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Stephen Leacock's Bright Red Dippy

Stephen Leacock had a bright red dippy... that is the fact. How this came to be is the story.

It seems that there were two things that the noted Canadian professor and humorist loved: fishing on lake Couchiching in his Dispro, and a wee drink now and again. The caretaker of his home and boat worked at a job during the day, which left evenings and weekends for tending to Mr. Leacock.

One of the caretaker's tasks was to ensure that Mr. Leacock was home safe and sound at the end of the day. Now, anyone who has ever had a little nap in a Dippy (brought on by peaceful fishing and a little whisky) will tell you that the boat will quite happily and reliably putt all over the place, gently bouncing off of obstacles. My own Uncle Jim was found (often enough that it became lore) asleep, bow stuck on shore with the boat still going "putt putt putt..".

The prevailing winds on Couchiching tend to blow wandering boats to the reedy far shore, approximately two miles from the Leacock boathouse, just at the limits of visibility with binoculars.

Sometimes frustrated by the difficulty of finding the Dispro at dusk, when it came time for the little boat to get a coat of protective paint, the caretaker chose a bright shade of red.

We do not know whatever happened to that boat, but I like to think it will show up one day.

...As told to me by Paul Dodington