Pond-Life ?????

June 25, 2008 at 1:45 am 4 comments

it  ain't easy
by Loraine Ritchey thatwb@yahoo.com

My husband is trying to get our back garden (yard) into some sort of order since falling trees and Misty – and YES! we finally have grass again -albeit it is fenced so Misty Morn can’t destroy weeks of work with one “squirrel run” .
photo Henery Hawk

This project has by no means been easy or quick and is still a work in progress, replacing fences, re -planting all the grass, moving wood, and re -digging the garden pond- this alone was a Herculean task- trying to save the 21 gold fish ( some 9 summers old) whilst the new pond liner was being installed. The old one , thanks to Misty and ultra violet, was deteriorating faster than my little grey cells.

Still two weeks ago we turned on the waterfall from the top pond put the fish back in their new home ( considerably larger than the old one) re-planted the Water Iris
and purchased water lettuce and water hyacinths.

As the water and outside temperature heated up so have the goldfish , due to their wanting to spawn among the roots of the water hyacinths

It is not uncommon to see a water hyacinth streaking across the surface of the pond powered by the throws of golfish passion.

My thoughts, as I watch this race of procreation on the surface of my pond , the returning frogs with their mating call , dragonfly dances, birds bathing and sharing a splash about and cascading water tumbling over mossy rocks, I can’t help but wonder why in “Brit” to be equated to pond life is such a derogatory term -after all looks pretty inviting to me


A worthless or contemptible person or group.


This is a British term which originated in the late 1980s. It is sometimes spelled without the hyphen, as a single word. Clearly the term is derogatory in its comparison of someone with the invertebrates and insects that are found in garden ponds. The first example that I can find of it in print is from the UK film magazine Empire, September 1989:

“Hollywood’s hottest execs: either you’re in or you’re pondlife.”

‘Pond life’ is at least a little further up the evolutionary chain than the equivalent US insult – ‘pond scum’. If the earliest sources that I have are accurate – and they may be superseded of course – the US version marginally pre-dates ‘pond life’. The earliest citation I’ve found for ‘pond scum’ in this context is from a May 1984 edition of The Washington Post:

“The man I loved is no more than pond scum to me now.”


Entry filed under: Brit take, tongue in cheek.

Paula’s Perspective – City Council June 23rd Speaking of Pond-Life

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Henery  |  June 25, 2008 at 2:02 am

    I thought your pond was beautiful, Loraine. Major kudos to your hubby for all the hard work! Your backyard is becoming quite the Shangri-La. I doubt it would be difficult to nap back there, the sound of the waterfall was simply musical.

  • 2. Loraine Ritchey  |  June 25, 2008 at 11:22 am

    And like Shangri-La it is when I leave it the “weight of age” seems to appear….. 🙂 and no I am not responsible for my husband’s black eye – the fence did that !

  • 3. Brian  |  June 26, 2008 at 3:21 am

    Tell Earnie I’ll be over tomorrow so we can go fishin. I think Henrey has a cookbook on how to cook up some carp.

    yee haw!!!!

  • 4. Trains and Boats and Planes « That Woman’s Weblog  |  July 16, 2008 at 11:31 am

    […] Strasbourg, France, where we can pick up the shuttle to Cochem for around $400 per person return ( pond life class) Time 1. hour and 40 minutes coupled with the 1:30 pre check in time and the wait at baggage claim […]

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