I know there is someone out there, somewhere, who needs another tote bag. Raise your hand, I know you’re out there. The universe doesn’t make any sense without you in it, Mr. Unknown Quotient, because they are seriously making a goddamn metric hump-ton of tote bags these days and I have no freakin’ idea who needs another one.
Seriously. I like artists and crafty people. I live in Brooklyn. I get all lathered up when I hear someone I’m talking to screen prints things. That is awesome! Way to create, friend! But if you ask me to buy one of your screenprinted creations on a tote bag I’m going to say no because I’ve got 462 of the things stacked up like extremely ineffective cord wood in my closet and hanging from hooks in my hall where I should have jackets.
The furthest I can stretch my concept of multiple tote bag use is two at a time. There are a limited number of things one would put in a tote bag as opposed to backpacks or messenger bags or purses or pockets or, y’know, hands. Right now I’m thinking groceries and towels, that’s about it. So maybe going to the beach with friends you might need more than one tote bag? Ah, but the hitch in that is that will likely have their own tote bags that they’ve been waiting to use in such a situation, perhaps totes acquired from a public radio donation or purchased at some sort of farmer’s market in a eco-sustainable frenzy.
I would completely grin ear to ear if I saw a tote bag full of oranges. Make this happen. But that’s not the point.
The point is that I heard that Toro Y Moi is packaging his latest album as a tote bag plus download code and I want to like this idea. Really, I do. I love this period of flux in the business of music marketing where added value items are thrown hither and yon and big crazy ideas come crashing around the blogs like ancient monsters awakened to destroy by the sound of the record industry’s collapse. It looks way less desperate than when the comic book industry did a similar thing in the 90s with chromium covers and holograms and polybagged trading cards and crap like that. Much cooler.
It’s even printed in Michigan and man, they could use the work.
My problem is that I will never use another tote bag. Ever. There will never be a need for me to buy a tote bag. Even if rendered homeless and nude with all my earthly possessions burnt and the ashes scattered by bitchy ravens (really guys, rub it in), if I found myself in need of something to carry a towel and some oranges I could simply yell on any street in the land “Hey, TOTE BAG!” and one of my fellow humans would have a spare they could give me.Within minutes.
In summary, can we please start releasing non-record records in some commemorative form that actually has a use? Like maybe load the album on a USB drive that’s the handle of a Bowie knife? (Sweet jams for Wild West defense!) Or maybe a pizza stone with a unique download code etched into its surface? Or a plum tree seedling with label stick that reads “I ABSOLVE YOU FOR TORRENTING IT”.
Image from the Etsy page where you can get a tote bag with a little dog wearing glasses and a curly black toupee.