Bruce's "Ducky Story" from the Main Point, Bryn Mawr, PA, April 24, 1973

This is a song... I lived 18 years of my life next door to a gas station in a small town in New Jersey. And it was Ducky Slattery's Sinclair station...that was the cat's name, Ducky Slattery... he was a older cat, older guy, and I lived next door. And you know how in a small town  ah ... the place that the people gather these days is down at the gas station.

Everybody comes in, sits around, guy comes in, somebody goes out, pumps the gas, comes back in. And this Ducky Slattery and this cat Bill... who was kind'a the... alcoholic... kinda, you know, this guy had a pink cadillac, it was a sight, it was a pink cadillac. He got drunk and smashed it up. Uh...there was these, who else was there?  Oh yea, there was this cat Danny, Danny was the weird cat in town. There was two of em [audience laughs], right, one lived with us and the other one was Danny. Danny was the guy, you know kinda, he was homosexual . You  can say that these days! Right? Jesus! Danny's makin a lot of bread right now somewhere. He was ahead of his time, let's leave it at that. And this other cat Crazy George, who was just crazy,  'nuthin else but that, rode a bicycle, older cat, older cat,  rode a bicycle, still rides one, still rides one. Saved up money for it. Uh...true story, true story.

Oh yea, Ducky Slattery had this one line he ripped off the Marx Brothers. Any time anybody came in the gas station he'd always say, "You wanna buy a duck?" That was his big line, you know, not too original but it worked, you know. You wanna buy a duck? What'a'ya gonna do with a duck? What's anybody gonna do with a duck? Right...I had a duck. My father killed a duck for Thanksgiving once. Helped me get out of the draft. Went down to the army,  told 'em ever since I seen my father kill that duck, I go crazy every time I see a duck. If I was out there on the battlefield in Vietnam and a duck came walking by, I might go nutty, I might shoot generals or something. I don't know. I could do anything I don't know what I'd do when I see a duck. Anyway, I was sitting outside one night... and...

The moon hung like a shadow on a rung over Shanghai...

James "Ducky" Slattery (L) and his attendant William "Bill" Worth, subjects of stories told by Bruce during the early years. That's the porch of Bruce's South Street home in the background.