Day 57 Reporting – 2,024 Words/Day Process Log –Curated Feed

It was the luxury denim handbag that broke me. The YouTube vlogger got her hands on the newest bag of the denim line of one of my favorite handbag brands through a friend who had a hook up with a sales associate. The bag had just dropped on the Neiman Marcus website, but not on the own brand’s. She caressed the denim with her perfectly manicured red nails, gushing over the quality, the hardware, the attention to detail…and I just couldn’t.

If you can’t tell by this point, yes, I love handbags. Okay, I love a well-made handbag at a good price. Most of my collection is made up of neutrals and were purchased for specific purposes.

There’s the black Coach satchel I bought at the outlet that says church or at least an evening occasion with it’s shiny leather resistant to rain which I discovered when I wore it to a play in downtown Lawrenceville when the sky opened up.

Then, there’s my everyday carry – a Dooney and Burke crossbody satchel of caramel pebbled leather I snagged at a ridiculous price. Between the zipper in the back and the pockets inside, I can find my cell phone and grocery list easily without it clashing with my decidedly navy blue casual wardrobe.

And then there’s my MARTA carry. That bag is a plain nutmeg, Portland Leather medium tote. It can fit a water bottle, my hygiene pack of Kleenex, sanitizer wipes, hand sanitizer, and lip gloss, head phones, my kindle, and a granola bar. Basically, everything I need for a trip into the city. It doesn’t draw any attention to me on the train which is why I wear it there.

I carry a logo bag to my theater matinees in Lawrenceville because I’m driving there, and I get better treatment when I wear a higher-end bag. Sad, but true.

Different bags for different purposes. And if the price is right of the bag and I have an open slot, it’s a wrap.

At least, I got the tendency honest. My mom harped on two things while growing up – have a good leather bag and good leather shoes. Both, when well taken care of, could last you for years, maybe decades even. She was true to the advice she gave.

My mom was a one-carry woman – she carried the same navy blue Coach bag every day until the edges began to wear through to white and, in the case of her last bag, the zipper pull replaced with a safety pin. Did you notice the navy blue connection? It’s another thing I got from my mom.

Coach is still my go-to brand. I think of it as luxury since that’s what I saw the church ladies carry growing up. Coach was the brand of choice for elegant ladies in suits that matched their hats and heels. It was the holder of unlimited butterscotch candy and, if you got lucky, strawberry ones with the wrapper that mimicked the fruit. Fancy, as the wrappers for other hard candies were plain. Plus, as for the quality and value, Coach is hard to beat.

I found that my YouTube feed started showing me more and more handbag vlogs. Now, I enjoyed these videos. They were a way to relax after my workday of a morning writing session and then logging onto work and then ending my “work” day with exercise. (That’s what I think of as a successful weekday, by the way – Did I write? Did I earn money? Did I move?)

I’d sit at the kitchen table scrolling on my phone while sipping on a homemade London Fog tea latte hearing about the latest releases, the upcoming price increases due to the demand, the quality issues complaints, and sales associates with certain brands treating customers poorly as a marketing gimmick. In the last case, it appears to be working.

And then yesterday, a new denim line came out that my favorite vloggers gushed over. And it broke the spell. I couldn’t. I just didn’t. It was denim, y’all. Yes, a high quality bag with gorgeous gold hardware, but it was the same price as a leather bag and I understand the gushing. I didn’t get it like my mom doesn’t get why I need more than three bags – an everyday bag, a black church bag for after Labor Day, and a white church bag for after Easter.

Then I went back to one of my favorite questions to ask myself – Is this who I want to be? Yes, I like handbags, but as my collection is rounding out to bags I can pull for a specific occasion, what was the point. More than that, my attention is a precious commodity. I didn’t want to be a handbag enthusiast. They’re works of art. I can admire them, appreciate them, without giving it my time and attention and money.

So, I actively started unsubscribing to handbag vloggers. If I miss them, I can always resubscribe. Funny enough, the folks who I subscribed to but missed their content, started appearing on my feed again. I’ve called this “starving my eyes” and I’ve done it more than once in my life. If I find myself slipping into what I think of at the time as an unhelpful obsession, I stop viewing it. The great thing is that all of that will be there for me if I want to return to it. I know they exist.

And, you know what? If one day I want to add a denim bag to my collection, I know exactly where to go to look for a review.

Keep moving forward. Keep getting better.

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As of Day 57, – 2/26/24

# of Words I Wrote/# of Words Written To Be on Track/Year Goal

110,339/ 115,368 / 740,784

About Irette Y Patterson

Irette Y Patterson is a writer of fantasy, science fiction, and romance. She has been published in FIYAH, Strange Horizons, Translunar Travelers Lounge and on the website of The Saturday Evening Post. When not writing, you can find her digging around in her garden or catching the latest musical in the theater.
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