So, the thing is, men are just not practiced enough to manage hand/man bags on the train, even when disguised as a manly backpack. Back in the day, men carried either a briefcase in the hand, or stuffed everything unattractively into pockets. Nowadays men recognise the value of having a bag that can be carried over the shoulder or back. No more unsightly pockets and two hands free.
This comes at a price. For others. And that price is whiplash. Admittedly it is nobody’s fault, other than the weirdo designers, that there are a minimum of 10 free-wheeling straps on these bags. But come on! Recognise you have straps flying off your bag and don’t casually fling your bag across your shoulder, flicking the straps all over and smacking strangers in the face. True, some women also do this but if you count you will find it is men who are the main culprits.
Last Friday on my way home from work I had a respectful chap sit next to me for most of the journey. Sadly he got off 2 stops before mine so towards the vacant seat flung a young man…with bag. He flicked it off his tired shoulders, and landed heavily on the seat next to me with an equally heavy sigh to let everyone around him know that he was tired. To be honest I couldn’t have cared less. Who on that train wasn’t tired?
Midway in the process of seating himself he whacked my forearm heavily with one of the straps from his bag. He appeared to be oblivious to the fact that he had just whipped me and landed heavily into the seat with a certain amount of smug self-pity. This whipping was particularly stinging as it is summer and my sleeves were short.
I winced at the surprise, although not sure why I was surprised. He of course paid no attention as he was too busy huffing and puffing and sprawling in a most ungainly and unsophisticated manner. Not wanting to get a reputation on a regular train of being as grumpy as I am I held in my annoyance with this new adult.
Other things with bags…
- Why do some people fail to recognise that if they are wearing a bag on their back that they instantly take up more space than if they were without? And on a crowded train that is pretty much unwelcome.
- Why do some people think it is okay to walk down a train aisle with a bag that is wider than they are and use it as a battering ram to make a clear pathway for themselves, or drag it along behind them hitting other passengers on the shoulder and/or head?
- Why do some people tut and look sulky when you are forced to ask them to remove their bag so you can sit down?
- Why don’t people who are walking along the road know that any bag placed upon the back or over the shoulder will make fabric rise up the body? How many men and women have I walked behind that have the back of their shirt or blouse ridden up their back, or skirts pulled right up on one side by the heavy shoulder bag. It’s physics…it will happen…
But my biggest gripe is with the strap flickers. There is practically no point to so many straps on bags, but if you are someone who is attracted to bags with lots of straps, and a surprising number of people are, then take a moment to think about cause and effect – if you whip it near someone then that someone will get whipped and if that person isn’t worried about their reputation then there’s every possibility they will whip back 😀