I’ve never been completely sold on the cool-kid acceptance of fanny packs. Okay, okay, I get it -- fanny packs have been on the Chanel, Wang, and Rebecca Minkoff runways, and spotted on heaps of celebrities from Rihanna to Jared Leto. Even Elle and Lucky Magazine have preached the chic fanny pack gospel.
I love me some fashion magazines, but come on you guys. They look like saggy crotch bags, and I cannot look at one without thinking of a ’90s tourist wearing a Hawaiian shirt and Sketcher Shape Ups. Most ugly things become fashionable eventually, but fanny packs are still a giant question mark for me.
Emily talked me into wearing a fanny pack around the city for shits and giggles (Side note: do people actually giggle-shit? Who came up with that phrase??) because I am a clown and will pretty much do anything weird for a laugh. Pure curiosity as to whether I could pull off this “trend” led to me walking around midtown in a mustard-colored Patagonia fanny pack with a couple of my friends (who for the record, are hip youths that thought I looked kind of cool).
As I walked down 34th Street, my fanny pack rhythmically slapping against my pubis, I could not shake the weird feeling that I had forgotten something. City living instills you with the constant fear of someone snatching your purse off of your shoulder, resulting in the relentless vice grip of your handbag strap.
With a fanny pack, I was completely free -- I was reborn. My arms were free to swing around in the wind, or hold a bag of street peanuts, or high-five one of those Times Square Elmos. Is this how men feel? Just yolo’ing with both of their arms? THIS IS LIVING.
Aside from the sheer convenience of having my valuables strapped around my waist (and the safety, because honestly I would be the biggest hassle for a pick-pocketer), there’s a weird and obvious downside to wearing a fanny pack. Everyone stares at your crotch like they’re witnessing a phoenix rise from the ashes. I don’t know if a large fanny pack is a sign of fertility or something, but sooo many guys were hypnotized, watching it flap around while I walked. One woman actually tugged at her husband’s sleeve and made him turn his head so he would stop staring at it.
But then again some businessman stared at my fanny pack, made eye contact with me, and literally shook his head in disappointment before walking away, so maybe it wasn’t that enticing after all.
I was expecting more “haha you crazy kids!” types of stares instead of suspicious glares like I was a harbinger of bad things to come. There was a positive relationship between age and distrust. Apparently old people are not fans of ironic fashion statements. Also, none of my fellow New York ladies gave me appreciative nods for my style choice -- they just looked genuinely confused. Why the crazy looks y’all? I want compliments!
Post-fashion-dare, I still think fanny packs look like you’re wearing your uterus on the outside of your body, and I’ll probably stick to regular shoulder bags. But hey, if you can pull one off then go for it because you will bask in the liberation of knowing no one wants to mug you that day.
What do you guys think? Do you like fanny packs or do they give you heebie jeebies?
Follow Courtney on Twitter and Instagram @courtneypizza