What’s In The Bag, Goose?
As children my siblings and I hauled our lives around in the small print bags my mom had sewn to organize our toys. Most often we transported an odd assortment of items. As we’d walk past her line of site, lugging our collections, she’d ask, “What’s in the bag, goose?” (I didn’t know the origin of the reference at the time but just found this commercial. )
For me, the phrase became synonymous with, “What are you up to?” It seemed to be her light-hearted way of checking in and checking up on us.
Now, thirty years later, my husband drops his loaded bag at the door when he arrives home from his travel to other LDS church congregations around central Minnesota, and I want to ask, “What’s in the bag, goose?”
In the figurative sense, his bag is full as he supports, strengthens and serves the members and leaders he visits on his assignments. But in the literal sense, we’ve discovered some oddities in his bag—a bright orange cone, a deposit bag, old manuals, envelopes, a foot ball kicking tee, a ball air pump.
My personal favorite had to be the baby doll in purple pajamas. He found it one Sunday morning when he unzipped his bag to pack his belongings for the day. That’s when I finally asked what was really going on.
Apparently, two leaders in our congregation hide random items in his unattended bag whenever Paul visits our “home” congregation. The mystery of the baby doll unfolded when our children left it on one of the leader’s chairs at the front of our church. But no, they wouldn’t take ownership of the doll, and it returned home in Paul’s bag with these instructions— it belongs in the nursery of a different building. We discovered they had all been at a meeting at this other building. Paul’s bag was lying around and so was the doll.
They continue to add their own assortment of items to his bag, but I wonder if they know that in their own light-hearted way of “checking in” they are really relieving some of the weight.