Warsaw's Black Hole
Right in the heart of Warsaw, there's a certain shop window display which has the power to hypnotize all who glance at at it. It's a display that I pass daily. With practice, I've learned to resist its hypnotic powers, but most aren't so lucky. Almost every time I go by, day or night, rain or shine, sleet or snow, without fail, there's someone looking at its wares. And "looking" is too soft a word, more like staring, or mesmerized, or transfixed. So much so that it appears time has stopped moving for these unlucky victims. I'm amazed at its power. There's too many good analogies to use for this phenomenon: Medusa, black hole, quicksand, venus fly trap, tar paper, kryptonite, and on and on. So... What could possibly be so interesting...?
All the non-Poles out there might be wondering what a Sklep Czeski is? The literal translation is Czech Shop. And as we all know from wedding registries, the Czech Republic is famous for its crystal. So a Sklep Czeski is a shop selling what can only be described as assorted crystal objects, but primarily in the tchotchke/trinket/junk-that-needs-to-be-dusted category. So it seems that everyone is fascinated by little shiny objects. What's that say about human nature? Speaking of human nature, check out what's next door to the Sklep Czeski:
That's right, there's a sex shop right next door. And yet no one stops to look at the sex shop. Apparently, Poles prefer shiny objects to "Erotic Passion".
In a way the Sklep Czeski has hooked me as well, as I now stare intently at the people who are staring intently at its window display, mesmerized by trying (and failing) to figure out what the hell is so interesting.