Skittles Part II: We Starve Skittles; the Retreat of the Black Smudge

by janet on October 23rd, 2006

Both James and I went out of town this weekend starting Thursday night. I was very distracted by the DVR fucking not recording the Project Runway Finale so I had to watch a live (ewww, LIVE???) rerun from midnite to 1 am on Thursday night. I was rushing out the door when I realized … who will feed Skittles? He is used to his two meals per day! This will be three full days of starvation!

Well, what could I do? I vaguely recollected that there are some sort of fish food rocks out there that disintegrate slowly over a week; but too late now, past midnight.

They are only $1.97 right now at Petco PLUS buy one get one free. For shame.

I said “SORRY SKITTLES!” and ran out the door with guilt weighing heavily on my heart.

I texted James: What are we going to do about feeding Skittles?
James: [no answer]

Clearly James either did not give a shit or else the idea of Skittles dying was too much and he became avoidant. Either way, we went on our respective trips and today I came back.

To redeem my “bad mommy-ness, the first thing I did when I unlocked the door was rush to the tank, turn on the light, and throw in a massive amount of flakes.

?but Skittles was hanging out in the north(!?)west corner of his tank, flapping his fins at the rate of about once every ten seconds. He would sink to the bottom, flap half-heartedly, sigh at his reflection, and sink again.

As a psychologist, I diagnosed the problem immediately – learned helplessness. Usually we talk about learned helplessness in the context of rats that are given electric shocks repeatedly, and these rats basically lose the will to live and just lie down in the corner of their cages (sad!). Humans (usually depressed humans) can also exhibit signs of learned helplessness. Think of a human Eeyore and you’ll know immediately what I mean.

That’s when I noticed something very odd – this fish was very gold! Where was the black splotch on his butt? Could it be that the black smudge was retreating?

I immediately whipped out my camera and started taking pictures. James wasn’t home yet so I had to do my best on my own. Luckily Skittles wasn’t moving much at all so I managed to get these.


Here’s the before!

See what I mean? I can only conclude one of two things:

(a) The black smudge is food-related.
(b) James snuck home and replaced a dead Skittles with a new fish.

We’ll never know, so I’ll just go with it.

Anyway, even with a massive foodshower raining down on him, Skittles didn’t do anything about it. He ignored the food and pecked at some rocks at the bottom of the tank. Then, he perked up (yes!) and shot for the surface, but instead of eating the food he started chewing on the plastic plant. What a drama queen.

Finally, when a piece of soggy food happened to drift into his mouth, he finally figured it out and started eating like a madfish. I’m glad, because one of my biggest pet peeves is when people say, I’m so hungry that I’m not hungry anymore. That is such bullshit.

So anyway, Skittles is back to his normal self. Very chipper. Food is pretty amazing, huh? Makes me happy that I have this forum where I can talk about it. I’m thinking that I will give him another small meal tonight before I go to bed. In the meantime, please do not call CPS on me. FPS? Either way, James and I just went to the ultimate CM paradise so don’t report me or else you’ll never get to hear about it.

10 Responses to “Skittles Part II: We Starve Skittles; the Retreat of the Black Smudge”

  1. sylvia says:

    lol! i bet it was too much food. like hakusai, you know? i remember i refused to eat the ones with black spots on them cuz it was gross n mom kept saying “daijyoubuyo, it just happens when they have too much nutrients.” oh btw i got a SUPER BEAUTIFUL betta fish 😀 soooo pretty!!! his name is misty sky (yeah i’m a loser). maybe he can meet mr. skittles some time yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!

  2. DJ Deer says:

    awww. suspenseful story. i surely thought skittles was gunna die. what a relief! 😀

  3. janet says:

    Aren’t beta fish like totally aggressive, and that’s why you have to house them in separate bowls? Misty Sky would tear Skittles to shreds so I am vetoing a playdate.

    You can keep beta fish in super cute bowls (without the air filter, etc.) so it is nice and easy, right? And decorative.

  4. simon says:

    if your CM paradise is where i think it is, i’ll gladly stop planning your demise.

    as for skittles, if he can fight back the black smudge (more specifically, if it only takes 3 days of your absence for the taint to disappear), then he could probably take on misty sky.

    i’m just saying. how could he not?

  5. superjou says:

    How big is the tank? It looks pretty small. It’s very odd that the black went away, I have no clue. You can feed your fish once a day and it’s fine. You can even skip a day and it’s fine. try not to give him so much that the food hits the bottom. If you want to really see your fish do well, try feeding live blood worms, but you usually have to buy by the ounce and he’s not going to eat them all before they die.

  6. superjou says:

    Oh yeah, it’s okay for your fish to swim with a betta, but it may need a larger tank. The betta is slower and won’t be that aggressive to it. You just don’t want something with a showy tale, like a guppy. It’s good to use a mirror and let your betta flare at it once in a while.

  7. *janet* says:

    blood worms??>!>?!>>!>!> ack.

    tnx for the advice – who knew you were a fish & dentist connoisseur?

  8. […] Several people (2) have asked for another update on Skittles. […]

  9. […] The dreaded has happened. The BLACK SMUDGE is back! My little pure gold goldfish is once again turning black! […]

  10. […] Skittles’ little life: We rescue Skittles and Cheeto from the L.A. County Fair. Skittles loses/kills his best buddy and gets a new home. Skittles battles THE BLACK SMUDGE and wins. Skittles being wriggly and cute. Skittles and The Return of THE BLACK SMUDGE. Skittles’ last days. […]

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