• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 05
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My duck Boris has alopecia. It developed last year when he realised that eventually, some day, he will need to admit that he is in fact English, not French.

“Well when I went on Tinder all I saw were duck pics;
ducks doing volunteer work,
ducks drinking kale and wheatgrass smoothies,
ducks doing yoga in Peru,
ducks handing out lentil soup to the homeless.
I felt totally inadequate. My Simpsons memes were still reeling them in but once they asked about my humanitarian initiatives or travel plans, the lack thereof sent them running into some other duck’s arms.”

I became particularly concerned when I noticed Boris flicking back and forth between Twitter and Instagram despairingly, rubbing his head on a fence-post. I think that was when he started to go bald.

“I had a look in the encyclopaedia and noticed that all the most popular ducks were French and called themselves ‘canard’ instead of duck. Even the pics were different:
A tanned brown one lying in a pool of hoisin,
A tropical one with fake tan that was supposed to smell like oranges,
Another one that looked sticky and didn’t seem to be wearing shoes who boasted he’d been in the tanning salon for four hours.
It all seems a bit odd to me.
The decadence of it made me feel ill. But allons - y!”

I bought Boris the wig in the local doll hospital, it was quite cheap. He had abandoned Twitter and Instagram and was now on Duolingo most nights, learning how to conjugate etre and avoir, asking randomly for baguettes or directions to the bookshop.



I brought him to the duck pond and watched as he courted several women by calling them "ma pamplemousse d’amour" and they seemed to love it. I took the wig off at night which Boris didn’t like and saw he was as bald as a Marabou stork underneath. He would snatch it back from me and demand I take photos of him posing with a garland of garlic, wearing a beret, sipping Ricard or promenading on a photoshopped Champs Elysee.

“The ladies couldn’t get enough, I had friend requests coming out of my feathers. The only problem was when we met in person they realised I had lost my French accent. They assumed I was more experienced dans la chambre and I’m not sure I was still making sense. My usual line of 'la chien et dans la piscine' didn’t create the peals of laughter I intended to generate, they expected raunchy kisses and for me to recite erotic poetry. They kept talking about someone called Gainsbourg and forcing me to eat cheese. But I’m not that kind of duck.”

I took Boris/Pierre to the vet today, who informed me that he had seen Boris going to the tanning salon more than was healthy for a duck his age. He prescribed a 72 hours dans la frigo avec herbs and four hours at 225 degrees. Remove wig first.