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  • Paul Davidson

Words For <i>Your</i> Enjoyment: Fanny Packs

This week’s “Words For Your Enjoyment” brings us a quirky little idea from WFME friend Charm, who wonders aloud just what’s the deal with people continuing to wear fanny packs.

Sadly — the fanny pack phenom started in the 80’s when kangaroos became the most popular animal on the face of the Earth, as reported by National Geographic. For some reason, it was the combination of Paul Hogan’s “Put another shrimp on the barbie” Australian Tourist Commercials combined with these Shrinky-Dinks that introduced fuzzy kangaroo animal packs. Between the two, people suddenly started saying things like:

Man, I wish I could be like a kangaroo!

If only there was a way to look even more fashionally-retarded!

See this fat pooch on my belly? Man, if only I could store stuff in there!!

Well, to much surprise, companies began putting two and two together. What if they could create a fashion statement that allowed people to feel like they were a kangaroo (carrying things in a pouch on their lower abdomen)!? Soon after, the fanny pack was introduced.

I don’t think that fanny packs were ever treated as a cool thing. I could be wrong, but I often recall people who wore fanny packs as the same people who dropped hundreds of pennies accidentally on the floor, those who rode bicycles with seats that were way too high for their body types, and speed walkers. What speed walkers needed fanny packs for I had no idea.

But the problem with fanny packs is that people are still wearing them today.

People with fanny packs on their belt-loops often defend their actions by telling you that they just don’t have enough space in their pockets to carry everything they want to take with them when they go to work or the store. They need room for more than just a wallet, keys and some change. Fanny-packers of today want to carry:

Chapstick A Passport Imodium A-D Toothpicks Sewing Kits Swiss Army Knives Mouthwash Mini-Shampoo Bottles USB Keychains Pain Killers Pictures of their pets And so much more…

To them, I ask — If you must carry all these things on your waist while you go to work (where you have a desk) or at the store (where you can buy all these things) or on a walk (where you will not need to sew clothing, freshen your breath, or retrieve important files from a USB keychain when there’s no computer nearby) or pictures of your pets (who are most likely walking with you while you have your fanny pack on anyway) then, dear God — why are you still wearing your fanny pack?

I would never discriminate against fanny packers but I will say that they have ruined particular things for the rest of us. Do you remember when you used to be able to walk into a retail store or a music store and go about your merry way without being asked to give them your backpack or bag? They used to trust us until the fanny packers started swiping objects and sneaking them back out in their pooches. In fact, if it wasn’t for fanny packers, homeland security probably wouldn’t be as rigid as it is today.

Sure, fanny packers have ruined it for the rest of us, but even more disturbing is the fact that they continue to wear their fanny packs with reckless disregard for the rest of us fashion-conscious people. Fads are called fads because they eventually DIE. Fanny packs have not.

It is a sad, sad state of affairs.

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