Wednesday, March 02, 2005

In defense of the the Man Purse

I have to ask, is it wrong to think that a Man Purse is an idea whose time has finally come? That {he glances askance, left, then right} I really want one? That, okay, I have all sorts of design ideas for one rolling around in my head that I think would make me a million $$ if I had a heavy duty sewing machine, a couple of yards of heavy duty nylon webbing and a bunch of velcro? Oh, and if I knew how to sew worth a crap?

I don't know how many times I've come home at the end of the day and it takes a full 15 minutes just to empty out my pockets onto the corner of my dresser. Wallet, keys, change. Wups -- pens in this pocket. That's right, stuffed my checkbook in cargo pocket. Along with those two handy coupons I found on the bulletin board in the lobby, now crumpled nearly beyond recognition. More pens, my palm pilot, the wrapper from my power bar, and that cool looking piece of rock I found by the construction site. Four receipts of various size and description.

All told, I'm about 7 pounds lighter now.

Then I think about all the times I needed this or that, and with a quick "D'oh" followed by the requisite smack on the forehead, I realize that I've left it in a pocket of the jeans currently at some unknown depth in the laundry pile back home...a good 20-minute drive away.

Chicks have it easy. Chicks have it figured out. One handy, multi-pouched and pocketed receptacle for all the various odds, ends, and random effluent and leavings of their frenetic lives.

Men still labor under the social stigma that carrying a purse is, like, totally gay. I say enough! Let me clarify here, however, that I am not proposing that men be cleared hot to develop the same irrational obsession with a nice designer Gucci handbag that leads an otherwise rational woman to spend $800 "holy-shit-you-gotta-be-kidding-me-800-frickin-DOLLARS-fer-a-friggin-PURSE?!" dollars on a purse, just because it goes nicely with those new pumps she just bought.

That would be gay.

Men need a bag, but a Manly Bag. Call it a tote. No, wait, I have it: men need a satchel. Satchels are not gay. Satchels are manly. John Wayne himself threw uncountable numbers of satchel charges into uncountable numbers of enemy pillboxes, usually doing so under a hail of murderous gunfire.

Quintessential manliness.

Even the WORD "purse" is inherently unmanly; you almost feel the need to lisp just saying it. "Satchel," on the other hand, is a virile, rugged, squinty-eyed-from-staring-into-the-desert-sun-for-too-long, fist-clenching, teeth-grittin', tear-off-a chunk-of-raw-meat-from-the-carcass-of-the-vicious-carnivore-you-just-killed-with-yer-bare-freakin'-HANDS kind of word. No lisping involved whatsoever.

In a crisis situation, women will often hit muggers with their purse. For men, in a crisis situation we toss our satchels into the enemy bunker and save the entire platoon.

Fundamentally different approach to problem solving.

Think of the convenience, the increase in productivity and efficiency of having all of those scattered bits of this and that in one, handy location that you carry with you wherever you go? No sissy little strap, but a three-inch wide strip of industrial strength webbing with a thick slab of leather for the shoulder. No prissy gold buckles here; just big plastic snap clips like you'd find on your top-of-the-line REI survive-the-worst-friggin-blizzard-in-the-history-of-summit-attempts-on-Everest backpacks.

Inside you'd have compartments for your PDA, keys, fourteen different kind of pens and pencils, aftershave, thumb drive, handheld GPS, small arms ammunition, K-bar fighting knife, survival rations, and tickets to the Mets' next home game. Don't forget pockets on the outside for your cell-phone, Leatherman, a short strand of piano wire and two hand-grenades.

The color would have to be black or olive drab. Camouflaged, perhaps. Eggshell and Taupe are definitely out.

Men need to step forward and embrace this brave new vision for masculine liberation. Demand your satchel, and carry it with pride!

On sale soon at most local surplus stores, Sportsman's Warehouse, Home Depot, and that delightful little boutique across from Nieman's down on Main!