In my quest to be one of those people – the successful ones – I’ve observed a couple of things that separate them from the other people:
- They set limits and stick to them.
- They fly carry-on.
I’m not just talking financial or career success. If I were, neither of these rules applies.
The fact that rich people are called “fat cats” is a good clue that some of them can’t lay off the donuts.
Or the blow, for that matter. Look at Chris Farley. Not real big on limits, was he?
And I see all kinds of rich, important-looking folks at the baggage carousel. They (or, more often, their “people”) heave one giant bag after another onto their cart before rolling it out to their chauffered SUVs.
But in terms of all-around personal success, people who have it live a streamlined life.
They do things in moderation — like packing.
All they take with them are a few high-quality, non-wrinkling, mix-and-match basics. Their outfits go from day to night. And for cosmetics, they only need lip balm.
Why would they weigh themselves down with excess? They don’t have time to stand around the baggage claim area. Life is waiting.
I want to be that person who wheels effortlessly from the gate to the airport exit, saying, “later suckers.”
So I’ve decided to do something epic:
I’m shopping for a carry-on suitcase. The hard kind, that doesn’t expand at all. And I’m going to use it.
This is a very big deal for me. I’m a lifelong overpacker.
When I’m filling the giant suitcase, my rationale is: So? I need options! Why shouldn’t I take a ton of stuff? Why should I stress myself out with decisions? I’m just going to check the bag anyway. And it has wheels. And who cares what people think?
Thing is, I care what people think. When I travel somewhere with my husband, my luggage makes him hate me. I say, “you don’t have to carry it” but he insists on carrying it. And hating me.
And then, whenever we get where we’re going, someone jokes, “how many months are you here for?” Oh — ha, ha. Very funny. I need options, OK?
My bag is always the one tipping over.
It’s the one that gets stuck in the revolving door. The one the person at the airline check-in slaps with a giant sticker that says OVERWEIGHT. Oh, nice. That makes my bag feel just great. Why don’t I slap that same sticker on you, check-in lady? Right on your fat head.
I decided to become a carry-on person two or three trips ago. That didn’t go so well. I bought what the store told me was a regulation sized “cabin” bag. The soft kind. As I zipped it up, I asked my husband, “aren’t you proud of me? I’m going carry on!”
He said, “That’s not carry on.”
Yes, I’d stuffed it pretty full, and the zipper pull had broken off from the tension of tugging it closed, but come on: it was regulation size.
At the airport, I tried to cram it into the tiny metal cage they have to test the bag size. I was grunting and poking at it and smushing it from every possible angle . If you’re ever tried to shove your badunkadunk into pants that are three sizes too small, you know what this looks like. The security lady wasn’t having it.
She said, “That’s not carry on.”
I said, “But it’s regulation carry on size!”
She sent me back to check it in. I rolled my eyes at the people waiting behind me as if to warn them, “good luck with this crazy bitch.” Then, muttering, “This is unbelievable,” I wheeled my bag off in a huff. Though, before I could do that I had to tug and squish and wiggle the bag out of the cage. There was lots of effort and grunting involved, which somewhat lessened the dramatic effect of the wheeling off in a huff. Didn’t help that the bag tipped over and spun around on me after about three feet.
That’s not going to happen with my future suitcase.
It’ll give me limits. With a hard case, overstuffing isn’t a possibility.
Watch out, folks. ‘Scuse me.
Successful person coming through.