Joel Canfield bespoke: >>Bite your tongue. Unless, of course, you can get a >>semi-toxic snake to bite it *for* you. <badly done Pacino voice> Meet my little hissy friend! <voice /> >>Although, a small aquarium wouldn't be bad. Fish rarely chew >>on my books or wet on the kitchen floor Fish are fun! (They _do_ wet on the kitchen floor however, especially if you teach them to play volleyball.) By 'small aquarium' I do hope you mean something in the 40+ gallon range. The smaller aquariums are fine for setting up a food tank, or a hospital tank, or a birthing tank ... but for a community display tank I wouldn't go below 40 gallons. The initial cash outlay is higher, but the reduced time and effort spent maintaining decent stable water chem more than makes up for it. Really. But fish tie you down! It's tough to travel when you have fish at home ... unless you don't mind the neighbors overfeeding and killing them while you are away. - You need a pet that's quiet. - Something that is hypoallergenic and doesn't mess up the house. - Something that doesn't take up much room. - Something that doesn't take up much time. - Something that will be okay by itself at home while you jaunt off to the Emerald Isle for a month or two. Hmmmm ... Think, think, think ... Aha! Maybe something like this cute little guy: http://www.applegatereptiles.com/species/campbelli.htm ;-P RonL. Missing his scaly buds.