It Has Come to This

I never buy the right purse. Each one I buy is either too big or too small, has too many compartments or not enough, or has an opening that either won’t stay open or won’t stay closed. I would function better with a heavyweight paper bag.

The right purse, above all other features, makes accessing items from it effortless.

When a woman is driving down the highway, for example, she likes to withdraw her sunglasses from her purse without taking her eyes off the road.

When making purchases at a store, she wants to retrieve her wallet and the appropriate coupons in one smooth movement.

As she leaves a store and heads for her parked car, she wants to withdraw her keys from her purse without breaking her stride.

I long to be one of these women. I once thought I could become one by buying the right purse. However, experience has proven I am incapable of buying the right purse. I must, therefore, make do with a wrong purse, rightly organized.

To this end, I laid all my purse paraphernalia on my kitchen table, along with a selected wrong purse from my closet. Then I carefully inserted each item into the purse in what I considered an organized manner.

I put my phone in the outside front pocket.

My hand lotion, compact, nail clippers, toothpicks, and chewing gum went into the outside back pocket.

 My keys I placed in the inner back compartment, along with tissues, hand sanitizer, lipstick, Chapstick, and wet wipes.

I inserted my wallet, sunglasses, pen, notepad, and calendar in the inner front compartment.

Finally, in the skinny, zippered, middle pouch I put my photos of the grandkids, my coupons, and my emergency twenty dollar bill.

This is good, I thought.

Unknown to me, however, the moment I closed the purse, the items inside began playing a sadistic version of musical chairs. Each item left its assigned location and moved to occupy some other item’s space.

Thus, a few days later as I drove down the highway and reached into my purse for my sunglasses, I pulled out instead a package of gum, followed by a compact, and a packet of tissues.

At the store, other customers waited as I dug through my purse for my wallet. I pushed aside photos, a notebook, a calendar, and my sunglasses before finally retrieving the wallet.

Leaving the store in a rainstorm, I dug unsuccessfully in my purse for my keys all the way to my car. My fingers grasped nail clippers, a tube of lipstick, a bottle of hand lotion, and a packet of toothpicks, but no keys.

When I got to my car, angry and frustrated, I dumped the contents of my purse onto the car’s slippery, wet hood. I sorted out my phone and shoved it inside my bra to protect it from moisture.

I rifled through the scattered metal, plastic, and paper items on the car’s hood until I found my keys. I then stuffed the miserable, soggy contents back into my purse, without regard for front pocket, back pocket, zippered inner pouch, or anything else.

My blood pressure cannot take much more of this. I will, I resolve, be victorious in this fight.

And so, sadly, it has come to this.


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14 thoughts on “It Has Come to This”

  1. So funny, Debbie, and all so true. May it be somewhat comforting to you to know that, yes, “it has come to this” for me too!

  2. I have boought so many perfect purses! I just recently purchase one that I KNEW was THE perfect purse. It has so many pockets like you I search for the right one. By the time I find what I was looking for and use it I have forgotten which pocket I got it from. I think my daughter has the right idea-she carries only a billfold and keys.

    1. I so wish I could eliminate some of the things I carry in my purse. Whatever I choose to stop putting in there is the first thing I will need the next time I am out.

      Sent from my iPhone


  3. Funny, and so true! I am lucky that my ‘wrong purse’ has metal dees on the handles that I have learned to clip my keys onto. That way they hang outside my purse and are usually within easy reach. Of course, this turns my ‘chic’ look into a ‘handyman’ look, but oh well. And, I always make sure that I wear pants that have pockets big enough to carry my phone and lipstick, things I can’t live without having in reach at all times. The rest of my carry-arounds are just mixing it up in the bottom of my cavernous purse where, like you, I can never find them! Love, Julie

    1. How do people get by with just a wallet and phone? Don’t their noses run, their hands get dirty, their lips get chapped, their hands get dry and rough, their lipstick disappear?

  4. My Mom has a car that only requires she have her keys with her. They can stay in her purse and she is able to open her car and start it. Now she is searching for one less thing in that cavern!

  5. Hahahaha! You are exactly like me in this purse dilemma!! I also have resorted to different pouches and coin purses to try to keep a little organization going inside my purse. It is ridiculous! And why do men need only carry a wallet and keys?! Men everywhere are probably (like mine) asking their wives for reading glasses, Chapstick, etc. and while we struggle to find said item they skip happily along unburdened by the clutter!

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