Try saying Eft…

Zombiegirl’s goldfish, Killer, is on his last legs. I mean, fins. She thought he had died last Thursday, and cried the requisite tears before school. I told MR when he got out of the shower that Killer was dead, so he went upstairs to dispose of the body. And promptly came back down to report that he was still breathing. When Z-girl got home from school, she was upset that she wasted the tears for nothing.

So today, we have another death, and she comes down upset. MR goes upstairs and this time brings the whole bowl down. Nope, still breathing. The little bug-eyed redhead looks extremely tired, though. He’s resting on the rocks on the bottom. But he’s still holding on. We prepare Z-girl for the inevitable- he will die soon.

She comes in to me and asks me if she can get a newt. Now we’ve had hermit crabs, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, birds, cats and dogs, but never reptiles. The older girls were too girly for the scaliness of lizards or turtles. They liked the furry. But Z-girl is all about dinosaurs, and reptiles are little pocket sized dinosaurs. Newts are lizards without the scales.

I personally like newts and salamanders. When I was a kid, we went camping in Florida, and I caught a newt and brought it all the way home in an orange juice concentrate can. When we got home, we put it in a tank, and put it in the kitchen. This being December, however, my dad turned on the heat when we got home. We didn’t realize that mom put the tank on the radiator, and we created a little hot tub for the poor guy. The next day my little newt was soup meat.

So I tell Z-girl to ask Daddy, since I wouldn’t mind having a little newt. She goes into the kitchen and I hear the following conversation:

“Daddy, can i get a newt?” She asks in her sweetest voice.
“A new what?” he replies.
“A newt! Newt!”
“A flute? You already have a flute!”
(I think he’s on to her.)
“No Daddy, a newt!”
“You want to get nude? Then take your clothes off!”
“Newt, Daddy, newt!”
“I heard you- nude! Why do you want to get nude?”
The whole time she’s laughing that laugh only Daddy can produce. Total abandon, as if this is the funniest thing in the world. She knows he’s kidding with her, and I listen to this exchange between them and laugh too. Daddy is the funniest person in the world, according to her, ahead of Tyler, even! (One of my dear soccer mom’s kids, who is in her class.)
Did Daddy say yes? Well, conditionally. She has to do a little research online to see what a newt needs. Daddy told her she would be buying grief- that the newt will die and she’ll get upset over that, too. So we’ll see. She has to grieve for her fishy, first.

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