Fake It ‘Til You Make It

What’s happening, folks? It’s your girl, Di, here to give you my weekly piece on the goings on of Buena Beach, the urban internet soap opera (updated weekdays at

As always, there was plenty of action this week at the Beach. I could give you the scoop on my boss being forced to go on leave after yet another anxiety attack. Or, me catching my colleague getting busy after hours in the boss’ office. Or, finally learning why my homeboy Calvin got fired a few weeks ago (can you say “money laundering”?). Maybe I could even divulge how I managed to get my hands on the personnel file of my least favorite co-worker, Veronica.

Instead, I’ve decided to talk about a personal problem I’m dealing with which, in a way, involves my aforementioned office arch nemesis. Today, I want to chat about bags. No, not the kind forming under my eyes right now after yet another late-night reading everyone’s comments on UTC. I’m talking about handbags (*Guys, don’t check out on me yet; believe it or not, this entry may have some application for you too). Gucci, Prada, Louis, Coach…bags! I’m into them, and don’t put me down for that. We all have our “things.” Some of you love jewelry and the bling-bling. For others, your thing might be sneakers or makeup or travel excursions or the newest techie gadgets. Well for me, bags do it.

Now I hate admitting it, but during these tough economic times (thank you, George), I’ve had to do the unthinkable – fake it. I’m not proud of it. Just doing what I gotta do, you know? And I had no problem with it until this Veronica chick showed up this week with a REAL Prada bag. One of the big ones. And I know it’s real because, while she went to powder her nose the other day, I snuck into her cubicle and pulled it out from her drawer for an up-close and personal inspection. And it passed the test – real seams; soft, supple leather; tight, even stitching; a genuine interior label; symmetrical spacing of patterns.

So now, it’s with great shame that I walk in with the crown jewel of my collection (let’s call her Luigi Vuitton). She, along with her buddies Proda, Michaela Kors, and Gu-chay (next to her good friend, Dol-chay), are all dull in comparison to the real thing.

In most cases, I see nothing wrong with faking it. Yes there are, indeed, some things that I don’t mind faking at all. Eyelashes. Signatures. Sexual pleasure. Polite smiles. Illness (especially on bright, sunny days when I only have 2.4 hours of vacation time accumulated). I think most folks would even agree that newfound sets of boobs or heads of hair are widely accepted these days. But with bags for some reason, it hurts.

I’d been so proud of Luigi, purchased just weeks ago from my cousin’s babysitter’s homeboy that stays on 110th and Western for just $200 (all he needs is a photo). In fact, I’d felt that way about all of my purses…well, except for the white pleather Dooney clutch that my boyfriend Jonathan gave me to make reparations after our very first fight.

This week on her UTC blog, Yaminah Ahmad wrote about flossin’ (not the teeth) and I have to say, I was kind of moved. I feel like I spend so much time (and money) on faking it, but I’m starting to think that, perhaps, it’s that time in my life (late 20s) for me to stop trying to get over. Time to let go of the bootleg DVDs (don’t you know, I already saw “The Love Guru”) and the free music downloads and the reduced priced (read: smoking hot) media equipment populating my living room - and just be responsible.

If I want the $3,000 bag, I should get myself in a financial position where I can afford a $3,000 bag. I need to be, as that trite old saying says, part of the solution, not part of the problem. I shouldn’t fall victim to our culture of overabundance and commercialism and waste. And I…

Wait. Wait a second. I’m getting too deep, here. I’m Diane, here representing Buena Beach – the soap opera. Besides, there are plenty of other UTC bloggers who are much better at breaking down the political, social, racial, cultural stuff. Someone’s gotta be materialistic and superficial. So in that case, looks like I’ll be calling homeboy for a new $200 Versachee satchel, or start using my little money to rent my bags monthly from Bag, Borrow, or Steal.

Anyways, take care, y’all. I’ll see you next week.

*And fellas, go back and read this again and just replace the word “bag” with watch, gold tooth, or hat.

Diane is (quite) a character on the online soap opera Buena Beach ( Her weekly insights on what’s happening at the Beach are featured exclusively on Urban Thought Collective.

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