Here Lies Froggy...


Crash's tadpole will never swim again. We have been nurturing his (her?) little fishy body for weeks and waiting for the metamorphosis to take place. And just as his color started to change... he goes belly up. He looked great this morning. Perhaps Jellybean's piercing little girl screams sent him over the edge.

Crash wanted to bury him and he did, but Professor thought the event was incomplete without the appropriate epitaph for the headstone...

"Seikilos! It must be the epitaph of Seikilos!"

Son, I'm not even going to pretend I understand what you are saying.

Apparently, the Seikilos epitaph is the oldest surviving example of a complete musical composition... which was discovered on a tombstone, written by Seikolos for his deceased wife. (How Professor knew this, I cannot say.) It goes something like this (translations vary):

As long as you live, shine,
Let nothing grieve you beyond measure.
For your life is short,
and time will claim its toll.


(Listen on YouTube)

We discussed whether or not this was fitting for a Catholic tadpole but Professor insisted that since "Froggy" has no immortal soul, we were clear either way.

I did call the company to beg for a new (free) tadpole knowing that it is not their policy to grant such requests after so many weeks. I told the woman how faithfully we had adhered to the rules for tadpole caregiving and how disappointed Crash was... and how he paid for the little creature himself. She explained that the process of metamorphosis is actually rather stressful on the tadpole and it is not uncommon for them to die during the process. She was happy to send him a new one. God bless her.


Posted on August 11, 2011 and filed under "nature study".