PURSE STRINGS…by Barbara Samuels

April 23, 2010 #tellafriend 4

I’ve outgrown my purse. Again. Every birthday I add three pounds to my hips and four to my handbag. I’ve yet to find a solution for lightening my load.

I started with a clutch, went to a handbag, then a tote and now I carry a body bag in order to hold my stash. On Laugh-In, when Henry Gibson was clobbered with a purse, he kept coming back for more. If he were hit with my bag, it would be considered assault with a deadly weapon.

Years ago my mother broke the spout of her treasured teapot. Right after the incident my grandmother stopped by for a visit and became my hero when she announced she just happened to have a spare teapot in the trunk of her car. I am my grandmother’s granddaughter.

Besides the obvious, I currently tote around markers, tape (scotch, masking and duct), rain gear, spot remover, hand sanitizer, pizza coupons and decaf tea bags. Next comes at least a dozen beauty products I rely on to make myself look like I did twenty years ago when I left the house with just lipstick. The back of my purse houses medical supplies including: aspirin, band aids, tourniquets, castor oil, throat spray and eye drops. With the quantity of vitamins I carry through airports, it takes one dog’s sniff to find myself accused of drug trafficking.

I don’t think I am, but I do carry nuts, along with granola bars, gum and breath mints. I refuse to go anywhere without food, due to what I call my blood sugar issues and what others refer to as my compulsive eating disorder.

I grew up watching Monty Hall ask the women in the audience for hard-boiled eggs. I’ve got one. And I’m proud to say MaGyver would have to look no further than my purse to escape any life-threatening situation. Not to mention he’d be able to call for help on my cell phone, then twitter friends about the experience while downloading a novel on my Kindel as he waited.

Of course there are those who take their packing to extremes. In Heloise’s column the other day a reader sent in the following tip: “Carry an empty pill bottle in your purse in order to have a safe place to put any stones that fall out of your jewelry.” Now call me crazy, but how often does this woman lose her stones? And, has anyone ever been focused on their diamond the moment it pops out of its socket? Yet, I’m sure right now there is someone out there with an empty pill bottle just waiting.

I try to weed out unimportant items. I don’t smoke, so I thought it safe to throw away an old book of matches. Then I started to worry, what if I ever needed to build a fire to protect myself from wild animals? In reality, I live in a gated community and in the last ten years the closest thing to a wild animal I’ve seen is Gertrude Smith’s goldfish, Bubbles. The matches remain in my bag.

No longer do I accept invitations to fancy events, the thought of downloading to an evening bag gives me the shakes. Worse than choosing between Haagen Dazs and Ben & Jerry’s, it’s too painful to decide which items to bring and which ones to leave behind.

It’s evident I’ll continue to outgrow purses like snake skins. While shopping the other day I was compelled to purchase a new bag, one that has a tremendous amount of space and lots of compartments. And wheels. I’m nothing short of giddy. There is even enough room for an empty pill bottle, just in case.

4 Responses to “PURSE STRINGS…by Barbara Samuels”

  1. kabthepotter@bellsouth.net'

    Karen Brady

    Hahahahaha!! Great post. I laughed all the way through it. Probably because I identified!! Thanks for the chuckle.

  2. cerro_j@comcast.net'

    Pat Cerro

    You are right on the money! It’s me! I have a zillion pocket books and they all have to have all kinds of compartments for everything. I once went to a bridal shower and the game we played was “What’s in Your Purse?”. Guess what? I won because I had almost everything on the list. But the item that put me over the top was a rock. Yes, you read it right. I had purchased a lucky rock and I kept it in my pocketbook.

    P.S. I just bought a new bag yesterday down at the Borgata in AC. It was half price and just my style. Not only, functional with all those many compartments. Not only big for me to carry all my many items. It’s also “glitzy” which is my favorite “look” in almost anything.

  3. t8ms@bellsouth.net'

    Mary Tatem

    A rock? Oh My Gosh I thought I was the only one! I’ve carried a rock for the last 30 years. It’s a beautiful smooth “Apache Tear” My husband gave it to me. I LOVED this story, and identify too…….I carry 2 tape measures, contact lens holder (all though I’ve never worn contacts) and hair “scrunchies” even though I have short hair.

  4. jojoedo@aol.com'

    Joanne

    Funny&nostalgiac! when my kids were little & mom came to visit, her purse held more goodies(even meds) than our home did.
    Never had an”I have to run out for…” emergency when
    grandma was around.

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