To the Oppressor, With Love by Deb Danielle Younge-Ullman

Dear Oppressor,

You don’t seem to know I exist. It’s understandable, I suppose. If you did notice me, it would be with indifference, possibly even disdain. That’s fine. I live to be abused and ignored, filled to the brim or stripped bare, pummeled with sharp objects, suffocated with unidentifiable and smelly things at the whim of others. I have witnessed untold decadence and misery. I am a stalwart, stoic carrier of the precious and the prosaic. (I am also somewhat skilled in the passive aggressive, as you can see.)

I have carried your socks and underwear, Oppressor. Also your daughter’s diapers, your dog’s poop bags and food for your entire family. I have carried your wife’s everything, over the past four and a half years. I have been around the world, criss-crossed North America and function as a purse, overnight bag and briefcase, often simultaneously.

Oppressor, I may appear nothing to you, but in fact I am quite special. I am from Spain, carefully chosen and purchased from the store of my maker, Adolpho Domingo, a name that must be spoken with a certain buttery and exotic cadence, ideally with a faux Spanish accent. But I digress.

I am writing to you, Oppressor, because the days are beginning to wear on me. Though I have many useful compartments, zippered, snapped, etcetera, I am weary of carrying the weight of the world on a daily basis. There is a lovely shelf to which I would like to go, only to come forth for special occasions. From this shelf I will happily observe the frantic comings and goings of your lovely family and speak soft, calming words to your crazed wife, coming out into the world only for special occasions.

I cannot be replaced, of course, since I am of such enduring quality and sentimental importance. But if some lesser, but more energetic young thing were to come along to take over the day-to-day running of things, I could retire and spend my days in peaceful contemplation. I would be much obliged and sure to live to a ripe old age with the excellent pension your wife has kindly set up. (I am also thinking of writing a novel.)

Giving up her close contact with me will of course be wrenching for Danielle, but she is a resilient woman and ultimately quite sensible. It might help if she had something like THIS, possibly in crimson.

Most sincerely,

The Purse

Post Script: I would enjoy my retirement even more if you could provide some turtles, occasional bottles of Port and please stop that blasted dog from barking.

19 Replies to “To the Oppressor, With Love by Deb Danielle Younge-Ullman”

  1. Joanne, I was contemplating a post about the Dorito problem but the purse won out. I think The Purse has been spared carrying Doritos, thus far. But you never know…

  2. Eileen, The Oppressor has hidden the little camera-computer uploader thingy. I have been asking for it for three weeks. If by chance today is the day I succeed in wrestling it from him (or finding it) I will take a picture of The Purse and post it here.

  3. Wounded, wounded, wounded. Perhaps we have a pot-kettle issue here. Perhaps it takes two to keep things organized in a house? Hm? And just so you all know, the first thing I said to The Oppressed this moring after I read the post was, “You want a new purse? Go and get it. Order it from that online place.” So REALLY, methinks she doth protest toooooooo much.

  4. What fun, Danielle. And then the loyal and dedicated purse brings The Oppressor into the Comments, adding even more! Personally, my feeling is that Michael is getting off far too easy with the “replacement,” given its moderate price and practical multi-functions. He should only know what you could do at Bag Borrow or Steal! 😉

  5. ROFL, Larramie. He IS getting off quite easily, isn’t he?! And now that you’ve introduced me to Bag Borrow or Steal, there really may be some trouble in the house. Good trouble, of course.

    Jess, I am going to do my best to photograph the purse sometime today. The tot and I are escaping to the suburbs and my mom’s house and I’m certain there is a working, hook-up-able digital camera there.

    I would have no end of fun writing a novel from my purse.

  6. Larramie and Lisa, you are officially off my Christmas card list. Don’t be too offended as the list already includes the entire population of the, um, the world, but realize this: you two could have been the first to get a card, but NO MORE!!! I have tried for years to keep Danielle from borrowing, stealing, and especially bagging and here you two are encouraging her. Fie. Fie! And also, Lisa, that link of yours is not a bag. It is a fan with a handle. Outrageously impractical. Imagine how much that handle will hurt your face when you go to fan yourself.

  7. Oh poo, realized I meant to say that the “don’t get a card” list contains the entire population of the world…poo.

  8. Lisa, now that I think about it, I really SHOULD angle for something a bit more ambitious. But I really am a practical girl when it comes to these day to day accessories.

    Oppressor, you have clearly been driven over the edge to think that work of art is a fan. Lisa and Larramie clearly have my best interests at heart.

  9. “And just so you all know, the first thing I said to The Oppressed this morning after I read the post was, “You want a new purse? Go and get it. Order it from that online place.” So REALLY, methinks she doth protest toooooo much.”

    Ahem, Oppressor, my dear, this is The Purse speaking once again. I am quoting your earlier words regarding my (clearly inferior but necessary) replacement in order to give you a hint, mano-a-mano as you young people say. Your wife does not wish to buy this upstart of a purse herself. It would be, as I attempted to intimate, a heart wrenching experience for her. For goodness sakes, man, she would have to take ME with her to purchase it. Unthinkable. Even were she to order it on this newfangled Inter-Net, I would likely be close by as we are seldom separated. She is far too sensitive to do this.

    I was trying to tell you subtly, young man, that your wife is unlikely to purchase my paltry underling on her own. However, if a thoughtful husband were to make this purchase and surprise her with it, the transition could, perhaps, be made. And you, Oppressor, would be a paragon of uxoriousness. It might even be considered romantic.

    I like white port as well as red. I may also, at some point, require a computer, the better to compose my novel with. The lighter the better, my dear.

    Most Sincerely,


  10. Let me make an hypothetical introduction. Curb, Purse. Purse, Curb. Remember what happened to the books for about six months, Purse? Mind your manners. There are worse fates than dust. You ask to be replaced? Huh? And then what would you be Purse? Know what you’d be? You’d just be a bag.

    Count your blessings Purse, for currently you get to spend time basking in the ebullient spectre of Danielle’s magnificent aura. But mark my words, Purse, for after this latest outburst, your days are numbered.

    The Oppressor

  11. Larramie, Dani and I have been on stage together. It lead to house, dog and child. Can’t imagine what it would be like with the addition of a purse.

  12. For the onstage purse routine I think one of us would need to learn ventriloquism. But it might be worth it.

    Oh, and Oppressor? Don’t even THINK about kicking my purse to the curb. Instead you should practice saying, in a buttery faux Spanish accent a la The Princess Bride, (my name is Indigo Montoya…) Adolpho….Adolopho Domingo…

    Yes folks, this is how we entertain ourselves…

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