Ross O’Carroll-Kelly: ‘She might have fitted into the dress on our wedding day, but now, well...’
Let me see if there’s a delicate way to say this – there’s a lot more Sorcha than there is dress
Sorch tells me today is our wedding anniversary. I’m there, “Er, yeah, no, I knew that,” wondering could I slip out to the petrol station to get her a cord
I wake up in the middle of the day to find Sorcha standing at the foot of the bed, pulling on her wedding dress. I go, “Did I, em, forget to put something in the diary for today?”
She rolls her eyes and goes, “I knew you’d forget. Even though I’ve been talking about this day for, like, months now?”
I’m there, “Refresh my memory, babes, because there’s a chance I wasn’t listening to you.”
The secret to a good marriage, I’ve always said, is a good spam filter.
She goes, “Yeah, it’s obvious you weren’t listening to me, Ross. Today is our wedding anniversary?”
I’m there, “Er, yeah, no, I knew that,” wondering could I slip out to the petrol station to get her a cord.
She goes, “What did I say we were going to do on our wedding anniversary?”
I’m there, “You better tell me. I think it may have ended up in the old junk folder.”
“I told you I was going to put on my dress and we were going to watch our wedding Mass on DVD. And don’t give me that look, Ross.”
“Like you think I’ve lost the plot. I know – oh my God – loads of girls who do this every year on their anniversary. Now, get out of that bed and help me zip this dress up. I want to make sure it still fits before the girl arrives to do my hair and make-up.”
Yes, she did just say that. But like Queen Elsa from Frozen, I let it go.
I climb out of the bed. Sorcha turns her back to me and lifts up her hair and that’s when I realise that we’ve got a problem here. Let me see if there’s a delicate way to say this – there’s a lot more Sorcha than there is dress.
I try the zip, but I can’t get it up any higher than, like, mid-back? Sorcha’s going, “What are you doing back there? Oh my God, Ross, you’re all fingers and thumbs!”
I’m gripping the two sides of the dress and I’m trying to pull them together then hold them in place to try to force the zip up another half an inch, but it’s no good. She might have fitted into it on our wedding day, but now, well, it’s like trying to stuff a double mattress into a shower cubicle.
“It doesn’t fit,” I go.
And of course you can imagine how that goes down.
She’s like, “What do you mean, it doesn’t fit? Of course it fits – it’s a Vera Wang. ”
I’m there, “I’m just saying, you know, we got married a long time ago. A lot has happened.”
Eddie Rocket’s storted delivering – that’s just one example.
“Oh my God,” she goes, “I know what is it.”
“Are you going to mention the Super Nachos?” I go. “Because I think those things should come with a health warning.”
“The dress has shrunk, Ross! It must have been the cleaners I took it to in Blackrock. Grab your cor keys.”
“Because we’re going back there to complain. I’m just going to throw on my Juicy tracksuit.”
There’s no point in arguing with the girl. I realise that. Sometimes, you’ve just got to go through the whole process.
So half an hour later, we’re standing in the dry cleaners in Blackrock and the dude behind the counter is going, “Good afternoon!”
Sorcha’s like, “I wish it was a good afternoon,” as she puts the dress box and whips out the dress. “I handed this in to be dry-cleaned and you shrank it.”
He’s like, “Shrank it?”
“Yes, it’s shrunk – as in, it doesn’t fit me anymore?”
He smiles sort of, like, knowingly? He goes, “Well, shrinkage might not be the only reason it doesn’t fit you anymore!”
He’s got the courage of Jon Snow, this dude. I refuse to make eye contact with him, though, in case Sorcha takes it as a sign that we’re on the same side.
She’s like, “Sorry, what is that supposed to mean?”
He’s there, “I’m just saying there could be another explanation, that’s all. I’ve been in this business 30 years and I’ve never known a wedding dress to shrink.”
“Well, it’s happened now,” she goes, “and I know my rights.”
She did an online correspondence course in consumer law.
He grabs his order book. “Okay,” he goes, “when did you leave it in?”
Sorcha goes, “It was 2003.”
He actually laughs. “Did you just say 2003? That’s, like, 13 years ago! Our records don’t go back that far, I’m afraid.”
“Well, that doesn’t affect my statutory rights. I’m actually qualified in this area?”
“Can I ask you a question? Is it your wedding anniversary?”
“Yes, it’s today. But I don’t see what that has to do with anything.”
“Like I said to you, I’ve never known a wedding dress to shrink. But at least once a month, I have someone in here telling me they put on their dress to watch their wedding video and it didn’t fit them anymore. Do you know what I’m saying to you?”
“I do – and I don’t like your tone.”
He grabs a tape measure. “Look,” he goes, “I’m going to measure it for you – what waist size was the dress originally?”
But Sorcha quickly stuffs it back into its box. “Oh my God,” she goes, “you are so, so sued. I actually feel sorry for you, because you don’t even realise yet how sued you actually are? ”
She storms out of the shop. The dude looks at me – not unsympathetically – and goes, “Seriously, one a month.”
I follow Sorcha outside. She’s spitting nails. She storts quoting various pieces of consumer legislation at me. When I don’t say anything back, she goes, “Do you think I’ve put on weight?”
I don’t give her a straight answer. I know better. Instead, I go, “Whether you have or not, Sorcha, you’re more beautiful to me today than you were the day I married you. And that’s not me being sarcastic.”
She smiles at me.
I’m like, “Come on, let’s go home and watch this famous DVD.”
“You take the cor,” she goes. “I’m going to speed-walk home.”
Which suits me. It’ll give me a chance to buy her a cord.
ILLUSTRATION: ALAN CLARKE