For those who are new to my sorry fish tail, Larry is our serial killer catfish. When other fish join Larry in our fish tank, they end up leaving via the toilet bowl.
At last count, he had outlived a dozen other fish including Moe, Curly, Federica, Archibald, Vladamir, Jacques, Luigi, Larry 2, Morgan Stanley, Ludwig Von Beckerfish, Wolfgang Amadeus Goldfish, and the latest casualty, Aretha P. Franklinfish.
We had hoped that Aretha might actually break the chain of fools. She out-sized Larry by a good fish and a half and didn’t put up with his carp. Clearly she felt she was not getting the R-E-S-P-E-C-T she deserved for a fish of her size, so whenever he would start up with her, she would suck up a piece of gravel from the bottom of the tank and shoot it at him. I was not only amazed by her ingenuity, but by her aim. She hit him right between his little fishy eyeballs every time.
Still, we figured Larry must be hiding some heavy artillery under the bubble filter because one morning I came downstairs to feed the fish and saw that Aretha had passed on to that great R&B fishbowl in the sky.
Larry played dumb and didn’t say a word, but I knew that somehow, he was responsible for Aretha’s untimely death.
“I think it is time we changed Larry’s name,” I said to my husband as I carried Aretha’s lifeless body to the bathroom. “We should start calling him Dexter.”
“Whatever. So, are we having a memorial service for Aretha?” my husband asked.
“No, I thought I would just play a selection of songs from the Lady Soul album.”
“Nice touch.” He said.
“… Then I’m going to go to the pet store to get a new fish,” I continued.
“DON’T get another fish,” warned my husband. “You get really attached to them and then Larry kills them. “
“The tank is too big for just one fish.” I argued. “Besides, his shark days are over. I have a plan.”
That afternoon I went to the pet store and consulted with the owners about our problem. I felt it was partially their responsibility to help me sort this out since they were the ones who had sold me a killer catfish. We chatted for awhile and then I left with a new fish in the bag.
When my husband got home he peered into the fish tank and rolled his eyes.
“You got another fish,” he groaned.
“Yes, he’s a Goby.” I grinned.
“Larry’s gonna kill him,” my husband said assuredly.
“No. Larry can’t touch this one.”
“What makes you so sure?” he wondered.
“The fish’s name is Goby Soprano.”