Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Small world.

Like most small boys, I was obsessed with dinosaurs. I couldn't get enough of them. As a consequence, when I found out that birds had evolved from dinosaurs I became very interested in birds as well. Being a child I sort of mentally filed birds into two categories, those that were close relatives to dinosaurs and those that were further away. I based these ideas on next nothing, just played by juvenile hunches.

Birds that were close to dinosaurs (and thus my favorites)? Eagles, Vultures, Ostriches and Emu.

I've seen these animals in zoos and other tourist traps. I'd seen their eggs and feathers in museums. I never figured I'd get to handle one of their eggs. Let alone eat one... so when my wife mentioned seeing Ostrich and Emu eggs at our local Whole Foods I insisted she take me.

This, to me, is crazier than cell phones, internet and laptops. Surgery using a camera and flexible tubes? Pedestrian! Emu eggs in a Goddamn grocery store?! You gotta be kidding me! (They were out of ostrich eggs when I went.)

This is an object that should be rare... but its not. Sure, at thirty dollars an egg, it's a bit pricey, but this is still incredible. I guess it makes sense on some level, I'd been aware of the rise in emu farming since one escaped and was hit by a car in my home town (Westford, Ma), but a part of me, the part of me that made up his mind about these things at the age of 6, always thought I would need to travel across the globe to lay my hands on a real emu egg.

For size comparison, here's the emu egg with a duck egg (also neat, but less so. About the size of chicken egg).

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