Did you know that you must be 18 to buy a duck?
I didn't, either. In fact, I'm not sure that's really true. It falls into the category of "Things I Learned Teaching School." Or an entry in my proposed Encyclopedia of Common Student Knowledge.
The kind soul who brought this matter to my attention loves animals. Every time we see a video or read about any kind of critter, she crows, "It's so CUTE! I want one!" Except for snakes. And, surprisingly, turkeys. Because she's such a lover of animals, I'm going to call her Philanimal. Near the end of class today, she approached my desk.
Philanimal: "Did you know you have to be 18 to buy a duck, Mrs. Thevictorian?"
Val: "I did not."
Philanimal: "I didn't either, until I went to buy one yesterday. They were SO cute. And they were only four dollars. I took one up front and said, 'I want to buy this duck.' And the lady said, 'I can't sell you that duck. You have to be 18.' Can you believe that? I can drive a car. I can see an R-rated movie. I can move out and live on my own. But I can't buy a duck!"
Val: "Where was this?"
Philanimal: "At the pet shop in Backroads. We also saw a little alligator. He was just chillin', looking at me through the cage, and my friend stepped up and said, 'Look at him!' And he SLAMMED against the glass and I screamed and jumped back...and...I peed a little."
Val: "Um. That's just a little too much information. But I'm glad to you tipped me off on the legal age to buy a duck. Too bad somebody called to tell on the auction my husband used to go to on the edge of Backroads. He could buy and sell animals there all day long. He got chickens, and a turkey, and rabbits, and goats. No duck, though. But he knew a regular there who used to buy a duck every couple of weeks. She was Chinese. It was not going home with her to be a pet.
Philanimal: "Ohh...that's sad."
Val: "Well, it's a fact of life. Besides. That lady WAS over 18."
I don't want to put false information into the blogosphere. I wondered if maybe that duck rule only applies to Missouri. We have exotic animal regulations, you know. So I consulted my BFF Google. Surprisingly, I did not find any statutes prohibiting under-eighteeners from buying ducks. I even read about the Missouri Duck and Coot Regulations. But that was certainly not about buying downy pets.
Don't let me dissuade you from running out to pick up some cute Easter fowl. Besides...I'm pretty sure most of you are over 18. And won't even get carded.