Summertime and the Living’s Hands Free
Look ma, no hands!
So you can ride a bike with no handlebars. Big whoop. I can ride a bike if someone is holding on to it while walking beside me but you don’t see me bragging about it. What’s actually impressive is figuring out how to ride life with no handlebars.
I’m talking about a hands-free summer.
Just imagine it: no more carrying crap. No more wet-shouldered walks across the Manhattan desert of Midtown avenues while sporting some dumb satchel. No more armpit clamps or hand cramps. No more pools of condensation from keeping your elbow bent to carry that dumb bag. No more dropping things. No more losing things! No more whacking strangers on the subway or trying to figure out where to put your clutch during a date. No more schlepping. No more purse means no more responsibility — school’s out for summer, arms open for the party.
Going totally hands-free is a commitment to fun. You can cartwheel on a moment’s notice. You can high-five yourself when you tell a good joke. You can hand jive to Grease without having to put down your shit, and you’re consistently prepared to double-fist adult beverages. It’s serious business — this takes logistical planning, dedication, phenomenal social skills, and bravery — but if you follow my guide, you’ll be living La Vida Bluetooth in no time.
Invest in clothing with pockets
Very rarely do we actually make use of our clothing’s sewn-in utility, but it turns out that pockets are great for holding things. Maybe this is why Leandra wants cargo shorts.
Alternatively, learn to appreciate nature’s pockets
Kangaroos have had it right all along. So too, I suppose, have drug mules. I bet you’ve never tried to keep your house key inside your belly button, but if you ask either of them (a kangaroo or a drug mule, that is), it’s definitely doable. And if for some reason you can’t bear the thought of keeping your debit card in your various DNA-given ATMs, opt for a Boobypack. Then raise your arms in celebration.
Find a friend who is bringing a purse no matter what
Then slip your belongings in when she isn’t looking.
Ask strangers to hold things for you
You kind of have to trick them at first — “Excuse me, do you mind holding this umbrella, backpack, shopping bag and antique rug I just found while I quickly tie my shoe?” — then engage them in conversation long enough until you’ve reached your destination.
Now, if you’re concerned about someone running off with your crap, let me ask you this: when’s the last time you handed your phone to a stranger so they could take a picture of you and your friends? Yesterday? Exactly. A stranger is just a purse you haven’t met yet.
Create urban hiding places
I like to dig holes around various locations in the city and hide important things: my ID lives under a tree near my favorite bar, my emergencies-only credit card is shoved into a potted plant outside of Barneys. I keep a Chapstick under the floor mat of nearly every coffee shop I frequent and drop my phone off in puddles of water whenever convenient.
Just don’t bring shit with you
And hope for the best.
Restaurants, friends, roommates and police tend to get really annoyed with this one, but not having to hold anything all summer is worth it.
…Especially if you need your hands free to grab on to your bike.
Feature image via Downtown from Behind