read / discuss / question

Links / Related: Epilogue / Cool: Sluggy Freelance

Login:    Password:      Don't have a username? Register!

Discussion > Feedback > A Goldfish Story

A Goldfish Story

BlacklightResponsive (May 17th, 2003, 8:38 am)

This isn't part of the story yet, I just though I should warn you that this piece is a bit...much to keep up with at times. It doesn't read all that you will see, and the first paragraph goes on forever. Again, I was trying to find a line in which the reader would in fact face and deal with the same situations that the fish in the story was. Namely mass confusion and trying to keep up with whats going on. I do want it comprehensible though, and not TOO difficult to get through. I dunno, I am rambling, I've been up too long. I hope you see what I am getting at. Anyway, here it is.

A Goldfish Story

A goldfish swam around it's small round fishbowl. A fishbowl to define the genre, so perfectly bowl-like that nobody in the real world would ever own such a thing, for it was the fish bowl of cartoons and stories. Not a tank like any half-decent human would buy, so as not to cramp one small goldfish into one small space with nothing more to look at than the fingerprints on the glass. However in this case, there it was, the small round fishbowl, with of course, the ever enigmatic goldfish, swimming in circles within. His large bulbious eyes buldged with stupidity. A goldfish has a certain defence mechanism used to help deal with the more obvious aspects of his life. Such an aspect, for example, would be that he is confined in the same small space for the entire length of his existance. This clever little trick is directly tied to his stupidity, for what will appear to be very obvious reasons. This trick, developed after millions of years of evolution within the species, is that goldfish can't retain a single memory for more than 5 minutes 6 seconds. This may seem absurd at first. Where and how was such a number derived. While, this number does vary from fish to fish, but can be easily measured by the owner as long as the owner shows to have an attention span that spans a period of time which is greater than that of which the fish can retain a memory. The reason most people haven't noticed this time span for a fish is quite simple (and can be exemplified by whether or not you had to re-read the sentance previous to this to make sense of it), most people don't have an attention span to rival their fish's long term memory. Just take radio played music for an example, it's not often you come across a song that tops 4 minutes. But back to the goldfish. You can judge your little fishy's capacity to retain a memory simply by watching him, and waiting for that moment in which he forgets everything and discovers the world anew again, as if for the first time ever. His already buldging eyeballs should sparkle just so, and said fishy may even swim around the small bowl in excitement. Around the time that the novalty of being alive and in the world wears off, the fishy will have forgotten about it and will have started the cycle all over again. Time this cycle, and you know about how long your fishy can hold on to a memory. Particularly apt fish have developed such a keen ability at memory loss that they can see their own bubbles for the first time, twice, before they hit the surface and burst. Sometimes during a fishy's life however, this defense mechanism may screw up. It's times like these that a fish comes to understand the futility of his own life. The endlessly depressing cycle. It was a moment like this that struck that goldfish, the one in the perfectly small goldfish bowl. Tossing the ideas over in his head again and again, the goldfish grew unable to deal with such attrocities as his bowl size, and his own inability to normally remember anything for a period of time long enough to do anything usefull with. So in a last act of desperation, this goldfish slowly swam to the bottom of the tank. He gave a sigh, and pointed himself towards the top of the bowl; towards the brilliantly white sky. Without delay, just in case the defense mechanism kicked back in, he propelled himself forward, towards his final destiny. His little fins twirled like a motorboat, churning up a mass of frothy white bubbles. His head broke the surface of the water, and he was flying freely through the glorius life taking air.

"That sweet sweet air", he thought, "that will take my breath away as I sail toward the great beyond." A land never explored or even his memory. Around the time he hit the floor he forgot all of this, and started flipping and flopping all over the place.

"Not like this!" This fish thought to himself, "I've only just been born!" Then the family cat came by, snatched him up with a quick swipe of her claw, and gulped him down greedily.

The moral to this story was forgotten, in living memory of the goldfish that couldn't.


cruise (May 19th, 2003, 12:06 pm)

I like...I followed it quite happily, actually...and with your pre-warning, the weird confusing nature did fit. I'm not sure it would be so obvious without the lead-in though...


Semirrahge (May 19th, 2003, 12:43 pm)

Again, quite good. Not as confusing as I expected it to be (as per your warning), but then... Who knows?

Imminently cynical and sarcastic, the story is right up my alley. I'm noticing, however, that you seem a bit sloppy - not paying attention to thought and text flow, proper word forms, punctuation, etc... Though this may be stylistic and not exactly WRONG.

Bring on more stuffs! :)


BlacklightResponsive (May 19th, 2003, 5:41 pm)

I've never actually had any proper writing beyond capitals and commas, I'm pretty much just trying to write something that sounds good. At times I've purposely made it sloppy, for example "While, this number does vary from fish to fish, but can be easily measured by the owner as long as the owner shows to have an attention span that spans a period of time which is greater than that of which the fish can retain a memory." Although I just noticed that I have a stray comma in there...hmm. Anyway, probably half of it is just me being sloppy, and I am a rather sloppy person, and I should probably try and work on that before I ever show these to somebody if I am hoping to get published. Ya. Um, I have to go back to work now. Byebye.


BlacklightResponsive (May 19th, 2003, 5:42 pm)

I've also read way too much Douglas Adams to be able to not have any of his influence in my writing. I just try and keep it toned down and still my own as much as possible.

I love it!

Eldritch (May 23rd, 2003, 2:38 pm)

I don't know, there's just something about it... Love the style. And the end line. And the whole thing in general ;)

Discussion > Feedback > A Goldfish Story

Register to post.