Today I’m going to write about yesterday. I think I may have found subject matter for a new sitcom. The pet shop of a grimy gritty overspill town serves its purpose to all comers – young old rich poor odd normal and so on. This idea could be the saviour of prime time tv. No more tired formats stretching the limits at the police station, the cottage kitchen, the 90 second makeover.
Pet shops are the new Trinny, Jamie, Monty, Nigella.
As much as seeing a painting will reach the parts that other placebos do not reach, pets can do the same and more. Dogs are now allowed in hospital wards. Stroking fur relieves stress. Walking your dog launches seratonin.
More to follow… just going to check on new goldfish – goliath and his palatial bowl.
Goliath is fine. I think, but how would I know? He (she?) looks pretty chilled. The ‘me’ of our new pet presents as a rather fine black and shimmery gold fish. Stunning floaty fins which it flourishes around the bowl before finding its place nose up to glass surveying its new home. That’s his ‘me’. Seems quite content, not fazed, settling in beautifully. Impressive impression management. But, what is his ‘I’. For all I know Goliath could be very sad at leaving his friendly shoal in the shop. Possibly petrified at the huge faces and fat fingers that keep interfering with his space. His ‘I’ is not his ‘me’.
Which makes me think about my choice of pet. If dog owners are said to resemble their pets what does the purchase of a goldfish say about my ‘I’?
‘Human beings act towards things on the basis of the meanings they have for them.’
Put into practice, my fundamental fear and loathing of the skinny white rat in the pet shop was very different to the affection and warmth shown by a well dressed, grey haired man, anxious to buy it. To me that rat meant bites, disease, dirt, The Plague, fleas. To him? Maybe curiosity, amusement, companionship….
I shall return to the pet shop later, when I have helped my daughter sort out a me v I calamity.