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2007-09-12 / Loose Ends

Loose Ends

Picky about purses
Susan Nienow

I have a set of rigid requirements for purses that I buy. Since I am a purses and shoes person, I have a small - maybe medium-sized - wardrobe of purses. But they have to pass muster.

To be considered, a purse has to have a cell phone pocket that I can get my phone out of quickly, a car keys pocket, a zippered inside pocket and a strap long enough to put over my shoulder. It has to be good looking, lightweight and easy to get into - but not an invitation to wallet snatchers. On the other hand, I don't want those wallet snatchers (and others) to look at it and say, "Nah. Looks like she still has last week's leftover breakfast bagel and the Sunday crossword puzzle in it."

It can't be deep and significantly wider at the bottom than the top. That just frustrates me and has been known to cause me to dump the contents of my purse on the counter to find my keys.

My other half once referred to that as a temper tantrum. Once. Since then I have been careful to avoid that shape of purse. It becomes a dark hole with lots of unrecognizable stuff at the bottom. For a short time, purses with tiny flashlights were the thing. If I need a flashlight, it is not a good design.

Last month I found the perfect purse. It has the requisite number of interior pockets and zippers and is a golden yellow. It was my favorite until I took it to tennis and later realized that the yellow came off on my slightly damp, white tennis shirt. So now, after tennis, I carry my shoulder purse in my hand.

I wonder what would happen if I got caught in the rain? It isn't huge, though. I do have purses that will swallow a micro umbrella easily. The problem is micro umbrellas aren't much help in keeping me dry unless it is just sprinkling.

The younger generation may not understand any of this. They carry those little bags that fit right up under their arms and would hold half of my wallet and a lipstick. I need my purse to hold a makeup repair kit, my wallet, my keys with 13 little key cards so I can get store discounts wherever I go, and my cell phone.

I also carry my checkbook even though I rarely use it anymore. It's hard to give up the security of knowing that I can always write a check.

There's also a dog-eared list of last year's tennis team players with phone numbers. I could put those numbers in my cell phone, but I don't remember how. I put important numbers into the phone the first day I got it, but I haven't done that since. That was 19 months ago. If you want me to call you, you have to put your own number in my phone. But if you call me, give me time to get it out of my purse.

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