I had no idea that flipping eggs was such a seriously difficult thing to do. Our third daughter, Tired of Being Youngest, is in culinary school, and this quarter's project involves creating egg dishes of all sorts, with a major emphasis on being able to flip the egg product, spatula free, by synergizing one's wrist movement with the frying pan.
It's one thing dropping fabric from a basket all over the beach;
To this end, Tired of Being Youngest practices with a piece of bread in the frying pan, the latter which she sets on the kitchen counter and picks up every time she walks by.
Flip. Flip. Flip.
I hear this throughout the day and one time, surreptitiously when no one was looking, I picked up the pan and gave a flick of the wrist myself. Thank God there wasn't a real egg in there.
Okay, so maybe you don't eat eggs, and if you do, you're fine using the spatula — I really only like my eggs scrambled, after all (TOBY is incensed with me — "Who's going to eat my practice projects?" she asks). But the point of today's article has less to do with culinary techniques as it has to do with the concept of practicing:
To get good at anything, from flipping eggs to perfecting oil painting techniques to creating complete artworks, takes practice, practice, and practice, and sometimes, that practice doesn't involve real eggs, but a slice of bread.
Translation: paint a lot, but not necessarily with the idea of selling everything you paint. Some of those works are practice pieces, and when you look at the finished product, you feel that you have literally splattered eggs about. But you keep at it — flipping, flipping, flipping — and you get better and better, until one day — that fried egg goes soaring into the air, gracefully pirouettes, and lands, cleanly, in the middle of the pan.