Op-ed on Egg Nog

Here we are December 31st. While you are pretending to work for half a day at your job, I figured maybe you could sneak a read of this. I wrote it back in 2016 and almost have it edited. A quick note about my comedy schedule: I’m performing at the Backline in Omaha Jan 4, 2020, a Saturday. AND I’M SUPER STOKED TO BE RUNNING ANOTHER NORTH STAR COMEDY HOUR in Minneapolis, 1 p.m., JANUARY 26TH at the EAgles Club #34. This show will feature the uber talented dynamic duo Ethan Iverson (renowned piano player and jazz artist who’s mug has been on Rolling Stone Magazine) and kick ass author and NYC women’s boxing champ Sarah Deming.  More info and ticket link soon at MaryMackcomedy.com ALRIGHT ALREADY HERE’S MY EGG NOG BIT:

Guns, Drugs, and Egg Nog

The following is a sad, wintertime-related observation about the United States of America based on what I experienced while living in—what some people claim is the greatest city of the U.S.—New York City. If it’s so great and such a 24/7 town, then why is there no eggnog on the shelves January 2nd? At least in Wisconsin, where I grew up, they stock up on nog at the gas stations and big box stores in addition to the grocery stores’ supply. Often, one can find nog through Valentine’s Day to celebrate appropriately with her sweetheart.

I need eggnog more available to me, like as soon as an autumn leaf drops and then throughout the ensuing winter and then well past spring. Sadly, in a free country where you can have organic food on your doorstep within 2 hours, this is not an option. Unrestricted and guaranteed egg nog access is not a 1st world option. *1

So there I sat a few years back in a New York sublet on January 10th eggnog-less. Outside, the temperature was averaging 15-25 degrees, the same as inside my apartment. The heat in the Brooklyn sublet, which I had been renting for 7 days already, had been shut off after just 2 days of my habitation and still had not been turned back on due to a carbon monoxide leak and impending death within the building. But it was mainly the eggnog shortage bothering me.

Egg nog is pleasantly addictive. I read you can hallucinate from too much nutmeg, but it’s not the nutmeg alone which is habit forming. It’s the mystical and holistic combination of eggs, dairy, sugar, and spice altogether—the veritable “healing crystal” of drinks. I clinically need eggnog in order to relax…and maybe to be normal, to sleep better, to cope, pay my bills, all that. According to a recent survey of up to 8 people, which I put out on social media, I’m not the only one. And yet, the supply of nog in this country does not meet the demand.

Some people who work at Trader Joe’s (a busy, cheaper than Whole Goods, pretend health store that has spread from California to many larger towns across the United States) will try to make you feel ashamed of yourself for asking where they keep their egg nog on the 10th day of January. Or maybe they’re just sick of answering that question, because there IS so much demand for it, and they’ve probably been asked 80 times that day already.

“Um,” they say to me condescendingly, “That’s a seasonal drink, ma’am.”

“Yeah, I know. It’s winter. This is the season,” I say. The honesty of my Minnesotan-tinged, Wisconsin accent intimidates and confuses New York’s Trader Joe elves.

Apparently, the corporations have decided there is an Eggnog Season, and it only lasts 2 to 3 weeks. Three weeks of availability is laughable in any 1st world market, but especially the Big Apple. When I decided to stay in fabled New York City for the winter, I leapt in with eggs in my eyes, believing there would be pyramids of nog cartons stacked in shiny windows at all the reputable markets and children would stare, tugging on their mothers’ coats: “Please, mama.” It would be just like the bee bee gun want in The Christmas Story. 

Reality disappointed me. Instead of eggnog glorification, what NYC gave me was a shortage of and almost disparaging attitude toward nog, a carbon monoxide leak, and 3 men named Junior all trying to fix a defunct furnace in my apartment everyday for 22 days until the landlord—also named Junior—bribed a young gas company employee to turn it back on. There were no eggnog window displays, just a limited window of availability and even then, not enough to go around.

Not only are the corporate eggnog calendar-limiters hurting me, but they are hurting themselves. They could be making so much more money. I appeal to their greed and do not fear—nay! welcome—the possibility of Big Eggnog. Do drug dealers shoot themselves in the foot by claiming there is a specific 2 weeks of the year when heroine is available? A Heroine Season, if you will? No! Drug dealers make heroine available ALL GODDAMN YEAR, and that is why heroine is so popular and selling so well. Drug dealers recognize the demand, and supply supply supply. Am I saying it’s easier to be addicted to heroine than eggnog? In some ways, yes, I am. It’s easier to get heroine than eggnog. (However, beware that both have serious health repercussions and you can get really sick if you try to make either on your own.)

I am not satisfied by just complaining about this issue. This is a call-to-action. Grocers, gas stations, restaurants, phony health co-ops, please do the right and smart thing and start honoring the entirety of winter and maybe a little of spring and fall, since there’s still snow on the ground then in the upper midwest markets—the eggnog hot spots—by demanding a longer eggnog window from your suppliers. (Chance of snow means Eggnog Season for any reasonable person.)

In final plea, I pose to the reader, if the U.S. senate can refuse to pass a revised Violence Against Women Act because it takes gun rights away from domestic abusers, then, at least we could agree on decreasing the restrictions placed on nog availability. If only eggnog were as accessible as guns and drugs in the United States, this would truly be a great country. (Also, this should have been the first—thesis—sentence, but I’m in a hurry.)

*1 –  You could make it yourself, but I’m just focusing on prepackaged egg nog in this “piece.”

Published in: on December 31, 2019 at 5:56 pm  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Amazing! I WAS reading this while pretending to work a half day today (NY Eve). And I love Eggnog! (although I found the TJ’s Brand disappointing). I wonder though, if my heart (and stomach) could survive an extended Eggnog season…they may be doing me a favor by limiting my access.

    Back to “work”…Happy New Year!


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