Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag

9 Jun

I love bags. Last night, my wife laughed at my new one. She said it was a girl’s purse. I called it a wristlet. Then she laughed because I knew it was called a wristlet. I said “What would you call it if it was shoved up your ass?”

I have two primary bags, a large Swiss Army backpack and a medium Timbuk2 messenger back. Lately, I’ve been using the backpack because it’s large enough to carry an 11.6 inch laptop. When I’m not leaving home seven mornings a week seeking out coffee and Wi-Fi, I switch to the smaller bag.

Here’s what’s in my bag today:

  • computer & mouse
  • Kindle Touch
  • cellphone
  • small baggie holding mixture of sweeteners (XyloSweet, stevia, and coconut palm sugar)
  • plastic spoon
  • coffee mug
  • small notebook
  • medium notebook
  • magazine (The New Yorker)
  • toothbrush + toothbrush holder
  • iPod + earbuds
  • wallet
  • YMCA membership card
  • lip stuff + Germ-ex + lotion
  • six pens, including a black Pilot G2-mini
  • a salad in a large glass lidded bowl
  • large water bottle
  • small plastic cup with lid holding five brazil nuts, two dates, and a small piece of 100% chocolate
  • small bag of carob powder
  • camera
  • keys
  • wristlet (the subject of this post)

When I’m done “working,” and I need to run into a grocery store or Target … anywhere, I don’t need to carry all that crap, but I need some of it: pen, small notebook, phone, keys, and wallet. The medium bag is too big, the big bag is way too big.

So a couple of weeks ago I found myself in Target slinking through the summer hat/floofy scarf/purse department. I tried out a green “cross body” bag. It would almost work. I put it back, walked around the corner and discovered a smaller breed of chick bags.

I found a small, black, non-leather, tasseled bag with a small strap clipped to it. The tag told me it was a wristlet. I stood there studying it wondering what I could do to de-feminize it. Obviously, the tassels. And then I thought I could paint something tough on it, like a skull or gun. I imagined myself carrying it around, wondering if it would cause anxiety, wondering if some ass-hat would whisper to his wife “Hey, it looks like that dude’s been in your closet.”

Of course, I could stick to my pant pockets for such a small number of items, but I don’t like to feel all bulgy and droopy. I feel like the weight is going to leave me standing with exposed boxers.

Yesterday was the big test: a trip to Target with Ainsley to get some almond milk and avocados. In the parking lot I dug the wristlet from the depths of my backpack and transferred the necessities into it. I put the wristlet in the cart. But when it was finally time to swipe the debit card, my hand trembled imperceptibly as I felt the eyes of the checker and the young mother waiting behind us. I fumbled around trying to shove some bills and the receipt into my wallet, and then both my wallet and some coins into my wristlet. Then coins went into a special slot. Somewhere deep down, I was impressed with the functionality, but closer to the surface I was trying to remember where I put the receipt.

But I’m keeping it. One of the keys to a happy life is to not give a shit what other people think.

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