A PLEA FOR THE AQUARIUM
It was a relief to resume my programme by entering that abode of the dumb and detached - the aquarium in Battery Park. For the kerb uproar "the uncommunicating muteness of fishes" was the only panacea. The Bronx Zoo is not, I think, except in the matter of buffalo and deer paddocks, so good as ours in London, but it has this shining advantage - it is free. So also is the Aquarium in Battery Park, and it was pleasing to see how crowded the place can be. In England all interest in living fish, except as creatures to be coaxed towards hooks and occasionally retained there, has vanished; on the site of old Westminster Aquarium the Wesleyans now manage their finances and determine their circuits, while the Brighton Aquarium, once famous all the world over, is a variety hall with barely a fin to its name.
After seeing the aquarium in Honolulu, which is like a pelagic rainbow factory, and the aquarium in New York with all its strange and beautiful denizens, I am a little ashamed of our English apathy. To maintain picture galleries, where, however beautiful and chromatic, all is dead, and be insensitive to the loveliness of fish, in hue, in shape and in movement, is not quite pardonable.