You may not care why I, a complete stranger to you, don’t carry a purse. But aren’t you curious? Purses are often a fashion statement. Many women have a purse (aka handbag) to go with different clothes. Ever see how stylish and even flamboyant some purses are? But oftentimes, a purse isn’t for fashion; it’s part of being a woman, which is why women carry purses, not men.
When a man DOES carry something that resembles a purse, it’s usually black or brown and very plain in construction, with thick straps. Women wear purses because…I don’t know: I’ve carried a purse only like four times in my life, so tell me. What does a woman carry with her that pockets can’t hold? What doesn’t a man carry with him that pockets are enough? Maybe it’s because women’s clothes usually don’t have enough pockets? No, that’s not it.
In some cases it’s because of all the things a woman must carry with her when she goes out. What do you carry in your purse? Are these essential items that you know you’ll use frequently? Or are some of the contents there just in case? I used to be a cashier at K-mart during college and would see firsthand just what bulks up a woman’s purse. Women would lay their purses on the counter and then dig through them to fetch a wallet. Sometimes a woman would start removing items, placing them on the counter, as she dug deeper to locate the wallet.
Here are some things a woman keeps in her purse besides the usual: cosmetics, hairbrush, comb, perfume, emory board, Kleenex, candy, gum, pad of paper/pen, tampons, envelope of coupons, lip balm, sunglasses, eye drops, aspirin, camera, hand wipes, hand lotion, and I read on one web site a woman kept a pocket knife, and another woman kept her toddler grandson’s pacifier (Eeeuuugh, gross!).
Men don’t need to carry all these things with them. Clothes pockets will hold only so much. Men carry with them just the bare essentials. And so do I. I want my hands free. More and more women are recognizing the convenience of carrying only what you need and having free hands; hence, the popularity of fanny packs, which I DO use, but only when I’m out and about for extended periods.
The strap of a purse irritates my neck. Yes, I HAVE carried a purse before, as mentioned above. Furthermore, carrying a purse means I have to constantly be guarding something. I don’t want this burden on me. A fanny pack relieves this burden.
A woman who shops without a purse may come off as masculine. But this is a good thing, because what man will try to mug or accost a woman who presents as masculine?
Another reason I don’t carry a purse: After a while, the innards of a purse begin to SMELL AWFUL. I’d hold my breath whenever a woman set her purse on the counter at K-mart and began foraging through it. I’d view the contents and see all sorts of yucky things that would cause a bad smell, including used crumpled Kleenex, loose cigarettes, half-eaten candy bars, soggy-looking paper fragments, empty munchies wrappers, open rolls of Lifesavers, gobs of dust, and even food crumbs. All this, in combination with old leather, will create a strong odor. A purse means one more thing to have to keep clean and tidy and organized.
I’ll stick to my fanny pack with its bare essentials.