Sunday, December 09, 2007


Recently I have tried not to covet after expensive things. It gets easier after time, especially if you can just buy something if you really want it. However, I was definitely struggling yesterday when I decided to do some browsing on leather briefcases. Who knew that professional accessories could be so expensive!

Why briefcases? Well, I decided that I'll be going into the real world soon, or at least the graduate school world, and I want something that looks a little more professional than my backpack I've had since high school. I do have a canvas shoulder bag that looks a little more fashionable, but not necessarily more professional. When I interview I want to have my Vitae ready in a container that says "contemporary academic" yet "not too concerned about expensive clothing; can live off of a small stipend." I've set my heart on the turn-of-the-century European-looking briefcases. What else could set a better impression on old professors than a combination of youth and classic style? Nothing! So, I may have to work an extra ten hours some week, or beg my parents for this necessary article, but it will be worth it.

But what is this interest I have in resurrecting old things into our modern era? I'm quite sure it's not unique - I mean, other people are interested in wrought-iron curly fences and calligraphy pens with changeable nibs! Maybe it's nostalgia for a time we never knew, that we feel had to be simpler and therefore better. Is this more past-centrism? Only time will tell. For now, I still fantasize about getting one of these leather briefcases and carrying it out on a hike with me, complete with a metal (not plastic!) thermos, binoculars, a hard cover bird-watching guide with color, hand-drawn plates, an apple and a sandwich in a tin lunch pail, a wooden bird whistle, and no cell phone.

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