By Frank Lowe
Originally published on Advocate.com March 19 2014 11:12 AM ET
One of the things that excited me most about becoming a parent was all of the gear I would get to buy. I was able to choose the hottest new stroller, high chair, and car seat. Those were a blast to select, as the market is saturated with aesthetically pleasing styles. Also, I was thrilled about the possibility of getting a fabulous diaper bag. And then I started looking at them. Honestly, what's out there is abysmal. Sure, there are a couple of styles that are kinda cute, but for the most part it is depressing. And if you are a dad looking for a diaper bag, the list is even shorter. Here is my list of the 5 Most Hideous Diaper Bags available:
5. "Rocket science is easier than this": As if the concept of a backpack isn’t atrocious enough, they’ve decided to make this into some Inspector Gadget crazy convertible number in shit brown. The only plus side of this is it goes beautifully with broken-in mom jeans. I can see a lot of straight dads being attracted to this (no offense), but most sensible gay dads will be overwhelmed by both the lack of appeal and the apparent overdesign.
4. "I'm not like a regular mom, I'm a cool mom": If you want to tell the world “I smoke pot when the baby’s asleep,” this is the perfect bag for you! It also has the added benefit of teaching your little one about death long before his/her peers. Gift with purchase: roach clips that double as diaper pins. I can almost see a gay parent picking this up thinking this is cute. It's not. Skulls and babies don't go together.
3. "I wasn't ready to have a baby": Calling all Jersey Shore moms. This is one of those tragic cases of some person thinking they are buying something cool, and all their friends say they like it, but in reality they’re just being nice (or are they?). Nothing says “I’m a new mom” like a studded hobo bag that looks like you picked it up in a Las Vegas souvenir shop. Unfortunately, this represents a lot of the "newer styles," which factor the gay dad completely out of the situation. It's clearly feminine, as it resembles a handbag. A cheap one.
2. "Taste went out the window when I became a parent": Seriously, I don’t know where to begin with this one. It looks like a hippie took some LSD and then vomited on this bag, and then a Lilly Pulitzer fan came along and tried to cute it up with some bows. My eyes actually hurt from looking at it. It’s scary to think of someone who would actually take this in public. For the record, this was designed strictly for women, which is OK, but there are a huge number of bags like these on the market. Owl be honest, I’m scared.
1. "My child will get a gun for his/her third birthday": Yes, it’s hard to believe, but it’s true. Someone actually green-lit this idea and made it into a product. Perfect if you are Honey Boo Boo’s mom. Caution: May cause morning sickness (after you have delivered your baby). You won't be able to un-see this one. This style is completely impractical for any parent, straight or gay. Lesbians, DO NOT BUY THIS AS TEMPTED AS YOU MAY BE.
These are just a sampling of the beasts that grace the world of diaper bags. The available bags designed for men are just as miserable (but, thankfully, not as colorful). I was so emotionally traumatized that I just went with a simple black nylon quilted Prada messenger bag, which ended up being absolutely perfect. It was simple and had a single zip pocket on the outside and a flap. The whole thing fit beautifully on the handle of my Bugaboo stroller, and it matched everything I would wear. Yes, it's true — until people start designing more diaper bags geared toward men, the messenger bag is the way to go, Prada or not.