December 30, 2005

Nature's Packaging

I just ate a hard-boiled egg. "Aha, she's not a vegan!" - fill in the corresponding dot in your worksheets, you'll suss me out yet. I aspire to lacto-ovarian vegetarianism but I am far from realizing this level of gastro-enlightenment....I'm lazily omnivorous.

Anyway, I was struck by the usefulness and efficiency of the hard-boiled egg from a packaging and presentation perspective. The shell is protective yet easy to remove, the overall shape of the naked egg is pleasing and ergonomic (and many agree). And there is a panoply of eccentric egg utensils, accoutrements, and accessories.

Since one of the definitions of panoply is a protective covering or defense, this officially counts as clever wordplay. My second today, I am still chuckling over Ohmic Enlightenment.

About the only thing that would make a hard-boiled egg better would be to have the shell removable in one or two pieces. Apparently, there is an official way to peel an orange, but truth be told, I prefer a more mischievous way - in which a great circle is carefully scored around the orange, and by careful peeling and prying in an incremental, circular way, one can remove the peel in two full hemispheres. It would be great if hard-boiled eggs peeled that way.

Of course the real purpose for this is to eat the fruit, and reassemble the orange peel carefully, placing it somewhere like a ticking empty fruit time bomb - someone will inevitably pick it up and be amused to find a hollow orange. Situational surrealism.

Props to Al Perrins (aka "Doc") for turning me on to this sort of tom-foolery at my first job, circa 1983-85. Not the first thing he has invented.

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