I remember in 1991 Kurt Cobain saying that it's ok to eat fish because they don't have any feelings. He was only half right. It is ok to eat fish. Even I eat fish sometimes. You do what you have to do. So that's not why I resented the pelican for eating me. It was another reason altogether.

Ever since I can remember I had wanted to fly. Sure, swimming is fine, but I always wanted to be above the waves and all the wetness and really soar you know? My girlfriend would tell me, “Quit daydreaming. You're just a fish and not even a special fish with stripes or speckles or a sword for a nose or something like that. Just another fish.”

Sometimes I thought maybe she was right, but one can dream.

A week ago, my girlfriend left me for a flying fish. You know, the kind with the little wings that glide, the kind you hear about, but never actually see or even really believe exist. Well, they do exist. And my girlfriend left me for one.

Sobbing on the couch we bought together, I told her that I loved her. She told me, “All you do is talk about flying, but you won't even go near the surface. Walter actually flies.” Of course his name is Walter (the son of a bitch).

I decided to kill myself. That would show her. I would jump into the sand and let the air and sun do me in. She can have Walter. He may fly, but he'll never love her like I do.

After flopping my way over some rocks and onto the beach, I could begin to feel the heat. Even while I was getting tired and couldn't breathe, I knew it was for the best.

After a few minutes, a pelican was standing over me.

We looked at each other for a moment. He glanced up and down the shore briefly, then… darkness.

The pelican ate me (the son of a bitch). I wanted to go out on my own terms and this fucker eats me. Once again, bested by a pilot.

At this point, I accepted my fate and the tragedy that had been my life when I heard in the darkness a faint, “Hello? Is somebody there?”

I was sure that I was hallucinating until I heard it again. I gave a nervous reply.


It was another fish. She had been eaten earlier and was dissolving in stomach acid. She told me she had been a waitress and had stepped out back for a smoke and then…darkness.

She told me she had been saving for school, but now it seemed she had wasted her life. She began to cry and so did I. Her name was Emily.

I tried my best to hold her fin. Her lower half was almost entirely gone. She was a sweet girl, but all those dirty plates, all those coffees…Cream? Sugar? Today's Special is…

It no longer mattered for her. There would be no school. No future. Soon there would be nothing at all.

After what seemed like an eternity, light suddenly rushed in and we were back in the water.

A passing turtle told me a shark had bitten the pelican which by some miracle had freed us. What a mensch!

I kissed Emily and led her to a nearby reef to settle down. We got married a week later.

She has trouble swimming now from her handicap, but I go slow and I don't mind. I love her and I don't mind at all.