WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP | I usually like to wrap up my annual Porter County Fair experience with a perverse verse or song parody. I'd hate to interrupt such a great tradition.
Let me tell you the story of a goldfish they found
Tossed in the trash on the county fairgrounds.
Rescued by a member of the fair cleanup crew,
He was taken to the office, and they named him Shamu.
A funny name for a creature so obviously small,
But it was better than having no name at all.
For days Shamu swam in a piece of Tupperware
On the counter in the main office of the fair.
Finally, one of the staff members got him
A small fish bowl with glass beads on the bottom.
Shamu's chances of survival seemed good
As long as they didn't feed him any fair food.
It certainly seemed better than the perilous fate
He faced in the trash bin or as deep frier bait.
Other fish I saw toted about, a midway prize,
Given to children, which hardly seems wise.
Most I fear were soon to be bestowed
To a speedy departure in someone's commode,
Where a few might make it to a lake or stream
To grow to a size that might seem extreme.
They could even become an ecological threat;
A fate far preferable to being a neglected pet.
But little Shamu merely swam in his bowl,
Happy not to be a dish with a side of cole
Slaw and fries or caught in some frat house fad
Of swallowing goldfish. Yes, that would be bad.
I wondered as I saw him there each day
If Shamu thought about being far away,
Freely roaming some distant sea, tho'
He's not like the star of "Finding Nemo."
The salt water probably wouldn't agree
With his gills, so that probably wouldn't be
A good idea. By Friday this tiny fish's home
Was replaced by a comparative Superdome.
An aquarium loaned from the 4-H display
Provided him plenty of space to play.
And three new fish were added to our story
When he was joined by Jaws, Nemo and Dory.
No more lonesome swimming and waiting.
Now Shamu might start double dating.
Despite the names, no one knows for sure
Just what the sexes are of the fishy four.
I hope he has a mate and soon gets fish kissed,
And the four aren't destined to endless fish whist.
So, now the fair's over, and I think Shamu
Was adopted by a member of the fair crew.
This happy ending might bring you a tear,
And maybe Shamu can come back next year
He can bring his little fish family in tow,
And order up some deep fried fish food to go.
I hope you enjoyed my little tale of Shamu.
I saw it myself, so I know that it's true.
The opinions are those of the writer. He can be reached writing out goldfish birth announcements at firstname.lastname@example.org or (219) 548-4352.