Spring Has Sprung

Today marks the official first day of spring with the coming of the spring equinox. I always mark this day on the calendar since it is the one day for me to display that I paid attention in eighth grade science. Mr. White was an interesting character, I believe he spent time in a hippie commune but I have no proof. He did make an impression on me with his interactive science experiments. I can remember countless useless science facts that make you the life of a party. I’m sure my parents were less than thrilled with his teaching methods given the number of trips they had to make to the Junior High School to explain to the principal that I would be severely punished for causing part of the science lab to explode. Looking back at my childhood, there were only two toys I would ever ask for and I did not receive either. The first was Rock ’em Sock ’em Robots. My mother seemed to think that the last thing her son needed was a toy that taught him to knock someone’s block off. The second toy was a chemistry set. Given my inquisitive nature and classification as a gifted child made for a bad combination when mixed with potentially explosive chemicals. That is not to say this made our house safe. It merely meant that I had to do some research before building these components. Needless to say, my mother was worried for no reason. I still have ten fingers and toes and no one has ever died from one of my experiments. Evacuated yes, scrubbed by the biohazard team yes, admitted to an emergency room yes, but never killed. Besides, I thought that was why she had three children. So that we had spares in case of an accident. Today’s experiment though had nothing to do with explosions, at least it wasn’t supposed to. It seems that on the spring equinox, it is possible to take a room temperature raw egg and make it stand on its end. This always fascinates the kids and makes our house very popular as all the neighbors come over to see the magic egg. Today, I was not as prepared as I should have been. I forgot to get the egg out of the refrigerator so that it was at room temperature. Cold eggs do not stand very well and when you are faced with an audience of five impatient kids, you improvise. In my case that meant warming up the egg in a hurry. What better appliance is there for heating things than the microwave oven. I probably would have been fine if I would have taken my time. Instead, I added an extra digit to the timer and ran upstairs to finish getting ready for work. It would appear that somewhere between one minute and three minutes, an egg will explode in the microwave. It is not quite as impressive as when house flies explode but it is still pretty cool. Well, its cool as long as your wife doesn’t find out. It’s grounds for another night of sleeping on the couch if she does find out.

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