Wednesday, December 04, 2013

I Bury Your Backpack at My Wounded Knee

Backpacks have a place: wide open spaces with trails for hiking; mountainsides where men and women have climbed to great heights; a handy small travel bag when going to grandma’s house for the holidays. I’m all for that. I don’t like to wear them myself, the wear and tear on my shoulders and back make them seem more like torture chambers to me, but I understand if you find them to be comfortable.

Backpacks do not have a place on the busy sidewalks of New York. They do not belong on rush hour transportation. I know, I know. You love your backpack. You love the convenience of carrying your burden on your shoulders and keeping your hands free to shop and text.  

What you have forgotten is that the svelte picture you have nestled away in your brain of how good you looked when you left the house couldn’t be further from the truth!

Your girth has doubled.

Even worse, you are completely unaware as you zip through crowds leaving crying children in your wake as your bag meets their faces. What about the old man nearly knocked off his walker as you slip in and out of the crowd as though you were the thin person you are without the offending backpack?

Today a young man, with the need to be ahead of me on the escalator, zipped around  and then landed on the step in front of me. His backpack made him the size of 2 men and he knocked me backward off my step. He didn’t even notice. How could he, protected as he was by 2 feet of padding? Luckily for those behind me on the escalator, I only fell back one step before catching myself.

If you really need to wear one of those things, put it on and then look at yourself from all angles. Try to understand that your back side has just become a weapon.