Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Gigantic Handbags

One of my greatest accomplishments ever as a boyfriend was buying a Michael Kors handbag (similar to the one pictured) for then-girlfriend. And I did it all by myself.

The handbag department at Bloomingdale's is a horrifically intimidating place to be for an idiot male. The uppity sales clerks were of no help and more or less gave me the stink eye as I spent an interminably long evening there during the Holiday season a few years ago checking out various purses with equal parts uncertainty and sticker-shock (the retail price of most designer bags is greater than or equal to the Gross Domestic Product of most Third World nations).

I say I did it all by myself (and of course, I took all the credit and subsequent glory for the purchase), but I had assistance. A friend of then-girlfriend spent a good 20 minutes on the phone with me as I wandered the handbag department of Bloomingdale's like a kid lost in the cereal aisle at the grocery store. (Author's note: I used to always get separated from my mother in the grocery store staring in bewilderment at all the glorious kid's cereals. And to this day the cereal aisle is one of my favorite places on Earth.)

I approached each bag that caught my eye, gave her a brief, idiot-male description and listened intently to her feedback and advice. After spending way too much time in indecisive-handbag-purgatory, I made my pick, mustered my courage and credit and made the purchase. I filled the Michael Kors bag with various sundries and presented it to then-girlfriend during our Christmas gift exchange. And it went over like birthday cake—she loved it. And even nicknamed it "Bag."

I tell this story not to espouse upon on my thoughtfulness, apparent good taste and gift-giving prowess, but to introduce this already too-long WWCC post: White Chicks Cherish Gigantic Handbags.

Why so expensive? Why so damn-gigantic? Unless said-white chick is a kleptomaniac, surely there cannot be good reason for a cute girl to carry around such a big-ass purse...or is there?

After conducting a social media survey to determine the contents of a white chick's cherished Gigantic Handbag, I reached the conclusion that it takes an awful lot of equipment to be a fantastic white chick. And a fantastic white chick MUST be well-prepared to take on any and all circumstances and do so with adorable aplomb.

The contents of a white chick's Gigantic Handbag may include, but are certainly not limited to, any of the following items:

--Monogrammed/Vera Bradley/Lilly Pulitzer wallet
--Monogrammed/Vera Bradley/Lilly Pulitzer case for over-sized sunglasses
--Various Receipts (possibly for a Pumpkin Spice Latte?)
--Lady Products
--Lip gloss
--Lip stain (I have no idea what the hell this is or how it differs from lipstick or lip gloss)
--5-7 to ponytail rubber bands/hair clips
--3-5 pens (any of which may or not work at all)
--Cell Phone
--Cell Phone Charger
--Monogrammed/Vera Bradley/Lilly Pulitzer Note Pad
--Horribly Tangled iPod Headphones
--Ticket Stubs to that concert by her favorite Non-threatening Singer-Songwriter
--Chapstick (anywhere from 2-4 different flavors)/the little jar of Carmex
--tiny bottle of Purel
--Digital Camera
--Business Cards (does it ever get not-cool to lay your business card on someone? I doubt it.)
--Contact Lens Solution
--Eye Drops
--Mini Umbrella
--Various Pills (which can include Tylenol, Aleve, Advil, Midol, birth control pills, daily vitamins or possibly a few random Adderall or Xanax)
--Water Bottle
--Breath Mints
--Ridiculously Clunky Key chain
--Cute, miniature bottle of Mace/Pepper Spray
--Day Planner
--Flip-flops...just in case
--Beer can koozie
--Eyeglass repair kit
--Reading Glasses
--Back-up sunglasses
--Hair Brush
--Random gift card with no idea how much is left on it
--Nutri-Grain bar
--a book (perhaps "Eat Pray Love" or "The Kite Runner")
--or magazine (ie. the latest edition of "Real Simple")
--Empty gum wrappers
--a random beer bottle cap
--change purse
--Cough Drops
--Random change that is covered in something (wtf is that substance?)
--small pack of wet-naps/Charmin-to-Go
--that necklace they are so sad that broke
--spare summer scarf
--AND room to spare for anything that happens to catch a white chick's eye throughout the day that she simply cannot live without

Did WWCC leave anything out? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter.


  1. This all sounds pretty accurate. Actually, I'm currently kicking myself for NOT having extra hair ties/ponytail holders in my purse right now.

    I also generally have a magazine or paperback in my bag. Gotta have something to read on the subway.

    And I have definitely been known to carry flip-flops (or, depending on the season, flats) in my bag when I'm wearing heels. Make like a Boy Scout and always be prepared.

  2. This is freaking SPOT.ON.

    Love it!

  3. The only reason I need my gigantic aka MARY POPPINS purse is to carry my flip flops and later, my heels, when I choose to switch over to said flip flops. This isn't only on game days. And yeah, there might be an umbrella in there. Maybe a lamp. I dunno.

    I also hate Vera Bradley EVERYTHING, just google-imaged Lilly Pulizter wallet and almost threw up. I guess I'm not as white as I thought.

    P to the S - a friend of mine carries an external hard drive in her Mary Poppins purse. Yep.

  4. OMGucci I cannot read. Sorry!

  5. So sad, yet so true! As a short white chick I look like I am schlepping around an overnight bag daily - but I can't get enough of giant suitcase bags and I have no idea why???

  6. We need our stuff! Add a point&shoot to the list ;)

  7. It was then, and still is, a fabulous "Bag," and all of my purses have gotten progressively bigger since this one. love it.

  8. You forgot about always having a planner/agenda. Mine is Vera Bradley... so are my wallets (yes, more than one), sunglasses case, notepad, and one of my 5 pens.

    Another thing we have in our purse is a snack of some sort. Or... that might just be me. Currently, it's an apple.

  9. Just kidding... I swear I can't read. Just now saw "day planner."

  10. You are so right.
    I have also been known to carry: bobby pins, super glue, a sweater, Sharpies, toilet seat covers (don't laugh at that), empty Ziploc bags (you never know when those will come in handy), contact lens cases, and multiple tiny bottles of lotion from Bath and Body Works/hotels.
    The really magical stuff lives in the trunk of my SUV: pillow, towel, bathing suit, multiple pairs of shoes, a few outfits (just in case), a roll of paper towels, a box of garbage bags...I'm the go-to gal for random things!

  11. Wait, there is such a thing as birth control daily vitamins?

    I've been carrying around a camera with a dead battery in my bag for approximately a year now.

    Also, the oversized Longchamp bag could have its own post.

  12. D'oh...forgotten comma. Though birth control daily vitamins may be worth a patent....epecially if they are Flinstones chewables?

  13. I'm partly disappointed they don't exist, yet partly relieved that I wasn't missing out on something so incredible. Flintstones needs to look into this.

  14. hmmm, no men with views on contents of the gigantic handbag they often have to carry. I like to get my own car keys in there sometimes. Only if I am wearing tight white pants of course.