The eternal mystery

I once said to my friend PS “I’d love a bag for every day of the year!”  He hung his head in shame. Small, large, tote, backpack, evening, smart, casual, smart casual- I have a few to say the least. Vinyl and vintage, leather and wicker, black, red, blue and brown.

But this is not about what bags I have, but what is put in them. I’ll attempt to answer the question what is in a handbag and WHY? (okay that’s two questions…)

I was talking to my friend T on the train yesterday about handbags. We have a few things in common; we’re both librarians working in Melbourne, and living in Ballarat, and we love books and bags. Sometimes it’s the same books we like, but I’ll never understand her Twilight obsession. She also loves putting things into her bags. Lots of things. So many things that she has to travel with two bags to avoid breaking the first bag.

So I asked her what was in her bag that made it so heavy. This was the edited version (I’m fairly certain it was the edited version, as a)it looked a lot heavier, and b) Mr BG, who knows T quite well, said so)

  • Purse
  • Keys-2 sets house and car
  • Deodorant (‘it’s useful!’)
  • iPhone
  • iPod (‘so if I run out of music on my iPhone…’)
  • Address book (my response was ‘but you have an iPhone!’)
  • Notebook(‘so I can write down book titles’)
  • A pencil case full of pens (‘I have a pen fetish’) but you also have
  • 3 pens!

I was a tad presumptuous and said, ‘Well you could declutter that bag!’

Then I went home and looked at mine…I spoke too soon.

(this is the unedited version of my bag, so look away if you find it offensive)

  • purse
  • keys- work and home/car
  • phone Nokia E51 (my next phone will be a smartphone, I promise)
  • camera
  • 2 pencils (2b and hb) for drawing
  • pencil sharpener- for the pencils
  • kneadable rubber, for the pencils
  • mascara, black and
  • Hemp body butter-  both purchased from The Body Shop
  • shopping bag(NLA branded, simply the best!)
  • panadol (niggly headache)
  • 3 pencils (they breed- that’s all I can say!)
  • circular knitting needles- purchased at lincraft
  • wool needles for sewing- purchased at lincraft
  • Notebook for writing
  • Apple
  • Recipe for Pumpkin scones (One pumpkin to use up)
  • Receipt for CAE course, Body Shop, Coles for panadol, Lincraft
  • Food Diary sheet (I bite, I write)
  • tampon
  • lipstick bag, contents 6 lipsticks (okay I have a lipstick fetish)
  • Umbrella

In my defence, I had been shopping at lunchtime, but it’s still a lot to carry. T once weighed her bag with her stuff in it and it came to 8 kilos. Her husband’s new bike  frame weighs 2 kilos.

Why so much stuff? The pencils and drawing stuff I could get rid of, but the notebook comes in handy for jotting stuff down on the train. You never know when you need an umbrella in Melbourne. Also now if you go shopping now you feel obligated to provide your own shopping bag. I would have taken my bag out when shopping, but I couldnt find it without  rummaging and it was easier to pop the stuff into the bag.

And as for the lipsticks, they’re all different shades of red and go with how I’m feeling. Today I am wearing Russian Red and feeling decidedly flirty…(Yes I know I’m making excuses, they’re more of a security blanket)

Do you carry stuff in your handbag out of need, or as security?

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14 thoughts on “The eternal mystery

  1. In my bag during working week:

    lipgloss & lipstick which I can never find
    wallet
    spare shopping bag
    keys
    notepad/pen
    iphone +headphones
    sticky plasters
    comb
    umbrella
    camera

    I carry and extra bag for crochet project & kindle
    scissors/needles/stuffing/wool, hooks/eyes/buttons/stitch counters/book on crochet

    Laptop and assorted cords/cables

  2. Hmmm I carry a handbag and a backpack. Hand bag has the usual guff.. reuseable shopping bags, purse, sunnies, tissues, son’s asthma inhaler. Backpack is for book, lunch, diary (no iPhone here *sob*). I sometimes even have a bag for my running gear + towel and toilet bag for showering after.

  3. Funny! I love it! Since we are confessing our deepest darkest here I will own up that when my bag gets too full of junk or otherwise out of control, my strategy is simply to lift wallet, keys and phone out and change bags. That way I start with a neat bag (although I’ve usually got to clean out whatever I left in there when I moved on from THAT bag x number of weeks/months earlier).

    And yes, I’ve lost some valuable stuff with this strategy – but it does usually turn up again during the cycle of the year or so it takes me to move between bags….

  4. The amount of stuff in my bag has inexplicably gotten greater as I’ve gotten older. No idea why, but I can’t seem to stop it!

    In an effort to carry less stuff, I started to keep doubles of things at work. I usually have a spare jumper/shawl, umbrella, panadol, chewy, handcream, bandaids, hairdbrush, , green bags, tissues etc in my desk drawer.

    Now if only I could choose to read books that would fit in my handbag as well as my lunch (most days it’s one or the other, not both)!

  5. This has made me run from the room to retrieve my own hand bag & check it’s secrets:

    Blackberry & holster
    Earphones with mic for Bbrry
    Yearly train ticket
    Work slage
    Leads for mechanical pencil (though no mechanical pencil)
    2 pens including 4-colourfrom VALA
    wallet
    sunglasses
    2 packs of tissues
    bottle of chewing gum with 1 piece left
    receipt from vet
    keys
    mini cadbury chocolate bar (life expectancy limited)
    lipstick in lipstick/mirror case
    lighter
    lipbalm
    5 bobbypins
    hairbrush with elastic around handle
    ticketstub from Wellington Cable Car (can’t bear to throw it away)
    pencil case, containing tampons in silk purse, nurofen plus (for dodgy back/neck) and face powder.

    I’m very envious when MotH leaves the house with keys & wallet!

  6. Pingback: Bag Lady « There she goes

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