You're at the aquarium store, and have decided on some new fish for your freshwater tank. You ask the shopkeeper to catch you the new jewel you have in mind for your collection-- that one, no-- in the back, that one right there. And the shopkeeper obediently chases your pick in and out, around and through all the decorations and other identical fish in the tank-- never mind that two others already accidently swam into the net on their own. Thus begins only the first of many stressful events the fish you have chosen will endure today before it gets to your home aquarium-- to say nothing of a few more after it arrives there.
Now, having caught your prize, the shopkeeper plunks it into the container of dechlorinated water dipped from the 5-gallon bucket at the fish bagging station-- no sense having to refill tanks after dipping water from them all day, now, is there? And then it's sploosh! into the bag, and a blast of air from the "oxygen" tank, and then spin, spin, spin, and the sloshing around as the rubber band is wound around, around, around. Wait! Before you put it in the paper bag, let me hold it up to the light and look at it one last time before you ring it up.
Now it's time to go home. But, half way there:
It's such a hot day-- let's stop at Baskin Robbins for a cool treat. A banana split would be great-- but, hmmm... Don't want to risk messing up the upholstery, we'll have to eat it here-- should only be 20 minutes, or so.
OK, that was great, but time to get on home. Sure gets hot fast in this car on a day like today. If we ate ice cream in the car, it surely would have melted all over the place.
Finally home-- just float the fish in the tank while I change the oil in the wife's car. It shouldn't take me too long.
Wow, who'd have thought it would take an hour and a half to get that darned oil filter changed. Well, I guess that's been plenty of time-- go ahead and dump the new fish out into the tank.
Hmm, it's hiding in the back-- get that algae cleaner stick and chase it out front so we can see it. Go ahead and turn on all the lights, too, so we can get a real good look at it.
And the next day:
Darn, only a day later and the new fish is dead. Have to go to the aquarium store and get my money back. They must have sold me a sick fish...
...continue reading "Stress: Enemy Number One"