Man Bag

“It’s a man’s purse”, said my then 15 year old daugher Trisha.

“No, it’s a cross body bag”, suggested my wife Mona.

I kept my eye on the road, holding the steering wheel somewhat apprehensively while tentatively listening and wondering where the conversation of my passengers were heading to.

They were referring to my newly found habbit of using a sling bag (there’s another term) to accommodate my essential items such as wallet, phone and other documents instead of stuffing them into my trouser pockets.

“It’s a Man Bag”, I suggested with an emphasis on the word “man’, dropping my octave a notch or two for effect.

I have found the bag quite convenient though in the few weeks I have started lugging it around. I can now appreciate why ladies have handbags: there are loads of spaces for them to put personal effects in such as that favourite lipstick or makeup. My Man Bag on the other hand started life as a “container” for my wallet and driving license. Since then, it had widened its repertoire as a carrier for my “currently-reading” book, drawing pens, sunglass and my 2 phones (yes, I had two. Long story).

My 2 boys had their own Man Bags as well….or Boy Bags rather, to put their own stuff in. The last time I checked, both kids have their ventolin inhalers in the bags (wise choice, boys) along with the compulsory wallet, an odd toy or two, books and food. Akmal had his grandmother’s mini ipad in his bag, by the way …. much to my mother’s annoyance :)

“It’s a Man Bag”, I had reemphasised the bag’s identity to my wife and daughter.

It’s also known as a messenger bag like the above catalogue photo showed.

But regardless of the names…. the bag seem to be making its way in as a required male accessory.

Mind you, I am not a proponent for Man Bags nor am I detracting from their use. These bags have the effect of making the wearers look like perpetual travelers or at its worst a gender bending individual (I’m stereotyping it now. Sorry!)

The upside is of course convenience. The downside is that they might attract muggers in certain situations and places. Occasionally, I am reminded of the Prada or was it the Harley Davidson bag that my uncle Zaludin had, or I think he had. I mean that was way cooler …. and meaner!

Here my Uncle Zaludin would have a clear advantage. If he were to display his Harley Davidson bag in public, that bag has the additional effect of warning would be muggers that the wearer probably was part of a motorbike gang and he is




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Subandi Kamis

Subandi Kamis

Navigating life a story at a time.

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