Oh, it’s been a week/lifetime/fetal position-last-few-months.

Let’s, for a moment, put all that aside — digging deep, shelving the tension and what-the-hellness, listening to the sounds of our own heartbeat, feeling the curve of our spine against our chair, letting it all melt away — and let’s take the plunge together.

Because Bag Lady, like, actually needs a new plunger.

In a normal year, I would trot down to Walmart/Dollar General/any hardware store and, you know, just buy one. But this has proven time and again, with occasional disastrous consequence, to be nothing like a normal year.

Indeed, 2020 needs a massive flushing.

So for a moment, just for fun, price is no object! Location is no object! Can I find one carved from a tree, ruby-encrusted, Oprah-approved or shaped like Elvis?


I mean, let’s see what plunger awesomeness awaits.

Ski pole plunger, SkiArtistry on Etsy, $27.47

An actual old ski pole complete with the looped handle on top. From the shop’s description: “High quality, fully functional (unlike other ski pole plungers on the market that are purely for decoration), reinforced and sealed to prevent water from getting inside the pole.” I even appreciate the not-so-subtle swipe at the competition. Take pride in your work! Even if you’re making ski pole plungers.

Korky 99-4A Beehive Max plunger, Amazon, $16.42

The New York Times’ Wirecutter column reviewed “The Best Toilet Plunger for 2020” in February, before this plunger-storm even happened! So prescient. They legit tested several brands, down to setting up a fake toilet with translucent plumbing and named this one tops. It kinda, sorta puts Bag Lady and Shopping Siren’s testing escapades to shame, when we’d shut the conference room door and eat ice cream and dip to our hearts’ content and debate a rating based on things like, “ewww” and “I’ve had worse,” but I’ll allow it.

Plush velvet toilet plunger hat, NickyBigsNovelties on Etsy, $13


Classic orange on the bottom with a brown handle on top. What’s that saying? “If you love something, set it free. Also, you’ll only ever find an amazing plush velvet toilet plunger hat when you’re not looking for an amazing plush velvet toilet plunger hat.” Because, that.

American Master Plunger, Re Made Company, $350

Try as I might, I could not find an Oprah-sanctioned plunger, though I did find a Chicago woman once inspired by Oprah to design her own decorative plunger line. Alas, her Plungees appears to have, well, gone down the drain — I couldn’t find any trace of it online. But, if we could glimpse inside Oprah’s guest bathroom for a moment, I imagine we’d find something like this American-made line of hella fancy plungers with names like Fortitude, Compassion, Radiant Beauty and Strike Anywhere. They come with a leather bowl cap and ship in a custom wooden crate. I know. It’s a lot to take in.

Are you braced? Fully? Because there’s also this:

Gentleman’s Leather Plunger Sling, Re Made Company, $165

Words . . . fail me. No, wait, I’ve found them again: This crisscross leather harness sits on one’s back as a means to store and transport one’s plunger. (Just how far is one walking, exactly, on this plunging quest? Don’t you get, well, plunge all over your back? Has anyone ever gifted this with a straight face? Like, “Hey, Pete, I know you take your plunger everywhere, man, thought you could use this.” So. Many. Questions.)


I’ll let the company have at it: “After every use simply dry off the plunger, rub a thin coat of linseed oil on the handle, buff the bowl, neatly stow it away in its sling, and then kick back knowing everything is as it should be.” Like, on your back.

OK. Speechless again. Just going to let the 2020 wash over me for a sec.

Best find: MR.SIGA toilet plunger and bowl brush combo, Amazon, $19.98

Name your plunger “Mister” and you’ve got my attention. This is Amazon’s No. 1 best selling plunger and it’s easy to see why with a sleek black handle, matching brush and black floor caddy to store it all in. Voila! I think I just found my new plunger and managed to class up my bathroom.

Now, to find a sling for it . . .

Think twice: About adventuring with your plunger, unless it truly brings you happiness. If that’s the case, off to Toiletland with you.

Bag Lady’s true identity is protected by a pair of stylish, sweater-wearing Doberman pinschers (who, true story, destroyed the plunger that needs replacing) and the customer service counter at the Sun Journal. You can reach her at [email protected]

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