20 December 2013

Angry Pregnant Duck Blog

Sorry for the blog silence in recent weeks. My brain has been turned to mush by the overwhelming hormones and frustration of being the size of a house while I wait (impatiently) for Boy2 to make his way into the world. I have started and given up on about 12 blogs in the last couple of weeks but around 2 sentences in I lose concentration and can't believe I ever thought I'd be capable of writing even my own name.

Today I got really cross about something. Crossness is great for writing because you just rant by typing instead of talking. If there's one emotion I'm excelling in at 9 1/2 months pregnant it is crossness. 

This morning we took Boy1 to our favourite local park/nature place. (Yeah, you heard- nature place. My brain cannot access the proper word for this.) We go there to feed the ducks, go on some swings and sometimes have warm milk in the cafe. It's beautiful and fun and he loves the ducks.

How cute is my little goose feeding Santa?!

On the way we sang "5 little ducks". This is where my rage came from. Boy1 loves this song, mostly because its about ducks but we have had to change the lyrics due to their inherent anti-feminist theme. 

If you're not familiar with the song it goes a little something like this:

5 little (disobedient) ducks go swimming one day. They go over some hills (water doesn't go up hills so this part of the song is stupid to start with) and far away. (Setting a bad example to impressionable young minds. It's not ok to run away from your parents kids.)

5 little delinquents went off the rails one day

Basically, their Mum calls after them "quack quack quack" which we can assume to mean "come back here!", but one by one the little ducks ignore her and eventually "no little ducks come swimming back".

So far we have an example of naughty children and inadequate parenting. I'm ok with that, it's a story... There will be a moral at the end right? Perhaps the mother will employ some more authoritative parenting techniques and teach her children the importance of staying safe while out and about?... 

No. After we spend 5 verses discussing how ineffectual the mother duck is, the story concludes with one brief word from Daddy duck and ALL of the little baby ducks coming back.

Ohhh... Daddy says we have to come back? Well then, we'd best rush home!

Problems I have with this:

1. The assumption that Daddy duck was too busy ducking around somewhere else to be a parent when it was really needed. (When the baby ducks started showing signs of challenging behaviour.)

2. The assumption that a Mummy duck doesn't have enough authority to call the baby ducks back, but the (largely absent) Daddy duck has total control. How did he earn this level of authority if he's never around? Why does Mummy duck willingly put herself in the position of second best parent? Are the baby ducks scared of Daddy duck? If so, why? Maybe a social worker duck should look into this family dynamic?

Look, I'm just going to the loo... Can't I have five minutes peace?!

3. Why is the Mummy the stay at home parent in the first place? Many families now have a much more equal sharing of care. Where is the Granny duck or the child-minder Duck or any of the other duck village members that a family with 5 offspring would need to stay sane? No wonder Mummy duck is having a hard time looking after the brood, she's got no support! Someone needs to give Mummy duck the afternoon off. She needs some me time. Maybe she should start a blog to share her experiences with other struggling Mummy ducks? 

In our new version Mummy and Daddy take it in turns to call after the naughty ducks and at the end they both call together to get the ducks back. It's an altogether more supportive family environment.

Now that I've finished this blog I can see why I gave up on so many others. I have lost my mind. Come back to me after the baby is born. I'll try to write something with a little more substance. 

In the mean time, don't get me started on Three Blind Mice! I did a module on disability rights at uni.


  1. Never heard a version where Daddy Duck calls them back but I do understand your frustration with the song - the last verse we sing is
    Sad mother duck went out one dayOver the hill and far away
    The sad mother duck said “Quack, quack, quack,”
    And all of the five little ducks came back.

  2. Oh really? That's better! :)

  3. Karen Teresa Reekie21 February 2014 at 05:59

    That version of the song has always annoyed me. Great rant! Hope number 2 arrives soon!

  4. Lol thanks! This is an old post! Boy2 is here and nearly 2 months old! X

  5. That has been bugging me for months!!!! and at baby group I sing as loud as I can that Mummy duck has the final word,as she is doing the calling, they have to respond to her. Will try alternatives you mention above. Rebel mum at baby group my poor little girl might not live this down

  6. Lol go you! (Don't worry I don't think they get embarassed by us til they're about 7??) xx