Wednesday, 18 February 2009

What has it got in its pocketses?

I like pockets, I really, really do.

Ever since I was a kid I have always wanted clothes that had decent-capacity pockets. My mother always used to tell me off because my pockets were always full. Full of rubbish that I hadn't got around to throwing away yet (sweet wrappers, etc), as well as snotty hankies (I was a snotty little kid), plus all my little treasures that I was trying to keep out of the thieving hands of my siblings.

It really annoys me that women's clothing in particular is so badly served in this area. I suppose the clothing manufacturers assume that

a) bulging pockets ruin the look of the garment

b) all women wander around with handbags into which their can't-be-without possessions can go.

OK, the first point is a fair cop, I suppose. But I've learnt my lesson and don't stuff my pockets anything like as much as I used to and, damnit, I want to be able to make the choice to be bulgy or non-bulgy and not be dictated to!

As to the second point, I hate handbags with a passion. They're too easy to leave behind somewhere, they are a target for muggers, and generally just get in the way. Men's garments have pockets, so why not women's? There's a definite inequality here!

On a more philosophical note, what would the world have to be like for us not to need pockets (or indeed handbags)? Let's look at my usual pocket/handbag contents as an example.

Hankie/tissues – I would need to be cured of my chronic allergic rhinitis for this to become an unnecessary accessory. I suppose I could just let my nose run, but that would hardly be attractive.

Keys – why do I need keys? To open locks, and they are needed because otherwise all my stuff would get pinched. The world would need to change quite radically for my stuff to be safe if left accessible.

Wallet – To carry my money/credit cards which are needed because we don't have a barter system or any or realistic alternative to money as yet.

Monocular/glasses/shades – I'd need to get a new set of eyes to be able to do without these.

iPod – definitely a luxury item and I could get by quite easily without – after all, I wasn't born with one, was I?

Phones – again, I got by for years without these and probably could do again but I have got rather used to having them handy (one's for work anyway, so I tend to keep it around in case – especially when I'm on call).

Notebook & pen – why I feel I have to have these to hand I don't know, but you know how it is, the minute you haven't got them, you need them - and they don't need batteries. Could function well enough without I suppose, but I'd kick myself if that dazzlingly brilliant lyric or story idea went un-captured just for the lack of some way to note it down. Who am I kidding, I mean, really?

I've just realised that the thing all these items have in common is they all are about giving me a feeling of security. The glasses and such have an obvious safety function – especially when crossing roads, but all of the items represent some way for me to feel safer (maybe not so much the iPod, but its music could be construed as comforting at a pinch). The notepad and pen give me the ability to have some measure of control by recording things that might be important or by giving someone a message.

How very much the world would have to change – and I would have to change – for me not to need my pockets.

1 comment:

  1. A-ha! for some reason i am today able to leave a message!

    It's odd to think that not that long ago we managed without carrying any of these around - 10 years ago i didn't own a mobile phone, yet i always have it with me now and know people that have 2 or 3!

    Perhaps we should all just be like Robinson Crusoe and strip naked before swimming down to the wreck and proceeding to fill our pockets...

    Still trying to work out how he acomplished that one!


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