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the magical world of airsickness bags

Welcome. This is what my wife calls "a bunch of stupid jokes and pictures of paper bags." She's right about the jokes. She's wrong about the bags: some of them are plastic.

What the critics say: "Utterly unnotable" (Wikipedia editor). "Ridiculous collections #4" (Buzzfeed). Other comments: "As complete wastes of time go, it's a very high quality complete waste of time... An entirely dispensable source of inane comments about a truly trivial subject... A monument to the planet's worst corporate design... An unwelcome reminder of some of the more unpleasant moments in our lives."

Donations (unused, please) of bags not represented in the bag gallery are welcomed -- please mail to this address, and I'll credit you on this site! I am happy to trade any extras that I have. Check out the links to other bag sites, find out how you can use your spare bags, and explore the fascinating world of bag manufacturers

Highlights: The design features page reveals the secrets of professional baggery, and the logos page analyses the enigma of airline corporate identities. Search for your favourite bag, browse the bag gallery by country and airline, and check out the biggest, best and worst bags!


Heave Ho, the first bookbag

"I must take exception on your statement that the Langescheidt bookbag is the first publisher to have realized the value of barfbags as an advertising medium", says Alaskan collector Bruce Kelly.

"Back in 1992, Heave Ho! My Little Green Book of Seasickness was published to...well...a limited audience. It was authored by Charles Mazel as a personal thesis of his experiences with motion sickness drawing on both personal and historical topics and... yes, it had a barf bag as a bonus tucked between the pages of each book.

"In addition, there are two known designs issued (I have both). The first bag was a longer version and the second (perhaps as a cost-saving device) was smaller. Both used identical stickers on white generics."

You can admire Bruce's scans of these history-making bags on the left.

The book comes in two editions, pictured on the left, identical except for the covers. The book is full of interesting and witty tidbits about seasickness through the ages. Order your own signed copy, including the bag, direct from the author at The ideal present for the baggist looking to round off his collection with some supporting literature.

Thanks, Bruce, for the correction. And apologies to Dr Mazel for not checking my facts before allocating the kudos for the first bookbag to Langenscheidt.

Anyone want to dispute their claim to be the first German dictionary publisher to use bags as an advertising medium?

Breaking news: Charles Mazel, author of the Heave Ho tome, says the first edition sold about 12,000 copies. That means there are that many of these bags washing around waiting to be added to someone's collection.

Friday, May 04, 2007 


What do Latvia, Liberia and Lesotho have in common? Yes, they all start with an L. What else? They're all missing from my barfbag collection.

What's the biggest country not represented? Chad. In terms of population? Burkina Faso. Other prominent absentees (coloured red in the map): Georgia and Rwanda. 

Major underrepresented portions of the globe are a swathe of Africa and chunks of Central Asia and Central America.

Donations from these areas especially welcome!

Centres of megabagdiversity are the USA (though many US bags are distressingly plain), China, the UK, Canada, Germany, Brazil and Indonesia. 

Click here for details.

For new baggists only


New to the world of bag collecting? Want to get a head start on your collection? Then send me an email, and I'll send you a randomly selected free starter pack from my surplus bag stock. There won't be anything rare, and you may end up with some duplicates, but at least you'll be able to show your friends a few more of these lovely cultural artefacts. Make sure you include your mailing address in your email. Offer good as long as stocks last.

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