Thursday, April 28, 2011

Speaking of writing, here's the next section of the story I am working on. I realize the pets are similarly named to pets I have had, but this is still a complete work of fiction besides the addition of Caramel.

Here's sections one, two, three, and four

When I was nine my parents allowed me to purchase two gerbils. Gerbils tend to be bigger than mice, but smaller than rats. I’ve heard people call them mean. My first pet was a goldfish that was given to me by a friend for my fifth birthday. I gave it a lot of food, so that it would not be hungry. I found it the next day floating on its side in the bowl. I later learned that fish do not have a mechanism to signal that they are full, they just continue eating until their stomach explodes or whatever happens after excess consumption. I did not obtain another pet until several years later when I bought my gerbils, Chocolate Brownie and Brownie, which I named as such because they were brown and I thought animals ought to be named after foods they were similarly colored to, hence the later naming of my golden retriever, Caramel.
I don’t know how long I had Chocolate Brownie and Brownie for. Their existence does not stand out in my memories except for the day that I peered into their cage to find Chocolate Brownie picking meat off the exposed ribcage of the dead Brownie. I proceeded to scream in a manner which is rarely done sincerely, causing my parents to rush to my room and haul off the cage with the offending animal inside. I don’t recall what happened to Chocolate Brownie after this, only that several years later my younger brother took up his own interest in rodents and purchased two mice, one of whom routinely killed his cage mates. My father released this mouse into the backyard, chuckling over its future amongst the squirrels and cats that roamed the neighborhood.
Freshman year I got two fish. One, large and golden which I named Kant and the other black and verbose named Nietzsche. I kept their bowl next to my bed and spent a good amount of time staring into their bowl and worrying about them unnecessarily when I spent the night in my boyfriend’s room and calling my roommate to make sure they were fed. On the way home for winter break, Kant started swimming very slowly in the plastic bag I had placed him in for the journey. He died the next day, the shock of being returned to his bowl killing him almost instantly. Nietzche survived the break, but when he finally passed it was with slow painful observance as I was packing to return to school. It was as if he somehow sensed the upcoming journey and was simply refusing to go. Like his bowl mate, his swimming started to become lethargic and every so often he would turn onto his side. I tried to nurture him back to health by peering into the bowl as often as I could, which about all anyone can do in the death of a fish, but nothing worked and the next morning when I fetched the little green net to fish his body out of the bowl and into the bag, he was very nearly passed and I spent the car ride tearful as his body limply floated to the surface. 

No comments: