When you start to approach your mid-thirties and the topic of “eggs” comes up, it usually goes in this direction: “I wonder how many I have left?” “I don’t want to reach the point where mine go bad. Aren’t you worried about that?” “Should I freeze them?” However, I’m here today to talk about eggs of a different kind: mainly those of the hardboiled variety.
Yes, this is a post about hard boiled eggs.
(I was hanging out with a friend the other day and when she heard my thoughts on hardboiled eggs, she encouraged me to share them in a post. So, here we go.)
I’m not exactly a picky eater. I’ll eat almost anything once (like that time I ate raw Geoduck – a local variety of clam that basically looks like it has a giant, uncircumcised penis attached to it. Fitting, I know) and I don’t have very many hang ups when it comes to food. If I don’t eat something very often (like steak) it’s because my body has a hard time digesting it. There’s only one food that I truly despise and that’s hard boiled eggs.
“What’s wrong with hardboiled eggs?” you ask.
Many, many things.
The texture: the rubberiness of the egg white, paired with the pasty, powdery yoke. I can never figure out which is worse, because to me, both textures are equally horrific (although I’d wager the gelatinous white is just a little bit worse.) If I was Detective Boyle from Brooklyn Nine-Nine, I’d give the hardboiled egg a big, fat zero on “mouth feel.”
That weird grey part: You know exactly what I’m talking about – that grey outer layer that often appears in between the white and the yoke. Yes, that disgusting thing. Grey is not a colour that I associate with things that are edible. The grey layer has always seemed decidedly alien and brain-like to me — as if, by biting into a hardboiled egg I’m consuming tiny, alien brains.
The smell: To be honest, I might be able to get past my other objections if it weren’t for the smell of hardboiled eggs. Just a whiff of a hardboiled egg is enough to actually make me gag. This is coming from a woman who survived a summer in Toronto during a garbage strike. If I get close enough to a hard boiled egg to actually smell it, I have to stifle a heave.
The taste: As far as I’m concerned, it’s basically one and the same with the smell. Why do we eat these things?!
My utter fear and loathing of hardboiled eggs is nothing new. As these things usually go, it’s something that started in childhood. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t find them absolutely repulsive.
When I told my friend about my hardboiled issues, she asked what most people do.
“What about Devilled Eggs?”
“No. Absolutely not. That’s like putting lipstick on a pig. There’s no hiding what it is, they’ve just dressed it up.”
“What about egg salad?”
“Are you serious?”
The problem is that I was born into a culture that seems intent on making you like hardboiled eggs. As I was writing this post I remembered the “hardboiled egg mice” of my childhood. These were a regular feature at kids birthday parties in the 1980’s. The first time I saw them sitting on a table, next to a plate of finger sandwiches and a veggie platter I thought “How cute!” I grabbed one and took a bite thinking that they’d be filled with something delicious like chocolate or cheddar cheese, only to realize once it was in my mouth that it was actually a hardboiled egg. To this day, I still consider hardboiled egg mice to be a culinary war-crime.
With that said, my life is not devoid of hardboiled eggs. There have been times I have eaten them out of necessity – like, when they’re the only option available (I just try not to inhale too deeply) and other times where I’ve actually found them “edible” – like when they’re in a delicious Nicoise Salad. I’m not one of those people like on My Strange Phobia that starts hyperventilating and screaming as soon as they see a hardboiled egg. I can eat around them. However, they will never be something I love. This is non-negotiable.
So, what exactly does this have to do with dating?
Well, lots of things. I promise.
Last Spring, when I was still trying to date Fitness Guy, I remember the topic of lunch came up.
When he told me, “For lunch I usually eat 4 hardboiled eggs and some carrot sticks while sitting at my desk” I nearly threw up.
All I could think was, “And you kiss me with that mouth?”
Besides the fact that that sounds like the saddest desk lunch ever, I struggled with the concept that someone I was attracted to could eat something I hated so much and in such excess.
Could I date and fall in love with someone who loved hardboiled eggs? Sure. However, this little egg-centricity (har har, I couldn’t resist) was just the tip of the iceberg when it came to our differences – for example, his politics and that he likes to hunt & kill some of my favourite animals – you know, the big stuff.
When it comes to dating, we all have our non-negotiables.
Although a love for hardboiled eggs isn’t necessarily a non-negotiable in a partner (unless they force me to eat “egg mice”), I do have my share of non-negotiables. They’re pretty simple:
-Agreement on major issues like abortion & gay marriage.
-Positive outlook on life.
In my twenties, I definitely ignored some of these non-negotiables in the spirit of adventure and experimentation. I dated a series of smokers and even a hyper-conservative, pro-life Christian (I know, right?) However, the older I get the more I realize how important these core non-negotiables are.
So, the question is – what are your non-negotiables?