It's Sunday, and I'm going to Target, as I do on the weekends. I've got $40 left on my Target gift card from Christmas (holla!), and I'm feeling life right now. As the strategic shopper that I am, I've come early enough so it's not crowded. I'm not here to make friends, after all… Let's be clear: This is MY time.
I'm walking through the sliding glass doors — the familiarity of the sight is not unlike coming home after a long trip. It smells like popcorn. There's a sale. This is the universe at its finest.
I'm not entirely sure what I'm going to buy today, but that's kind of the point of Target. You might come intending to purchase a side table or a vacuum cleaner or a value pack of paper towels, but understand you'll be leaving with a motley of home goods and probably trail mix.
I'm getting a shopping basket when I see something unfamiliar. There, amongst the carts and the shopping baskets, is what appears to be some kind of wearable device. What is going on here? I think. I look around. I see it happening in the women's clothing section — a woman is WEARING her shopping basket. She looks like she's stumbled upon the secret to space and time. I envy her ease and her grace. I go for it.
I pick up the basket and realize it's designed to be worn like a fanny pack. It is, indeed, a Fanny Basket. It fits snugly and clips right on. Beyond that, it has a holder for my phone AND for my latte. My hands are free; my life, changed. If Target had lips, I would kiss them in that moment, like, EUREKA, you've done it!
Because here's the thing:
There are times when you're shopping, and you have to push the cart or hold the basket yourself. It's OK, but it could be better (i.e., you could not be doing these things). Sometimes you're with someone, and they do it for you...but they resent you for this. They also get slowed down by people in their way, at which point you're already an aisle gone, you've lost each other, and now you've got to reconcile this. It's not forward motion, and only forward motion is good.
The Fanny Basket, I'm quickly realizing, avoids these issues. It's virtually issue free just as it's hands free, and to be free is to be limitless, and that is what I am right now. I am using BOTH hands to pick things up. I am TOSSING things into my basket. I am shimmying every now and then with both arms out alone in the card aisle and again in the camping supply aisle.
I've got maybe 20 pounds of items in my Fanny Basket (which causes no strain, surprisingly). Instead, I feel a guardianship over it. You are my basket, I think. I realize the straps around my waist are mimicking a small hug, and this begins to explain my growing affection.
A woman stops me. I'm well prepared for her question. "Yep, it's a Fanny Basket," I say proudly. She's very surprised and definitely intrigued. I tell her how great it is and do a small shimmy to demonstrate the reliability of the straps, the items in my basket sounding like maracas. This makes the demonstration very fun. We're having a good time.
She's almost done with her shopping trip for today, but can't wait to bring her husband next time to give the Fanny Basket a try. "I hope you love it," I say.
At this point, Target is getting busy, and there are Fanny Baskets galore. I smile to myself for being an early adopter and decide I've exceeded the amount on my gift card (which is worth it) and head toward the register. I'm surprised at my unwillingness to unclip the basket. When I finally do, I feel cold and very light. The Fanny Basket had acted as an anchor I didn't know I needed. I'm thankful for this.
I pay $57.68 and carry the Fanny Basket to the (now) very small stack by the doors. I'm honestly sad to be leaving. The basket drops into place with the satisfying sound of plastic on plastic, and I don't look back. I won't say good-bye, because this is just the beginning for us.
I sit in my car for longer than usual before finally starting it.
All images via BuzzFeed