Sorry Children

Sorry Children


By Jim E. Quarles

As related in an article before this one, I explained that I have now set up a microphone on some of my fish tanks to record the sounds discus make under tank conditions.

I run a slow speed tape recorder and check results every twenty four hours. Most of the time all I hear is air bubbling through the water, or a filter pump running. But this morning, I was amazed when I found the following on the recorder.

Mother and father discus were it appears explaining to the children what their life cycle was likely to be. And believe me it upset me as much as it did the young discus I was about to sell!!

Father discus said "children" you have reached the age where our keeper Jim will have to ship you to new owners very soon. One of the children spoke up and said over the bubbling noise of the filter, but father we don't want to go. We like it here, it is nice and safe. We have lots of good food to eat and the family is altogether and happy now.

Mother discus said Jr. we know you're happy here, and Jim takes very good care of us all, but you can see we can't all live in this tank, and you're growing faster everyday.

One of the little girl discus spoke and said, mother we know, but won't Jim just move us to a larger tank like before? Father discus said I am sorry but that may not be the case this time for you see you have reached what is known as salable age and size!

What does that mean many voices asked? Mother discus said, children it breaks my heart to tell you this but Jim makes something he calls money by selling discus. I am not sure exactly what money is but it seems very important!! Your father and I have not told you this before now because you were and may be too young to understand. You children are not our first born. Before you hatched out on the white cone over their we had other children! Lots of other children, and when they reach your age and size Jim sold them for that thing called Money. The young adult children at first seemed bewildered, then some started to get angry. Then one of the stronger young discus spoke up. I don't want to go anywhere, I was talking to that nice couple next door, you know Mr-Mrs. Snakeskin. Mr. Snakeskin told me that when he was young he was sold like that and to some jerk who kept him in dirty water! Can you believe that, dirty water? He also told me that if you get sold never show any signs of being out of sorts even for a little while, you have to be bright, beautiful and eat like a pig all the time. If you don't, the jerk who owns you will start dumping all kinds of foul chemicals in on you. Dad is that story true?

Son I am sorry to say it is true far to often. Only about 2% of the people who have discus like us really know our simple requirements. The other 98% are indeed slow learners, they mean well and try very hard to understand you but you see they often times take advice from other jerks who think they know more than they do. But giveing bum information makes them seem smart to others, so you have to suffer children.

Mama discus spoke up and said, now when dinner time comes to night, I want you all to really stuff yourselves because when you're sold you may never get the right kind of food again. Some people just don't " Get It ".

Hearing all this made me so sad. I decided this family shall not be sold.
That way they can be sure to avoid the jerks out there.

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