A Plot

By | 2 February 2001

from The Invention of Everyday Life

The novelist is feeling pleased. Having altered
somewhat the original emphasis, his novel is going
well for a change. It is now mainly about a young
woman who becomes a recluse after her lover kills
himself in her beauty salon because she wants to
break off their seven-year relationship.

In fact the young man is only seriously
wounded and in critical condition for a while, but
eventually recovers. It is the well-known heart surgeon
who is going to operate who is the one actually
shot and killed, in a suburb not far away. A different
surgeon, soon to be equally famous, performs
the successful operation.

The young man’s family, who have never
liked his girlfriend, have ‘a change of heart’, so to speak,
and relent in their opposition to the marriage.
Long, emotional discussions follow between the
mothers, apologies, gifts are exchanged. The
engagement is announced and a trousseau planned.
The Castel d’Oro is booked for the reception. Soon
a little van with tablecloths and bed linen piled in
the back begins to appear weekly in front of the
young woman’s mother’s house. There is an engagement
party with truckloads of food and drink and a
bazoukia band so loud that the police are called by
a distant neighbour who must not know the situation.

At the wedding the bridesmaids will all wear pale
blue and the groom will wear a red carnation like a
bullet hole over his heart.

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