a butch purse

In order to defeat the bout of writer’s anxiety that I’ve been faced with lately, I’ve decided to try that age-old writing excersize: write what is in front of you. In this case, K.’s purse.

Every time I look at K. with her purse I am reminded of a line by Jeanne Cordova, “A butch purse is an only child. Femmes have as many purses as shoes.” When I first read that I nearly had an asthma attack laughing, because it is so, so true. K. has only two bags: a green YakPak messenger bag which is falling apart at the zippers, and this purse. I, on the other hand, have an obscene and ever-changing number of purses, many of my own making, some adopted out of pity, some purchased in a moment of weakness. I’m fond of interesting linings and have yet to figure out the ideal number of pockets. Bags and purses are my great fashion love, and I collect them and treasure them dearly. I have no idea how she survives on only two.

But she does. The messenger bag is for cargo, a transportation item only, and the purse is for occasions when all you need is a wallet and keys. Some chapstick. Cellphone. Possibly a small notebook for shopping lists and the like. The purse she has fulfills these requirements and no more.

It’s a deep red, dyed leather, with a thick strap and many pockets. It doesn’t look designer but it does have a little plate affixed to the side panel: “liz claiborne. established in 1976 and made for all lifestyles.”

No kidding.

2 Responses to a butch purse

  1. dylan says:

    A butch purse. Ugh. There should never be such a thing as a butch purse. Ok, I’m kidding really, because I’m certainly not the gender police, but I can’t imagine ever carrying anything purse-like around. It’s either what can fit in my pockets or a full on side bag (usually for school).

  2. linaria says:

    well, yes, I somewhat agree with you. but then, some of it comes down to terminology–I mean, manbags?

    K. is new to this whole gender identity thing, but she’s also just not the kind of person who thinks a lot about how she looks to begin with. so for her, it’s the right size, it’s convenient, and that’s that. this un-fussiness is a very attractive quality to me, though…I think there may be some gender stereotyping at work here, but there’s only room for one high-maintenance girl in this relationship!

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