Searching for his roots at Disneyland, Anaheim, California
With David Backman
NOT was spending a lot of time thinking about his roots. Ever since he watched the Academy Awards recently and saw Matt Damon and Ben Affleck bringing their mothers to the ceremony (and we all know that the duck roots for the local boys) NOT began to think more about his flock and where he came from.
One day he was visiting his parents in Capistrano, (where his parents had retired after getting a time share pitch from a sparrow they were migrating with one winter) and talking to his mother and father, and asking him about others from his flock.
"Oh, they are a rather undistinguished bunch," explained NOT's dad, "Some of them are lucky to find South to fly for the winter. Not a truly distinguished bunch."
"Except for Donald," Mom helpfully reminded.
Dad sighed. "Yea, your great uncle, Donald, he went to California many years ago to try and find his fortune. He hooked up with this Disney guy who made him famous. We don't like to talk about him much - he made his fortune by not being understandable, hotheaded and never wore pants. A disgrace"
NOT decided it was safer not to remind Dad that none of them were wearing pants. "Hmm, my Great Uncle Donald. I should go find him."
"You can try," offered Dad. "Last I heard he was living in sin with this Daisy and working for Disney still in Anaheim."
So with a new found determination, NOT jumped on a nearby cannon and began his journey to Anaheim. A small duck in search of his Uncle Donald.
Many years before he had almost had a brush with his Great Uncle Donald when he visited Disney World in Florida, but only found his second cousin twice removed. This time he was determined to find the relative he was looking for.
After a short flight from Capistrano, NOT Duck homed in on Disneyland. Coming in for a landing he thought he spotted a duck right below him. Could it be his great uncle? Well, the duck wasn't moving much, but at the same time, he is old and thus won't be moving that quickly. He quickly landed and went over to check it out.
"Hello!" he cried. "Hello. Are you my Great Uncle Donald?"
But the duck stayed mute. He was, after all, just a statue. A statue to Donald.
"Wow," thought NOT, "he must be more famous than I thought!" And he quickly set out to find his Great Uncle.
"Have you seen my Great Uncle Donald?" he asked of the lady at the shipyard. But she was not helpful, only pointed off in the distance.
"Have any of you seen my Great Uncle Donald?" he asked the three gargoyles. They just sat there, lolling in the sunlight as if stoned, giggling and asking him is he was "Quackimodo."
"Oh, you're no help!" he exclaimed and began to storm off.
"Wait, isn't Donald one of those cartoon characters?" asked one of the gargoyles. "Why don't you try someplace like Toon Town to find him?"
Toon Town was a very strange place. Even for a small traveling Duck like NOT. He landed on mailbox and looked around. There were a lot of parading people around, but none that looked like a famous relative. He moved on, until he found a sign. "Hmm.... maybe this will tell me where to find famous ducks," he thought. It read
THIS IS A BLANK SIGN
Please do not pay attention to any printing that you may see on this sign. We only wrote this to let you know that this is a blank sign. With nothing on it. Except this message.
"Hmm, that's not very helpful," sighed NOT. Suddenly he noticed another duck nearby.
Exasperated, he ran over to the duck. "Have you seen my Great Uncle Donald by any chance?" he cried.
The duck just smiled and pointed his beak to the left. NOT turned his head.
And there he was. NOT's Great Uncle Donald.
"Great Uncle Donald!" he cried.
Donald turned, picked NOT up and said something. Unfortunately he said it just as he says everything else so NOT, nor anyone else there, could understand a word that he said. But NOT had found his relative and basked in the joy of this until it was time for Donald to go home to Daisy.
And since NOT was already at Disneyland, he might as well enjoy the rides, and seeing that he was a duck prone to playing in the water, what better way to celebrate but to ride Splash Mountain.
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Photos courtesy of David Backman
Last Updated December 1998