Stowaway!

The Duck

You see, there’s this duck.

It’s a little stuffed Aflac duck. When you squeeze it, it says “Aflac. Aflac. AFLAAAAAAAC!”

Back when Benji and I were roommates, we used to find creative ways to pass it back and forth. For example, one time Benji came back from class to see The Duck sitting on his laptop’s keyboard, looking at duck porn. Another time I found that The Duck had hung himself in my closet, complete with suicide note. (Which eventually led to the infamous Naked Yogurt Time incident, but that’s another story.)

But that was all two years ago, during my final year at Purdue, finishing my Masters’ degree. These days, several hundred miles of separation kind of makes it harder to do that sort of thing.

Anyway, upon returning from a recent business trip, I found that my checked bag had won the TSA lottery. Aside from having the mandatory “yeah, we looked in your bag, deal with it” note (I’m loosely paraphrasing here), everything seemed pretty much how I left it. However, after unloading the clothes, I noticed that the garment bag that I normally leave unused in the bottom look a bit higher than normal. I lifted it up to reposition it, and underneath I discovered…

The Duck.

I can only assume that when I visited Purdue last month, someone snuck The Duck down there when I wasn’t looking. I didn’t notice anything when unpacking from that trip, since the way the bag is shaped, there is a little space beneath where the garment bag goes. Which means The Duck spent several weeks in my luggage, in my closet, with me none the wiser, and if not for TSA it’d still be there.

I can only imagine what the TSA guy rummaging through my bag must have thought when he found The Duck in an otherwise painfully dull bag. (Clothes, shoes, more clothes, toiletries, and wait, something’s hidden down here, aha, it’s… a stuffed duck?!)

Actually, The Duck does have a funny story about that, but I’ll let The Duck tell it for himself.

[And since I couldn’t resist the pun in the filename, you can also listen to The Duck with lossless audio compression, fully capturing the richness of sound provided by the cheap little microphone that came with holly.]

Now The Duck is out of my luggage, and perched atop my backup hard drive. I told him he’s welcome to stay as long as he likes, as long as he stays away from those two pidgeons that hang out on my balcony. They’d be a bad influence on him. I mean, you can’t make a mountain out of a molehill, but you can make a mountain out of the mounds of pidgeon droppings they’ve been leaving. Seriously, it’s three-dimensional, and I can’t have The Duck pulling that sort of thing indoors.