China-focused Satire, Social Commentary, Comics and More

Out of Your Element


Totally Awesome Picture of the Week 24


“I have an ambitious creative thought!” yelled the fish, as though the blood crusted in the holes that might be his ears impaired his ability to judge the volume of his voice.

“You don’t need to yell, I’m standing right here,” I said.

“What’s that? Speak up!” he shouted back.

“Nevermind,” I mouthed. “What is your dream?”

“Dream!? NO. Ambitious Creative Thought! Dreams are for people who won’t live to see them happen.”

“Um . . .” I began.

“Yes, I am a fish, I used the word ‘people’ so that you’d understand, let’s replace that with the broader ‘things.’ Dreams are for things who won’t live to see them happen.”

“Um,” I started again, unsure of what approach to take. “Your tail has been chopped off and there is blood in your ears.” I said flatly.

“I have an Ambitious Creative Thought that one day this nation will rise up and…”

It was my turn to interrupt, “I’ve heard this speech before, and the word is dream and the subject is men, as in people, not things. Also, it doesn’t apply to China. I’m sorry fish but your eyes are drying, your ears are blocked and you have no nose. You are out of your element.”

As the cleaver came down his eyes followed me without moving. I let mine drop to his whiskers which also remained still. The fish was silent.

That night I dreamed I was underwater. The fish was there. I was yelling at him. He was happy and not listening. He could not understand me and I could not breathe. He watched as a shark ate me from the toes up. “You are out of your element,” I heard him say.

When I awoke a puddle of drool in the shape of a fish spotted my pillow. “Oh,” I thought, finding no significance in it whatsoever.

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