Once upon a time (aka a few months ago) in a land far far away (aka Northern Virginia) I purchased a Nordic Ware microwave egg cooker. I can’t recall where I first heard about it. It’s one of those food devices that seems to have always been around, but never really gets much attention because its too busy doing house chores for its evil step sisters.
Despite the lack of promotion, I somehow noticed this lowly device hanging on a rack at the end of a supermarket aisle. It was all like, “Hey do you like eggs and saving time?”
I love eggs and saving time!
The thing works well. In about a minute, my eggs were ready for consumption. Only one problem: COOKING AN EGG ISN’T ALL THAT HARD TO BEGIN WITH, nor all that time consuming. With just a touch more effort and a couple more minutes, I could have restaurant-quality fried eggs.
DAMNIT! I’d been gotten by the Marketing Gods again. Or had I?
I remembered that my office at work only has a microwave and toaster oven for heating food. So, as much as I’d love to make an omelette for a weekday lunch, it just wasn’t possible. (True story: I once used a quesadilla press to make omelettes at work. It worked surprisingly well, but the company next door complained because we were apparently brunching TOO hard.)
One afternoon, while I was making a rosemarino ham, white cheddar, egg sandwich, my boss entered the kitchen and was intrigued by my device. I explained to him how it worked and he waited to see how the finished product turned out. As I opened the lid, steam rose out from the perfectly cooked egg.
Like one of those Cinderella type stories where the prince instantly falls in love with a beautiful princess, my boss’s eyes were hypnotized and he was smitten.
Shortly after the kitchen meet-cute, he informed me that he had indeed purchased one of his own and that it met all three of his qualifications for a solid product: (1) It was cheap, (2) it worked as advertised, and (3) it was easy to use.
He shared his excitement with everyone in the office, eager to spread the good word of the egg cooker. He’d proudly walk up to a co-worker and place the egg cooker on the counter. “Know what that is?” he would ask, his sermon cocked and loaded. He would then explain how the device worked, how it met his qualifications for a solid product, and even offer to email them a link to the product page on Amazon. His enthusiasm could be matched by a child in the 90’s on Christmas morning describing his or her favorite Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle (it’s Michelangelo of course).
Here’s the thing: I don’t recall him ever showing this much excitement over anything…ever. So, based on the limited data I have on his excitement habits, I can only conclude that the microwave egg cooker is the greatest thing to ever happen to him. His wife seems nice enough, so I mean no disrespect to her, but the data doesn’t lie.
Needless to say, lunches at our office have never been the same and we’re clearly responsible for 90% of the microwave egg cooker sales in Virginia.
That’s the weird/awesome/surprising thing about food: It’s unpredictable. Every meal has a certain mystery and excitement to it. Every food device–no matter how simple–can bring out the child in us. When I casually threw it into my shopping cart, I never would have guessed that my boss would fall in love with this inexpensive piece of plastic and live happily ever after.