‘Ducker’ Barrington

Isn’t it curious how two very different aspects of human character can manifest themselves , under one roof, in one family and as a result of the same basic upbringing. ‘Ducker’ had a brother called Nicholas who, for some years,thought ‘Ali Money’ was some Arab prince who seemed to know a lot of Hollywood stars. To be fair to him, which is never enjoyable , the penny had dropped by the time he took up his residency as the Vicar at St Anthony’s church in Lower Sadworth . A position he filled quite happily, but without note, for the majority of his life. His career was so colourless that we have no difficulty in dropping him from this tale and we won’t be referring to him again. As his brother said to him, “Nicki, the road to hell is paved with great anecdotes, and you don’t have any”

So back to his younger brother ‘Ducker’ who had qualified as an accountant through luck and bribery and now  worked  in his local town signing off the accounts of the many businesses there. He was a popular figure at the bar by reason of his colourful stories and the ability to buy a round. He used to quote his best advice with abandon.   ” Never make a promise you can’t break”, which he would tell to any passing ‘ingenue’ who was lucky enough to cross his path on the way to professional glory.

I remember someone asking him how it was he had been so successful with the ladies and yet had no children. He smiled knowlingly and winked in that world weary way which wreakes of dishonesty. “No forwarding address son”. “Pardon” says the innocent pupil. “Never leave a forwarding address, then they cannot contact you with the bad news”. Needless to say he was regarded more as a fund of good stories than useful guidance. One of those people who, if you  introduced him to your friend, you might say, “Count your fingers before you shake his hand”. “Anything is possible with Ducker” And so it was. His speciality was massaging the figures of local small businesses to prevent any unpleasant conversations about tax.  Despite his ‘slack-happy’ approach to deadlines, his ability to overlook a decent percentage of the profits when auditing accounts always kept his glass full at the bar, and a decent car on the drive.

Moving  on with reluctance and a man calls up and asks if he can come round for some advice. “Come as soon as you like” says Ducker. It’s one of the curiosities of life that the morally bankrupt enjoy giving advice almost more than anyone else. Anyway, this chap rolls up and settles in the chair opposite Ducker’s desk. He clutches his cup of tea and says. “I have a day job, but I want to start an evening business with my wife offering interior design”. “I’ve been given your name as a person who can set us on the path to a profitable enterprise”. Ducker smiles, which  gives him the chance to flash off some expensive dentistry, and says. “You’ve stepped in the right door son”. “I can give the addresses of quite a few round here who could do with your help.”. “Not me, of course” he said pointing to his purple and orange desk lampshade in the shape of a parrot,  As for profits. “You make em and we’ll keep em to a minimum if you follow me. ( More teeth flashmanship) and then he asked. “So what do you do during the day. His  young client replies “I work for the Inland Revenue as a tax inspector.”

About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
This entry was posted in character, creative writing, Fiction, humour, Talent, writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to ‘Ducker’ Barrington

  1. Ina says:

    🙂 lol, thank you for making me smile!


  2. renxkyoko says:

    Oh-oh. The IRS ! Oh, well.


  3. Julie says:

    Strange how the kid who you wrote, “we won’t be referring to him again” is the one who stays in my mind in this lovely tale of what comes around goes around.

    I think you’ve got some sage advice in there. In fact, I remember as a kid my dad used to tell me there’s always an easy way to make illegal money. He really helped me to make good choices. I do think that those bad choices Ducker made did come to haunt him in the end. Good tale. Thank you.



  4. I always read your posts on a morning Peter; they set me up for the day, this time with a big smile. I feel I have swallowed a very healthy tonic 🙂 🙂


  5. catterel says:

    Another of your wonderful characters and a nice twist! Thanks.


  6. Kirri White says:

    So many great one-liners in this story Peter and yay for the unexpected twist!


  7. Jane Thorne says:

    Happy story telling Ducky…karma my friend Xx


  8. gotham girl says:

    Great story to start the day! LOL…love the “Count your fingers before you shake his hand!” I’ve gotta remember that one!


  9. Barbara says:

    I love a good ‘gotcha’!


  10. nelle says:

    lmao… the morally bankrupt and first with advice… my gosh, that’s me! 😉

    Several years ago, I lay upon a massage type table as electrology technicians in training exterminated hair upon my person. Two to a room, a man occupied the next table, one free of talk while I was loose and asleep. He went on about how he took the summer off and wouldn’t look for work until fall. In the meantime, he collected unemployment compensation benefits – which required he look for and be available for work.

    Hmmmm. Out of my repose, I hatched a ploy out of truth, and involved my technician, who loved the idea. At once she informed the man I was an adjudicator of unemployment compensation benefits issues, of which he just created one. His run of talk ended, silence hung heavy, ready to detonate, or perhaps send him on a fast sprint to his car. I gave it about a minute before revealing the rest of the truth. He collected benefits from Massachusetts, and I worked for New Hampshire. He was quite safe, although I wonder if he had to change his undershorts thereafter.


  11. aawwa says:

    What a great twist at the end! I didn’t see that coming 🙂


  12. Writerlious says:

    I didn’t see that coming either! LOL 🙂


  13. “It’s one of the curiosities of life that the morally bankrupt enjoy giving advice almost more than anyone else. ” How true!

    Do you know these people or are they pure fiction, Peter? This style you are developing is pure gold, my friend. Pure gold. Don’t let Ducker get a hold of it! 😉


  14. Jen says:

    I really enjoyed the dialogue in this one! Painted me a picture.


  15. Haha, very entertaining! 🙂


  16. ‘It’s one of the curiosities of life that the morally bankrupt enjoy giving advice almost more than anyone else.’

    That line grabbed me – people who think they can give good advice are probably the last to go to for it! At least, that is my experience. Another great vignette!


  17. ElizOF says:

    😆 Hysterical! serves him right.


  18. Ha. But wait: so is the IRS guy corrupt or was this a sting operation?

    (Glad you’re writing so much fiction these days. You’re really good at it!)


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