Hi Dave, nice shoulder bag!…

But first…
Dulltown. UK: Today’s armadillo is the soft cuddly one.

I like to have a shoulder bag.
Some macho chaps sneer at them and call them ‘man-bags’, but I don’t care. They are a handy size and pretty lightweight too; you can keep your notebook and pen and your little digital camera in front pockets so that they are always handy and ready when you are out and about keeping your eyes peeled for scenes of urban strangeness.
Also a loaf of bread and a Marks and Spencer ready-meal curry sit comfortably into it too; mind you, you have to be careful with such things, I recently had to scrub my bag out with bicarbonate of soda and apply moist kitchen towels to get rid of the odour after an unfortunate internal Singapore noodle spillage incident.
I have always had a shoulder bag, it was usually a black canvas one; a friend of mine always referred to it as ‘Dave’s sinister black bag,’ for some reason – ‘There goes Dave with his sinister black bag…’ she would say…
Anyway, a year or so ago, when the one in use had started to look a bit shabby I was on the lookout for a replacement. I don’t usually pay very much for them, but one day I was in a department store here in Dulltown when I saw a pile of interesting looking black bags with a sign on them that said something like, ‘Only £24.99 – reduced from £80!’ Well, that really caught my eye; £24.99 was a bit pricey, but I did notice that they were made by Victorinox, the makers of those famously well-engineered Swiss Army Knives, and the bag did look pretty classy. I was drawn in, I handed over the cash and got one…
What a disappointment! Yes, really! Victorinox may be very good at knives, but they are rotten at bags. Yes, it was very well made; it was covered in zips, stout straps, Velcro flaps, it had lots of pockets, a couple, for some reason, made of black netting, and some with elasticated tops, but the first thing I noticed was that even when empty the bag was heavy. Also to open the big front flap to get inside, you had to first locate two thick straps and unfasten their sliding plastic clicky things, then disengage the flap which was still firmly Velcroed to the body – this produces an ear-catching loud ripping noise, like someone brutally violating a hassock in a silent cathedral.
Of course the design of this deliberately expensive bag is aimed at the top of the man-bag market:
‘I say Giles, what’s that I see lying on the back seat of your BMW X6?’
‘Oh, hello Trystan, that’s my new Victorinox bag – cool eh?’
‘Gosh yes!…’
I expect the idea for this product was pitched by some bright young thing at a board meeting at Victorinox headquarters back in Switzerland.
‘Look, this is fantastic idea, they’ll cost us next to nothing, they can be knocked up in China, and with our trusted world famous name embossed on them they’ll fly off the shelves! I’ll sketch out a quick design after lunch…’
So, anyway, I got out my heavy-duty scissors and my Stanley knife, and sliced off all the unnecessary straps, buckles, and bits and threw them out. The bag much lighter and easier to use now… but not really worth the £24.99…
Of course the people who originally coughed up their £80s for these obviously didn’t think that much of them either, word got around and the bags were a flop, and they ended up in a big pile, in a shop in Dulltown UK, reduced in price for gullible idiots like me…
‘Oh, by the way, what’s that smell Dave?…’
Damn! That Singapore noodle sauce is so persistent…

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in advertising, cool, design, Dulltown, fashion, food, Hull.UK., humour, information, learning, style, surrealism and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Hi Dave, nice shoulder bag!…

  1. What a great story! But no picture, sadly? Curious bag lovers need to see the offending bag! Anyway, I get most of my bags from charity shops, because a) I’m female and love bags and b) I’m forever changing them around according to what my plans are for the day, because I’m female and love bags, haha! I did get a beautiful distressed satchel type bag as a gift once, but I have never used it in case it gets ruined *ahem* But yes, your bag sounds wonderful now its been modified! 😀

    • Dave Whatt says:

      I thought about a picture for the post, but it would have been a pretty dull one – anyway black things are difficult to photograph – I had enough trouble getting those black sculptures to look half decent few days ago.
      Not counting guitar cases, I only have two bags, the Victorinox, and inside that a fold-up shopping bag – that’s black too by the way.
      Hey! Enough of this bag-talk!…

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