Read Your Rod’s Duck Farm News
– Tooo Many Form Letter Words Jan 9, 2007
HAPPY NEW YEAR
Once again it is time for my New Years resolution. The past few years I have kept my resolution “To not make a million dollars”. A few years back I changed the resolution on my computer monitor. This year, I’m starting to think my hearing has a problem.
Is it “Rest Solution”? (I like to think so). One solution to falling asleep has to do with “getting up earlier”. Another solution has to do with “working harder”. I chose option number 1, “getting up earlier”. Another possibility for “Rest Solution” has to do with “ignoring the Rest of the world and thinking about ducks instead.” That works well as a solution for the Rest of the problems.
My favorite commercial for 2006 was the Chicken Fries commercial. A “gang” of chickens was teasing a rooster, suggesting that the rooster wanted to be a Chicken Fry. The rooster, open to new ideas concluded that not only did he “MAYBE want to be a Chicken Fry” but in fact, he “DID want to become a Chicken Fry”.
I asked Eric why there was no follow-up commercial. Why there was no more commercials with the rooster. Eric said it was because the rooster became a Chicken Fry.
Number two commercial is the cave man trying to get respect. “So easy a caveman could do it! Give me a break. What if I said it is so easy a psychologist could do it?”
The Geico Gecko no longer qualifies as a commercial but is now a feature presentation. His quips aren’t quite like Clint Eastwood’s “make my day” but on the other hand, the gecko is a non-threatening, friendly face in the living room.
The last Duck Farm News introduced a discussion about the death of newspapers. there is a saving grace – regulations – laws – precedent …. when something is a PAID publication in a newspaper, PUBLIC NOTICE has been served.
Another saving grace has been parakeets. Newspapers make good cage liners.
Newspapers also make good fire starters. But since, according to the newspapers, people aren’t supposed to be keeping confined animals and starting fires, the use of the paper has dwindled. I think maybe newspapers are sort of like the Chicken Fry rooster. They have talked themselves out of existence. Eat a beaver – save a tree - don’t buy paper. I will reiterate my statement of last news letter, “maybe if the newspaper was useful, in and of itself”. Think about it. People buy rolls of toilet paper, and it doesn’t even have writing on it. (Hint to the bidet industry: Give away free rolls of toilet paper, printed with bidet advertising. Remember, the Sears Catalogue went the way of the outhouse.)
Eric and I have been enjoying baseball hats with bright LED lights in the bill. People ask, “What use would you have for such a thing?” I got out my taxidermy kit and used my lighted duck hat in conjunction with a magnifier and tweezers to remove a splinter from Leta Mae’s hand. (And that’s just a start of fascinating testimonials in favor of the hat.)
My Father used to tell humorous stories. One of the characters ate rutabagas and played the dulcimer. Since I had no experience with rutabagas, could not resist buying a can of diced rutabagas when I noticed them on the grocery shelf. Sadly, they are not an exotic culinary product. It’s just yellow turnips.
Arkansas is a diverse place. Here in Northwest Arkansas, the toy department at Wal-Mart sells children’s nursery rhyme books in Spanish. Close to Little Rock, at Benton, the Spanish nursery rhyme books are not available. Noteworthy, the stores also had a shortage of ethnic minority customers when I was there.
I spent the night at a little “Persian” owned motel. It was more upscale than I thought. The waste receptacle bore the Holiday Inn logo! There was a Bible but no Koran. Capitalists??
Anyway, I finally returned home and there “wasn’t anything on TV”. I watched an episode of South Park from a different perspective. (One of the producers of the 1980’s sitcoms says that the modern TV comedies are lacking but that he watches South Park religiously. Eric said, “South Park is a political commentary.”) The episode I watched was a Wal-Mart publicity commercial. Of course, it was disguised. They spelled Wal-Mart with two l’s …. Wall-Mart. The South Park kids were on a mission to plunge a stake into the heart of the evil Wall-Mart store. When they finally found the heart of the store, the “heart” turned out to be a mirror, a reflection of the customer – Wall-Mart is only as successful as the degree to which the operation mirrors the collective hearts of the customers. Or maybe it was just a cartoon of uncouth, violent, young hoodlums.
You recall that I had to decline the visit with President Bush when he stopped by NW Arkansas. My Mother and Step-Dad attended. I got home from work and there they were on TV news. George was talking about things. Mom and Dad were sitting behind him, listening intently. It was a 15 or 20 minute live broadcast. Mom and Dad didn’t know they were being featured on the news. It would make an interesting story if they had been making funny faces or gestures.
The next day, in an unrelated incident, the FBI broke into brother-in-law Calvin’s house with a battering ram. (They couldn’t wait for Calvin to drive the 5 blocks from work to open the door for them.) Word is that when the FBI breaks into your house, they are not responsible for any damage they cause. They didn’t fix Calvin’s door.
THE BIG DUCK
Doug Cox is doing well. He is now assistant to the guy in charge of American Jeweler certifications. I think Doug can put a wristwatch on a gnat.
He also sent info about the Oakley, Idaho deaths of as many as 3,400 mallard ducks. Homeland Security went to investigate and decided the ducks had a fungal infection from tainted grain.
THE PROFIT MOTIVE … or is that PROPHET MOTIVE
Dave Renfro sent information about the Long Island Ducks …. that corner of the world is pretty ducky. Near the Hamptons at Flanders, New York is the Big Duck – a large Duck shaped building constructed in 1931 by duck farmer Martin Mauer using ferrocement over a wood frame. Every year the Big Duck is decorated with lights at Christmas. The town has a celebration and sings Duck Carols. The Big Duck’s eyes are red (Model T Ford tail lights). Martin patented his duck and sold ducks and eggs from the building.
Nowadays, a building that is shaped like the product has an architectural term – a duck. If you had a donut shop shaped like a donut, architects would call the building a duck, NOT a donut. Also, Long Island has a baseball team, the Long Island Ducks. They have a pretty neat duck logo.
Dave Renfro reports that the Anaheim Mighty Ducks are now just Ducks … no more Anaheim Mighty. Dave is a little like that Nostradamus feller – a prophet. Dave created a web site (DaveMowsGrass.com) with a link to his news page (blog). On his list of “favorites” was Rod’s Duck Farm which was at that time non-existent. Now there is a Rod’s Duck Farm “Biographical Log” – Blog:
Dave has an Uncle Steve who writes stories such as “He Forgot that it was Sunday”. The November 21 archive tells about a boy that forgot he was holding a duck call in his hand during a sermon. Unthinking, he coughed into his hand – the hand with the duck call.
My blog has a “favorites link” to Steve’s “Bullet Holes in the Mailbox” blog. Steve, a master chef, writes, “One man’s heaven is another’s duxelle.” Duxelle is finely chopped mushrooms cooked in butter with shallots (a member of the onion family) and wine.
You may still be thinking about the donut building being called a duck. There is a new word coined in 2006, “Pluto”. Synonyms are “demote, devalue”. For instance, the 8-track tape was king until it got plutoed by cassette tape. Sort of rhymes with Flu Toad.
We had 18 duckgrees fair-in–height and snow on the first day of December. I stayed home and made Official Rod’s Duck Farm Dish Drying Towels. Something thin and adsorbent, rugged and dainty. Pairs of adjectives for the Dish Towels are antonyms.
Grandson, William, has a stroller shaped like a Duck. He rode around the shopping mall in the duck stroller December 8.
On Saturday (Dec 30) I watched part of a 1995 movie called “Friday”. That household had duck knick-knacks on their shelves.
The Duck Truck is becoming a historical artifact. Born in 1988, it will be old enough to smoke in 2009. Right now it has 213 thousand miles. Since I just replaced the passenger door handle for the second time, a passenger door handle lasts 100,000 miles. The poor thing has a cold weather problem also. Either the fuel pump, relay, or control module has become cold sensitive. To start the Duck Truck, I have to wait until the relay turns on the fuel pump and the fuel pump pumps fuel. When things are quiet I simply listen to the sounds and start it up. But when it is real windy or my ears are ringing, I have to wait and guess. I would get an electronic fuel pressure gage but the $200 price is a distraction.
This year, Calendar Creator let me down. I spent several hours updating all the important events. I saved the updates and then discovered a couple more. I added the couple more but Calendar Creator not only failed to save but erased the entire file. I got a 2007 Pocket Pal and updated it using the Pilot G-2 gel ink pen.
There were lots of Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. The favorite was, of course, the family dinners with Adam & Amanda’s family. High on the list of a fun time was the Legacy Bank dinner. They had a big Christmas dinner party at the country club complete with a live jazz band.
THIS CHRISTMAS WAS VERY DUCKY
Adam & family went wild on ducks!
Adam got me a pocket watch with flying ducks on the lid. Adam & Amanda had several packages for me. There was an assortment of 3 rubber ducks, one of which was a 2007 New Year’s duck. Also there was a framed puzzle depicting a rubber duck. Another surprise was salt & pepper shaker ducks. A duck bath scrubber concluded the haul.
Grand-Daughter, Katlyne, gave me two plush ducks and a nice Santa Claus rubber duck.
In-laws, Amanda’s folks (Steven and Diann Myers) joined in the spirit of duckness with a fascinating duck radio …. looks like a rubber duck and floats. Twist the head for volume and twist the tail to change stations.
My Step-Mother sent antiques: ceramic ducks, two cologne bottle ducks, a pair of embroidered dish towel ducks, and a duck pillow. Crystal discovered antique mechanical ducks for me – Quack Pack All Duck Band and a basket of ducks. The basket of ducks winds up with a key. Baby ducks alternate opening their bills and quacking. The All Duck Band is a battery powered stage-set marionette collection of dancing/instrument playing ducks.
Gary & Melody’s gift was sweet as honey – it was honey, wrapped in a duckological artifact. The wrapping paper has a penguin theme. Gary and Melody claim that a penguin is an unrecognized form of duck, the Arctic Duck. (Sort of like a goose. Jimmy Skaggs says a goose is simply a long-necked duck.)
Charles & Veloria Barber sent a lovely Christmas card. The envelope had several of their return address labels …..duck emblazoned return address labels. There’s a lots of people thinking ducks!!!
Ducks bring in the New Year at some places. Havre de Grace, Maryland has a giant duck decoy museum. The town is said to be the Duck Decoy Capitol of the World. Instead of dropping a ball, like at Times Square, they drop a duck.
At Benton, Arkansas I went to Wal-Mart and got a kid’s book, “The Little Duck”. It is pretty informative. For one thing, it takes 28 days for a duck to incubate. Henry the duck was hatched from an incubator. He didn’t float because his feathers didn’t have oil. Henry’s oil glands weren’t developed and he couldn’t brush up against a mother duck to get coated with oil. (That part about “Thou anointest my head with oil” applies to ducks!) When Henry replaced his down with regular duck feathers, one of his tail feathers demonstrated a pronounced and distinctive curl. That’s because Henry was a male duck.
Define the following:
FILL IN THE BLANK
A building that is shaped like the product being sold is called a(n) _____________.
A penguin is an arctic ____________.
A goose is a long-necked __________.
Henry was a ______________.
If people spent more time thinking about ducks,
They’d spend less time thinking about other things.