the seas, seeing wonderful places like Patagonia, the Bering Sea and the coral reefs of Polynesia. Whales are wonderful singers and have even recorded CDs. They are incredible creatures and virtually have no predators other than humans. They are loved, protected and admired by almost everyone in the world.

Mermaids don’t exist. If they did exist, they would be lining up outside the offices of Argentinean psychoanalysts due to identity crisis. Fish or human? They don’t have a sex life because they kill men who get close to them, not to mention how could they have sex? Just look at them … where is IT? Therefore, they don’t have kids either. Not to mention, who wants to get close to a girl who smells like a fish store?

The choice is perfectly clear to me: I want to be a whale.

P..S. We are in an age when media puts into our heads the idea that only skinny people are beautiful, but I prefer to enjoy an ice cream with my kids, a good dinner with a man who makes me shiver, and a piece of chocolate with my friends.

With time, we gain weight because we accumulate so much information and wisdom in our heads that when there is no more room, it distributes out to the rest of our bodies. So we aren’t heavy, we are enormously cultured, educated and happy. Beginning today, when I look at my butt in the mirror I will think, ¨Good grief, look how smart I am!¨

About Writing

Sometimes it comes easy, usually those are the times when you have a lot to say and can hardly keep up with yourself. It’s good to have nimble fingers. I don’t know how the one fingered typists do it!

Other times it is an exercise in patience when you have interruptions and have to keep yourself getting back to it no matter how far away it gets as the day and the interruptions go on.

Other times, not so often, I just feel there is nothing I have to say, nothing I want to say and the world is a nasty, dark and horrible place. Why should I talk to anyone? Why should I even let them know a bit of me just so they can knock me on my butt again, nasty bugger that they are. Those days I give myself the day off, or I write it all down, DAMN THE LOT OF THEM!

Originally posted as a comment in Ken’s blog. Sometimes I want to remember what I wrote, sometimes it helps keep me grounded in an odd way.

I tried acting when I was a kid. The school wanted me to do it. So my Mother had me join an acting group for kids. We put on a play about fish and a pricness and so on. I might still have the script. I did get a fairly big part. I did manage to do it all and didn’t forget what I was supposed to say. But, I’m not a natural performer in person. I have trained myself not to say “ummm” and other stalling things people do in speech. But, I perform much better on paper, in every way. I like the mystery of making the words up as I go along. I also like having the control of being the only one speaking. People who interrupt when I am talking make me want to do bad things.

I’d forgotten about that old thing, the few months of that acting group. Funny how your life can have so much in it when you look back at where you have been. Maybe I just don’t look back enough and think only about looking ahead so I miss myself.

Pond Snails

All the goldfish survived the winter. I was tossing in a bit of fish food and watching them when I noticed a snail in the pond too. How it got there I have no idea. I read that they came come when you buy pond plants. But, we haven’t bought any plants except for one last summer. I counted at least five snails when I looked for them. I don’t know what kind they are or if I should get rid of some, how many are too many? Anyway, interesting to find them living in the pond. If they are purely scavengers they are welcome, tons of dead leaves in the pond for them to feast on. But, if they eat the fresh growth we will have a problem. There are only two waterlilys in our pond and one is pretty sensitive. Anyway, will see how the new tenant works out. I took a photo, if anyone knows what kind of snail it is let me know.

(As always you can click on the photo to see it bigger).

Sentimental about PC Dinosaurs

Why are we sentimental about old electronics? I’ve seen them at the Goodwill, those thick monitors side by side, the old towers with their dirty keyboards leaning against them and the mouse dangling like a spider. I’ve seen photos taken by others who have found old computers, video game consoles and assorted technological anatomy discarded on sidewalks, rummage sales, tossed out of windows. It’s funny that they bring more feeling than the other debris, the general run of the mill stuff like cracked dishes, beat up furniture and half-dead clothing.

It’s funny that we do care. I get a funny feeling seeing those discarded dinosaurs, unwanted and hopeless. Of course, they have no thoughts about the whole thing. Whatever emotions or passion they ever had were from the people using them. Maybe it’s because they became something more than a hunk of plastic, a tool. They became familiar, like a family pet you give attention to every day, worry about when it’s sick and feel happy spending quality time together.

Still, they are totally useless now. Unless you can make some kind of modern art with them, deconstruct them and build a new system using some of the old parts. Those old clunky monitors are too far gone though. But, they could make a very unique fish bowl for your goldfish. So there is always hope, if you really want to save your old PC.