You’re rich. But you have grown weary of arranging your money into variously sized piles and counting the full-length portraits of yourself wearing period costumes. Yes, even cosmetic enhancement has lost its dazzle. After all, when you finally perfected the angle of that stubborn left eyelid, you had no use for the medical perfection as it exists in Western culture. But it was then that you got weird. You began exploring the most exotic treatments money can buy — diamond-tip abrasion swabs, jacuzzi suits, tongue-lengthening massages, protein emulsions made of your own fingernails — but even then you could not be stopped. Your need to spend compelled you to rope more into your madness — more people, more services, more… species.
Then you heard of the doctor fish, the Garra ruff native to certain Middle Eastern river basins. You felt cautiously optimistic. After all you’d been burned before on that basset hound-led primal scream class. But then you researched, and then you learned something that made you throw out your towels and soap, for you would never need them again. No, not once more would you have to pain yourself to clean your body. Ever.
That’s what the fish would do now.
Yes, the doctor fish you already had being shipped to your house, and they would soon populate your outdoor freshwater rock pool, where they’d be happy with you… when they ate your scabs.
Oh, sure, it wasn’t just scabs. It was a veritable you-banquet — your scabs, yes, but also all manner of dead skin cells. If you had dandruff, it would be like an appetizer to the bounty that was all the pieces of you that you didn’t need and that you’d been carelessly casting off on the ground, where no fish at all had the opportunity to eat them. Yes, you had ushered in a new age into your life — and the lives of your loved ones, if they would only have listened to you! — that so improved on the previous state that you now split your personal timeline between the period before ichthyotherapy and the newer, better, more fish-focused golden age. And you were happy, so happy, and it didn’t bothered you in the least that everyone else simply knew you as that crazy pervert who didn’t think he had to wash himself because he instead wanted to let hundreds of tiny fish nibble all his bits.
And if my description of doctor fish was too much for you, you really don’t want to click this link to see the little guys working on a pair of feet whose toe hairs are so weirdly long that they literally span the toe and reach out to touch the adjoining toes, as if the foot itself is trying to build some sort of hair-bridge from Market Piggy to Wee Wee Wee on the far side of town.