Sunday, October 12, 2008
Send in the Clowns
Do you know what it's like to take a look at your kid and find that he's grown another two inches?
Maybe not, but it's unsettling, thrilling and strange at the same time.
See, about a month and a half ago I was looking at Blue and he seemed bigger to me. A lot bigger.
Well, you know how we are, Jewish mothers, what was I thinking, all that food.
I took a good look and his tank looked too small. He seemed unhappy. Granted, the marine tank was perfect for the room, and the rocks just right for the tank, but poor Blue no longer fit.
I mentioned to #3 son that Blue had to move on, had to graduate, leave home so to speak. I said, "Son. While you're cruising CraigsList for fish, call one of your fish salespeople and ask about a bigger tank for Blue."
This is like asking a little kid if he wants ice cream, or wants to go swimming on a hot day. My son, who has much better things to do with his time, jumped to the task. I had my tank in 2 days.
FD sees the boys bringing in Blue's future home and becomes the Doom Sayer. He's not happy with the plan. The new tank sticks out too far. People will bump into a corner and want to sue for damages, or simply won't like us.
"I'll have to do a lot of construction," he says, "including figuring out what to do about that supporting beam, the one that holds up the house. Who do we know in steel?"
We live in a big city. He has the piece that he needs made for $54.00.
My son sets up the new tank up in another room and buys those baby clowns we discussed in Water, Water, Everywhere, and we wait. Patiently.
In a matter of weeks FD has done an amazing job and #3 has moved Blue (not a simple procedure) and Blue seems very pleased. The two new clowns are clowning around.
Friends and family are all excited. I would have rolled the credits* on the video, but didn't have time. What you see is Blue acclimating to the temperature of his new sea in the safety of a large Ziplock, and the clowns are welcoming him in.
This is really why Stephen Sondheim wrote that song, Send in the Clowns. They're friendly.
But Blue. Who knew if he would be friendly or not? He had yet to meet them.
After a fitful night's sleep (Will Blue survive the shock of the move? He's sleeping upside down! Will he eat the clowns?) I wake up and all is well; the fish are swimming along famously.
Except the clowns are wondering, "Is that guy staying longer than three days? Whaddaya' think? He's huge! And how much will it take to feed him? And where did the big guy go, the one who arranged all of this, the one with the connections, and where is his wife? I like her, too."
*Thanks #3 son, and thanks FD, too, Y. for ideas on caves, C. for her support, and Little One, of course, who shlepped.