post cover

Episodes: 12 places I could take my printer in the tote bag it came with


Emily VanDerWerff

Nov 05 2015

4 min read



Recently, I hooked up a new printer. "New" is a bit of a misnomer. I've had it in a box for a few years, since my parents got it for me as a gift, and in all that time, I've had maybe four occasions where I thought, "Shit, I wish I had hooked up that printer." But since we're moving, I figured I would set it up and get it running, for those times when I need to print a court document or something. It's a really nice printer. It even has a sorta tablet built into it, because it was made when tablets were the hot new thing.

It also comes with a tote bag. At first, I thought this was a weird value-add designed to make you think you were somehow helping the environment even though you had just bought a printer that would consume reams upon reams of paper. So as you were printing out the Mahabharata in 48-point typeface for ease of reading, you could at least assure yourself you weren't going to be throwing out plastic bags.

I mean, maybe that's what it's for, but the damn thing fits the printer exactly. If you needed a reason to carry a printer around, this would be the way to do that. And because the printer is relatively light (for a printer), it's not hard to imagine strolling around my neighborhood, smile on my face, greeting everyone I see, printer swinging daintily from my hand. Basically, what I'm saying is, picture "Belle," the opening number from Beauty and the Beast, only instead of an animated teenage girl, it's an overweight TV critic in his 30s, and instead of a wicker basket, he's holding a crummy tote bag, and instead of putting a book in that basket (which, Belle, have you ever carried anything?), he's putting a printer in the tote bag.

The part where I'm singing and spinning about is basically the same, though.

Anyway, I've become inspired by this tote bag (and reader Chris Dole suggesting this idea for a post), so I've come up with 11 different places I could bring my printer in its tote bag.

1.) A coffee shop. This seems like a natural. In fact, it's so natural that I am 90 percent sure I'm going to try it. There's a Starbucks a couple of blocks from my house. I'm going to take my printer there in its tote bag and print a bunch of stuff while drinking some truly awful coffee.

2.) A sporting event. There's simply no reason to take in a Laker game this season if I can't simultaneously be conducting my business like it's 1987.

3.) The park. Ideally in the middle of the day. Just sitting there. On a bench. Surrounded by birds. Printing stuff.

4.) The airport. I usually get my boarding pass on my phone, but now I could just always have it available on my printer. So long as I could find an outlet and security let me bring it as my personal item.

5.) Taco Bell.

6.) In my car. Our car has a power outlet, into which I could quite easily plug my printer. This would be of particular convenience while stuck in traffic on the 405, as I could hand out freshly printed flyers.

7.) To a school. If anybody's kids need to learn how heavily we used to rely on paper, just let me know.

8.) To court, in the event that I am ever charged with a crime. It's important to have a paper record of all proceedings in a courtroom. Printers make obtaining such a record possible.Technology!

9.) To 1995. If I arrived in 1995 with a printer from 2010, it would be a lot harder to find computers with USB ports. But everybody would be, like, "Wow, you can carry your printer in a bag? That's really forward thinking of you."

10.) To the 2015 tablet computing expo. I could show off the fact that my shitty tablet is attached to a completely adequate printer.

11.) To a campaign stop for Carly Fiorina. I could ask her why Hewlett Packard saw the need to put a shitty tablet on a perfectly good printer!

12.) Kinko's. Just to hammer home how little I trust them since they became "FedEx Business Center."


Episodes is published daily, Monday through Friday, unless I don't feel like it. It is mostly about television, except when it's not. Suggest topics for future installments via email or on Twitter. Read more of my work at Vox Dot Com.

Read more posts like this in your inbox

Subscribe to the newsletter