And now, for no good reason except for my own amusement, I will make a comparative analysis of my Mom-mobile to an Event Horizon. But first, a pop quiz:
Which of the following did we recently excavate from my disgusting, perpetually stench-infested minivan? This isn’t counting the permanent fixtures (two car seats, one stroller, two beach chairs, one umbrella, six towels, one giant bag of toys, a stash of diapers and wipes, various clothes, etc):
a) not one, but two rotting, decrepit sippy cups half-filled with curdled milk
b) about half a dozen empty Go-Go-Squeeze applesauce pouches
c) about ten empty water bottles
d) a plastic bag with a decaying, half-eaten Spam musubi in it
e) a pile of parenting magazines, unread (obviously)
f) about half a dozen Happy Meal toys
g) enough sand to create our own beach
h) enough crumbs and unidentifiable food chunks to feed…(see next item)
i) …a well-established colony of ants
j) all of the above
The answer, of course, is all of the above. Ok, so you’re probably thinking, “Why don’t you just clean your car more often? Why do have to be such a disgusting slob?” Ah, not so fast, my friend. SCIENCE can explain and justify my inability to keep grime at bay.
At first, I wanted to compare the backseat area of my minivan merely to a Black Hole. After all, it is a region in spacetime where all the junk and filth in our known physical world gravitate to this point in the universe. Raisins, Goldfish, applesauce, sippy cups, Happy Meal remnants, tsunami debris, pink slime, you name it…somehow, my kids are able to launch all this junk into another dimension that cannot be cleaned.
But the vastness of our squalor goes far beyond that. Upon further research on Black Holes, I actually discovered that the interior of my Mazda 5 sounds frighteningly similar to an Event Horizon. According to Wikipedia:
“Around a black hole there is a mathematically defined surface called an event horizon that marks the point of no return…a boundary in spacetime through which matter and light can only pass inward towards the mass of the black hole. Nothing, not even light, can escape from inside the event horizon. The event horizon is referred to as such because if an event occurs within the boundary, information from that event cannot reach an outside observer, making it impossible to determine if such an event occurred.”
You see? It’s physically impossible for one to see and locate the mass once it is thrown into the Minivan Event Horizon, aka, the space where my kids drop all their crusty remnants. It remains unseen to the human eye – and this explains why I went weeks without knowing there were rotting dairy products and Spam in my backseat – that is, until they were unveiled at The Semi-Annual Minivan Clearance Event.
And just in case you need me to show my work:
(“my work” = copied & pasted from Wikipedia):
“The size of a black hole, as determined by the radius of the event horizon, or Schwarzschild radius, is roughly proportional to the mass M through
where rsh is the Schwarzschild radius and MSun is the mass of the Sun.“
Bear with me. This equation simply explains how in our Event Horizon, the mass of the goo my toddler is slinging, which is usually greater than or equal to the mass of the sun, is inversely proportional to the amount of remaining baby wipes and/or hand sanitizer I have left. Furthermore, the volume of mysterious liquids (and sometimes solids and gasses) my daughter spills on herself is directly proportional to N, where N = the newness of the outfit she is wearing.
God, I hate math. Anyway, so I’ve now nicknamed my minivan the Event Horizon. And interestingly, my minivan’s characterisitcs also apply to the 1997 sci-fi horror film of the same name, starring Sam Neill and Laurence Fishburn. This Event Horizon takes place in a haunted space ship that’s actually a portal to Hell. Much like the movie characters, when we begin to spend too much time in the Event Horizon, we mutate into tortured passengers, some in catatonic states, others in hysteria, due to the manifestation of an evil presence (the rotting Spam, perhaps?). The movie poster’s tagline summarizes it best: “Event Horizon: Infinite Space. Infinite Terror.”
A comparative analysis:
-A vessel full of tormented occupants? Check
-Said occupants are plagued with hallucinations of their fears and regrets? Check
-Those who stay in the vessel for too long go insane? Check
-Once-normal humans are launched into “a dimension of pure chaos, pure evil”? Check
Sigh. Off to the car wash.
What my minivan’s interior should look like:
What it actually looks like:
An artist’s rendering of anything that happens behind the front seat:
The warning sign I will now place near all entrances: