This is Hope Dworaczyk. Everyone be nice to Hope Dworaczyk, because she is not long for this world. Not long at all.

How do I know this? Because I had fish as a kid. I would always get them and carry them back from the fish store in their little bags that leaked out the corner, so full of hope and promise. I’d go through four or five potential names for them on the way back from the fish store. Usually I wouldn’t choose Hope Dworaczyk, usually I’d choose something like Goldie. I’d imagine a pretty great future for me and Goldie. I’d imagine Goldie possibly having human levels of intelligence, us hanging out, Goldie doing tricks like Willy in Free Willy. Goldie: The Miracle Fish. That’s what they’d call him/her. Goldie: The Miracle Fish. They would start writing fucking children’s scientific textbooks about us.

Goldie would be dead within a week. Goldie would get ich – or Ichthyophthirius multifilis if you are a fish scientist – within days. I don’t know why. Maybe because I didn’t love him/her enough. I would always know, because little white spots would start breaking out all over Goldie I through  Goldie XXVI’s body. There was a sort of medicine that was supposed to treat it that my mom got me, but it didn’t work. We hosted funerals at first, but by the end, we just starting dumping them pretty unceremoniously down the toilet. This is what ich looks like. This is what plague looks like. This is what death looks like:

Little white spots. All in one clustered area at first and then spreading, and spreading and you, so powerless to stop it.

Hope Dworaczyk: The Miracle Hope Dworaczyk, you were a beautiful freshwater sea-creature in this tank called life. You will be missed imminently.

In conclusion, my parents really should have gotten me a puppy way sooner than they did.