Last winter only two of our mosquito fish survived the winter, a male and a female. We kept hoping they’d have babies but it never happened. This is one of the reasons we bought some goldfish: our fish population had seriously declined; we were tired of owning fish that we could barely see; the mosquito fish did not seem particularly hardy.

But now we have the problem that I originally wanted to avoid, which is the fish are all pretty distinct and therefore one starts to see them as individuals with personalities, and one (this one) starts to have feelings for them.

So when the female mosquito fish started acting strangely a week ago, I started to feel bad. She would mostly just lie on a large smooth rock and barely move. K tried to convince me she was pregnant but I feel that with my ample animal experience, I think I know a sickly and possibly dying animal when I see it. The male would hover around her, which was surprisingly endearing.

Last night she was lying on her side on the front edge of the pond, and that sure looked bad. I figured she wouldn’t last through the night.

Here I entered the emotional limbo of pet/not-pet. It ‘s a little absurd to ceremonially bury her, as she isn’t really a pet and I don’t love her as one. But I don’t know what else to do. Watching her makes me think of all the painful pet deaths I have gone through and why I no longer have “real” pets. It also just makes me sad.

I can’t help but wonder what she thinks or feels (don’t assume she doesn’t) as she lies there watching the sky with one eye always open. Which further makes me wonder what the hell death is anyway.

This morning she was lying there immobile and I reached down to touch her to make sure she was dead — and she swam away! So, I guess she may not be contemplating oblivion just yet.

imgp0282.JPGAfter some thought, we decided to keep Tzipi’s name the same despite his gender. Mostly because we are used to it, but also since he is not a pet, what does it matter what we call him?

Our schedule has been erratic for the past couple of weeks and it seems that Tzipi has kind of moved on from his obsession with us and our nuts. We think this is partly because he is being watched by other jays and doesn’t want them honing in on his used-to-be-secret food source. He may be lying low, temporarily or permanently. Also, he probably has a hoard the size of a mountain by now.

So he just comes by from time to time. He came by when my friend W was here Tuesday evening, so I introduced W to Tzipi and he came right over and took nuts from W’s hand. W was quite pleased. He suggested that I teach Tzipi some tricks. Hmm.

… and discovered that most people are incredibly unobservant to what’s right in front of them. Forget about electronic gadgets being distracting or The Problem. Folks weren’t paying attention anyway.

Anyway, I fell off well riding my bike for no real reason, which certainly isn’t an isolated incident, but for some goddamn reason this time I broke my hand. And normally I wouldn’t care so much, because at this point in my life I have almost non-stop intense sensations and other physical inconveniences, but I’m supposed to ride 50 miles with my brother on August 8 in the Pan Mass Challenge, and it’s going to suck if I can’t.

I found out that the common term for the kind of break I have (spiral fracture on the 4th metacarpal) is a Boxer’s fracture. Of course, it makes me feel so much better to have an injury that sounds so tough. And if that isn’t enough, I found out the type of cast I have is called a gauntlet. Nice, huh? I doubt there is any injury which sounds more butch. BTW, I found out the type of cast by reading my medical record on the computer screen when the physician’s assistant left the room. Hey, don’t leave me alone with a computer and think I’m not going to peek — or hack, if I can.

Anyway, the day after I broke my goddamn hand I was watering the flowers in front of my building with my good hand, my arm in a sling, and my upstairs neighbor came by. She was standing about five feet from me as we chatted and she never noticed the sling. I was dumbfounded and when I told this to K he said, “She’s even ditzier than I thought.”

BUT, the next day I went to work, and discovered that most people didn’t notice my arm & hand were in a cast. I was getting more and more flabbergasted by this when I was waiting for the elevator and the office nurse came out. She stood right next to me and said, “Hi, what’s new?” I held my goddamn broken hand in her face in said, “I BROKE MY HAND.” I mean, how could a NURSE not see that I have a cast?

This leads me to believe that people are way more unobservant than I previously thought, and I had already determined they were pretty out of it. Here I am, worrying about my acne or wrinkles or sagging but they don’t see a thing. I could probably walk around with a goddamn bag over my head and they wouldn’t notice. They are completely oblivious.

By the way, the code term for my hand is The Mighty Crip Fist.
Bonus: how many times does the word “goddamn” appear in this post?