Paraffin Wax? French Tips? Risotto Milanese?

| June 3, 2008 | 3 Comments
  • 3 Comments

Surrounded by the gentle hum and blue glow of the television from 11pm to 3am, I’m at my most productive. It’s a routine I started in college. I was never able to concentrate in daylight, which might unveil a slightly vampiric side to my personality, and I needed noise to drown out the screaming silence of my room. Unfortunately, these work habits, while productive, mean I often stumble unwittingly into the terrifying world of infomercials.

The other night I was busily tapping away at something or other when I glanced up for an eye break and watched a thoroughly disgusting but completely enthralling infomercial for the PedEgg.

This handy little vehicle of blood poisoning waiting to happen grates all the off your feet with just a few (reportedly) smooth strokes. The PedEgg has metal “micro-files” that will rasp off your rough patches but won’t pop a balloon! (I long for the days of dual tin can and tomato cutting.) The PedEgg also has a handy little collection chamber where all your foot detritus gathers instead of falling to the floor. (Because that, well, that would be gross.)

The next time I took an eye break, I found myself watching the same commercial. Except this one wasn’t grating dead skin, it was grating cheese. It had the SAME grater panel and the SAME handy little collection chamber. It’s ingenious. It’s a multi-use that even Alton Brown has to love! It’s also bizarre and gross and the two commercials shouldn’t be shown on the same channel within hours of each other! And FYI putting a cute little mouse on it doesn’t negate the foot factor.

Do you think the PedEgg guy saw the cheese grater and thought, “Cheese? Feet!” Or did the CheeseEgg (not its real name) guy watch the happy old lady dumping her foot shavings in the trash can and think, “Wow, I’ll bet that would work really well with cheese.” I’ve seen the cheese grater at Bed, Bath and Beyond. I’ve thought about buying it, testing it out, seeing if she really handles better than my beloved Microplane. But I can’t quite bring myself to do it. I think I’m afraid the CheeseEgg will creep into my bathroom in the dead of night and perch on the edge on the tub. There it will sit, staring me down as I shower, taunting me, knowing how vainly I’m wrestling with my curiosity and my disgust. Knowing I will want to see if it grates my feet as well as it grates my cheese. Knowing that once I find out that answer, I will have to throw the thing out, disgusted by my weakness. Taunted by my smooth feet.

These are the things that pass through the transom of my mind when I’m up being productive at 3am. (Don’t even get me started on the Corn Stripper.)

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About the Author ()

A former picky eater, Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic is a writer, editor, and lapsed cheesemonger in the San Francisco Bay Area. A culinary school grad with an English lit degree, she has written for CNN.com, MSNBC.com, Popular Science, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Boston Globe. Additionally, she has been writing for KQED's Bay Area Bites since its inception and is the website editor for KQED's Emmy-award winning show "Check, Please! Bay Area." Stephanie was an original recapper at Television Without Pity and worked on a line of cookbooks for William-Sonoma as well as in the back kitchen of a Jacques Pépin cooking show. Her first book, SUFFERING SUCCOTASH: A Picky Eater's Quest To Understand Why We Hate the Foods We Hate (Perigee Books, 2012) is a non-fiction narrative and a heartfelt and humorous exposé on the inner lives of picky eaters that Scientific American called "hilarious" and "the perfect popular science book for a reader that doesn't think he or she wants to read a popular science book." Stephanie lives in Menlo Park with her husband, three-year-old son, assorted cats, and has been blogging at The Grub Report for over a decade. Follow her on Twitter at @grubreport
  • TampaBeeAtch

    Long time fan here, first from your TwoP days (your vinaigrette recipe during the Martha recaps changed salad for me forever) to Grubreport. I absolutely cracked up at your most recent post. I too had been fascinated and horrified by the PedEgg commercials, though I hadn’t seen the cheese one though. Man, that must have been traumatizing to see them both within hours.

    Anyway, in a moment of weakness, and with several new pairs of sandals down here in Florida, I caved and bought the PedEgg at Walgreen’s. I was skeptical and scared, but honestly? After using it for five minutes on feet that looked like I frequently walk to work uphill, both ways, on gravel and hot coals; it now looked like I had weekly pedicures at the best spa in town. Obviously, you don’t want to over do it and you don’t want to use too much pressure. Also if you tip it to get at the angles you need to, some of the um ‘collected detritus’ sneaks out, but it mostly stays in there for completely gross disposal.

    Anyway, don’t let the cheese grater creep into your bathroom, for $10 the PedEgg is quite the deal. And still fascinatingly horrifying. Anyway, love your writing, and love your site. I so miss your writing the food related recaps on TwoP, and your recipes.

  • Natalie Wren

    unless they’ve been pirated, both tools are made by Microplane-they are a built-in-the-usa kinda company in Russelville, Arkansas that used to make wood rasps back in the “old days”. I highly recommend their various food tools… never used the foot grater-i’m sure it’s good if you can get over the gag factor when you realize the grated foot looks like grated pecorino.

  • http://www.grubreport.com Stephanie

    Aw, thanks TampaBeeAtch — that’s so lovely to hear!

    I guess I might have to give in and try it on your say-so.