Last time I moved into a new neighborhood I posted multiple flyers about my missing rattlesnake until I practically got fined for too-much-awesomeness.  Or “being a nuisance” according to the Home Owners Association.

This time when moving into a new neighborhood I decided to do things differently.

Very differently.

Or, as Victor says, not really so differently at all.

I’ll keep you (and these) posted.

150 thoughts on “MISSING

Read comments below or add one.

  1. I thought you were going to say your sanity was missing. Glad I was wrong! Happy Friday!

  2. I found him. He’s all the way here in Ottawa (where @wilw is as well, oddly enough)

  3. Good luck finding Fred. My fish disappeared tragically into a frying pan one fine summer day. We mourned for days.

    But he was delicious

  4. Phew – thought I might have eaten Fred last night – but it turned out the fish’s name was Dave so its OK.

  5. Along with the age progressed pic add in a big date: missing since xx/xx/xxxx and indicate what he was last seen wearing and/or driving

  6. Our HOA is so strict it is crazy. I would love to pull this prank!

  7. If only the whole world communicated that way. There wouldn’t be war or anger or stuffy celebrities.

  8. Way to not implant Fred with a pet chip.

    So irresponsible.

    PS: I named my singing Lobster “Fred.” He sits in my office. Common name this year for sea creatures, apparently.

  9. Fred’s sitting here with me now. He says he’ll call you as soon as he finishes his cigarette.

  10. Dont worry! I found him in the seafood section at whol…
    Nevermind, that was a bad joke.

  11. I would give anything to see someone drop off a fish on your doorstep with a found sign attached to it.

  12. I think this is the perfect way to find your people. I mean, only fun, cool people are going to respond, right? Those who don’t like this? You didn’t want those friends anyway.

  13. Just another hopeless case of a fish gone bad. Swimming from home and trying to make it in the big city.
    Fred doesn’t realize it’s just a path to drugs and fishy prostitution.
    Come home, Fred. Come home.

  14. are there any identifying birth marks or tats? Does he smoke or wear glasses? If he were on America’s Most Wanted they would totally say something like, “Fred was last seen with a young flounder of atlantic decent. He enjoys Big Mac’s win no lettuce and smokes Marlboro Lights, call if you’ve seen him”

  15. You are the model neighbor. Upstanding citizen. Who would NOT want to have you in their ‘hood?!! Damn HOAs don’t know jack, or Fred yet…but they will soon.

  16. If you ever decide to leave TX for Colorado, please move to my neighborhood. My stodgy HOA needs to be rocked by you!

  17. I had a cat named Fred when I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala. My neighbor ate him. True story.

  18. Good call on the Sharpied phone number. That shit lasts forever.

  19. “We’re checking all the water in the area, there’s an escaped fish.”

    Seriously, maybe he’s Jim the Fish in disguise…stranger things have happened.

  20. Fred was delicious. Wait, I mean Fred looks adorable. I’ll keep an eye out.

  21. you should ask Dory and Marlin to find him – they did an extraordinary job at finding Nemo. He might even get in Dory’s next movie! He could be a FAMOUS fish! “Finding Fred- the exciting tale of the Fish who refused to answer to his name”

  22. Why don’t people do more things like this?? Actually, why don’t *I* do more things like this? You’ve inspired me.

  23. That’s just sad that you got in trouble for the rattlesnake signs. They’re still some of my very favorite posts you’ve done and I think I would have tinkled in my pants a little if I’d seen it in my neighborhood. 😀 From laughing, not because I like to wet myself or anything. I SWEAR.

  24. I totally understand why he doesn’t answer to Fred. It’s cause he looks like a a Bob. You’ve been calling him the wrong name ALL THIS TIME. How embarrassing for you.

  25. They FINED you? Those bastards should have been paying you for bringing up the level of awesomeness in their neighborhood!

    I wish you lived here every day, just so my neighborhood could BE awesome!

    *sigh* Some people just don’t know how good they have it.

  26. I would lol if I saw this! If one of your new neighbours starts acting “dickish”, when he’s in the yard, stick your head out the door and yell “dick” (or fuck off, or numbnuts, whatever the mood strikes) over and over. If he gets pissed off, you can always claim one of two things. 1) Turrets syndrome, or 2) Calling your cat/dog. (with the aforementioned name)…Your welcome.

  27. Don’t be surprised if some asshole puts a dead fish at your front door. You know, to be an asshole.

  28. lol! I hope someone posts a response “FOUND FISH – seems to have had something written behind their fin, but was washed off when the fish decided to take a swim in my hot tub. Please call xxx-xxxx if you are or know the owner of this stubborn trouble maker.” That would make your neighborhood the awesomest (I know that’s not a real word but it works here).

  29. Hmm…I wonder if I could pull this off with bunny pictures. We have a bazillion (not even kidding) bunnies in our townhome complex at any given time.


  30. If I lived in your neighborhood I would totally post a sign below that saying “Found” with a picture of the fish and the note that there was a blurry smear of sharpie ink on his right arm thingie (fin) but since the smear wasn’t on the left we weren’t sure if it was Fred.

  31. My best friend’s name is Fred. He insists that we call him Derf because it “sounds cooler.” I am forwarding him a link to this, but without any explanatory note. I love seeing his reaction when I send him random Fred-related items.

  32. Fred looks really surprised in that picture. Like really surprised. Are you sure you’re supposed to hold him out of the water like that?

  33. Oh. So now I guess the “welcome to the neighborhood” fish fry I was planning for you would be considered “in poor taste.” Don’t put up posters for missing hot dogs or you’ll end up with no party at all.

  34. I know that you live in the south… probably still Texas… so I can’t really explain how disappointed I am that the Fred flyer wasn’t posted in my neighborhood. There have been so many homes sold in my neighborhood and I have really been hoping for a fun neighbor instead of all the damn Yuppies with their nannies & strict 1 drink minimums.

  35. Last seen walking through the park, holding hands with Sally the Snake. ( I knew I shouldn’t have let the go out on a date without a chaperone!)

  36. OMG you are funny! (I really wanted to post “I love you and will you be my best friend?” but thought that might come across a bit stalker-ish).

  37. I was going to trout this seriously, but it seems kinda fishy. You hooked me with the picture, but I’m floundering about why. Something seems out of tuna. Cod it be a joke?

  38. Henry,

    Hubby’s grandfather used to have a box with a “baby rattler” in it that he showed to people he met.

    Turns out it was just a plastic baby’s toy rattle, but it got lots of giggles.

  39. Have you checked the basement in my old Cleveland neighborhood?
    I seem to remember giving old Fred a ride.
    He really shouldn’t be getting into a car with a stranger.
    I might not be able to look in on him for a while.

  40. That fish looks legitimately terrified. Very similar when my kitty had worms and the vet had to go in the backdoor to do some rooting around.

    Same eyes.

  41. Wait, did you do the cross out “fin”; or did one of the neighbors correct you?

  42. Also missing — Fred’s bicycle. He NEEDS it. Because, you know, a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.

  43. Just remember, those women in Cleveland came home after 10 YEARS, so Fred could be trying to escape and find YOU! NEVER LOSE HOPE!

  44. This is awesome. However… I think you would get better results reeling Fred in if you had some kind of hook.

  45. What a fantastic way to quickly weed out the folks that aren’t worth your time in the new ‘hood! You are brilliant! I hope you don’t mind, but I may copy you if I ever move.

  46. Love the expression on Fred’s face! Should make it easy to identify him when one of your new neighbors finds him swimming in their pond… 🙂

  47. LOVE comments 11,33,43,47,50,76 and Ouch James-80. I wish the comments included people’s twitter name or FB link. I would really enjoy following most of the people on here. So much more wittier and funnier than I am.

  48. Not only would I love to live in your hood, but the hood of these commenters too! U people be trippin! As far as the fish-would that be an amber alert or silver alert?

  49. Fred, I have identified you!! You are a snakehead fish!! Which I am sure is a crossbreed to the rattlesnake you listed as missing in your old neighborhood!! See when you do not neuter your fish and snakes properly,
    you have a whole of snake on fish sex going on!!! So now not only is Fred missing, and unresponsive due to his attitude, he now is gasping for air and very bitey!!!!

  50. is it took stalkery-ish for me to ask for your personal address so I can come over & we can have drinks together? I swear, you’d like me. I already like you so hard

  51. Sorry, Jen but I think we may have eaten Fred for dinner last night. Bit really its not our fault because we didn’t see your flier on time since you procrastinated and Fred refused to answer when we asked him his name. So not our fault. But if it is any consolation he tasted amazing with ketchup

  52. Oh. Oh, I must do this in my very urban neighborhood. And put up hidden cameras. Pure awesomeness.

  53. This is almost as good as the time a new neighbor introduced herself by going door to door in our subdivision asking if anyone had seen her llama named Daithi. She then went on to explain that he was in recovery and was worried that he might be out trying to score some black tar heroin or crack rocks and if we see him we should call the number on her card. Yeah she and I were besties and then she moved before Daithi came back…stupid llama.

  54. That is quite possibly the scariest fresh-water fish ever (from N. America) – the eye! I loved the rattlesnake sign saga. I laughed till my stomach hurt.

  55. What if someone turns up on the doorstep with a fish deep fried in batter and some French fries, would you accept that in its plaice ………

  56. One of the reasons I won’t buy a property that sits in a Homeowners’ Association jurisdiction. Homeowners’ Associations never, ever appreciate awesomeness.

  57. My co-worker always knows when I check your blog from the semi-stifled snorks of laughter in my cube. Thank you for being you, you make the world a much better and brighter place!

  58. Fred’s obviously a pure-bred. If you don’t find him, I suggest that your next pet be a rescue fish, from your local SPCA fish shelter.

    Stray fish need good homes too, you know.

  59. Oh my cod.

    If I see him, I’ll chuck him your way. With a side of chips and mushy peas.

    Don’t say I never did nuthin’ for you.

  60. I’m clearly living in the wrong neighborhood. The only interesting thing that happens around here is passive-aggressive wars via wireless network names.

  61. Big mistake! You shouldn’t have said anything about the sharpie and you may have gotten dozens of free fish! Yummy!

  62. I think you should go door to door and accuse people’s cats of eating your fish. If that doesn’t work, accuse their alligators.

  63. You move around a lot, are you all in a witness protection program or do the neighbors take up a collection to move you to the next town over? It’s Texas, you have to be the sane people there…just saying…not that there is anything wrong with Texas…I’m going to stop now.

  64. That will teach me to check The Bloggess while proctoring an AP exam. Laughing out loud counts as a Disturbance and now I have to file an incident report with the College Board!

  65. There is a sign taped to the stop sign by my house that says “MISSING CALF” and then there is a phone number… it’s the only one I have seen in my neighborhood and all I can think is how the fuck did you lose a calf?!?!?! And how come you don’t have more signs for said calf? My cat went missing and plastered the neighborhood with them (which worked in my favor sort of when a neighbor found him dead and called me). Also if I were to see a calf walking down the road odds are I’m going to take pictures and post them on facebook before I call you…. kind of like the time a rogue goat wound up in my front yard…

  66. I am so sorry. I think I had him here for dinner Wednesday. After that, he went home.

  67. Forget Fred. I wanna know what this new neighborhood thinks about Beyonce’.

    I’m betting she’s jazzed up the place…am I right?

  68. last may, early in the morning, two goats were walking down the dirt road in front of the school i work at. they saw me and came running. so i had one black and one white goat in the school when the rest of the employees came. students didn’t believe we were teaching goat milking that day.

    anyway this poster is hilarious.

  69. One of the things on my bucket list, is to catch a bunch of fish before a fishing contest, be-dazzel them and release them. Then watch as the “serious” fishermen pull out fish with sequins.

  70. Fish are like cats. When you move, you need to keep them locked in the house for a few weeks while they acclimate to their new home, or they’ll run off swim away, trying to get back to their old home. The move makes them feel like a fish out of water, so to speak. You might need to put the sign up at the old neighborhood, too. Besides, they can’t fine fin you anymore.

  71. Please imagine that “run off” and “swim away” were crossed out in that last comment. It was much funnier that way. Also? @Trish — can I borrow the bedazzled fish concept? That is AWESOME!

  72. I don’t think fish can read. Also, my aunt says that when you move you should put butter on your cats feet before you let them outside. They lick the butter off then get the new house smell and learn where they are. I don’t know if it works or not, we don’t waste butter like that here. Good luck with the never ending unpacking.

  73. @ Tori be my quest! It would make watching fishing shows with my husband so much more interesting.

  74. Last seen swimming down stream? Did the police tell you that after the first 48 hours most are presumed to be ‘sleeping with the fishes’?

  75. Something smells fishy to me about your aquatic friend’s disappearance. Why don’t you try enlisting Liam Neeson to find Fred?

  76. Oh my god this completely cracked me up. About 3 years ago I was on a family holiday and my dad attempted some badly thought out impromptu fishing. He managed to catch one. I immediately named him Fred. Fred the fish. My dad couldn’t figure out how to kill the fish though so after bashing his head a couple of times on a rock he sort of used a pliers to break its fishy neck. This isn’t really my dads sort thing and so I think I traumatised him by narrating the entire episode by lamenting for poor Fred.

    So when I saw that you had started a search for Fred I immediately send the poster to my dad.

    He knows the truth -Fred no longer sleeps with the fishes

  77. 1. Did he go missing naked like in the photo, or was he wearing clothes and a top hat?
    2. I hope he didn’t go missing naked, because that would be embarrassing.
    3. But then again, if he normally wore clothes, then this photo would pretty much be a form of porn.
    4. I love how you wrote the word “fin” and then drew what looks like a fin next to it. Some people would think you were using the term known in the writing world as a carrot, but I know better.

    Unless Fred likes carrots and you were suggesting that.

  78. So, has the fish been located? What is the update? Are you in trouble yet? Inquiring minds want to know!

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