What’s in my bag

My bag Here’s one from the “List of Stan­dard­ized Blog­ging Top­ics,” because, well, at least it isn’t “What did you have for lunch?”

We should start with the bag itself. I car­ry a purse, real­ly, but in form it looks like a lit­tle mes­sen­ger bag. It’s from Timbuk2, and it appears to have been dis­con­tin­ued ((I’m chat­ting with Timbuk2 cus­tomer ser­vice to see if they still make one like this)). The bag has four com­part­ments. It has an out­side pock­et, which is just a flat pock­et with no inner fea­tures. Under the main flap, a snap cov­er that can flip all the way over the back, there are three more sec­tions. The main pock­et is a big emp­ty bag thing. The zip­per pock­et is in there, and is also a big emp­ty pock­et, but it has a key fob on a rib­bon, and, of course, the zip­per to secure your stuff need­ing secur­ing (secu­ri­ty?). Final­ly, there is a gad­get pock­et, with inner sleeves sized for cell phones, gad­gets, pens, etc.

Here’s what I car­ry inside:

My bag, explodedClick to see it on Flickr.

The out­side pock­et

  • Sun­glass­es. It is not the best place for sun­glass­es, as it can get squished pret­ty eas­i­ly. But they are eas­i­ly acces­si­ble here, and if you just buy the $9.99 shades at Tar­get, not too much risk is involved.
  • Car key. One of our cars does not require me to get my key out. But the oth­er does, so I keep that key in this pock­et. This is for a Volk­swa­gen Pas­sat sta­tion wag­on, btw. I would not real­ly rec­om­mend this car, long-term. (Sor­ry Den­ny!)
  • Receipts. All my receipts get stuffed in here, which means they no longer get stuffed into my wal­let! Long live the Bag!
  • Binder clip. Yeah. In the sum­mer, we go to the Farmer’s Mar­ket, where our son gets a hon­ey stick. Invari­ably, he does not fin­ish it, hands it to me to “keep for lat­er” and runs off. I use the binder clip to fas­ten the hon­ey straw closed.
  • Clock. Actu­al­ly, it’s a lit­tle clip-on time­piece, very cool, that I got for my birth­day. I don’t wear a watch.

The main pock­et

  • My wal­let. Also a Timbuk2 prod­uct, also dis­con­tin­ued. Damn. I real­ly like this wal­let. It is a burnt orange, can­vas wal­let with a snap and a zip­pered change pock­et, both things that are hard to find in men’s wal­lets.
  • Baby wipes. Because I am a father to a dia­pered child. I pre­fer the Pam­pers Clean’n Go pack­age, as it can go straight from shelf to bag (via check­out, of course), and it is made of some­thing very durable (hor­ri­bly long-last­ing plas­tic poly­mer, I am sure). It achieves the sweet spot in size about halfway through its con­tents. It’s a lit­tle bulky when full, and crum­ples too eas­i­ly in the bag when near­ly emp­ty. More than you want­ed to know.
  • A dia­per. ibid.
  • Sundry. If I have col­lect­ed it on my trip out to the Real World, I will prob­a­bly put it in this pock­et. For exam­ple, right now there is a pack­et from my bank about the busi­ness account I just opened with them.

The zip­pered pock­et

  • Car key. This is the key for the oth­er car, the car that does not require me to take my key out.
  • Nov­el­ty flash­light. I got this from Dri­veSavers when I gave them two thou­sand dol­lars to recov­er my hard dri­ve. I keep it for the mem­o­ries, and on the off chance I need a light.
  • Microfiber clean­ing cloth. For my glass­es, or my sun­glass­es, or my cam­era lens. I wash it reg­u­lar­ly.
  • Cam­era bat­tery. Extra bat­tery, charged, for my dig­i­tal cam­era. If you don’t have two bat­ter­ies for your cam­era, get a sec­ond one now. Unless, of course, your cam­era takes AA bat­ter­ies, or some­thing. I hate you.
  • Cam­era tri­pod. The lit­tle Joby Goril­la­Pod. This thing is amaz­ing. Light, capa­ble, per­fect. Much bulki­er than my pre­vi­ous com­pact tri­pod, but so much more capa­ble.
  • Mea­sur­ing tape. Eight feet of cloth mea­sur­ing tape, in a spring release roll, from Oxo.
  • Lubri­cant eye drops. You know, one of those half ounce, $10 bot­tles of tears. Because I wear con­tacts.
  • Namits. This is a game you can play with your kids any­where. Plas­tic cards with cat­e­gories and exam­ples on them, such that you can flip it open and tell the kids in line at the DMV, “Name things that… tan­gle!”

The gad­get pock­et

  • Dig­i­tal cam­era. My Canon Pow­er­Shot SD-500. I love this cam­era, though I am jonesing for a new one. What I could do with the face-recog­ni­tion focus­ing! And the image sta­bi­liza­tion. I actu­al­ly use this cam­era as a movie cam­era, too. It has proven much more ver­sa­tile than haul­ing along my DV cam­era.
  • Cell phone. Yes, I have one. I am a Ver­i­zon slave, and I car­ry the Motoro­la E815. It is capa­ble, and I have gone online with it once or twice when I need­ed to (when doing a live web­cast off­site, I need­ed to vis­it our web pages back on cam­pus for some set­tings).
  • BIC pen. Noth­ing beats the old crys­tal BIC ball­point pen. I favor the blue ink.
  • Sharpie MINI. How do oth­er peo­ple get along with­out a Sharpie at their dis­pos­al?
  • Voice recorder. An Olym­pus dig­i­tal voice recorder, the DS-2, to be exact. I use it to record the price­less utter­ances of my chil­dren. It works well, and fits nice­ly in the bot­tom of the gad­get pock­et.

In the end, the bag actu­al­ly weighs a lot. But I sling it over my shoul­der and all is well. I once car­ried the bag, the baby, the four-year-old, his coat, and his art­work, 500 feet to our car. Through a gate!

In all seri­ous­ness. I would be lost with­out the bag. I don’t know how I did it before. I will wel­come the day I can light­en my load (and bulk) by los­ing the baby items, but to be hon­est, they are not too cum­ber­some right now. Miss­ing, in my opin­ion, is a real source of light in an emer­gency, and some sort of cal­cu­la­tor. Yes, I know, but my phone doesn’t do cal­cu­la­tor. So I guess I am miss­ing an iPhone, too.

Okay. So. Dare I ask? What’s in your bag? Feel free to link to your own site, or Flickr pho­to, or what­not.