I bought my purse on a hot day in Japan on my honeymoon seven years ago. It is purple and one of the pockets is held together with a safety pin. I obviously love it a lot but every single day I shove my hand in it for something I need and pull out 47 things I do not.
This is a fun game I like to call “Why is this in my purse?”
- Grocery store receipts even though in 20 years of food purchasing I have never once taken an item back—even that expired yogurt I was outraged about and then ate to spite the world.
- 13 lip glosses that have 16 hairs and crumbs affixed to their spouts, rendering them both useless and disgusting.
- One earring.
- Movie stubs, like I have a scrapbook I’m going to Washi tape them into. (I don’t.)
- Notebooks that I use to jot down ideas for writing that are completely blank.
- Gum packages that have no gum left.
The other fun game inspired by this black hole of nonsense is “Why isn’t this in my purse?”
Tampons. I have been bleeding regularly for 20 plus years and yet every month when I ruin another pair of cute underwear, there is no rescue to be found in my purse. The tampons you buy from bathroom vending machines are made out of repurposed Ikea chipboard furniture so they are never to be inserted. A temporary fix of a wad of toilet paper followed by a whispered plea to a co-worker usually works.
Floss. Because inevitably my first bite into a delicious crunchy apple rams a sliver of apple skin so high and hard into my gums it feels like it’s millimeters from my brain.
Wet wipes. Because—kids. They create and collect stickiness. Without a vessel to collect it, it becomes smeared all over my new favourite sweater and me. Every time.
A pen. Preferably one that doesn’t cut out in the middle of me messily jotting down an amazing idea I have. I still lick the end in an attempt to get more ink. Is that even a solution with modern pens, or am I just very, very old and slowly poisoning myself with ink?
Motrin. The best headaches come on in an important meeting, like a tidal wave, and then eat your brains when you need them the most. If you ever see me frantically massaging my thumb pad know that I read once this would help. (Spoiler alert—it does not.)
I realize the best way for me to get organized with this Mary Poppins-style satchel situation is to simply trade it in for one of those powerful Lady Mom purses: musky with leather, laden with powerful zippers and capable of neatly holding all the high-quality accessories I need to feel like a responsible adult.
In the meantime though, I’ll swing my purse over my shoulder and offer you a piece of gum that I do not have. I do have the receipt for it, if that helps.
This original piece by Brooke Takhar was written exclusively for In the Powder Room, a division of Hold My Purse Productions, LLC.