Monday, December 17, 2012

"...and I Always Carry a Purse..."

Phil Ochs fans know where that comes from.

My little bag poll results surprised me a bit.

About a third said "no purse, no way."  I expected that to be higher ~ purses are kind of obvious.  I searched for a while before I found one that I felt I could pass with.  I stretched that a bit last week ~ Charity presented me with a colourful Star of David pin, about two inches across.  I put it on the strap of my bag and moved it to my lanyard (yes, I need a stinkin' badge) for our holiday party.

Forty percent of you said you carry a bag at least part of the time.  A quarter of you said you might, and I'd like to add that I was in that category a month ago and no-one's said a word about it.  The remaining third said "no way."  I was probably there when I first thought about it, but then I started looking around and saw what men and women were carrying and decided it wasn't as much of a stretch as I thought it might be.  But yes, it's a hard one ~ you're adding something, not just changing something.  I'm still wearing socks; whether they're plain or argyle or flowered is just a matter of degree.  But I added a bag.

But Mandy commented on my poll said "you need an 'all-the-time' category" because she always carries a purse.  Since I spent a lot of time looking for a "passable" bag, I asked what she carries.  The answer surprised me, but shouldn't have.

I am very conservative in my normal dress.  It's very out-of-character for me to wear even the few women's items I wear.  Mandy goes for a more androgynous look.  Look closely at the occasional person who stimulates a "not sure" when you try to identify their gender.  There's always a clue somewhere.  It might be the shoes, or jewelry, or handbag, even if the brows are straightish, the hair short, the makeup non-existant, the clothes shapeless.

But sometimes it's a false clue.  An androgynous look with a purse causes the observer to say "aha!  Girl" whether the observed is or not.

This is where Mandy is.  I asked her to write about what she carries.  Take a look at her blog entry about purses.  I don't think I'd brave that red purse!  And hang out a bit.  She's getting added to my daily update list.  And I REALLY need to update my places I go list!


  1. Just a bit of a remembrance as a comment on my red purse...

    Years ago, as a kid, I wore wing-tip boy's shoes every day, "just like Dad." Well, ladies, it's kind of obvious how much good that did...LOL! Anyhoo...

    One of the colors my folks made me wear was what they called "cordovan"- a sort of purply-brown, and the wing-tips became my "cordovans." As in: "Put your cordovans on for school today..."

    To me, this purse seems closer to that cordovan color, than red. I guess my past familiarity with "cordovan" is why I gravitated right to it, and still like it. Though the color isn't at all masculine on a purse, and I don't have any matching shoes!

    Isn't it amazing what stays in the "gray matter" and comes back at the most unusual times?



  2. I also would have chosen the "all the time" option, even though I have distinct male and female presentations.

    So even though I have long painted nails in both modes, I carry different bags. A small backpack style in boy mode, a shoulder bag in girl mode. :)

  3. When I need to take along more than wallet and keys, I have started carrying around a plain ol' reusable cloth grocery bag with all my stuff in it.

    1. Ralph, the tote replaced a reusable grocery bag ~ they seem to be hot giveaways at the auto show. I have several but really... what's the fun in a grocery bag?


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