18 Comments

  1. billybob is correct. It’s the movie cliche of stopping a bomb with seconds on the timer. But it took me a while to work out that Humpty is the one defusing the bomb, not the one behind the corner. The suit makes his egg shape less clear. Perhaps that’s why it’s a CIDU?

    It’s also not clear why Humpty at all. The joke, such as it is, would work with anyone tilting the timer. The connection between sand timer and eggs isn’t very strong.

  2. There is a connection in that small sand hourglasses are often called egg timers. Why it would be Humpty by name is indeed still not clear.

    Nor is the mechanics of the threat and the save. How are the electric contacts at the TOP going to set off the bomb? The tilt trick is understood because we know the trope, but from the picture doesn’t really make a differenc

  3. So, this might be Humpty at some time prior to the famous wall incident?

    Too bad he didn’t keep on using his protective gear!

  4. @Dana K – I don’t think there’s another way to show that the egg timer is actually connected to the bomb. Unless Humpty lifted it higher, maybe, so we could see wires at the bottom.

  5. I agree that this is an egg timer, and that there are very few famous eggs therefore they rather had to use Humpty. The “tick tick tick” doesn’t really make sense, beyond the “because that’s what bomb timers do in the movies,” since hourglasses/egg timers of this sort are filled with sand and therefore if they do make noise it’s more of a hissing sound. But hey, I got a Sensible Chuckle out of the comic so, mission accomplished.

  6. Yes, very few famous eggs. Aside from Humpty, the best I can do is two fictional humans named Egg: Dorothy Sayers’ #2 series detective Montague Egg and a minor R. Crumb cartoon character, Eggs Zactly (and I’m probably misspelling the last name).

    I suppose the Egg of Columbus in the apocryphal story counts as a “famous” egg, but alas it didn’t have a name.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egg_of_Columbus

    Do any of the Fabergé eggs have individual names that anyone would recognize?

  7. Pete: I put it here as a CIDU because I didn’t understand why it should be Humpty. So Dana K has explained it.

  8. The top drawing is not well executed, as the sand fills the bottom part, the neck and also part of the top part. The way an egg timer works is that it sits there with half (or some other substantial portion) of the bottom globe full of sand and the rest empty. You turn it over, then the sand runs from the new top through the thin neck until all of it half-fills (or some other substantial proportion) of the new bottom section.

    Ideally I expect the wires should, when the device is armed and dangerous, be on the bottom bit, with a connection between them supplied by a metallic spring strip that closes only when sufficient weight of sand has fallen onto it. Mind you, in real life the falling sand would no doubt seep under the metal connecting spring and thus prevent the closing of the switch. Care must be taken to use a non-conducting material, and not iron filings as then the electrical connection might close prematurely*. Though that could be fixed by having the metal spring switch encased in a thin membrane flexible enough to distort with the weight of sand but impervious to sandy particulate substances.

    I may be overthinking all this.

    *Injuries to egg-form bomb disposal operatives is known as “shell shock”.

  9. “*Injuries to egg-form bomb disposal operatives is known as “shell shock”.”

    That deserves an OVAtion.

  10. “*Injuries to egg-form bomb disposal operatives is known as “shell shock”.”

    Very good! Albumen-tioning that to my wife later tonight.

  11. It appears that “eggs” have been on Leigh Rubin’s mind lately. I could understand it if this were Lent, but during Advent it seems a little weird†:

    P.S. † – At least for the general public. My family is the only one I know of that puts decorated eggs on our Christmas trees. Several years ago I decorated an Easter egg with a drawing of a Christmas tree, but nobody outside my immediate family understood the joke.

  12. I can’t quite summon the energy to construct a story to combine a community theatre Shakespeare season with a noir private eye or lowkey Mob characters, to support saying “You can’t produce a HAMLET without braking for some yeggs.”

    Surprisingly the TV series “Barry” came along mixing some of those elements, but I didn’t get to watch it far enough along to see if it would work.

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