As the book opens, in 2025, our hero, Tyrone O’Shaughnessy Tierwater, baby boomer, ex-radical environmentalist, ex-con, ex-father, widower and divorce, is seventy-five and battling to stay afloat in the rising Social-Security-less waters of a meteorologically challenged society. He is working as an animal keeper for a wealthy but faded rock star who maintains a menagerie of some of the last specimens of formerly wild animals, when his ex-wife, Andrea Cotton, comes back into his life after a twenty-three year absence. He is reluctant to get involved, but intrigued too. He makes an assignation with her for that very night at Ahigetoshi Swenson’s Catfish and Sushi House, where he regales her with the locally brewed sake (wine is a thing of the distant past) and the only sushi left available on this picked-over planet: catfish, tilapia, and the always-in-demand crappy roll. And so begins his new career and his newly kindled romance.
Alternate chapters take us back to the past, where we see a younger Ty and Andrea in action as the driving wheels behind the radical environmental group, Earth Forever! We also delve into Ty’s relationship with his daughter, Sierra, now famous as a “matyr to the trees.” All of this is presented with satiric verve—this is a funny book, albeit on the most depressing possible topic.