The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, January 23, 2004


Ladies' purses

Have you ever given any thought to ladies' purses? I mean those handbags made of leather, cloth or even plastic that most of us women manage to drag around with us every place we go. These so-called purses are filled with most of our earthly belongings. Our makeup, house keys, pictures (enough to fill several albums) of our kids, pets, boats, houses, grandchildren, lovers, animals, gardens, along with check books, rolls of coins, spare hankies, spare socks, matches, pliers, apples and other miscellaneous snacks, yesterday's mail, cell phones, wallets and sometimes even our driver's license and car keys. Have you ever tried to lift some of these purses? They weigh a ton, and those jokes about little old ladies using them as weapons really have lots of merit.

I too was guilty of carrying around one of those overstuffed items. I walked around, leaning to one side just from the weight of the massive thing. These purses seemed to be appendages that had attached themselves to us, things we had to keep track of, strain our arms trying to carry around and still never be able to find anything in them. Car keys disappear, and instead old bills appear, along with old notes that you haven't a clue what they are about and are afraid to throw away because you might just remember and need this very note to refer to. Small children could disappear in there as well. Certainly we all have heard of or seen people carrying small dogs in their purses.

Well, I finally decided that enough was enough. I got rid of the big purse and got a very small one. It is only big enough for my license, a few credit cards, folding money, and some change as well as my keys. Sounds perfect doesn't it? This little number hangs over my shoulder, or fits under my jacket and takes up very little space. But before I start to smirk, let me tell you that the road to lighter luggage is not as smooth as it seems. Now, what do I do with all my stuff? Being a sailor, I have a very nice supply of canvas LL Bean type bags. Perfect!!! Just put the most necessary stuff in one of those. Today, I carry my small little purse in one hand, and my LL Bean bag in the other. This "Bean" bag has more stuff in it than my purse ever did, and weighs just as much if not more. I tell myself that there is nothing important in the Bean bag, except maybe my lunch, the mail, pictures, the book I'm reading, and other small items and I really could leave those things at home, but I haven't done so as yet, and I probably never will.

Lately, as I sit in the office, looking out the window into the parking lot, I see lots of men with these strange leather or canvas bags over their shoulders. I wonder what is in them. Keys, check book, bills, cell phone, papers, pens, pictures, pocket calculators, Palm Pilots, etc.? Sounds familiar doesn't it? Are the guys following us down the path of "purse overload?"

2004 The Carlisle Mosquito