In September I will celebrate a decade of writing for the local weekly paper. While I’m certain I won’t be getting a gold watch or a party, the job does have its other rewards.
Namely, it’s weird. And it just keeps getting weirder. I don’t mean the people in the office; I refer instead to a whole other brand of weirdness. Namely, of course, ducks.
If you follow the Gabber or this blog – or if you live in Gulfport and pay any attention whatsoever to our coconut telegraph – you probably know about the recent duck drama. Ducks disappear, ducks reappear, ducks maybe get eaten, maybe they don’t… it’s just your garden-variety duck scandal. I guess. I wouldn’t know. I’ve never dealt with duck drama before.
This week was new, though. For the first time in a decade of writing for the Gabber, I’ve had to promise to protect the identity of a source.
A source who fears legal prosecution because he or she previously harbored ducks and knows the locations of other ducks currently in what I can only call “protective custody.”
I am in no way making this up. Even if I wanted to invent a story, I don’t know that I could come up with one to rival the truth. Carl Hiaasen would be proud.
Me? I suppose, in crazy world, this is a right of passage, a journalist telling a source that yes, they will keep their identity secret, even if it means that when the police come knocking (in Gulfport, it’s against the law to keep a duck in captivity) I will refuse to reveal the source’s name. Even, I should note, if it means jail.
Which I would totally do. I just never thought I would do it over a duck.