The Diary of a Dorm Room Fish

Author: Annie Dineen

Graphic of multiple fish"

Typically, I get a lot of stares, but I try not to let it bother me. Plenty of people will walk into the dorm and peer into my tank, maybe angle their head to the side or tap on the glass. Then they start with the old “I didn’t know fish were allowed in dorms!” and the “Please don't tell me you clean that thing in the communal sink!” The audacity that some people have. I mean, it's not even that crazy, I am just a fish who goes to the University of Notre Dame. Don't get all mad at me that I got into this school over your high school boyfriend.

Anyways, my story started in the Jordan Hall of Science, in a neuroscience lab. Lots of great memories at that place — I met some of my greatest pals there. But alas, we have since parted ways ... it's hard to keep in contact considering Eduroam WiFi doesn't have great connectivity to my tank. Man, do I miss that neuroscience lab — we were treated like royalty over there (and I'm not saying that just because they gave me Prozac twice a week).

Leaving Jordan was quite the adjustment if I am being honest. I was not in a good place — I mean physically because I was toted across the north quad in a red solo cup — but also mentally because they weren't handing out any antidepressants in Lewis Hall. I also had two new roommates, and these ones didn't have gills so I wasn't sure how much we would relate. I have known the shorter roommate for longer given that she was the one who suggested I live with her after my time in the lab. They feed me regularly (thanks to that Post-it note that is permanently stuck to the doorknob to remind them before they leave for the day). They even let me get the penthouse suite (the shelf above the taller one's desk) with a view of St. Mary's Lake.

Maybe one complaint I would have is that the short one is trying to be a DJ so I just have to nod along pretending that her mix of “Rich Baby Daddy” and the “iCarly” theme song isn't the worst thing I have ever heard. Not to mention, the tall one is crying about her homework being hard, which is just embarrassing if she knew what my course load was like as an aquatic studies major with a minor in “Finding Nemo” literature.

But other than that we all get along. The short one even invites me to have Thanksgiving dinner at her house. Do I have a mini heart attack whenever she packs me into an old cooler and drives us 12 hours to Long Island? Yes. But nothing beats her mom's homemade fish food!