By Trevor Bacque
Photography By Erin Yewsiuk Photography
Everyone in rural Canada has a story to tell. Some are, admittedly, more interesting than others. While many are the strong silent type, content to put their head down, grind out a day’s work, rinse and repeat, that doesn’t really resonate with Quick Dick McDick—at least the strong silent type part. He absolutely loves to work hard, but boy does he have fun doing it.
The son of Tuffnell, Sask. farmers, 39-year-old Quick Dick McDick, better known to family and friends as Dickson Delorme, is perhaps the most reluctant social media star in Canada today. His recent brush with celebrity status, specifically in the agricultural world, was almost all for naught as he spent most of his adult life off the farm, working the better part of two decades in northern Alberta and B.C. in the oilpatch.
Fresh out of high school, a friend working in oilfield services in Brooks, Alta. helped Delorme land a job and he spent the next three years in southern Alberta, before relocating up to Grande Prairie, an area he says reminded him of home.
“I fell in love with it,” he says. “The amount of rivers, mountains and forest is amazing.”
For the next 16 years, he worked in fracking, well services, transportation and logistics. However, the trajectory of his life changed with one unbelievably long trip. On June 1, 2019, Delorme set out on a 27,500-kilometre motorcycle journey that took him across Canada and the U.S., covering 10 provinces, two territories and 21 American states. Before he left, though, his brother suggested he download Snapchat and post a story on occasion and check in with family. Delorme obliged and chose Quick Dick for a username so nobody could find him online. One problem, the handle was already taken. He added the McDick suffix, and the rest is history.
Upon his return to Grande Prairie, Delorme found himself with a job opportunity in fracking down in South Australia’s Moomba Desert, where the average daily high in summer is 38.6 C. Excited for the adventure, he said yes and briefly headed home for a wee bit of downtime in preparation for the continental move. While spending time around town, he bumped into Mark Rogers, owner/operator at the Bar-R Ranch and the man who farms Delorme’s father’s land. They had a cordial catch-up and Rogers asked if Delorme could help him move cattle the next morning. It was a date.
It turned out to be quite the day.
“We went out and moved some cows and that night I sent an email off to the guys in Australia and I said, ‘guys, I don’t think I’m going to leave home, I think I am going to stay here.’ I don’t know why I ever left this place and that was it.”
It wasn’t that moving cows was a new idea, but for the young man who made it home twice a year—if he was lucky—spending a day off grid was a complete culture shock, and it deeply impacted him.
“I lived a life of 19 years of your phone going off 24 hours a day; a very high-stress environment,” he says. “It was great, it was an awesome career and offered a lot of great opportunities doing what I did. But there’s just something about being out in the middle of Saskatchewan with no phones ringing, no traffic around and just you and another guy and a couple of cattle out there moving them one place to another. It was the craziest epiphany that I ever had, and it was the first time in 19 years all of a sudden I just felt like I was right where I needed to be. And I was happy.”
That moment brought him back to the farm, and it was there that the online persona really began to take off, although he insists that there’s no separation between himself and the character, stating the only difference between himself and Quick Dick is a “bit of uncensored barbecue sauce.”
Back at the farm full time, one day he found himself out gathering firewood with his dad. Always one for theatrics, Delorme made a video, depicting a fast-talking Quick Dick McDick as an infomercial salesman encouraging people to come buy dad’s firewood. He shared it around with a few buddies and they texted back letting him know they were on the floor laughing.
The shorts began to circulate around his area and eventually he started to produce one video each day.
“It just kind of spread like wildfire,” he says. People would ask him, however, what was in the background of his videos, which was often a handful of cattle or farm equipment. That gave him the idea to focus his craft on agriculture. By this time he had hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the area and beyond following him. Many wanted to see his back catalogue. Finally, he made a YouTube channel and began to post videos in late 2019.
“When I put it on YouTube, it just started exploding,” he admits. The longer format let him create content that could go into greater detail about specific topics or remove constraints when he would tee off about a subject with an extended rant.
All his social media platforms serve as one giant creative outlet and has allowed him to start a dialogue about matters near and dear to him.
“Sometimes I talk about energy, oil and gas or government policy. It seems like it’s a unique way to talk about what’s going on in our world, be it agriculturally or geopolitically. There are no topics I’m afraid to cover. I guess my goal at the end of it all is to have people laugh and pay attention to relevant topics.”
The feedback is mostly positive, but he admits he does get negative remarks. “Sometimes I poke the bear with what I do, fair enough.”
Today, his social media following has a combined 290,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok and YouTube, the latter of which is now more than 107,000 subscribers and 11.5 million total views.
Though small numbers versus mainstream social media stars, Quick Dick’s clout within agriculture is nearly unmatched. But he’s not doing it because of likes, subscribes or play counts. He’s still just trying to primarily make jokes for his buddies.
“If I get a text from a handful of people around here, I feel like I accomplished my own mission. I gauge my success on how my community reacts to it. I make uploads for my hometown and community. I seem to resonate with a larger group of people just by keeping true to that credo. I make it for here, and if it makes it farther, well that’s great. That means there’s a lot of places like here in Tuffnell and Foam Lake. That’s a comforting feeling.”
Despite his videos starting out as nothing more than silly ways to pass the time, he’s rightfully earned his stage. It’s not something he takes lightly, even if he doesn’t take himself seriously. In addition to his Prairie monologues, Quick Dick has made educational videos and talked about important topics in and around agriculture. He doesn’t feel forced to produce such videos, but he knows his day job and Saskatchewan backdrop make it a natural starting point for conversation.
“I’m still the same guy that started it,” he says. “I drop F-bombs and make fun of the federal government, and I’ll still do that; but when you get a larger platform, I’ve been giving a very unique opportunity to showcase what we do here.”
The disconnect of what happens on farms and ranches has helped him communicate the “truth” of what goes on in his own brash, straightforward manner.
“I need to try and bring a bit of ag and rural life into urban settings.”
A recent YouTube video he made entitled “The Canadian Fertilizer Ban” quickly racked up 650,000 views and caused a big stir across social media. He intentionally wrote a misleading title on this occasion because he needed to speak directly with fellow farmers.
“The people I want to talk to are the ones that say it’s a ban. I say hey, ‘it’s not a ban, not yet.’”
Throughout all his social media usage, it’s clear from community consensus that Quick Dick has been a bright spot in the world of Canadian farming and ranching. By leveraging his online clout, he carved out a niche for himself, one that now even helps pays the bills beyond farming. In a curious move, his latest foray into the world of entertainment actually doesn’t involve his smartphone on selfie mode at all. Quick Dick has ventured into the life of a comic.
“Never in my life did I think I’d do standup comedy,” he admits, but just as readily states he loves the charge of a live crowd, which perhaps isn’t shocking for a man who grew up participating in all of his grade school drama productions. “If somebody shout-heckles you, it gets me going. You gotta be on your toes.”
His first show was in 2021 at the Thanks for Farming Tour in Lethbridge, Alta., where he debuted a 90-minute set mostly speaking to the idiosyncrasies of farm life. Making polished, well-edited videos, curated social media posts and carefully crafted comments are one thing, but a real-life setting is unpredictable. The event organizer booked Quick Dick at 3 p.m. on a Thursday. In a post-mortem, it became clear the time-slot matched the performance.
“I remember it really well; I bombed,” he says with an honest laugh. “It went terrible. I hit the stage, I got two beers in my hands, and my audience is about 100 Hutterites that came to the show. I thought, ‘oh this is not going to go good.’ The first bit I talk about Tinder for 10 minutes. It was crickets for an hour-and-a-half.”
The organizer came up to him after and suggested he should write a new set of material otherwise it may be a short-lived comedy career. For Quick Dick, it was hard to fight the feedback, but what a difference a day makes. Friday attendance skyrocketed just after lunchtime and patrons flooded in, ready to kick-start their weekend with some laughs. The audience was packed and the result was polar opposite to the day prior.
After the set, the organizer promptly told Quick Dick to forget every word he told him earlier.
His favourite live performance has been a charity fundraiser for Constable Shelby Patton Memorial Park, held at the Grand Theatre in Indian Head, Sask., which once had the quirky boast of being the only functioning opera house between Vancouver and Winnipeg.
For starters, the intimate venue didn’t have a beer garden, so it was already quite different than his usual haunts. A true stage, hot, buzzing spotlights shone down, fixed on Quick Dick alone.
“I’ll always remember that show; it was just electric,” he says. “When you start getting a good feeling, you start emulating that back to your crowd. We absolutely blew the roof of it, and we raised a lot of money.”
Clearly, he’s doing something right. Quick Dick now books paid speaking engagements and comedy gigs 10 months in advance. He is adamant the social media fame hasn’t changed him. He still drives his 1994 Ford F-150, nicknamed Morty, and is most often found around Tuffnell, working the land, or shooting the next viral video on his phone.
However long the fun lasts, well, c’est la vie. Quick Dick doesn’t mind.
“I didn’t expect it to go this long; I know it’s not going to last forever. Anybody knows me that I don’t care how many views or likes or shares I get. I care that I get five texts from my community. My YouTube career is an absolute and complete side hustle. I farm and raise cattle. That’s what I do.”