Post originally written for my previous blog. I lived in NJ at the time and worked a less-than-fulfilling job in a suburban office park.
Headed into the communal kitchen to wash my water bottle, I saw the best lunch bag ever: a Prada shopping bag. I would attribute this to either a very snarky, anti-consumerism environmentalist showing his or her idea of using a Prada “bag”, or, more likely, one of the young women in the office next door trying to upsell her image to the other females toiling in obscurity. Seeing how there isn’t anybody that cool in the whole fucking building, I’ll bet on the latter.
And what, exactly, does this say about her? It was a small bag, so she’s extremely brand concsious, but doesn’t have a lot of disposable income. Paying $195 for a tie, for her ex boyfriend, who can burn in hell, was a bit pricey, hence the need to get some extra mileage out of the bag. Bringing it to work is clearly a show for the other crotch sniffers hunting around for a NJ husband.
Seeing the bag would probably turn off all but the wealthiest potential mates, because if she’s willing to spend (read: waste) that kind of money while she’s making entry level income, imagine the damage she can do to your Amex once you’re married. This does have the slightly positive effect, for her, of weeding out the less-than-flushed suitors. She may miss out on a happy match, but who the fuck wants that? Show me the money!
She is one of many young women in the New Jersey area who don’t want a career, though she protests to her friends and family that she’ll only be with a man who respects her intelligence and desire to be a professional. No, the calculated plan has been in motion since high school. Her mother bought her the Coach bags and stayed at home to raise (read: drink red wine all day) the kids, showing that a life of leisure is the right of all semi-attractive girls who know how to buy expensive clothes. On to a private new england college, the goal becomes more focused: a professional job amongst up and coming young men who need a wife to bear a child to shut up their mothers. So she struggles through accounting because the job placement rate is high and she’ll be in an office of tie-wearing frat boys who want a wife who will stay home with the baby and stop asking so many questions about their constant late nights at work and mysterious hotel charges on the credit card statement. She’ll have a huge wedding with 300 of her closest friends and enemies to show everyone that she was worth it and that’s why she was anorexic for seven years, so she could find such a great frat boy and settle down. Pregnant within a year, she starts to lose her mind being trapped in her 4500 square feet of air conditioned suburban splendor so her mother comes over and teaches her how to drink red wine all day but still drive well enough to pick up hubby’s dry cleaning without putting any dents into the Escalade. The baby cries a lot but at least it can’t tell her to shut up or work seventeen days in a row and “sleep” at the office. She wonders what all the people at the office are up to and if Michelle is still such a bitch. She’ll complain to her frat boy that she doesn’t know him anymore but it’ll blow over when he threatens to trade her Escalade for a Kia Sportage if she wants him to take an easier job and they can also move back to the townhouse but we all know how that would look to the other mothers on the block, tsk tsk. And life will go on like this, until she has her own daughter to dress up like an Asian hooker for Little Miss Beauty Pageants but of course she’ll have to lose some weight if she’s going to be the bestest five year old in Monmouth County so you didn’t want any butter on that roll anyway, did you? And little miss lipstick whore will grow up into a bulemic and/or anorexic cheerleader with her mother carefully looking on from the stands, every now and then using her two index fingers to remind little miss lipstick whore to smile big for all the people who came to see her, forget about the football game. And little miss will head off to a private college in new england where she’ll major in business so that she can get that entry level job at 33k a year and buy a Prada tie for her boyfriend who is probably cheating on her but he can burn in hell. Then she’ll take the Prada shopping bag out from its spot on the side of the closet in her 1 bedroom condo that her father bought to give her a leg up and she’ll carefully unfold that white shopping bag to make sure there are no tears or other visual clues to show that it might not be from this fall’s line. The bag will make it to the suburban NJ office kitchen where a stranger will notice it and wonder who the fuck uses a prada bag, to carry a plum and tupperware container of baby carrots, as a lunch bag.
And life will go on.