Duck-avoiding season. (Mild-mini-rant: annoying commercial.)

I’m usually not one to complain about commercials. I don’t see too many, for one thing. I only see commercials online, as I don’t watch actual television. For another thing, most commercials are annoying; that’s par for the course. Insurance company AFLAC, though, has come up with several commercials that deserve mention.

They’ve got this duck.

YouTube’s commercial rotation at the moment includes AFLAC’s. If you’re not familiar with these commercials, I envy you.

In case you didn’t know, AFLAC’s commercials currently feature a duck whose gimmick is to appear suddenly near a person who’s minding their own business. To announce his entrance, the duck quacks… but he doesn’t say “quack” like ducks are supposed to say (according to the old guy on the farm). He says: “AFLAC!”

His squawk comes out nasally because the first “A” is pronounced like the “a” in “cat.” The second “A” does, too. The company’s name rhymes with “quack,” which probably inspired the ad campaign that spawned the duck. I’m assuming that the AFLAC! squawk is meant to be a mating call to attract insurance buyers.

I’m not sure what the company’s name means, by the way. I haven’t looked it up. It may be an acronym. Actually, it reminds me of text/internet-speak, like ROTFL. “AFLAC” should stand for Abstain From Loud Annoying Commercials. AFLAC!!!!

I would insert one of the commercials here for your reference, but I’m not that mean.

It’s a hazard, this commercial. I cringe at the idea of this duck every time I click on a YouTube video. My guard is usually down, so I end up scrambling to mute the commercial before it gets to the part with the duck. Each commercial features two duck appearances. In the space of 20 or so seconds, avoiding the duck’s nasally call is my whole mission in life.

Of course, I worsened the situation for myself by sharing my grievance with Callaghan. I should’ve known better. His new favorite way to amuse himself is to squawk AFLAC! in my face. When I asked him (as I was writing this post) how many times the duck says AFLAC! in each commercial, he said, “I don’t know. You have to find one and watch the whole thing… with the sound on.”


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