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2009-06-17 / Loose Ends

That's my purse!

Susan Nienow

There is a world of meaning in those three words. Mostly it means that my purse is an extension of me. I have switched from carpetbag size to an extra large mini bag. It holds my cell phone, a small wallet, my checkbook and a pen, lipstick and keys. But along the way it picks up coupons, receipts, tissues, directions to a gardening center and a nametag.

That throws it over the top. If I need a pen, it is hooked to a tissue and a coupon so when I pull, everything falls on the floor. That is when my other half said, "You've got too much in there. That's the problem."

Now, if I were looking for an issue, that might fill the bill. I pointed out to him that my purse is personal. And I did not fill my purse too full. I think I also said I like it that way, which did not mean that it was too full.

I was so tired of hauling half my life around in my purse so I decided to streamline my life and only carry the essentials. My purse is yellow and slim with an across-the-body skinny strap so I can have my hands free when I shop for plants, beads or books. Everything I need fits in there but only one way. If my cell phone turns sideways, I can't get my wallet back in.

So I picked out this purse thinking that if I needed to carry more than it would hold, I could just put the whole thing in one of my carpetbag purses and still have room for extras.

But I actually prefer having a purse wardrobe. Then if I am feeling earthy, I can get out the canvas bag. It makes me feel younger, but not too young, adventuresome, but not reckless.

I like the kind of purse that inspires without being pushy. I don't want a logo I have to live up to or have shoes to match. I want lots of pockets inside and out with zippers and magnets.

Picking out the perfect purse is much harder than picking out shoes or a pair of pants. It has to fit - in my hand, over my shoulder, under my arm. If it isn't comfortable, it isn't perfect. And it has to have a spot for my cell phone. My reaction time when my cell phone rings is dependent on how much noise there is around me, how many other people are around me with cell phones that could be ringing and whether my cell phone is hung up on something in my XL mini.

That is the drawback to my yellow purse. No designated cell phone pocket. Yes, I could buy one of those cell phone carriers and attach it to the strap, but that really doesn't fit with the streamline thing I am aiming for. Until I solve this, give me time to get my cell phone out of my purse.

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