Farm Fresh!
Food and Farm Humor

Breaking Eggs

I'm probably walking on eggs writing this, but sometimes the truth has to be told, even on eggshell white paper. Like the ham-and-egg boxer, I express myself as best I can with no excuses or high expectations. You might say, though, that I've got scrambled eggs for brains.

I'm not your butter-and-egg man like the guy in that Broadway play but I know an Easter egg when I see one -- hard boiled and dipped in dye -- whether it's hiding in the bushes for an Easter egg hunt or loping down the manicured lawn in an Easter egg roll.

I've also been out on the links a time or two, and I know a fried egg when I see one. 

As for that chicken-and-egg question, which came first? It's chicken, obviously. In Genesis, God created "every winged fowl after its kind" and then eggs them on with the commandment to "be fruitful and multiply." The hen fruit came second.

But this is not something you want to share with eggheads or your lacto-ovo-vegetarian friends. That would be like teaching your grandmother to suck eggs.

Of course, one must be careful not to put all of one's eggs in one basket like Aesop's clumsy eggmaid. You don't want to kill the goose that laid the golden egg.  I like to put my butter-and-egg money, the loose change from many failed adventures, in a secure nest egg where it will encourage hens to lay more.

The alternative is to put all your eggs in one basket, as Mark Twain suggested, "and watch that basket!"

You may think you're one of those hard-boiled types, but don't go flying around in any eggbeaters, even if the pilot does have scrambled eggs on his cap. I don't want to see your hopes and dreams shatter like an eggshell.

Would you like us to wreck a pair, or do you prefer to coddle your eggs? You could have Adam and Eve on a Raft, a hobo egg, Scotch woodcock, or deviled eggs ("hot as the Devil's hell"). Personally, I prefer fish eggs with a tall, cool egg cream or maybe an eggnog.

What do you want, egg in your beer? Depend on that and your love will be a duck's egg, I guarantee.

"Go fry an egg," you say?

Well, look, you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs, nor can you unscramble an omelette. As Lady Macbeth said, "What's done cannot be undone."

It's like the curate's egg, there's some good and some bad to this story. The good egg always has his sunny-side up. Obviously I've been egged on and encouraged to write this by the rotten egg.

I see now that I've got egg on my face. I've laid an egg, failed miserably, and scored a goose egg.

If you break an egg, make an omelette, and that's what I'm about here. I'll just eat my words, or maybe just go suck an egg.

-- by Michael Hofferber
Copyright © 2002. All rights reserved.
Thankyou to Robert A. Palmatier for compiling "Food: A Dictionary of Literal and Nonliteral Terms," published by Greenwood Press of Westport, Connecticut in 2000, the inspiration for this eggs-hausting composition.

A referenced dictionary of the literal and nonliteral language of cooking and eating. The dictionary is "referenced" in the sense that it is based on a survey of over thirty books, most of them dictionaries, that record selected literal terms and selected nonliteral terms and expressions in the field of food.

Fresh Eggs



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