Today in central North Carolina began the greatest of all celebrations known to duckdom: the Festival of Bolted Lettuce. For three days and three nights, the ducks feast upon lettuces of all kinds, eating their fill of the tender greens.
Preparations for the festival begin in February, when the Wingless Priests plant the seeds of the year’s crop. For three months, only the priests may eat the lettuce that grows. But when the first heat of southern summer causes the greens to grow too swiftly, or when the priests decide they’ve eaten enough damn lettuce for one year, the ducks feast upon the bolting greens. Oak leaf and plain, smooth leaves and hairy, red and green and speckled, romaine and escarole: they feast upon it all.
Then, for three more days and three more nights, they gripe about how there isn’t any more lettuce.
Frequently asked questions about the Festival of Bolted Lettuce
- When is the Festival held
- The Festival of Bolted Lettuce is a moveable feast, being held sometime in late May, at the discretion of the Wingless Priests. It is also, from the ducks’ perspective, a completely random feast, given that they lack timekeeping, calendars, or indeed (insofar as we can discern) even any concept of past and future.
- What rituals are associated with the festival?
- Eating lettuce, mostly. Being distracted by fireflies is a typical amusement.
- Is there a theological basis for the festival?
- No. They’re ducks.
A closer look at the festival