Belle Re-Post: Men and Pockets

Full Pockets Make You Look Fat

As a supplement to the intern posts, I have decided to re-post a rant from over a year ago about male staffers (and men in general) who carry too much crap in their pockets.  This is mostly because I got stuck in line yesterday behind a man who needed five passes to get through security.  Seriously men, this is desperately irritating.

On your average weekday morning, the line to enter the Cannon House Office Building snakes out the door toward the street.  Staffers wait impatiently bopping to their iPods and reading their newspapers shivering against the cold or melting in the heat.  And when a holdup in the natural ebb and flow of the security screening process occurs, the perpetrator is either a tourist or a man with overly full pockets.

Such was the case this morning. And as I watched a tall, dark and overloaded gentlemen empty his pockets item-by-item, I was truly astonished by the amount of crap that he had shoved into them.

From his pants pockets, he removed a Blackberry Curve, a cell phone, a money clip, a pocket knife, a handful of loose change and another Blackberry.  From his jacket pocket came an iPod, a metro card, a set of keys and a lighter.  And just when I thought there was no more room at the inn, he extricated two portable memory drives and a billfold from his inside jacket pocket. All of this was in addition to the laptop bag that he was carrying.

He then stepped through the metal detector and was quickly followed by the tell tale beep of a job poorly done.

As loud groans filled the corridor, he rechecked his pockets and discovered another lighter and two more pieces of change.  I expected him to go all Mary Poppins and pull out a floor lamp or a tea set.

Another try through the machine, and another beep.  The belt.  He forgot the belt.  The very belt that I was moments away from strangling him with.

Finally, after what seemed like a lifetime to the people in line behind him, he cleared security.  Suddenly conscious of how much time he had wasted, he dumped two bowls worth of detritus into his laptop bag (where it belonged in the first place) and jogged toward the elevator completely oblivious to the fact that he had just made a half-dozen mortal enemies.

As I walked back to my office, seething like a Shakespearean villain, I kept returning to the same question, “Why do men carry so much sh** in their pockets?” Frankly, it’s infuriating.

In an effort to cleanse the security lines of this scourge, I have compiled a list of why men should limit the items in their pockets to only most necessary and leave the rest at home.

  1. Carrying excess items in your pockets make your pants bulge, and not in a good way.
  2. Only elves should jingle when they walk.
  3. Constantly sifting through your pockets in order to find things makes you look like a dope.
  4. Bumping into people on the Metro gives other riders bruises and abrasions.
  5. Your girlfriend does not want to wind up carrying all of your crap in her purse every time that you go out.  She is not a Sherpa, and her Kate Spade clutch is not a yak.

So, what is necessary?

I carry a Blackberry, my House ID, a wallet, an iPod and a tin of Rosebud Salve in my purse.  If you are a man carrying more stuff than I am, you are officially high maintenance.  And coming from me that is a sad commentary on your existence…

So unless you want every person you encounter to think you are the Zsa Zsa Gabor of the House Office Buildings, empty your pockets.  Or at the very least, start emptying them while you wait in the security line, and don’t wait til you get to the metal detector to begin disarming yourself. 

The Capitol Police and this blogger thank you.



  1. Bhill says:

    Bella, I love this rant and your blog.
    I can’t tell you how many times I have waited in line behind a gentleman with the same issues on the Senate side. They must be brothers.
    We also have have this young man who seems to have fifty dollars worth of change in his pocket EVERY morning. I don’t get it, who has that much change at eight o’clock in the morning. He needs two hands to scoop it out of the bowl. Of course he doesn’t get it all on the first try either.
    Thanks for the great reading.

    July 15, 2010/Reply
  2. AT says:

    Great read!

    Can we also talk about the time that the guy in front of me put a full fountain beverage on the xray machine? It spilled over, and CP basically scolded him like a little kid that didn’t raise his hand before speaking out loud in school.

    July 16, 2010/Reply
  3. District Cut says:

    Great post and I totally agree. I did a post on it awhile back.

    July 16, 2010/Reply
  4. kob says:

    You are so totally right! Great post.

    July 16, 2010/Reply
  5. Alex says:

    I want you to print this rant out, fold it up until it’s all pointy corners and shove it right into your purse.

    July 16, 2010/Reply
  6. Belle says:


    There’s no law that a man can’t carry a messenger bag or briefcase to work. If you need to bring that much stuff to start your day, buy a bag.

    July 16, 2010/Reply
  7. K says:

    My husband and his co-workers (they are Capitol police) thank you. ­čśë

    July 16, 2010/Reply