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Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Mass Murder in Silverstream

Oops.  Maybe we should have measured a bit more carefully.

"But I didn't know it was loaded."

"I thought the safety catch was on."

"I didn't mean to pull the trigger."

"What happens if I push this button?"



All of the phrases above are excuses or exclamations made when someone makes a serious mistake, the result of which is normally Death and Destruction.

I made a mistake.

I'm not completely perfect.

Yesterday, in an effort to restore my newly washed shorts (see Shorts and the Dangers of Dental Hygiene) to something resembling their normal well-used state, I began to clean out the goldfish pond.

To do this job properly requires at least a couple of hours and should follow the following plan.

  • Remove surviving remaining  fish and put in a bucket of the pond water.
  • Drain pool (we have a small recirculating pump to aerate the water, and it is quite simple to attach a hose so that it empties rather than spray. (Note: This process can take some time; just enough for two beers)
  • Remove rocks and stones.
  • Add bleach and scrub out pool.
  • Scrub rocks.
  • Thoroughly rinse and drain pond and rocks.
  • Repeat the rinse and drain at least 3 times to remove any trace of the bleach.
  • Refill pool, adding a small amount of anti algae treatment.
  • Allow pool to stand for at least 6 hours to equilibrate.
  • Put fish back into pond.
  • Sit back with another beer and admire the little fishies enjoying their new, clean environment.

At least I think they enjoy it. It's really hard to tell if a fish is happy. 
Do they smile?
Do they do a little dance?
Do they fart ecstatically?

Does he look happy to you?

They just dart around exploring their changed home.

At least, they used to.

Look, I was in a hurry.
I didn't really have time to do the full "clean out the pond" plan.

What I did was stick the garden hose in at one end of the pond, and turned it on.  The overflowing water removed a lot of the algae and various debris.
I've done it quite a few times before without any serious consequences.
This time was different.
I forgot I was flushing the pond and went to bed, so the pond got a really good flush-out. 

The driveway got a good clean as well.

About 14 hours of flushing with fresh, chlorinated mains water.

I'm pretty sure the fish aren't happy now.

They're not darting around exploring their changed home.
They're not really moving around very much at all.

Actually they're just sort of floating on the surface.  Belly side up.

At least the pond is nice and clean now, ready for the next load of victims fish.

I wonder how long they'll last.  The record so far is 8 months.

It wasn't my fault last time.

I didn't know that weedkiller is also fishkiller.


  1. Will you have a funeral for the fish? It turns out that I'm not booked too far ahead if you want to give them a low rumbly send off.

  2. Oh dear. I don't know what upsets me more - the fact that you MURDERED your fish or included a big boob lady picture. You were, of course, actually trying to insert a big BOOK lady picture, weren't you?

    Ali x

  3. Richard [of RBB]: Nope. They're already in the wheelie bin. They're fish.
    Does one grieve for a haddock? I was tempted to fry them up, but by the time I spotted them, they were already beginning to bloat. Thanks for the offer however.

    Ali x: I refuse to comment on the first charge on the advice of counsel.
    I completely missed that the lady in that picture had a larger than normal chest; I was focussing on the beer. I'll examine the images more closely in the future.


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