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The ducks of Facebook
editor's notes

I am starting to think as a species we humans are basically two kinds of people. Ducks and not ducks.

The ducks are the ones who see something on Facebook that winds them up (illegal immigrants, stupid editors and other perceived slights against their sense of proportion) and they feel compelled to throw in their two cents soon as they can get to the keyboard. It kind of goes like this.

First duck: “Quack!”

To which second duck types: “Quack, quack, quack., quack quack quack, quack quack quackity quack.”

I goes from there. “Quack quack quack quack, quack!”

That may well lead the first duck to defend itself, or further explain what it meant to quack had the spell checker not changed its meaning from quack to, well, quack.

“Quacker quack? Quack quack quack quack quack.”And so it goes.

The quack attack.

Sometimes it goes for hours, even weeks, until something of equal or greater quackability comes along. Quack quack quack.

Sometimes it’s video quacking. Quack quack quack.

On occasion many others join in, though to be honest only two or three people can conjure up such a storm of quacks it could fill up two War and Peaces and make you think a groundswell of angry ducks toting pitchforks were set to march on the capitol to demand somebody’s head, though it can sometimes be hard to understand what all the quacking is about.

It makes one wonder, well, me anyway, where the ducks get time to quack so much. A good duck seldom misses the opportunity to get in a good quacking, and some ducks are so reliable you can set your watch by them, if you had no other means by which to set your watch. Assuming, of course, you wear a watch.

At an rate, I am forced to consider some verbose quackers may be ducks of leisure, and not tied to a job, which naturally frees them up for plenty of quacking about.

Some might be quacking up a cloud from the bathroom. Others could be quacking up social media from the office in between bursts of work. Some may be quacking by smartphone while running people off the road on I-95.

Doesn’t matter. The important thing for a duck is to get its two quacks in, you know. Whether it knows anything about what it’s quacking about is another story, of course.

As for the not ducks, well, they probably wonder what in heck I’m babbling on about.

If they think about it at all, they’d think all that quacking about on Facebook is kind of strange, or maybe a little sad, though some have Facebook pages themselves.

But at some point in their evolution from tiny hairless mammalian baby into large hairy mammalian adult with car keys and a mortgage, they did not devolve into a duck and get the urge to quack (or make duck faces) on social media about how unfair life was, or the darn Democrats, or even stupider editors; or whatever other convenient target might show up on the horizon just waiting for a good quacking over.

Thank goodness for that.

The not ducks, who fortunately still outnumber ducks in our world, tend to eschew social media for all but those things for which sites such as Facebook were intended, such as stalking old flames, showing off the grandkids, sharing recipes or figuring out how to give one’s business free advertising.

And even though I once had a cop tell me “if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and talk likes a duck, it’s a duck,” there are exceptions.

For example, grebes are awfully ducklike, but they’re not ducks.

Neither are coots, though I’ve met a few of the older variety of coot over the years who can and did quack with the best of ducks, they just preferred to come down to the office and quack at you over a pot of coffee.

I once knew an old coot with a moustache who spent probably two hours explaining to me why a certain cable company’s poles were not in compliance with industry standards because, well, I forget now, but he had a train whistle at his place out in Marlow and loved to blow it and now he’s gone to the great coot ranch in the sky, and I miss his brand of quacking.

Finally, while loons may look like ducks and act like ducks, they are technically not ducks. But some ducks are definitely loons. You can tell by the way they quack.

Whitten is editor of Bryan County News.

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