Sunday, June 18, 2006

Black Hole Bag

If my blog had categories then this would be a non-scientific post.

It's a Sunday and - again - I am sitting at an airport, this time waiting to be squeezed into a Boing 747 with what looks about 1 Million of Indians, currently dancing in the boarding area.

Today, a good friend sent me an email reminding me that I have only 5 days to go to my wedding. I realized, she is right. So, I decided it's about time to get in the mood, and bought a bridal magazine. Among other things, I learned that I can insure my wedding against rain, and the latest must-haves in dinnerware: contemporary collections enhanced by stylized designs to help me create dinner parties that reflect my personal style. Wow. I am very worried about my current personal style.

The magazine also has a countdown calendar! Some highlights from this:

  • 12 months: Choose a wedding theme and style, meet potential wedding consultants
  • 11 months: Research and interview florists
  • 10 months: Select and order your wedding gown, discuss attebdants' duties with your maid of honor and bridesmaids
  • 9 months: Register for gifts, dicide on food and liquor to be served at your reception
  • ...

... and so on, and so on. Can we make that days instead of months?

So far the only contribution I made to my wedding organization was to pick the dress. Scheduled between a visit at PI, a seminar in Frankfurt, and a conference in Paris, this was undoubtly the most entertaining event my mother had in the last month.

The shop assistants were horrified to hear that the wedding would already be in no more than four weeks. After we calmed them down, assuring that we would be uncomplicatd, they called two tailors. One of them one with needles pinned everywhere hardly spoke a word, but vanished every 30 minutes for a cirarrette break. The other a chatty women with an accent from Sachsen, whose eyes began gleaming when she saw me: She's tiny, she said, she will fit in EVERY dress. I was about to run away and marry in jeans.

They placed me on a stool, and dragged a dress over me. Great, I said, it's white, I take it! - Nonono, the assistants, both dressed in pink, said, you have to try this, and this and this. It went on for endless hours, in which they put me in and out of dresses, attached things to my hair, around my neck, and shoes on my feet, while my mother was served coffee and cookies. She had a really good time. I was tought how to sit in a dress, how to make turns with the full armor, and to never, never, never, move backwards.

The shop assistants found everything gorgeous, other customers made comments like: Isn't this absolutely LOVELY? or How cute! A postman who delivered a parcel remarked I look like Cinderella. I definitly felt more like the beast than the beauty.

After f-o-u-r hours we settled on the first dress. Then, one of the shop assistants placed a bag in my hand. I had never seen a bag so tiny before. It was white and a bit shiny. My patience was pretty exhausted, so I asked What the fuck am I supposed to put in this 'bag'? The assistant shrugged her shoulders and insisted, it looked nice. Cigarrets, the quiet tailor said. My mother vetod on that, I doubted the plural 's'. Tampons? the other assistant suggested, not very convincingly. A cell phone, the postman yelled from the back.

Actually, I thought, good point. It would look much better to have the cell in a bag than to attach it to the train or so. Yes! the chatty tailor giggled So her lover could call last minute!, my mother looked appropriately disgusted. I instead saw myself getting a call from my coworker, upset, because he had just scanned the arxiv, telling me that we have been scooped on our new paper. Then I would shout into the ceremony 'I DO, I DO, can you hurry up a bit, where do I sign?', and run away, looking for a wireless network.

Anyway, my mother decided for the bag. Now I read in this bridal magazine, what has to be in the brides bag:

'Don't leave for the ceremony without an emercency kit packed with essentials for tackling common wedding-day mishaps like torn hems or broken heels. Some must haves:

  • Double sided fabric tape
  • A small sewing kit
  • Superglue
  • Deodorant
  • Breath mints
  • Clear nail polish
  • Nail Kit
  • Band Aids and Painkillers
  • Tissues

To this we add the 'Emergency Beauty Kit: comb and brush, hair spray, nail glue, nail polish topcoat, pressed powder, mascara and lipstic.' Also, I am supposed to take off my glasses for the photos, these go in the bag as well. Together with the cell phone, cigaretts and tampons. Not to mention worldly stuff like purse, and keys, and the required legal documents (you want to make sure you marry the right person). And my memory stick, without which I never go anywhere, in case the new paper gets scooped...

All this seems to imply that it takes a black hole bag rather than a tiny, shiny, white bag. At least the interior needs infinite volume. So I googled for it. And guess what? Here it is, the black hole bag:

I also found the black hole vacuum cleaner, which I should maybe put on the gift list. That is, if I had registered for one around the time when men still dragged their women around on their hair or so.

When I think about it, the double sided tape acutally could be handy to stop the uncle from talking too much.

Note added: I have been told that 'I DO, can you hurry up!' is not exactly the right thing to say, but that I have to say 'Yes' loud and clearly. Not 'Sure', not 'I think so' or 'That's why I'm here'. It's like when you end up sitting on the plane in an emergency exit row. If you are willing and able to perform the required actions in case of an emergency, please say yes lound and clearly.


  1. 1) Do you marry a man or a woman?

    2) Cigarettes? From your posts I guessed that you are an inteligent woman.

  2. 1) Do you marry a man or a woman?

    I have plenty of experimental evidence that he is male.

    2) Cigarettes? From your posts I guessed that you are an inteligent woman.

    I am a non-smoker. Do you think smoking helps killing brain cells? Maybe I should try.

    Best, B.

  3. Bee, he IS one lucky guy!
    All the best on the big day. Q

  4. Congratulations!

    At the same time, I am sorry to inform you that afterwards you will have to constantly be concerned with the two (and possibly more)-body problem. :)


  5. Bee, he IS one lucky guy!

    Yes, quasar9, indeed - he is :-))

    Best regards, Stefan

  6. Yeah Stefan, I guessed as much. Go Bee Go! - Q


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