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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Confessions of an Evil Egg Flinger

During a recent visit with my Mother, I finally came clean about an incident that happened more than 32 years ago. Since Mom is now aware of this episode and Dad was probably informed when he arrived in heaven a few years ago, it is time to make it known to anyone else who is willing to read my ramblings.

This event took place that same summer we moved onto Main Street, Hinckley when I was 16 years old. After we transported the chickens, Jim and I were given the responsibility of moving the eggs stored in our cold room. Mom and Dad evidently had not realized just how many eggs were stored there because the area prepared in the new house for egg storage wasn’t nearly large enough to hold all those dozens of eggs. The cartons were stored by date, so Jim and I took the newest eggs and stacked them in the fridge in the mud room of the new house. After filling that fridge to capacity, we still had 114 dozen eggs left with no place to put them. So what do you do when you have that many eggs? When you are 16 and 13 years old and your parents are in Salt Lake City for the day, you simply divide them equally between the two of you; set up your fortress of cartons on your side of the long sidewalk that equally divides the front yard; and you have a huge egg fight.

That’s right, we threw eggs at each other in what we are sure was the largest egg war in the history of Hinckley, Utah.

The house on Main Street had two very distinct features that made it the perfect egg-fight venue. First, even though it was on Main Street, it was completely private due to the nine-foot-high hedge that grew around the entire front yard. (I was the trimmer of that hedge and that is another story for another blog post). Second, this yard was huge. You don’t see gigantic front yards anymore. Now days the lot is divided so the extra space is in the back of the house for yards, gardens, decks, pools, etc. But in the late 1800s when this home was built, it was a boarding house (where Camilla Kimball lived when she taught Home Economics at the Millard Academy in Hinckley—possibly another blog post someday?) and it had a very long sidewalk from the gate near the road to the large front porch. That long, straight sidewalk made a perfect division for our battleground.

I claimed the south side of the lawn, which I thought would be the best side for combat--it had the biggest and the most trees in the yard. I figured I’d be able to stand behind the trees and hurl eggs at Jim on his less protected side of the lawn. I assumed my three years of superior understanding and knowledge would serve me well; but that wasn’t the case at all. As the fight began, Jim quickly realized I didn’t have a very good throwing arm. He also recognized that by throwing the eggs in the limbs of the tree I was hiding behind, they dripped and dribbled down on me. He didn’t have to be accurate; he smashed those eggs into tree branches above my head and drenched me in the wet, sticky mess. I figured we each had nearly 700 eggs. Most of mine ended up in the grass or the hedge behind Jim, but it doesn’t take very many eggs on your clothes and hair to make a huge mess. I think most of Jim’s eggs were smeared all over my body. I could have stood over a skillet and made an enormous omelet with the egg dripping off of just one arm.

When the last egg was tossed, we met at the sidewalk and we started laughing at each other. Our hair was plastered to our heads by yellow-tinged slime. Even our eye lashes were stuck together in the gunk that streamed off of us. We laughed and laughed and then suddenly we stopped laughing because as we looked around the yard, we realized we had a lot of work to do to hide the evidence of our 'clash of smash'. The grass was completely covered in the shattered shells, not to mention the ooze of egg still dripping from tree trunks, limbs, the hedge and even the brick of the house.

Oh, we were going to be in so much trouble if we didn’t get this mess cleaned up soon! We each grabbed a hose and started washing down trees, bushes, the house, grass, each other, etc. We gathered arm loads of shells and tried to find a place to hide them. We eventually filled the wheelbarrow and hauled them into the garden and buried them to conceal the evidence that could be used against us.

Even after the hose washing, our hair and clothes stiffened as we dried. We removed clothing at the back door and slipped into the bathroom to shower, shampoo and repeat many times to get the goo off. We also had to do that load of laundry several times. The egg just kept sudsing and foaming up in the washing machine.

Jim and I thought we did a fairly good cleaning job; we looked spick and span by the time the parents showed up. But a few days later when our irrigation turn came and the water was turned down our ditch, I was helping Mom irrigate the yard and garden when I noticed millions of egg shell shards floating everywhere. I don’t know how Mom didn’t notice, but apparently until last Tuesday, she was completely unaware of our escapades with eggs all those years ago.

It makes me wonder what kind of antics I'm completely oblivious about that my kids will share with me a few years down the road...


Tina said...

What a great story!!!

Dani Marie said...

We're good kids. We've probably already told you any antics we were up to because we know you won't be too mad a few years down the line...except for the hole I kicked in my bedroom wall. I guess one time you told me and Bryan the next person who called the other "butthead" (a novel word for us at the time) would get their mouth washed out with soap. I'd never seen this before in real life and thought it might be funny to see (not experience) so I provoked Bryan until he was at breaking point and made sure when he said the forbidden word you were in hearing distance. I must confess, watching Bryan get his mouth washed out with soap was not so funny after all, and I immediately felt sorry. But we've never wasted 114 dozen eggs throwing them at each other. We just slid down the stairs in sleeping bags and on those big pillows Mimi & Pop gave us for Christmas. And one time on a crib mattress at Sarah's house. That was the best time.

Dean and Sheri said...

This was SO FUN to read. really should write a book. I cannot believe what a mess you made! And your sweet mom not thinking a thing about all the shells that came through when it was time to irrigate. As I was reading about the flinging and your realization of the mess you had made I thought about Dr. Seuss's "Cat in the Hat". You must have really "scrambled" to get such a battle scene cleaned up. The thought makes me smile and laugh. Oh but what a WONDERFUL childhood memory you and your brother have to share.