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The Day Sir Mallard Jones Picked Up Seven Chicks

Ducks and Dearest Chucks,

'Tis I, Sir Mallard Jones! Just popping in because Duck insisted I tell thee the story of me, seven chicks, a unicyclist, and a clammy underside. And because this blog now focuses on how we can live a better, happier life, I shall tie this story to that pithy, slightly irritating theme.

The clammy underside (please see my above diagram) is mine, you understand. It hovers above my flippers in all it's clammy beauty. Duck sometimes asks me, "Mallard, why are you so proud of your clammy underside?"

I reply, "Well, old fruit, it's MINE! That's why!" And so it is. If my underside is a clammy underside, then it must be a MAGNIFICENTLY clammy underside. Here, my friends, is the proof:

'Twas the other day, and I, your clammy mallard, was taking a brisk walk in the cold sun that always shines on Mallard Mansion, even though everywhere else stays quite murky.

As I wandered down the bike path, I started to say to myself, "What is that strange squeaking that I'm hearing in my duck-ears?"

No sooner had I said this than a unicyclist appeared. Squeak, squeak, squeak came the strange sound, which now seemed louder than it had been. "Ahoy, keen unicyclist!" I quacked. "Thou appearst to have a squeaky wheel! Are you, perchance, seeking another wheel that isn't so squeaky? Of course, an additional wheel would make thee a mere cyclist as opposed to a unicyclist, but the loss of a couple of syllables is no cause for alarm!"

Yet no! Even after said unicyclist had passed, I could still hear the squeaking.

'Twas only when I got home from my magnificent walk that I discovered the CAUSE of said squeaking. My clammy undersid

e, miraculous as it is, had managed to pick up seven young birds. Chicks, to be precise. They were stuck upside down to my clammy feathers, yet had NOT paid for a fairground ride."We've been squeaking at you all afternoon!" cried Chick 1.

"Don't you listen?" cried Chick 2.

(As you can see, these feisty fluffballs were more than a touch peeved.)

"I've been dragged through the muck, all because of your clammy underside!" squeaked Chick 3 who was a little grubby.

Naturally, every chick aboard my clammy underside had something somewhat angry to say. But I, Sir Mallard, responded thusly:

"Kind chicks! I apologize heartily for attaching you, accidentally, to my MARVELOUS clammy underside. I may inadvertently have squashed and attached thee, and for that I am sorry. But think of the ORIGINALITY of thy situati

on! I assure thee it will make a magical tale that many blog readers—we have at least FIVE—will chuckle or quack at with mirth! How uplifting!"

"Actually," said Chick 1, "since I got accidentally attached to your clammy underside, I've had enough of being 'uplifted.' I'd rather be left alone to peck at some leftover corn."

"Me too," said Chicks 6 and 7.

What more could I say? So, to make up for my clammy misdemeanor, I invited said chicks for some afternoon tea at Mallard Mansion. They all had a hearty time and we left the best of friends. Yes, there was some swearing, and one of them left me a note reminding me to check under my "hood" more often, which was a very thoughtful reminder. Who knows what could be stuck under there in any given moment? Only yesterday, I found a whole pineapple under there! 'Twas a wonder I could walk at all!

And this, my friends, is the 'happy life' moral of the story: I could have spent my time flapping around, worrying about everyone's crabby words about my clammy underside, but instead, I made the whole incident about ME. As Star often says, "The rest of us could do with the littlest pinch of Mallard's confidence. Maybe two percent or so. That would do us a lot of good!" So, yes! I, Sir Mallard, loan you a full two percent of my MARVELOUS ME'NESS! And I encourage you to love all your parts, be they clammy or otherwise—especially when they inadvertently cause a fracas that you had NO INTENSION of causing. Because then, they are most deeply in need of your love.

In the words of my best frenemy Duck T, "Give thyself a ducking break! Though dids't not mean to cause a fracas!"

[Note from Duck: I have never, ever said 'thyself'! Not once! Until just now!]

Thank thee kindly, my feathered friends, and I bid thee a clammy farewell!


Sir Mallard Jones



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