Climax of the fanny pack fashion comeback was not the fiery explosion I could have hoped for. It was just a repressed memory that found its way back into my consciousness.
Last Halloween, my roommates and I decided to spend the night in Waikiki. I was dressed as a nerd, which was actually the costume I had worn for two out of the last three Halloweens.
I put on fake glasses, a digital watch, a white button-down shirt with pens stuffed into the breast pocket, suspenders, short and tight black slacks, long white socks, and penny loafers.
The very first time I had assembled my nerd-robe, I faced the same problem as I had with my gym shorts. I couldn’t fit my keys, wallet, and phone into my pockets because my pants were several sizes too small. I decided the fanny pack would be a smart addition.
When my buddy’s friends showed up, a buxom blond fairy exclaimed, “OoooOooo, a nerd! I love nerds!”
“Look, he even has the fanny pack!” One of her friends added.
I spent the next ten minutes trying to explain that the fanny pack was not actually a part of the costume. If anything, a fanny pack should detract from my costume because it was so cool. They did not believe me.
Whatever. In the end, I still got the girl, so obviously the pack has swag. I decided it would become standard Halloween attire. Coming up on my third round of Halloween fanny packing, I was excited and confident. My roommates, a sexy pirate, a stoner dressed as a hippy, and an Asian Mexican, were dressed and ready before me.
I barged into the living room with a swagger and a spin, announcing the glory of my costume with a flourish.
“Uhhhhh you have a fanny pack,” the Asian Mexican said, unimpressed by my theatrics.
“Yeah. It’s part of my costume.”
“Are you a druggie nerd?”
He then told me that he had always associated fanny packs with drug addicts. Meth heads, pill poppers, and heroin shooters—according to Mexican Asian—all carried their drugs and paraphernalia in a fanny pack.
“Did you know about this?” I asked Sexy Pirate. He shrugged his shoulders with a slight nod.
I was annoyed, but assumed it was a Hawaiian island thing. Sure people had called the fanny pack ugly, and stupid, and pointless, and ugly, but for it to be associated with the sordid underbelly of society was something I could not accept. I had heard that they called them “bum bags” in Australia, but I always thought it was just a playful term of endearment.
We went to Waikiki, drank some drinks, wandered the crowded streets, and had a fantastic time. I had all but completely forgotten about the attempted besmirchment to the reputation of my beloved bag.
But that night, as I lay darkness with my side-parted hair on the pillow, that repressed memory reemerged into my mind…
It was from several years before. The fanny pack had already become an integral piece of my dodgeball uniform. And—just like I knew she would—Delayn had come to accept it.
When the dodgeball games had ended for the evening, it was tradition for league members to congregate in an Irish pub just down the road. One night, as I wandered through the maze of bar tables, a hand grabbed my left arm.
I spun around to face a man—late forties or early fifties, grey hair, large round glasses, protruding beer gut—who was definitely not my type… of anything. Still holding my arm he pointed with his free hand at my fanny pack.
“Hey do you take that pack to raves?”
Before I even finished my response, the man had already launched into a story that was equal parts tragic and informational—although I was just happy that conversation was his only intention—that also offered a whole new perspective on fanny packs. Here it is:
“I heard that those fanny packs are the big thing with the teenagers and their rave parties. I had one once. I didn’t use it at raves though. I am too old for those things. Maybe my kids would use it at raves, if I had any. You see a couple years ago I hurt my back real bad. I couldn’t work anymore so I had to go on disability. It was really hard on us because…”
Ok, at this point I am going to skip ahead. He spent at least three minutes digressing about his troubled financial situation. The government was blamed, terrorists and Mexicans were mentioned, and I think there was something about Commie Bastards in there somewhere. He continued:
“Anyways, my wife bought me one of those fanny packs because I couldn’t hold anything in my pockets because my back was hurt. I tried to find them myself but they didn’t have them at any of the stores because they were popular way back when I was a kid. I think she found it on one of those internet stores or something, I don’t know. And then one day a kid, kind of around your age, well maybe a little younger. I think you are probably older but…”
Another digression about what kids wear these days…
“Anyways, this kid asked me where I got my pack. I told him my wife got it for me because I tried to find them myself, but they didn’t have them at any of the stores because they were popular when I was a kid. I think she found it on one of those internet stores or something, I don’t know. Then the kid told me he was curious because everyone wears them to raves and he had tried to get one because he liked to go to raves but he never had a fanny pack because he could never find one. That’s why I asked you if you use it for raves. You don’t look like you go to raves but I thought you might because those packs are popular at raves I guess.”
Holy drug culture Batman… I guess I had known it all along, but my mind had refused to come to terms with the truth. Asian Mexican was right. My fanny pack was sending all the wrong signals for all these years.
I had to make the tough decision. It was finally time for greatest, most controversial fashion statement (in the history of all fashion statements) to retire… again.
So pussycats, that was the last and final installment of The Fanny Pack Diaires. I'm know you enjoyed it as much as I did. If this is the first one you've read, what is wrong with you! Read all 4 parts! Or Re-read them! Peter is hilarious, and this series was probably my favorite thing to happen to Dailysass since Jhune Li.
So I hope you enjoyed this series, and let me know if you like having guest posts twice a week!
Have a great day,
and please keep it sassy,