man dreaming of fish eating a hamburger

In my yard there is a tiny pond, just four feet across. I tried to keep goldfish in it, but they always died after a few months.

Years ago a friend named Lin used to mow my lawn. One summer Lin put new fish in the pond and they did well. At first I fed them regularly. I found that the fish were still healthy even when I didn’t feed them for a week, so I put less effort into it. I suspected that the fish were eating mosquito larvae and plants, so the food was just supplemental.

The next spring I noticed that the fish were doing well. That’s when I realized that I had forgotten to feed them all winter. I guessed that they hibernated in the mud and didn’t need much food when their body temperature was low. Just then Lin walked up and I told him my theory. He sighed and said, “Jeff, I fed the fish during the winter. I’ve always fed the fish.”

Embarrassing moments like this helped me grow up. Now I try to be aware of all the people in my life who quietly keep things humming along.

Who feeds your fish?