The Sign of the Triple Distelfink is a comic story written and drawn by Don Rosa. It features Donald Duck, Gladstone Gander, Daisy Duck, Grandma Duck, Huey, Dewey and Louie Duck and Scrooge McDuck, as well as several more characters in flashback: Daphne Duck, Humperdink Duck, a Traveling Painter, Quackmore Duck, Hortense McDuck and Della Duck. A photograph of Admiral Duck can also be seen.
Daisy Duck has decided to hold a surprise birthday party for Gladstone Gander at Grandma Duck's farm. However, Gladstone can't seem to be found. Donald, not so distraught by the fact, informs her that Gladstone has never been seen on his birthday. It turns out that his birthday is actually the one day of the year when Galdstone is unlucky, and he has never wanted anyone to know.
- The framing device of The White Balloon (2019) is a sequel to the present-day part of Triple Distelfink, presenting itself as one of the first birthdays Gladstone has after being freed from the birthday curse. The flashback parts of White Balloon also reference the backstory in Triple Distelfink heavily.
Behind the scenes
This story was written to celebrate Gladstne's 50th anniversary. It was first printed in 1998 in the Finnish Aku Ankka #1998-02. It was first released in English in June of 1998 in Uncle Scrooge #310, and has been reprinted in 2014 in the special album Free Comic Book Day #3, entitled Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck: A Matter in Some Gravity, and in the eighth volume of the Fantagraphics Don Rosa Library.