The Good, the Bad and the “Eggly”


Linda Knight Seccaspina

If you’re prone to misplacing things I am going to suggest that any hand painted Easter eggs be accounted for as soon as possible. The family might have enjoyed watching the festive activities last week, but you don’t want a forgotten fresh egg anywhere near you.

I remember the halls of Cowansville High School used to wreak of hydrogen sulfide at least once a month when someone thought it was funny to make a stink bomb in Chemistry class. Growing up in the Townships and spending a few years in Sherbrooke I could smell the same scent coming from East Angus when the wind turned. So please heed my advice from this past story of a fresh egg that went astray.

There is always something happening in my home called Springside Hall. It was constructed with three foot stone walls and built in 1867.  Garage doors break, vents fall out of ceilings, and the dust seems to keep piling up.  I don’t worry about the dust anymore as many people died in this house and they say you return as dust. In essence, I could be dusting up someone I might know– so we will leave it at that. Last Spring about this time I thought the Gates of Hell had opened up. I was sure my kitchen had  acquired a rotten scent from the underworld lair, described in the Book of Revelations as a “lake of burning sulphur”.

My husband Steve and I searched everywhere: cupboards, on top of cupboards, in cracks and corners, looking for the culprit that was infiltrating the air. At the end of our fruitless search we decided that it had to be a dead mouse. It seemed to be the same odour I had called a local plumber in a panic about last year. There had been a bad smell coming from the laundry room and I was certain it was a gas leak from the dryer. The two most common sources of a rotten egg smell are a natural gas leak, and escaping sewer gas. After searching with his flashlight and charging me 70 bucks he assured me there was no gas or sewer leak, but probably a dead mouse somewhere in the walls. So this time we decided to wait until the smell went away as house calls from even a good egg can be egg-spensive.

As the week went by the warm weather increased and it got worse. The smell was killing us. Again, Steve looked everywhere. When he opened the tea cup cupboard he slammed the doors shut. He looked at me and said with a frightful egg-spression:

“Something has died in there!”

I took a whiff and quickly shut the doors. That was where the dead mouse was probably wasting away. But there was no wall whatsoever– so what the heck was going on. Again, we decided to give it another 48 hours. By this time we were looking at prices of gas masks. This is no “eggs-aggeration”!

The next morning when I got up I headed right to the smelly cupboard. I opened it up and somehow I spotted a tiny green demitasse cup that had something strange in it. What was it? It was the Ukrainian hand-painted egg that my friend Jennifer had made me for Christmas. The heat had exploded the egg and the whole top was the same colour as the demitasse cup. The sulphur smell was coming from the mold that had popped out of the egg due to the extreme heat we had. Why we had not seen this was beyond me– but I got rid of that egg as fast as you can say Bob’s Your Uncle.

From what we’ve gathered, generally the cause for that type of smell is some sort of combination of bacteria infiltrating the broken rotten egg. You don’t have to lay eggs to know one is rotten. They say 30 days might not be enough for an egg to smell horrible, but Id probably go for 45 to 60 days on this one– heck, even 90.

A year later the smell “that attracted vultures and other creatures that gravitate toward corpses” is gone, but it’s still a faint memory, and the story will always be around in that cupboard…. for evermore. As C. S. Lewis once said “No clever arrangement of egg-straordinarily bad eggs ever made a good omelette”. Sorry, that was a bad yolk!

The End

About lindaseccaspina

Linda Knight Seccaspina was born in Cowansville, Quebec about the same time as the wheel was invented and the first time she realized she could tell a tale was when she got caught passing her smutty stories around in Grade 7 at CHS by Mrs. Blinn. When Derek "Wheels" Wheeler from Degrassi Jr. High died in 2010, Linda wrote her own obituary. Some people said she should think about a career in writing obituaries. Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa from 1976-1996. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off she finally found her calling. Is it sex drugs and rock n' roll you might ask? No, it is history. Seeing that her very first boyfriend in Grade 5 (who she won a Twist contest with in the 60s) is the head of the Brome Misissiquoi Historical Society and also specializes in local history back in Quebec, she finds that quite funny. She writes every single day and is also a columnist for Hometown News and Screamin's Mamas. She is a volunteer for the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum, an admin for the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page, and a local guest speaker. She has been now labelled an historian by the locals which in her mind is wrong. You see she will never be like the iconic local Lanark County historian Howard Morton Brown, nor like famed local writer Mary Cook. She proudly calls herself The National Enquirer Historical writer of Lanark County, and that she can live with. Linda has been called the most stubborn woman in Lanark County, and has requested her ashes to be distributed in any Casino parking lot as close to any Wheel of Fortune machine as you can get. But since she wrote her obituary, most people assume she's already dead. Linda has published six books, "Menopausal Woman From the Corn," "Cowansville High Misremembered," "Naked Yoga, Twinkies and Celebrities," "Cancer Calls Collect," "The Tilted Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place," and "Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac." All are available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. Linda's books are for sale on Amazon or at Wisteria · 62 Bridge Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada, and at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum · 267 Edmund Street · Carleton Place, Ottawa, Canada--Appleton Museum-Mississippi Textile Mill and Mill Street Books and Heritage House Museum and The Artists Loft in Smith Falls.

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