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Jasminka Petrovi}


Irena Tiodorovi}

SAILING THROUGH MARRIAGE WATERS (A Beginner's Course in the Shallows of Marriage Waters)


A SHORT EXERCISE FOR OUR READERS This book, as you have seen on its cover, is called Shut Up and Swim! (A Beginner's Course in the Shallows of Marriage Waters). This is only because we need some sort of title, because a book with no name cannot be published. Actually, it has several alternative titles, so that its real name depends entirely on your own choice. When you have finished reading it, come back to this page and circle the appropriate title, or invent one of your own, if you're smarter... If you think you are even smarter than we think you are, do it now!

We offer the following titles: SAILING TO THE SAFE HAVEN OF MARRIAGE (poetic)







SAY "YES" AND SWIM! (clever) _________________________ (even more clever)

As you can see, if you bought the book with one title, that does not mean that you need to read it under that name. Anyway, it is high time to prevent all those high and mighty authors from naming their books any way they like, isn't it? So take things, i.e., the book, into your own hands. You paid for it fair and square and you are entitled to call it whatever you want! 3


y dear,

If you have been dating him for four or more years If you have not been dating anyone for four or more years If your mother has told you: "It's high time to learn how to cook!" If every time you see a wedding dress in a shop window you sigh If you cross the street and say "Ooops!" every time you see a wedding dress in a shop window If your granny tells you: "I just ran into that old maid who was with you in school..." If you treat depression by eating a whole bar of chocolate in one go If you have not eaten for days because you gained ten pounds over the winter If you have managed to fry an egg without breaking the yolk If your dad has praised you for ironing his shirt flawlessly If you have attended more than two children's birthdays in a month's time If your friend's baby peed on you when you tried to replace her diaper If you secretly read romantic novels If you have joined a women's rights movement If you watch parliament broadcasts on TV regularly to catch a glance of the handsome MPs If you are always in the front row at weddings when the bride throws her bouquet If you are too embarrassed to go for the bouquet If you spit on daytime soap operas (but know all the characters' names by heart) If you always solve the psychology test in women's magazines If on introduction you are asked "Miss or Missus?" If your brother told you "Why doesn't somebody finally marry you so we can all get a breather?" If you blow your top every time someone calls you a "good marriage prospect"


y dear,

If you never dated anyone for more than a week's time If you've been with the same girl so long that you have forgotten how she snared you orignally If your co-workers have told you that every morning your eyes look like two meatballs If you fell asleep in a disco If you are sitting in a pub full of beautiful chicks and talking about work If your dad has told you "It's high time to learn how to change a blown fuse!" If you have more than two neckties If you have bought a house pet If your mum still leaves you dinner on the table covered with aluminium foil If you have been sent to buy a turkey for Thanksgiving, but have no idea where and how If you have decided to join a political party If you try to remain unobserved as you gaze longingly at model cars in the toy store If you spend more than two hours a day on the Internet If you still think that a monkey wrench is a game played by apes in the zoo If your mum has told you that all her friends already have grandchildren If you have finally managed to learn how to make French toast and coffee If you have enrolled in a fitness club If you no longer carry a condom in your wallet If you have told your best friend: "They're all the same - all they want to do is get married!" If you have frequent nightmares ending with the words: "I do, I do, I do..." If your dreams involve only yourself and Pamela Anderson If you've stopped dreaming entirely If you have no idea on what you spent all your money the previous month If you were called "an old geezer" by a 15-year-old girl on roller blades If you have made up you mind to remain a lifelong bachelor... If you have at least three of the above symptoms, what can we say...


WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT? I know! What does a piece of paper saying that you are married change? What is important is love! The two of you love each other even without that slip of paper! This book is actually not about that sheet of paper. The paper is just a reason to have a few laughs about everything that awaits you because it. What you will have to do because of that document is: • get a whole stack of other documents from various institutions, • spend a stack of paper banknotes, • for years and years share your toilet-paper roll with the same partner!


MARRIAGE IS SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT! Love Understanding Devotion Tolerance Respect Mutual assistance Adaptation Dialogue Quarrels A safe haven Responsibility Maturity Children Family A living Division and multiplication Going through life together

But philosophising was not our intention here! No one can explain any of it to you until you yourself feel the urge and make your own choice. The objective of this book is not to force you into marriage or to study the phenomenon from a scientific perspective, but to take a humorous look at what awaits you after you have said the famous words "I do!" Whatever happens, stay cool and keep smiling!


To propose (verb) - to beg, plead, extort, compel, pray, mooch, beseech, implore...


Women's: - For days I have felt that you have something important to ask me! - Look at these wedding bands, they're not that expensive! - My biological clock is ticking away... - If you love me, prove it before a priest! - When will you summon the necessary courage and ask me to marry you!?



"UGH" MARRIAGE PROPOSALS (not advised in practice, as the consequences could be fatal)

Men's: - Would you cook for me for the rest of your life? - I feel a bit bored, so I though we could get married... - I need someone to bear my children. Will you do it? - OK, let's get it over with! - Everyone tells me it's high time I got married, and you're around, so we might as well...

A list of the best marriage proposals does not exist. Any frank and honest proposal, however it is worded, but always free of conditions and phoney talk, is just fine. Actually, it is best if no need for any formal proposal ever arises, if marriage comes as a logical consequence and a need. All in all, in this case simply


You shut up and you swam, and swam... You rode the current of love, and now you are nearing the island of marriage. So go for the land, for both of those things. Of course the island is deserted, as one might expect after all that swimming. But the two of you are both going on land ... lo and behold, the desert island is now populated by you, and you need to make it habitable. Love itself is no longer enough - this is now survival, all the little things that make up life... That is why you should read carefully the bit which follows, what a husband is good for, and what a wife is good for. If you are ready for these things, the palm tree on your desert island will soon look like the biggest and best Christmas tree. Of course, love is implied...

WHAT IS HUSBAND IS GOOD FOR Vacuuming the house Changing fuses A good target of nagging A good shoulder to lean on A good partner for a quarrel A good partner for silence Snoring next to her ear

Looking after her car

Having someone to snuggle up against in bed

Doing the shopping

Giving a bath to the children when so inclined

Taking out the trash

Repairing leaking taps Serving drinks to the guests Looking after the household bills 10

WHAT IS WIFE IS GOOD FOR Endlessly making him pancakes

Bringing up the children

Listening to endless complaints about his boss

Telling her she spoiled the children

Bothering him with her nagging Having someone to tell he will be late for dinner So he can have a mother-in-law

Covering him when he falls asleep watching TV

Listening to his complaints how she never goes shopping or takes out the trash

Drawing up his shopping lists

da mu pegla ko{ulje

Taking care of the family finances Spending money

To always be there... Packing his suitcases for his business trips

Now you know some of the reasons why a wife needs a husband a vice versa. There are of course many more. There are just as many questions and answers as there are husbands and wives. It is all individual! Before substantiating, we will give a few quotations by well-known people on marriage. So before you hear "The bridegroom may now kiss the bride!", it might be worth reading them. If they are not educational, at least they are funny... 11

THEY SAID ABOUT MARRIAGE... "Love is an ideal thing, and marriage is a real thing. Confusing the real and the ideal can never go unpunished." Goethe

„"If we want to face the truth, marriage is an evil, but a necessary evil." Menander

"Marriage is the triumph of the imagination over intelligence. A second marriage is the triumph of hope over experience." Oscar Wilde

"If you have a good wife, you will be happy. If you have a bad wife, you will become a philosopher!' Socrates

"The best husband a wife can have is an archaeologist: the older she gets, the more interesting she becomes for him." Agatha Christie

There is no nicer, friendlier and more pleasant relationship, union or company than a good marriage." Martin Luther

"Marriage is made up of three things: love, trust and patience." Branislav Nu{i}

"If a good marriage does exist, it is only because it resembles friendship much more than it resembles love." Montaigne

"Love is a wonderful institution, but who wants to live in an institution?" Groucho Marx


READY, STEADY, GO! The decision has finally been made! So you think you have solved the most important questions? You are soooo wrong! The race has not even begun!!

Contents The happy news . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 Everything by the book

. . . . . . . . . . . .17

Who will make the event even more dignified . . . . . . . . .22 The trouble with gold

. . . . . . . . . . . . .25

A dress for just one day . . . . . . . . . . .29 Eating and drinking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31

I SREÆNA VEST Odluka je mo`da bila te{ka, ali kad je prerasla u vest, postala je sre}na. Dolazite zajedno kod njenih roditelja da saop{tite tu sre}nu vest. Evo kako to, ukratko, izgleda:

Mlado`enja: Bako, nismo kupili kola, nego se ven~avamo!

Mlada i mlado`enja, u duetu: Mi smo odlu~ili da se ven~amo! Mama/ta{ta (lije neute{ne suze): Jao, deco, neka je to majka do~ekala... Mlada: [to cmizdri{ sad, pa nije kraj sveta!

Otac/tast (skuplja obrve iznad prodornog pogleda): ^ekaj, ~ekaj, da nije tu neko trudan?

Otac/tast (pali cigaretu, namrgo|eno): Kako to tek tako, odjednom?

Mlado`enja: Ja nisam, ~asna re~! Mama/ta{ta: ’Ajde, Bogoljube, ne lupetaj! I bolje bi ti bilo da prekine{ da pu{i{! Gu{i{ nas sve ovde tim dimom, a Milici to sad stra{no smeta. Je l’ tako, sunce mamino?

Mlado`enja: Pa i nije odjednom, tri godine se zabavljamo! Sestra/svastika (unezvereno): A to {to ja nemam {ta da obu~em za svadbu? Mlada: Pa {ta, nemam ni ja! Baba (heklaju}i milje za unuku): A kad je registracija?


Mlada (odlu~no): Da, da, dogovorili smo se da ne}emo neku veliku svadbu!

Sestra/svastika (za sebe): Moram da kupim nove cipele! Baba (i dalje heklaju}i): A kad je registracija, ne ~ujem dobro!

Otac/tast (ustaje i lupa rukom u sto): [taaaaaa? To ne dolazi u obzir! Nije Bogoljub stipsa, da ne napravi svadbu za }erku!

Mlado`enja (obazrivo): Mi smo to mislili da obavimo {to pre, onako, samo sa jednom `urkom za dru{tvo.

Mama/ta{ta (smiruje ga): Ma {ale se deca, naravno da }emo praviti pravu svadbu! Mlada i mlado`enja: Ali mi smo... Otac/tast: [ta vi? Ko vas pita? Je l’ vi udajete }erku? Vi kad budete `enili i udavali decu, vi pravite {ta ‘o}ete! Sestra/svastika (zami{ljeno): Ho}u li imati vremena do svadbe da sa{ijem haljinu? Mlada i mlado`enja (poku{avaju da do|u do re~i): Mi ne bismo... Mama/ta{ta: Ho}ete, ne}ete, isto vam se hvata! Nema {ta da brinite, sve }emo mi da organizujemo, va{e je samo da se pojavite i da budete lepi mladenci. Baba (uporno): Kad je registracija, ho}e li mi neko odgovoriti? Otac/tast (dere se babi u uvo): Nema registracije, mama, SVADBA... svadba je u pitanju! Baba (uvre|eno): Pa za registraciju te i pitam, {ta se dere{?


MALA VE®BA ZA ÈITAOCE Na~ini saop{tavanja sre}ne vesti (izabrati od ponu|enog):

Stara izreka ka`e da je iskustvo majka mudrosti i zato }emo se, posle svake ve`be za ~itaoce, obratiti za savet nikom drugom nego iskusnim pliva~ima...

1. u`ivo (hrabro) 2. telefonom (na distanci) 3. e-mail-om (savremeno)


4. telegramom (staromodno)

Ne zaboravite da je ven~anje VA[E! [ta god da je va{ zajedni~ki izbor...

5. objavom u novinama (ekscentri~no)

...izborite se sa njega! Kako da ka`ete ako }utite!?

6. 6 meseci unapred (blagovremeno) 7. danas za sutra („cajtnot“) 8. danas za ju~e („svr{en ~in“) 9. nikako, ven~ati se u potaji i ne saop{tavati bar mesec dana (bezobrazno)

8 7 5

1 9

4 3 6



II SVE PO PROPISIMA Odlu~ili ste da zaka`ete ven~anje za mesec dana u op{tini na kojoj stanuje mlado`enja. Nije da vam se `uri, ali ako biste ~ekali du`e od mesec dana, mladi ba{ ne bi idealno stajala ven~anica. Mislite da nema ni{ta lak{e od toga – odete u op{tinu i ka`ete datum i vreme. Deset minuta posla, zar ne? Evo u {ta se to, u stvari, izrodi:

©ALTER 1 u OP©TINI. DESET SATI. Mlado`enja: Dobar dan. Mi bismo hteli da zaka`emo ven~anje. [alteru{a (s punim ustima bureka): Kod mati~ara, {esti sprat, soba dva’es’ dva. Ne radi. Mlada: Mati~ar ne radi? [alteru{a: Ma, lift, bre, ne radi! Penji se pe{ke!


UH, HU, HU, UH, HU, HU, UH... ©ESTI SPRAT. SOBA 22. Mlado`enja (kuca boja`ljivo na vrata) Glas: ‘Ajdeeee! Mlada: Dobar dan. Mi smo `eleli da zaka`emo ven~anje! @ena: Mo`e, ali kad se vrati mati~ar. Oti{‘o u WC! Sa~ekajte, sad }e on... Mlada ({apu}e budu}em mu`u): Ba{ romanti~no, zar ne?


SOBA 22. POLA JEDANAEST. Mati~ar (ulazi): Je li to mene neko ~eka? Dobar dan! Mladenci, je li? Izvolite, samo izvolite! Mlado`enja: Da zaka`emo, znate... Mati~ar: E, da vidimo! Jeste li vi sigurni da `elite da se ven~ate? Mlada: Sva{ta! Pa naravno da smo sigurni. Zato smo i do{li! Mati~ar: Bez uvrede, propisi su propisi, ja moram da pitam. Zaka`u tako, zauzmu termin, pa se pre domisle. Dajte li~ne karte! Dobro, dajte izvode iz mati~ne knjige ro|enih. Mlado`enja: Evo, izvolite! Mati~ar: A, pa ovo ne mo`e! Stariji su od {est meseci. Morate nove da izvadite i da mi donesete. Takav je propis. Mlada: Dobro, da sad zaka`emo datum, pa }emo doneti. Mati~ar: Nije propisno, ali progleda}u vam kroz pr ste. Dajte uverenje o dr`avljanstvu. Mlado`enja: Nismo znali da i to treba. Mati~ar: Nego {ta nego treba! Ne}emo valjda da ven~avamo koga stignemo. Nije po zakonu! Treba i izvod iz mati~ne knjige ven~anih i re{enje o razvodu. Mlada (na ivici `ivaca): Kakav razvod, jeste li vi normalni? Mati~ar: Otkud ja znam da vi niste ve} ven ~ani sa nekim, mo`da je va{ izabranik biga mista, kriminalac, otkud ja to mogu da znam?! Mlado`enja (poku{avaju}i da ostane stalo`en): Nismo se nikad do sad ven~avali ni sa drugima ni me|usobno. Mati~ar: Onda potpi{ite ovde da pr vi put stupate u brak. E sad, da vidimo datum. Mlada: Mi bismo hteli u subotu, 5. maja u 12 sati. Mati~ar: Vi biste hteli! Ma ne mojte! Svi bi hteli u subotu! Ne mo`e tad, sve je zauzeto. [to se le po ne ven~ate u ~etvrtak, 3. maja u 8 ujutro? 19

Mlado`enja: Ne}emo u ~etvrtak, ho}emo u subotu. Mati~ar: Mo`e u subotu, ali 16. juna! Mlada (o~ajno): Ne}emo u junu, kasno je. Mati~ar: O tome ste trebali ranije da razmi{ljate, gospo|ice. Ako ho}ete subotu u maju, mo`e, ali ne u ovoj op{tini. Mogu da pitam u Lazarevcu, mo`da tamo ima mesta za maj. Mlado`enja: A u nedelju, 6. maja? Mati~ar: Tad ja ne mogu, slavim slavu! Mlada (sa nagove{tajem sre}e na licu): Mora da vas neko menja! Mati~ar: Jedna mlada, potpuno neiskusna, koleginica. Mlada: Nedelja! Zakazujemo! Mati~ar (uvre|eno): Dobro, ali da znate, ona se tek u~i... Ne}ete biti zadovoljni! S ovim {to imate od dokumenata da si|ete u prizemlje, da iskopirate i overite na pisarnici, pa da mi vratite. Lift ne radi! I da mi donesete ve} sutra ono {to fali! Moramo se dr`ati propisa...

Sailing through Marriage Waters  

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