…from the quill of Antisthenes the Younger
This has nothing to do with the delightful book by Betty MacDonald The Egg and I, first published in October, 1945 and of which, by September next year one million copies were sold. A movie was made in 1947. The humorous, but occasional politically incorrect book is about her adventures and travels as a young wife on a chicken farm. It is based on her experiences as a newly-wed in trying to operate a small chicken farm with her ex-Marine husband Robert Heskett from 1927 to 1931 near Chimacum, Washington.
I read the translated excerpts in a magazine as a child and later, in the West, the whole book, which I found in my friend’s library. In case you are interested – the politically incorrect bits concern the under-age incests amongst drunk Indians on their reservations, which the authoress from time to time visited with her husband. An astute reader will notice some similarity with our native population. In most of our i.e. Australian reservations, sorry, communities, there are no virgins over the age of four. [Little children are sacred] (Some of the early Hemingway’s writings are, for describing the same problem, also offensive to the truth suppressing Anti-Discrimination Commissars) The Greensparty hacks, Rhiannon, Brown, Milne and Hanson-Young most vociferously slandered the Coalition “Intervention Plan” which was designed at least to ameliorate, if not eliminate the most criminal outrages. Naturally, the human rights of Aboriginal toddlers do not count for much on the socialists’ scale of justice and upon attaining power, the Green/Labor Federal government quickly diluted the “Intervention” to nothingness. Somehow I guess, that is the main reason why the Aborigines in the recent Northern Territory elections turned so massively against Labor.
But I intended to write about eggs. I am practically an expert. I ate many of them, in various forms, even in a whisky sour. As a child I collected eggs from our hens and also taught them, by means of a slingshot, not to disturb our vegetable garden. Before PETA condemns me for my cruelty, in my defence I state that I was young and naïve, which is, in Australia, a valid “get out of jail” card. But perhaps only for ALP apparat-chicks.
Back to eggs; and no, I am not going to make any sickly jokes like Sarah Hanson-Young makes about ovaries and rosaries when she campaigns for legalisation of murder of unborn babies. I am offering a practical advice. To men only of course, as an absolute majority of young women wouldn’t know how to boil an egg, not to mention having the necessary curiosity or knowledge to estimate the freshness thereof by anything else but the “best by’ stamp. I suspect that most of the TV celebrity chefettes are only providing protruding mammaries (not that I object) to increase the ratings and a man in the background provides the food.
As you know, when you put an egg in a cup or bowl of water it either sinks to the bottom and stays there, so it is about three to six days old; or it sinks, but floats at an angle, so then it’s more than a week old. If it sinks, but then stands on end, it’s about two weeks old. If it floats, save it for your next anti-carbon tax demonstration. Just joking; only Left is violent and under the Labor Government, has an immunity. We don’t.
From time to time I soft boil (2 ½ minutes) one egg for breakfast. I noticed that sometimes the egg practically sinks, sometimes almost floats and sometimes something in between. All eggs from the same carton, same date. Puzzled, I experimented and upon the next and the next purchase I subjected all the eggs straight away to the above described test. The difference was marked. It seems that in every twelve eggs there are two or three suspiciously old. The practical solution is to sort the eggs according to their apparent ages and hope for the best, eating the oldest first.
I am not accusing the hens or our retail duopoly Coles/Woolworths of cheating. The substitution, i.e. insertion of older eggs amongst the fresher ones can happen anywhere along the profit chain. For all I know even on the slow boat from China, where, as every Green voter knows, the hens are treated just as well as Chinese citizens, and the eggs are cheapest. Perhaps some hens by reason of their political unreliability (do not cluck in unison as our journalists) get less calcium in their diet, leading to thinner shells and thus easier permeation thereof by air and thus a larger bubble and then to this suspicious floating. I do not know. But do not expect Australian authorities to sort it out. It could hurt.