My “Fish Problem”

Discuss a significant person, experience, goal, issue, or achievement that has special meaning to you. The essay tells us a great deal about our candidates and allows for expression of writing skills, creativity, and imagination. You may be serious, humorous, or somewhere in between.

The freezing water lapped against the plexi-glass walls. Ripples appeared on the surface, and the water glittered in the fading rays of the sun. The seven million gallon home was coming alive–for just under the surface, the water was bustling with activity.Excitement lined the faces of the spectators as they awaited the treat in store for them. Suddenly, the 12.5-ton, tuxedoed giant breached out of the water. The spectators were left in awe, their mouths open, their eyes locked and their hearts pounding.When we are in public, my friends refer to me as having a “fish problem”. Most people, upon hearing this, think I have an intense dislike for sea food. But when they talk about my “fish problem,” my friends are not talking about seafood. They are referring to an unusual hobby of mine.Since I was a child, I was fascinated by animals and wanted a pet. My parents would not yield to my infinite demands. Yet unlike other parents, they weren’t joking when they said we didn’t have the space to keep it in. After all, I didn’t want a puppy or kitten for a pet. I wanted a whale! These gentle giants have fascinated me ever since the age of six, when I received the movie Free Willy as a birthday gift. From that day onwards, killer whales and “Willy,” my childhood hero, have inspired me. It is not only their presence that I find mesmerizing, but also the lessons they have taught me over the years.My first encounter with killer whales was in July 2003. Through stubborn determination, I landed myself a ticket to Sea World, Orlando. Little did I realize that this would turn out to be one of the most memorable days of my life. Killer whales are unmistakably the ocean’s top predators, their power and dominance unrivalled. Through my experience at Sea World, I saw that these whales lucidly understood every instruction given to them by their trainers and would execute the required maneuver to perfection. Their relentless determination and perseverance astounded me. I believe we humans can learn from these highly intelligent creatures. Perfection is not a taxing job for them; it is a way of life. They bear the harshest of conditions and perform in difficult environments with supreme dedication. The level of teamwork and synchronization which I observed has left me in awe up till this day. These spectacular displays truly showcase the power and grace of the majestic animals, as well as the special relationships that they enjoy with the people who work with them.As these ambassadors of killer whales show us, we stand much to gain from their kind. Yet we are throwing it away by polluting their habitat and hunting them down. Aren’t these magnificent creatures worth saving so that our future generations can enjoy–and learn from them–as well? This is not my “fish problem.” This is our “fish problem.” (Author’s note: Killer whales or orcinus orcas are not fish, although my friends joked that they were. Instead, they are mammals, and are in fact the largest members of the dolphin family.)

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