Hey! Hide yo ducks! Hide yo decoys! Hide yo squirrel brains! The Beards are back. It’s the Robertsons! The new season’s first episode of “Duck Dynasty” airs Wednesday night, October 10, on A&E at 9 p.m. Central time. If you don’t have time to watch this show, you need to get a new clock.
I have to tell you, I love the show. I love the story line behind Duck Commander Phil Robertson and his family. I appreciate the mixture of brutal honesty and hamming it up for the camera that the stars of the show do weekly. Frankly, I didn’t miss a single episode in season one and don’t plan to miss one in their expanded lineup this year either. If I have to miss one, I’ll at least use the DVR to make a duck tape of it and watch later. I’m even thinking about having a Duck-gate next Wednesday night (like a tailgate for football). Each day for the next 10 days leading up to the show, I’ll also have a favorite quote from last year’s shows.
One of my favorite things about the show is where the family is from — right here in our backyard. And although I’m a “city boy” to Phil, he is one of the most intriguing and enjoyable people I’ve ever written about. That goes back to the mid 1970‘s when I interviewed him and wrote a story for the Monroe newspaper about his new duck calling venture. It was probably one of the first articles ever written about Duck Commander. I met him for the interview at Mom & Pop’s restaurant in downtown West Monroe. Besides the interview, he also gave me a pair of his new hand-made calls. They both have square green labels on them marked “patent pending”, showing they are from the first run of product he ever made. Yes, I still have them. I also once wrote an article about Phil for Outdoor Life. He went on to fame and fortune. I went on to…well, still write about him.
One thing about the show that doesn’t have one bit of “showmanship” in it is Phil’s religious conviction. Every show in Season One ended with the family gathered around the table for vittles with Phil leading the blessing. That is not for show. I never forgot the first words he said to me when we sat down in that little lunch spot 35 years ago: “Haddox, do you know Jesus?”
He took care of the serious business first, then we spent a couple of hours talking about hunting and duck calls. About five years ago, my son Adam and I had the chance to visit Phil’s home down on the banks of the Ouachita River and get some updated notes for another newspaper article about him, his family and his business. This Fall, I will probably share some of those old stories in this space and I hope you will enjoy them. In the meantime, I’m waiting to hear another question from Phil:
“Haddox, you want to go duck hunting again?”
Duck Dynasty quote of the day: “Find out what it is in life that you aren’t good at, then don’t do that thing”
— Phil Robertson