What Is in My Handbag? Failed Writer, Gold-Digger Edition by Shyama Laxman

Hi my lovelies,

Before I deign to tell you poor and hobbyless people what is inside my obscenely expensive handbag that I didn’t buy for myself and which goes against every grain of feminist, independent, empowering thought I once possessed, let me begin by saying that all the objects I have in here are oh my god so important and are also things I cannot live without.

My husband has paid for all of them. Now, Aesop opines that one should be more invested in the goose rather than the golden eggs. But I would absolutely die if I lost my eyelash glue, whereas my husband has insurance so…

A little bit about the bag: it is made of crocodile leather and is called ‘poor sod didn’t see it coming’. It cost more than the royalties I got from my one and only book, Digging for Gold, but is not as expensive as the ocean view apartment that goose husband gave his first wife as a parting gift. So here goes:

1) My wallet containing my husband’s credit card – self-explanatory;

2) My sunglasses, which block the reality around me – you know, women becoming vice presidents, winning Man Bookers or fighting against climate change;

3) My lip-plumping gloss – because my husband likes big lips (as I discovered from his internet search history) and I am against invasive procedures. We found a middle ground. All marriage involves compromise;

4) My concealer – to cover dark circles for when the big lips work their magic and I don’t get enough sleep at night. You get my drift. Also, for most other nights when I don’t sleep because I am thinking about the second book that has been brewing inside me now that I don’t have to think about starvation and penury;

5) My vibrator – because you have to be responsible for your orgasms, never mind your social, class or relationship status;

6) My birth control (more to keep my hormonal acne at bay than to prevent the arrival of babies);

7) My appointment book – especially as it contains the date of my next visit to the gynaecologist to discuss freezing my eggs (a little insurance for the future);

8) My journal, so that I can write about the scandalous secrets of my husband’s high flying society life. (This will either be the draft for my second book or an alimony negotiator if it ever comes to that);

9) My diamond encrusted pen – because one has to keep up appearances.

Shyama Laxman is a London-based writer and poet. She writes mainly about gender, sexuality and LGBTQ issues. Her work has been published in The Quint, Huffington Post, Hundred Heroines, Defenestration, ShethePeopleTV, Muse India and Gaysi. Her new poem ‘The Nudes Editor’ is published by Guts Publishing in their Sending Nudes anthology.