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Do you know what really grinds my gears? (Cue Family Guy). Man bags and murses.

When I was coming up, dudes rocked backpacks, duffle bags, or even those NorthFace Kanga bags. You know the ones that kinda-sorta look like fanny packs but were given a pass because they were NorthFace?

Anyway, there was no question as to who should be rockin’ the bag. Men had heavy-duty nylon bags with two straps, while chicks had dainty leather bags that were monogrammed up. Today, however, is a whole different ball game. Dudes are walking around with these shoulder-strap bags that resemble purses. Some try to defend their choice by labeling them “man bags” (or totes and travel bags) but the fact they even have to specify the gender of their accessory should be a red flag.That’s why most stores have a men’s and women’s section.

Now, I’ll admit that some of these satchels might actually be made for men and might get a pass on a good day, but there seems to be more and more men walking around with girlie bags. Last year, Pharrell proudly posed on the cover of Paper magazine with his purple/fuchsia Hermes bag. Sorry, homie, I don’t care what the salesperson told you, what name brand it is, or how much it cost, I know a purse when I see one, buddy. You’ve been got.

Now, far be it for me to judge a man for having to carry a bunch of stuff around, but I’m infamous for not carrying a bag of any sort if I don’t have to. People often ask, “But where do you put your stuff?” In my pocket like any other adult male. DUH!

Why the hell is it so pertinent that I carry every portable item that I own with me every day? I just don’t get it. All I need is my iPod, Blackberry, wallet and keys and I’m good. I dropped the backpack as soon as I graduated college.

The only exception to my no bag rule is: 1) I just went shopping—which is highly unlikely in this recession 2) I’m coming from the gym 3) I just got off a plane 4) I had to lug my laptop around with me for some ungodly reason. Whatever the case, it’s usually a nuisance for me and the masculinity of said bag is clearly visible.

While scouring the Internets the other day I came across a video clip of some rap group called Jap City (I don’t get the name either). Apparently the whole man bag/murse epidemic riled them up to the point where they made a seven-minute salvo against men rockin’ womanly bags, as well as other questionable trends like biker chains, skinny jeans, scarves and anything else they deemed suspect.

What do y’all think about the trend of man purses? Has hip-hop gone soft or are some guys just trying to be fashionable while carrying all their crap? —Anslem Samuel

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