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Ducks and Dudes – Prose (sic) and Cons
by Doug Hawley

Frequently while watching water fowl, I wonder if they have it better. Because people don’t talk duck (I do bad imitations) and ducks don’t speak people, they are no magpies after all, my research is inadequate, but I’ll do the best that I can.

Obviously ducks have it all over people in several ways. We cannot fly without artificial apparatus. If we want to get anywhere fast, we require vehicles, whereas ducks just take to the skies. I envy them dumping and whizzing wherever they want. We must grow or buy food. Ducks have readily available grass, algae, fish or amphibians. They don’t need to save for college, join the army, get a job or go to jail.

In some areas we are more on equal ground. Ducks can get botulism, cholera or plague. Ducklings may be eaten by fish – notice the symmetry – or raptors. Humans are a big hazard for ducks; we eat the wild ones and the domesticated. Humans are rarely killed by ducks, but we can get a lot of diseases that affect ducks and a lot of our own diseases. Humans do a lot of things that lead to their demise – driving drunk, smoking, drinking, stds, and war. I believe that ducks are never as smart as people at our best or as stupid as our worst. There has never been a duck Einstein or Hitler. Ducks can be monogamous, but maybe only for a year at a time. In duck years, that’s about like people.

Humans definitely come out ahead on longevity. Ten years is a long life for a duck. Ducks rarely get to sample our tasty cuisine – quarter pounders, Black Butte Porter, licorice twizzlers, Terminator Stout, waffles, wheat thins or peanut butter.

What is the final score?  I’m going out a limb, make a controversial decision, and call it a tie.    

Short Bio:
Little Old Man Doug's story smart car will appear in a fifth place - The first Fiction On The Web paper anthology, following FOTW online, Nugget Tales, a compilation in Corner Bar and an unauthorized Russian translation.