Problem Page: A Fishy Romance?

This week’s problem comes from a mermaid on the South Coast of England.

The young lady wishes to remain anonymous.

Dear Aunt Grizelda,

Every evening a young man comes down to fish in the cove where I live and I suspect he’s taken a fancy to me. At first he just kept glancing over to where I was sunning myself on the rocks, but now he throws me pieces of bait.

Yesterday evening he arrived in the cove with a surfboard and started paddling out towards me. I felt shy, so I dived deep below the waves, but now I wish I hadn’t. My friends say I shouldn’t trust him and that he probably wants to catch me for re-sale purposes. But he’s got a really nice smile, kind eyes, and the bait is delicious. Should I trust my gut feelings and let him get closer, or keep him at tail’s length?

Miss X

Dear Miss X,

Young men with nice smiles and kind eyes should never be trusted, but more importantly, have you seriously considered the problems inter-species relationships bring? A mermaid /human combination would be fraught with difficulties right from the start.

For example, how could he wine and dine you? If you went to a restaurant under the waves, he couldn’t eat because of his aqua lung; and if you went to a restaurant on land, the chef might mistake you for the fish course. Also his parents would be unlikely to welcome you as their daughter-in-law as humans will go to great lengths to avoid fishy aromas in the home and generally avoid getting their soft furnishings wet.

Reluctant as I am to pour cold water on this budding love affair, I cannot in all conscience recommend you to pursue it. Find a new cove in which to relax and remember there are always more fish in the sea.

Aunt Grizelda

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