I don’t consider myself a materialistic person. I wear hand-me-downs from my brother and older cousins and I typically avoid wasting what little money I have. However, on one fateful night, I experienced such a deep temptation that my very sense of self was lost in a deep fascination of something intangible and alluring.
This temptation struck me at a time when I least expected it. After finishing track practice, a few friends and I decided to venture to McDonald’s to feast upon our favorite synthetic beef. It was a Friday, so we didn’t have explicit plans or school responsibilities, and I didn’t need to go home immediately. Most teenagers from our small town would agree that one of the most appealing places to visit on a Friday night is none other than the Petco adjacent to the Norwalk Walmart. Filled with ferrets, guinea pigs, lizards, and fish, Petco never fails to surprise those who choose to enter its edifying confines. Meandering the narrow aisles, I spotted what I believed to be one of the most glorious creatures to ever exist upon the face of Earth. My eyes fixated on a betta fish. The solid red scales sparkled and shimmered underneath the fluorescent lights as the fish danced around the sea fern in its small, tupperware-like box. My thoughts abandoned reason and restraint as my friends tried to persuade me to think twice about such an irrational decision. Refusing to consider consequences, I walked without hesitation to the cashier to pay for the $8.50 fish.