In my office I have a little aquarium in which Brandiss, my goldfish lives. Brandiss was a “feeder fish” at PetSmart, which means he would have been someone’s dinner long ago had I not adopted him.
At first he lived in a traditional goldfish bowl with a second goldfish and a snail. But Brandiss sort of picked on the other fish and it died. It could have been a coincidence.
It wasn’t long after that the snail was nothing but an empty shell. Brandiss said he had nothing to do with it.
I found the little aquarium at GoodWill one day, which gave Brandiss two and a half times the swimming room. He also now has a filter, some aeration, a light and a little palm tree. We’ve been through several snails, which I continue to get because they eat the algae from the sides of the tank. Every Monday, I change about a third of the water.
Brandiss would always get excited whenever I got near the tank. He’d swim up to the surface because he knew he was going to get flakes. That fish loves him some flakes.
But the snails - Klugh, Green, Carl, and others, kept disappearing. They’d be eating away at algae one Friday afternoon and the next Monday morning they’d just be the shell of their former selves. Even though he proclaimed his innocence, I found the whole thing a bit fishy and blamed Brandiss. So when I recently saw him nibbling on his new roommate, Chambliss, I jumped toward the aquarium and yelled at him.
Now whenever I go to his aquarium, talking nicely, Brandiss hides behind his filter, his tiny fins shaking in fear.
I feel terrible. Does anyone know how long it takes a goldfish to forgive?