While hurrying along on my way to work, I found myself several feet behind a guy who was walking even more briskly than I was. My eyes were immediately drawn to his keys, which he was nervously shaking against his hip like a tambourine. And that’s when I saw it...
Okay, I’m not exactly sure if was an actual purse. When I first presented the photographic evidence on Twitter, the immediate reaction from my friends was that it was a messenger bag. Yeah, right. Maybe, if we were back in medieval times, when messenger bags only carried a scrolled up parchment and an apple. Today’s modern messenger bags (according solely to me) should be at least be the minimum width to carry legal sized documents. So perhaps it’s a satchel, right? Well, I still think that’s kinda weird, even if he was wearing it across his chest, instead of on one shoulder - which brings me to the point of this discussion...
Why does it seem so wrong for a man to carry a purse-sized bag? I mean, it is just a bag after all.
I imagine that the biggest “wrong” reason is probably due to society assigned gender roles, much like the same way that we’ve been conditioned since birth to think that blue is for boys and pink is for girls. I remember when lots of men started getting ears pierced in the early 80’s, and at first it was completely shocking. A short time later, it was somewhat more acceptable, provided it the correct ‘ear’ was pierced - otherwise it meant he was gay. I have no idea if the man wearing the “bag in question” yesterday was homosexual, and it doesn’t really matter. There are plenty of men who have both ears pierced now, and it doesn’t really seem to phase anyone. Could it be that we’re on the verge of male handbag revolution? (I can’t say I would completely mind, as this iPad isn’t going to carry itself around).
Just now as I’m writing this, I turned to my wife and asked, “What would you think if I started wearing a purse-sized bag all the time?”, to which she replied, “The only purse I want to see you carrying around is mine.”
Here's a classic "man purse" video example:
Personally, it would drive me crazy to have to keep track of a silly, little purse all the time. I always find it frustrating when we’re always having to work around or worry about my wife’s purse in different social or adventure outings. And I don’t really see the need to tote around a bunch of random junk all the time. My wife however, reminds me that I actually do smuggle around approximately the same amount of items, having all the stuff evenly distributed amongst my manly cargo pockets, rather than a designer leather pouch. And she reminds me that when my cargo pockets aren't enough, I ask her to tote my stuff around in her purse.
I had no problem slinging a diaper bag over my shoulder when my daughter was an infant. At the end of the day, I suppose it’s all about the confidence and personality of the gentleman that’s carrying the purse. For all I know, it was a gift from his wife and he’s just buying time until he appears to have appreciated it. It could be that he has been getting a lot of compliments about that bag, and wears it proudly.
Quite possibly if I had my own purse that particular day, I wouldn't have spent several minutes fumbling around looking for my car keys as I watched the other guy speed away from the parking lot, probably making it to his office on time.
Do you think it’s wrong or weird for a man to carry a purse-sized bag? Would you consider buying a “European shoulder bag” for your husband or boyfriend? Would he even wear it? I'm dying to know (before I hit the 'buy' button in my Amazon shopping cart).