• Welcome to TONMO, the premier cephalopod interest community, and birthplace of #WorldOctopusDay and #CephalopodAwarenessDays. Founded in 2000, we are a large community of experts, hobbyists and enthusiasts, some of whom come together when we host our biennial conference. To join in on the fun, sign up. You can also become a Supporter for just $50/year to remove all ads and enjoy other perks. Follow us on Twitter for more cephy goodness.

Anxious for help...soon

Joined
Jan 6, 2003
Messages
476
Besides the issue of having the opportunity to experience a live octo specimen for my friend as you've probably read about before it got locked...remember I mentioned about volunteering for the aquarium myself so *I* could experience an octopus off-hand, up close and in person? Oh, and have the pleasure of taking care of it. Things arent going well though. Like I said, there policy is strict and you MUST be 18 years old to even volunteer for a spot to do the type of volunteer work related to the octopus which is "Invertabrate feeding."

I don't know how much more enthusiastic I can be though. Iv already stated that iv studyed them since I was 6 years old consistently. I started dissecting them when I was only 9 years old as well as squid which weren't cleaned. However, I don't think there buying it. I emailed them with no reply and iv listed like...over 6 telephone numbers to access any info on how I can reach someone related to any opportunity. Basically..all the calls are nothing but recorded operators and I actually managed to speak to 1 person, however...again, the policy doesn't fit me and its so unfortunate. Suggestions I had were to contact the New Jersey coastal institution located in Atlantic City. Called them...and again, this time a resume is needed to prove your status in the marine bio field in order to have any access to ANY cephalopod such as an octopus.

I am sorta flipping out over this whole thing. To be honest with you, I don't think im going to have many opportunities in the future to even own an octopus, or even see one in person were I could have the pleasure to touch and get close with and connected with...cuz thats my dream and its been my dream since I was 6 yrs old. After im 17, im emmediatly going to college to be a fashion designer which iv been set-up on since I was also a kid. Im an artist and iv excelled in the fashion business so far consistently with knowledge and so forth and my other dream is to make it big in that industry. Unfortunately, a chance of even becoming big in that field is 160,000 to 1 so thats why my mind is going to set permanently towards that field which iv had experience with previously. It's going to be tough, and I figured...why NOT enjoy your child-hood so far by meeting the most favorite animal to you thats touched your heart.

But, lifes not fair and I wouldn't be suprised if I never got satisifed with my dream before catching onto my other dream once im 18. Cuz then on, i'll be working hard. I used to wanna be a marine biologist...until I discovered that it would be useless cuz I love fashion for 1, and 2...the octopus as well as the squid and cuttlefish are the only creatures I would have the motivation to study mentally. If that were the case, I wouldn't have any versatility in the field and it would be pointless. So why not make the best of it now? Sadly, its difficult, but if you have any ideas at all please let me know. Or let me know if any members on this board that can help me along with this problem. Iv been going through lots of anxiety after witnessing the octopus on display at the new jersey adventure aquarium and its reminded me of things I should be doing before I become an adult.
 

corw314

Colossal Squid
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
3,749
Wow....I wish I had some answers for you.. I know Jenkinsons Aquarium lets people younger than 18 volunteer, but again I do believe there are strict quidelines for dealing hands on with the creatures. But the thought was if you could add you have volunteered at an aquarium even that does not have an octo, it would look good on your resume. I remember talking with someone on one of my visits to Baltimore Aquarium who was very much involved with the remaking and opening of Camden. I am going back beginning of November. I will see what I can find out for you. Maybe a contact name. Have you tried to email them?

Best of luck! Maybe someone else will have other suggestions. It is frustrating when you know in your heart what you want to do but don't give up, yet.

Best of luck!
Carol
 
Joined
Jan 6, 2003
Messages
476
corw314 said:
Wow....I wish I had some answers for you.. I know Jenkinsons Aquarium lets people younger than 18 volunteer, but again I do believe there are strict quidelines for dealing hands on with the creatures. But the thought was if you could add you have volunteered at an aquarium even that does not have an octo, it would look good on your resume. I remember talking with someone on one of my visits to Baltimore Aquarium who was very much involved with the remaking and opening of Camden. I am going back beginning of November. I will see what I can find out for you. Maybe a contact name. Have you tried to email them?

Best of luck! Maybe someone else will have other suggestions. It is frustrating when you know in your heart what you want to do but don't give up, yet.

Best of luck!
Carol

Your right, and I have been to the Jenkinsons aquarium about 15 times because I live 10 minutes away from the shore. However, I do envy their aquarium for packing in so much creatures in such a small building. They do a great job.

But yes, iv tried emailing the new jersey aquarium twice now with no response. The contact-info says that they always respond promptly (on time), however...I haven't received a response from them for almost 2 weeks straight. Don't know whats going on. But iv already spoke with a person involved there on telephone and I think that was enough to know that their policy is strict and 'set' and cant be altered or changed for the sake of 1 person...that would be me. I wish I could prove to them how enthusiastic I am....because I don't honestly know any other kid who already knows as much as I do related to cephs, biology and captivity-keeping. I even compiled and wrote a book about how to manage them as a pet-owner. But, im kinda getting off topic, lol.

It would be the greatest honor to ever experience an octo in person. Even though some on here may think im seeking a "thrill" and entertainment..thats not the case. If octo's were new to me, than it would be entertainment, but me wanting to see an octo in person, up close and hands on would be the same as in meeting a friend online and wanting to meet him/her to get to know the person off-hand and experience them without having to "read" about them in a book or see their emails right? The same goes for the octopus and I kinda do regret seeing that incredible one at the adventure aquarium in new jersey cuz its made me get a lot of anxiety. Iv been trying to contact many places, but have no luck. I hope that something helps me though. Octopuses are another life-form on this planet and my favorite mentally and physically. To get to experience another life-form to that degree would be one of the greatest things in my life.

But, I hope you do get a chance to contact that person your talking about who's involved with the camden aquarium. I think if I had the chance to know someone personally, it would higher my chances by a lot.
 

DHyslop

Architeuthis
Registered
Joined
Dec 22, 2004
Messages
1,713
Armstrong said:
But iv already spoke with a person involved there on telephone and I think that was enough to know that their policy is strict and 'set' and cant be altered or changed for the sake of 1 person...that would be me. I wish I could prove to them how enthusiastic I am....because I don't honestly know any other kid who already knows as much as I do related to cephs, biology and captivity-keeping

Its probably a policy that's set by their insurance company. Try not to take it personally because it is likely that it is out of their control.

Dan
 

Jean

Colossal Squid
Registered
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Messages
4,218
Armstrong, I replied to your pm but hey if you've written a book on it, send them a copy (or extracts!). Be willing to do ANYTHING that get's your foot in the door. Even envelope stuffing, floor washing whatever....show willing.

The Jenkinsons aquarium sounds like your best bet! But don't get too hung up on working with the octopus. Do whatever they want well...once you've proved yourself they may let you have more hands on with the animals.

We are not inclined to let volunteers work with the more delicate animals until they have been with us a while and have proved that they can deal with it. Even you we would want to see you with other critters first. I'm not implying anything here but they don't know you and anyone can say they've worked with whatever...they need to know...both for your safety and for the animals safety. We usually start volunteers off with cleaning the touch pools as these animals are selected for toughness! And maybe chopping food or floor washing. Only when we're happy with the volunteers ability and willingness would we let them move on to the bigger critters (although if the boat is going out we try to get them on board for a collecting trip ASAP ya gotta have some fun too!).

J
 
Joined
Aug 15, 2005
Messages
410
when i volonteered at the dallas world aquarium, i was stuffing envelopes and "giving tours" for the first three months before they let me do the real stuff. which eventulay led to feeding the gpo there, but that too almost 6 months since i started. so i would just try to get your foot in the door. because eventaly they will know you know what your talking about.

wow i wish i was still there, too bad i have so much damn school
 
Joined
Jul 18, 2005
Messages
80
Hi Armstrong,

Here's a somewhat 'outside the box' suggestion:

1. Buy a student rate annual pass to whichever aquarium suits your situation. Virtually all such institutions have these and they're probably a good deal cheaper than setting up your own octo tank.

2. Start spending as much time as you can manage at the aquarium. I wouldn't be surprised if the staff didn't eventually offer you a chair so that you can watch the octo more comfortably - especially if you bring writing material and take notes (or at least appear to do so :wink: ).

3. Develop a few octopus stories to tell the tourists. By "stories" I don't mean 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea - When I'm docenting I try to package information into stories such that I don't lose my audience by going into too much detail. I've got a den/midden story, a breeding story, a gestation story, a learning story, and a hunting/killing/eating story. [I've also got some anemone stories, a couple of rockfish stories, an urchin story or two - you get the idea.]

4. Use the stories to help the staff during busy times rather than appearing to usurp their responsibilities. There is absolutely nothing a docent likes more than a truly interested and knowledgeable visitor. I'd be very surprised if the staff didn't start looking for ways to bend the rules on your behalf.

Persuasively yours,

Alex
 
Joined
Jan 6, 2003
Messages
476
I really love all your suggestions...however, they all require volunteer-work to do so. And to even get my foot into the door, all volunteer work requires you to be the age of 18 and have completed high school. That's something I can't do because by 17, im going to college to become a designer soon. It's really unfortunate. The only possible way I could ever do what I want is if I knew personnel who were involved with marine biology or captivity within the camden aquarium, but I don't.

As I wanted before, getting up close with an octopus for only a few hours for 1 day would be enough for me to be satisfied. I can't even accomplish that. To do something as brief and short as that would require all the hard you work they guys mention such as volunteering, and starting from the very beginning such as doing letters and cleaning the floors and bathrooms. Trust me, I would go through all that trouble just to one day get to the cephs for ONLY a day and a few hours, lol...but there's no way for me to even establish myself into the volunteer-position. And even if I did, the means of transportation would be almost impossible. I don't drive yet, bus money would be sorta pricy...and again, Camden has to be the most dangerous city in the USA.

Im just out of luck and it goes to show that people can't always get wha they want right? Lifes not fair and it never will be. Mabye someday when im a lot older i'll have the chance and pleasure of seeing one up close and off-hand. Cuz thats my dream at the moment. I guess i'll have to wait because thats the way its going...there are no options.
 
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
Messages
378
Hi Armstrong.

You are obviously really passionate about cephs, and I know what you mean about wanting to be near the octopuses. Here in the UK, where I am landlocked (the five rivers that converge in Salisbury, don't really do it for me) I get so few opportunities to see cephs. Any Chance I get I'm in an aquarium, just hoping they have some cuttle or an octo. Couple of weeks ago I went to Weymouth Sea Life centre, where they say they have an Octo, 35 minutes I spent staring into that tank waiting for the octo to appear, until my youngest son (who appeared to have gone bioluminescent) demanded we move on. I didn't catch even a glimpse of the Octopus. In fact I haven't seen an Octopus in real life since 2003 when I took my first born son to Plymouth aquarium, before that the last one I saw in real life was in 1998, when working at the Museum of the Moving Image I used to get a free pass to the mighty London Aquarium. I would to sit and watch that Octopus for hours. If it wasn't for TONMO I think I would get Ceph withdrawal symptoms.

I know you say Fashion is your number one priority, and from what you say it sounds like you are talented in that area, but don't give up on the cephs. You say you are not interested in Marine Biology and that cephs are the only things that capture your interest, but I feel that once you start learning about Marine life you'll just want to know more. You strike me as a really inquisative person, I bet you'd really get into a book like "Mapping The Deep" by Robert Kunzig, or "The Sea Around Us" and "Under The Sea Wind" by the late Rachel Carson. You might find your interest broadening.

I really think you should give some consideration to the ideas about just continously visiting an aquarium, a season ticket would probably turn out cheaper than the costs of owning a ceph. I can guarantee that the staff will be impressed if you're there all the time. There is nothing someone who is passionate about a subject likes more than to find someone else who's equally as excited about something. Who's to say they won't give you some special treatment. Even if they don't, just think of all the quality ceph time you will spend looking at the octopus. There is no greater way to learn or understand a creature than to observe it's behaviour.

Also as a last resort see the Tonmocon forum for pictures of the amazing cephwear created by Erich Orser, proof that fashion and cephs can mix.
 

Nancy

Titanites
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Nov 20, 2002
Messages
5,772
Armstrong, I wouldn't despair so soon.

What about LFSs - maybe there is one near you that handles octos and you could visit one there.

Also, what kind of design do you plan to study? If you're going to a university with marine biology, maybe they would have labs with octos.

Nancy
 

Forum statistics

Threads
20,880
Messages
206,843
Members
8,471
Latest member
CarlServi

Monty Awards

TONMOCON IV (2011): Terri
TONMOCON V (2013): Jean
TONMOCON VI (2015): Taollan
TONMOCON VII (2018): ekocak


Top