What on earth do people carry around in those things? Laptops? Library books? Walking shoes? Gym clothes? Small children? Litters of newborn puppies?
I know, I know—since I have to ask, I obviously don't get it. I don't understand the current style trend for huge purses. Maybe it's my lack of fashion sense. Or maybe it's my naïve belief that if you have something called a "handbag" you should be able to actually carry it, rather than needing to haul it behind you in a little red wagon.
These purses remind me of the magic carpet bag from which Mary Poppins extracted a series of improbable belongings, including a coat rack and a tall plant. (By the way, an Internet search for "Mary Poppins carpet bag," comes up with several places where you can buy a replica of her bag to use as—you guessed it—a purse. Sigh.)
I might have used a more contemporary reference and said these bags remind me of the magic bag carried by Hermione Granger in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I. It contains, among other things, a tent the size of a three-bedroom house, complete with furnishings. But Hermione, being a sensible young woman as well as a skilled magician, was wise enough to condense all her camping necessities into a tiny evening purse.
I just don't get why these bulky bags are so popular. I suppose one might come in handy for defending yourself against a potential mugger. Provided, that is, you could manage to swing it high enough to knock him out with it.
My only other theory is a diabolical marketing scheme by a powerful cartel of chiropractors. There has to be a lot of money to be made from treating back and shoulder ailments of all the women who are hauling around half their worldly possessions in gigantic bags.
Most of these purses, besides being huge, are hugely over-decorated. They're covered with the initials of famous designers, or loaded with shiny buckles, chains, studs, and plastic ruffles or flower-like thingies. One day I noticed an elderly woman lugging one of these bags that had a big round design on the side. I couldn't quite figure out what it was until I got closer to her.
It was a clock. A working clock, with a traditional round face about four inches in diameter. It was covered with clear plastic to protect it, of course, which was a good thing since its slender owner was dragging it across the parking lot through the slush.
Okay, I suppose it might be convenient to be able to tell the time by glancing at your purse. You'd think it would be easier just to check her cell phone like everyone else. But of course she couldn't. She probably hadn't been able to find her phone in weeks. It was lost somewhere in the bottom of that enormous purse.