• Archives

  • May 20th, 2009

    What the Duck is Going On?

    Linda Cullen
    I lead an incredibly busy life. My days are jam packed. For example, every other day, I have to scour newspapers and magazines in order to keep a running tally on Brad and Angelina’s offspring. I believe at last count it was three thousand two hundred and eight. I also have to put in at least 3 or 4 hours daily trying to solve that age old problem; If train ‘A’ leaves the west coast at 4 o’clock traveling a hundred miles an hour, and train ‘B’ leaves the east coast at 5 o’clock traveling 110 miles an hour, at what time will ‘Happy Hour’ start on train ‘A’, and more importantly, why am I cut off after only 7 Cosmopolitans? On top of all of that, I have to fit in at least 3 high-quality, intensive beauty naps. So, you can see, there is very little time left for anything else.

    However, at this time of year, I take on the heavy burden of trying to keep all of the Animal Kingdom alive…well, okay, not ALL of it, but a big portion of it, if you consider a big portion of the Animal Kingdom a dozen or so baby ducks. You see, I live in a townhouse complex that has as one of its desirable features, ponds and streams running behind most of our places. And so, over the years a number of ducks have made these waterways their home. And for most of the year they go about their duck business, you know, rooting for Anaheim in the play-offs, that kind of thing. But every spring, because Mother Nature seems to demand it, we have babies. And of course, when you first see the little puff balls, it’s as if you are discovering these rare elusive creatures for the very first time. “Ah, what an interesting puffball. I think I’ll name this species Daffydoopidus Cullengoofitus!” Oh, yes, there’s a lot of squeeling, and clucking…and these are the human beings I’m talking about. “Ohhhhhhh!! Loooook at the widdle baby wabies!! Oh my god, they’re soooo cuuuuute!!”

    And that day arrived yesterday. We have our first batch of puff balls. Ten of them. And they are just so cuuuute! But now, I have to stand guard for hours on end, trying to make sure that, first of all, the crows don’t get at them. I’m not quite sure how the crows do it, except that I know they’re smart, and they work well in teams. I think what happens is, they get a couple of them to go to the front door and ring the bell, and then when I go to answer that, another bunch of crow thugs hold down my husband, so he can’t protect the babies, and then they snatch a few. Plus we have hawks, and a hawk is just your basic deadly duck hunting machine. Not to mention cats, raccoons, and who knows what other creatures are lurking out there in the dead of night, I’m too afraid to look.

    It just about drove me cuckoo last year, because when they have these big families, there’s always one knucklehead in the group that doesn’t pay attention when mom turns left, ‘cause he’s busy playing pocket Nintendo or something, and BAM! The whole family is gone, and he starts squeaking incessantly, like a rusty water pump, or a Jessica Simpson song. So I had to wade into the water, and start doing a fairly decent, if I do say so myself, impression of mom, in order to get him to swim toward me, and off in the right direction…which he DID! Yeh, I don’t think they’re very smart.

    And it’s the same this year. I was out this morning yelling at one of the Mallard males, because when it comes to being a parent, they suck. I’m tellin’ ya, like that Oscar winning rap song said a few years ago, “You know it’s hard out here for a duck.” Or something like that.

    I’m so worried about them I can’t sleep, I can’t eat (who’s kidding who, I could do with about 20 pounds of worry) because I just want to keep the babies alive, so that when they’re adults, and they fly over my place, in their happy quacky duck way, I can wave at them and say “Hey duckies, if you drop one more of your stinking payloads on my patio furniture I’ll KILL you!!!”

    Leave a Reply

    You must be logged in to post a comment.