The Real Duckman of San Francisco
There is a man in San Francisco who walks his pet duck…I know that sounds like the beginning of a joke or a nursery rhyme, but it is not.
The Duckman of San Francisco pulls up in a Fiat, casually hops out, and opens the car door for his…duck.
The first time I saw this dynamic duo was on a sidewalk in the Sunset District, and I thought I had dreamt it. But when I saw them for a second time at Stow Lake this past Sunday, I knew the fairytale was real.
I swear to you, the Duckman of San Francisco gives that duck verbal directions, like “stop”, “go”, and “we’re going left up there at the bend”. The duck quacks back pleasantly in response, as she waddles through a crowd of onlookers, no leash needed.
I’m telling you, they fucking talk to each other.
In the Sunset the pair were wearing matching brown outfits, the duck was even wearing a matching brown speedo that doubles as a duck diaper. Maybe they were going to take a long car ride or the duck had eaten some dodgy birdseed.
At first glance one is almost surprised at how normal the Duckman looks and dresses. You’d expect a man walking a duck to have a top hat, or at least a bow tie. This guy doesn’t carry a cane or pontificate about alien galaxies through a megaphone, from head to toe he’s simply a normal-looking guy.
But then you see the Duckman’s feet.
The strangest thing about the Duckman is not that he walks a pet duck, or that his duck sometimes wears little duck booties, or that they seem to talk to one another. It’s not even that weird that he sometimes carries two pocket-sized dog creatures…in his pockets:
The strangest thing about the Duckman is his predilection for wearing flip-flops on San Francisco sidewalks. Which to San Franciscans is actually much crazier than walking a duck.
Seriously, have you seen our sidewalks? Open-toed shoes on the regular, homie?
We’ve heard tell via Alissa Greenberg who also saw the pair at Stow Lake, that the duck is a she and is called ‘Daisy’.
The duck is chocolate brown, and is rumored to be a Khaki Campbell breed, known for their friendly character and egg-laying prowess.
I was so flummoxed by seeing the celebrity pair twice in a month, that the only question I managed to ask the Duckman of San Francisco was, “is it a rescue?”
He replied that his daughter had won the duckling at a state fair and that they had kept it and raised it, so ‘yes’, he supposed it was a rescue. And then they waddled off together, traversing Stow Lake with the other love birds. Before I could ask if the wild ducks at Stow Lake talked to Daisy, or if his daughter still loved the duck, or if he and the duck were truly ‘happy together’.
When I got home I googled ‘Duck Man San Francisco’ and found that there were Duckman sightings on Twitter and Imgur dating back to 2018.
Here’s the San Francisco Duckman back in 2018 in Washington Square Park.
A park in San Francisco today: the smell of weed is in the air. 5 cops are citing people for drinking beers in public. A 20min walk away, people are injecting heroine out in the open. Also there’s a guy hanging out with his duck and 2 chihuahuas pic.twitter.com/3oMeBwrHT7
— Flo Crivello (@Altimor) June 16, 2018
Here he is walking with his duck and Chihuahua:
I mean, we had a bushman of San Francisco, we have an Ant-man of San Francisco (no it’s not Paul Rudd), I think it’s time we recognized that we have a Duckman of San Francisco, and it’s just the kind of weird we like.