Fanny Packs Are Getting an Unnecessary Rebranding

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I don’t know if you also wake up in cold sweats at night after nightmare flashbacks in which you are eight years old again and traipsing through an amusement park with your parents, all care-free and full of youth and naiveté, unaware of the dangers that lie out there in the world or the concept of mortality, only to discover immediately that you are actually completely nude save for the bright blue fanny pack that your mother forced you to wear so that you’d never go without your sunblock (to prevent sunburn and eventual skin cancer) and an inhaler (so that your lungs and throat stop working after riding a rollercoaster—the kids rollercoaster). Also in this dream you are actually the age you are now but are acting like an eight-year-old. Have you had this dream? Neither have I. No, not ever. Ha ha!

But let me get to the point: the fanny pack. It’s a terrifying thing. They are coming back, I hear, and on occasion I will find myself on Bedford Avenue in the depths of Williamsburg, Brooklyn (the horrors!), and I will spot some vintage throwback strapped to the skinny waist of some dummy out there in the wild. Will the fanny pack comeback be limited to the ironic streets of North Brooklyn, or will normal adults get in on this act, too?

My fears, you guys, might have come true, as a friend pointed me to L.L.Bean’s “waist packs” this morning:

waist packs

Nope! No, no, no. “Waist packs?” Come on, L.L. Bean, do you think I’m a total idiot? Let’s all call a fanny a fanny and stop trying to put the word “lumbar” in any context other than old dudes who hurt their backs lifting things. Because those are fanny packs. They have lots of zippers and strappy things and I’m sure they can hold all kinds of bottles and chains and condoms and whatever masculine things one would need to go walking in the woods and climbing rocks or whatever else people who shop at L.L.Bean like to pretend they do. But that’s a fanny pack and I refuse to call it anything else.