Et in Arcadia Eggo

Author Elvia Wilk usually writes about art, architecture, technology, dystopian near futures and larping. She also speaks fluent internet and loves eggs – a lot.

I liked eggs before the internet liked eggs. The amount that the internet now likes eggs, however, does not diminish how much I like eggs. I know I will never be an egg queen on par with true internet celeggrities, but I partake in egg culture like any true fan. In quarantine I have only gained a deeper appreciation for the vast amount of things you can do with an egg: it’s the basis for almost any quar-hobby cooking project. Eggs are THE quar companion. Why else would Eggdog Quarantine (see above) have seven million views?

In lockdown, I have also learned that eggs are my Love Language. Over the last months, my partner has made me: the famous cloud eggs, hot chocolate with egg yolk, whiskey sours with egg white, an egg burrito, poached eggs with hollandaise, and many egg-based pastries. For Christmas, he made me an Easter Egg hunt in the house. I swoon. 

So far I have been talking about the standard chicken egg: the absolutely perfect aesthetic object, whose roundness signifies fecundity and secrets and dualism and hidden joy. But I like every kind of animal egg, in fact, my favourite combination in the world is a sushi roll with the yolk of a quail egg topped with salmon roe. One major recent discovery was the superiority of duck eggs with respect to chicken eggs in breakfast dishes. 

The only egg I have ever had to reject was a century egg. I bought it from a street vendor in Singapore, who told me it had been buried for over a year (not actually a century as advertised) in order to ferment to perfect ripeness. When I cracked open the dirt-encrusted shell I found a horrific, mutant, blue-black, sulfuric, rotted alien, the smell of which made me gag. I couldn’t eat the century egg but I don’t hate it, I love that it exists. Centuries and centuries of eggs, eggs forever. 

I leave you with this video of a raccoon eating scrambled eggs. (By the way, when raccoons want food they rub their hands together in excitement, which is how I feel when I look at a plate of eggs.)

Elvia Wilk is a writer and editor living in New York. She’s a contributing editor at e-flux journal and writes a monthly column on ethical quandaries for Monopol magazine. Her first novel, Oval, was published in June 2019 by Soft Skull press. 

Title animation: Eggdog Quarantine, title boiled egg image: ©Elvia Wilk

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