Worried that your overstuffed purse is veering into Hoarders territory? Don't be ashamed. In fact, after hearing what Janis Joplin carried in her handbag, you'll probably want to add a few more eyebrow pencils and empty SoCo bottles.
The Hairpin's Mary Miller has unearthed this description of Janis' bag from the 1972 book Piece of My Heart by David Dalton. He writes:
Now where in the hell did I put that lighter…? Probably left it in that bar. I'm real sloppy. Lose more damn things in bars. Left a wallet with a grand in it in a bar last week. Just can't seem to hang onto anything, man. In desperation Janis dumps her bag onto the floor of the limo. Its contents are truly awesome. Janis has a baglady's compulsion to carry her whole life with her. There are: two movie stubs, a pack of cigarettes, an antique cigarette holder, several motel and hotel room keys, a box of Kleenex, a compact and various make up cases (in addition to a bunch of eyebrow pencils held together with a rubber band), an address book, dozens of bits of paper, business cards, match box covers with phone numbers written in near-legible barroom scrawls, guitar picks, a bottle of Southern Comfort (empty), a hip flask, an opened package of complementary macadamia nuts from American Airlines, cassettes of Johnny Cash and Otis Redding, gum, sunglasses, credit cards, aspirin, assorted pens and writing pad, a corkscrew, an alarm clock, a copy of Time, and two hefty books-Nancy Milford's biography of Zelda Fitzgerald and Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel.
There you go: Definitive proof that a cluttered bag is a sign of a brilliant mind.
What Was In Janis Joplin's Handbag? [The Hairpin]