« never call me again! | Main | strom marks another milestone »

grinding nemo

Kids are flushing their fish down the toilet in an attempt to set them free ala Finding Nemo.

Unfortunately, life does not imitate animation. I wonder how many of these parents will hire lawyers and sue Disney/Pixar for causing mental anguish by making kids believe that fish can survive a trip down the pipe.

My kids are just as gulllible. DJ thought if he climbed into the sewer could find the Ninja Turtles. I dared him to go. He didn't.

I am no stranger to flushing fish, either. I once had a 20 gallon fish tank. We had an assortment of goldfish that we won at a local fair; Darth, Skywalker, Greedo and Boba Fett. The first three bit the dust after a month or so, but Boba hung on, probably happy that he had this spacious home all to himself.

I got tired of having the tank take up valuable counter space. I waited for Boba to die. And waited. And waited. And then, I could wait no longer. One morning, before the kids woke, I scooped up Boba and sent him on his merry way into the sewer system of Long Island.

If only Finding Nemo had come out then instead of now, I could have blamed my fishocide on the movie and remained guilt free. But no, the image of Boba, eyes wide and frightened, traveling at high speed toward the Atlantic Ocean, haunts me to this day. I feel like I should pay penance for that deathly flush.

And now that I know what happens when something goes down the toilet - it gets grinded into bits - I feel even worse.

Probably not as bad as Justin felt the time he stepped on his mother's toy poodle, who was sleeping under a pile of clothes - and killed him.

But that's another story.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference grinding nemo:


hahahah! My sister set her hampster free in the backyard, she still swears she sees mutant furry chupmunk hampster type things running around

I had a goldfish live for SEVEN years.

You know...that goldfish is a huge feces eating monster in the NYC sewers now.

You realize that don't you?

I'm just glad that movie wasn't called Finding Benji.

Would that be called "piscicide"?


1. The fish that they give out are bred to be feeder fish for other animals and are often not the most healthy specimens of the breed. Besides, goldfish are "cool water" fish that need to be kept in larger-size tanks (MOST DEFINATELY NOT A BOWL!!!), due to the amount of waste they produce and the relatively large size they gow to -- up to 24 inches. *They also have a life span of 25-50 years, so what may seem to you to be a long life of seven years (just an example, not an indictment) is really less than 1/3 of an average lifetime in somewhat optimal conditions.
2. Fair/carnival workers generally have no knowledge concerning the welfare of the fish/animals they give away, and often keep the animals in deplorable conditions and dumping any left over fish into storm drains before changing venues.
3. As for reptile prizes, any reputable breeder would never release his/her hatchlings for such purposes. Again, we come to not-so-healthy animals, which are given to people without proper, if any, instructions for care. And they would NEVER tell you that the cute little baby iguana that Johnny just won will cost you a few hundred dollars at the pet store to get set up properly (heat lamps, UV lamps, vitamins, LARGE cage) and that this little reptile will grow big enough (6-ft from nose to tip of tail) to eventually need it's own room in your house. I'm sure they also aren't aware of how aggressive sexually mature male iguanas can get around menstruating women--sounds funny, yes, but just give your local reptile rescue chapter a call for some horror stories!

*Note concerning turtles and tortoises:
Buying or selling any turtles or tortoises with less than a 4-inch shell diameter is in violation of the CITES Act. And you should check with local game wardens for restrictions in your area, since it is often illegal to posess indigenous species without special permits. *This includes that box turtle that you 'found' in the woods -- you didn't 'find' him 'cause he wasn't lost. He knew exactly where he was, so put him back. The stress of captivity will probably kill him.

The previous soap-boxy message was brought to you by the collective spirit of frustrated exotic animal pet store managers everywhere.

say it isnt so
a fish murderer
oh my bubble is bursted
how can i continue to idolize you now?
you have broken the spell
boo hoooo
gurgle gurgle
boo hooo

My parents have two small poodles that they love dearly, and they're ALWAYS trying to get under your feet. I can definitely sympathize...

Poor Justin! That's awful.

My favorite goldfish story:

I went to a liberal arts school, and for the most part, I was able to ignore the "liberal" part. I could throw away the leaflets, and occasionally a "world food" day would have something good to eat.

In the student center one week, the Chemistry department set up a display, where a carefully heated tank had a goldfish inside. I don't remember why they did it, but there was a nicely printed letter explaining how safe the fish was. All in all, a nice change from some of the strange art projects that were usually in there.

One day, the fish was gone, and there was a scrawled manifesto beneath the letter, describing how the fish had been "liberated", and thrown into the lake on campus.
Unfortunately, the lake was (and probably still is) a stagnant cesspool that has to be dredged every summer because it is full of crap. Also, one of the still-thinking members of campus wrote an addendum under the manifesto: "You idiot, you killed the goldfish because of heat exchange!"

To this day, I have a Chemistry department shirt with the goldfish symbol on the front, to remind me of stupidity in the name of liberal causes.


I've kept freshwater and marine aquaria for more than 20 years...and unfortunately, I've had to euthanize some fish along the way by various methods.

Unless the fish is very large, I think the most humane method is to place it in a small container of water and drop in some Alka Seltzer. This generates carbon dioxide (displacing the dissolved oxygen in the water) and in effect, puts the fish to sleep before oxygen deprivation brings about its demise.

My son decided the goldfish we won would like a drink of fruit punch. "look dad, fruit punch made them sleep!" bahahah
My wife got pissed when I told him the truth "nope, ya killed em boy."
His totally unhorrified response was "Oh... can I go outside and play?"