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How A Backpack Ruined My Life

So I walk into this store downtown and there it was—the backpack I’ve been looking for. Talk about dark and handsome: It was a vintage mini made from black suede, with pebbled dark leather trim. And I couldn’t even believe that it actually was mine.

Life with this thing was good, man. Things were so much less “strappy” and carrying things on my back was just so much easier having all that weight on my boney shoulder. Euphoria. Fuzzy feelings inside. Is this what love is? A friend of mine says that love feels like a second childhood. And I sure as hell felt like a kid again. Memories of waiting for the bus, my mom packing my lunch into my purple Jansport. Before I knew it, backpack and me were the new “it” couple. And we went everywhere together: Shopping in the lower east side, romantic dinners on the lower west side and turning heads at glamorous parties all over Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Little did I know that later this unassuming backpack would break my heart, leave me penniless, and for a few minutes there, destitute. This backpack has messed with my life and left me to feel like damaged goods. But I learned that a broken heart can always be fixed. And you owe that to yourself. Life is too short to waste on the wrong piece of arm candy. But wait. I’m getting ahead of myself.

At first we were getting along just swell. My friends would point out flaws, but they didn’t get “it.” They didn’t get “us.” But maybe somewhere in the back of my mind I couldn’t help but wonder if they might be right. So much buckling and re-buckling every time I need to send a text or pop an Altoid. Everyone grew increasingly annoyed with my constant stop/unbuckle/rummage routines. One friend even shot a photo series of me trying to maneuver this thing. So things were a little rocky. Cue the disapproving look from the best friend—is there anything worse? And as with all bad behavior there’s this gravitational pull that keeps you coming back for more.

Then things took an even more serious turn for the worse. Because of the crappy closure, I’d lost several inarguably vital possessions—along with my dignity. My passport, my credit card, my checkbook, my favorite necklace along with an indeterminate amount of cash—GONE. I’m still working on becoming a documented citizen again. (Potentially helpful side note: it’s not easy to gain enough points for a New York State ID without a passport.) But I was still too in love to care. Did I begin to question my devotion? Sure. But those thoughts would quickly be replaced with visions (illusions?) of the good times that we had: laughing over chicken parm in Nolita, traipsing around to late night parties; even a simple subway ride to work seemed so good. And I didn’t want to have to go back to doing those things alone. Pathetic? Maybe a little.

The final straw was when the drawstring—the last thing keeping us together—eventually just fell off on the street somewhere. It wasn’t working and I knew it. And really, what had this backpack ever even done for me? I was now able to recognize that I was in a bad relationship. So I did what I always do when I’m in a bind. I had a little talk with myself that went something like this: “What would Patti Smith do?” Finally I mustered up the courage to do what I should have done a long time ago.

The backpack was no more…
And after a brief mourning period—because I’m good like that—I met something new; a gorgeous little 'sling bag' by Reece Hudson. Those fuzzy feelings came back along with a sense of hope that I feared wouldn’t return. What they say is true though. Sometimes it takes one to get over one. And this newer, chicer accessory had so many things that the last one didn’t. A ZIPPER! An adjustable strap! And just when you thought that it couldn’t be more charming and funny meet the two handy pockets with magnetic closures.

Tonight, I’m taking my rebound accessory for a celebratory after-work drink. We’re still getting to know one another and not to be a total GIRL about it, but actually, I see a real future for us.

Reece Hudson No 7 Sling Bag, $1,500, Kirnazabete.com


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