Burdened With Baggage
We all carry stuff around with us everyday. Women typically have a purse to tote their essentials. Traditional options for men are jean pockets or a backpack, but there’s no in-between. That’s the zone I’m looking into for every-day-carry (EDC) items, like all the tech gear for a mobile computing lifestyle.
My daily carry is a personal Backpack for my work commute. It hauls my laptop plus other stuff, but it’s kind of overkill most of the time. I like using both shoulder straps for convenience; it’s harder to lug stuff off-center when using only one of the straps.
I also sometimes use a Messenger Bag that came with my company laptop. I like how its single long shoulder strap crosses my body from one side to the other, letting the bag hang by my side, back, or front. That’s a big difference from a backpack, which is only for transporting stuff on your back from point ‘A’ to ‘B’, not accessing your stuff between those points like you can with a messenger bag.
Backpacks and messenger bags are big and handy for lugging your accoutrements, especially when traveling for a weekend. But for commuting or every day carry, it’d be nice to have a smaller simpler bag to hoist around, keeping my pockets clutter free. But I’m not talking about a “Murse” or a “Fanny Pack.” Right?
There are somewhat synonymous terms for bag types. What’s the difference between a rucksack, backpack, satchel, hip-pack, messenger bag, or shoulder bag. Sometimes, I’m really not sure. But I have found some good niche websites all about bags where they…pack a lot of helpful info.
If you’re wondering about optimizing your own daily carry situation, I highly recommend these two great sites:
This is the type of bag I’ve been drawn to most. Its main funtion is hinted in the name. The bag and single-strap set-up enable a small to medium-sized bag to sit comfortably against your back; it doesn’t dangle loosely like a messenger bag. Then it rotates to your front for quick easy access.
I would say a slingbag is a cross between a backpack and a messenger bag.
Amazon has stacks of packs to preview. It’s a decent starting point. But to stay focused, I made a list of my everyday items I am likely to carry in a slingbag or similar pack.
Rather than find a bag that “looks cool” and has “neat features” and then hope all my stuff fits is a backwards way to go. I should first note what stuff needs to fit, then find a suitable bag.
So for my potential every-day-carry, here’s an itemized item list of…items:
- Low-dose Aspirin
- Lightning to 3.5mm adapter
- Micro USB cable
- Lightning cable
- USB C cable
- Battery pack
- Bluetooth speaker
Other things to weigh me down:
- Water Bottle
- Leatherman multi-tool
- Nintendo Switch (in its own case)
- Mini LED flashlight
- Zippo Lighter
When I list it out like that, wow, I may need to minimize first! That’s a lot to carry. So I think it comes down to access. What do I need/want to access quickly or frequently while on-the-go and don’t want stuffed into my pockets? That answer needs more brain cycles…and coffee…
The modern mobile man needs not resort to a classic backpack. Today, bag options abound.
If, like me, you’re thinking you might want a better bag to pack, maybe now you’ve got some new ideas. Let me know what you think in the comments! Or do you already have the perfect bag; what do you use?