My brother bequeathed a fish to me when he left home at 18.

It was a tropical fish — a Kissing Gourami which was pink. As such, I named him Floyd.

The fish lived to be close to 20 years old — no joke. For years I dutifully cleaned Floyd’s tank, but when I went away to college seven years after my brother moved out, the cleanings became less frequent. In fact, I assumed I’d come home on break and find a bit of Floyd taxidermy on the wall next to my dad’s largemouth bass haul from the ’80s.

That never happened. Floyd persevered through most of my college career.

Ultimately one day Floyd did pass, but that little guy (gal?) was a tough one. And his legacy lives on in Floydisms to this very day.

1) Life can get pretty scummy. Suck it up. (Floyd did this literally. I believe it was a delicacy for him.)

2) You might spend a lot of time a-chasin’ (as my grandma used to say), but don’t forget to come up for air.

3) When you get new roommates or when someone comes into your space, be nice. Don’t terrorize them.

4) Sometimes fake plants are best.

5) There will be days when you’ll need to be content simply watching the world go by. Enjoy those days.

I’ve not thought of Floyd for years until very recently — hence this post. As a fish, he never really had a voice, but he always held a place in our hearts. For Floyd and all the years he spent in our home — bless his little gills — I am thankful.

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