In My Bag: the Odds and Ends

While writing about the Chrome Barrage recently I mentioned having pouches for odds and ends is very helpful so that you can find what you’re looking for in an expansive damn-near-bottomless bag.

Odds and Ends

Many messenger bags are designed to provide one huge space for things you carry and maybe some smaller organization pockets here and there, but it’s almost impossible to find one that offers either enough organization without assistance and when you can do it better there isn’t that much of a need for it. Sometimes you find satisfaction in changed expectations.


WaterField Designs

WaterField makes the very finest laptop sleeve cases and they also make great pouches for carrying just about anything in your bags. That’s why they’re getting their own section in this list.

  • One small Gear Pouch
    • Pens, pencils, pillbox, lip balm and tissues
  • One medium Gear Pouch
    • Dental floss, bandages, a small roller of my custom-blended cologne, anti-bacterial towelettes, batteries, over-the-counter medicines
  • One small iPod Gear Pouch
    • iPod Classic with a lot of music, podcasts, some favorite episodes of my favorite TV shows, a couple of movies, and every single episode of Shaun the Sheep ever made
    • Folding on-ear headphones, wrapped-up in-ear headphones that I find awkward and painful for extended use
  • One medium Cableguy
    • Camera shutter release cable
    • A/V connection kit for Dock Connector devices like my iPad and iPod
    • Small multi-tool, set of lockpicks
    • Retractable USB Extension with USB, Micro, Mini USB adapters
    • Lightning-to-DockConnector gizmo
    • Dock Connector SD card reader to get photos to my iPad
    • a Square for accepting monies on my iPhone or iPad

Dry Bags & Stuff Sacks

Something wet and you don’t want to get other things wet? Something dry and you want to keep it that way? Packing for a weekend trip and want to stuff as much as possible into as little space as possible? I have a couple of these I use pretty often for just such occasions.

  • Cascade Designs eSeries 13 SealLock™ pouch
    • Postage stamps & postcards
    • Scraps of paper, notes, 3×5 cards
    • my Comment Cards, Apology Notes and other stationary
    • sometimes my Midori Traveler’s Notebook (Passport size)
    • can keep my iPhone safe from harm should the need arise
  • Sea to Summit Ultra-sil Drybag (small)
    • Smaller drybag, rolls up very compact, into a buckle that you can use as a handle. I keep my camera’s Gariz felt bag inside of it when I’m on a boat.
  • Sea to Summit Stuff Sack
    • Diapering supplies and a spare set of clothes for my daughter most of the time, with plenty of room to spare. I fold it over itself and shove it into the bottom of my bag and find ways to use it as a bumper or pad for my back in some cases.
    • I can fit nearly three days of clothing for myself in there if I’m careful about it.
  • When I am going swimming and don’t want my clothes or towel to get funky, I have a Sea to Summit mesh stuff sack that works great.

Other Carry

  • In a rare moment of frugality I keep my iPad in a bubbled mailing envelope made by 3M that I bought at CVS for a dollar or something. A little roomy but works well.
  • Cocoon Grid-It
    • I don’t use this very often at all because it isn’t as useful as you’d think it would be. The irregular things it’s perfect for are better kept in a pouch in my experience. It also weighs more than it should, and you run out of usable room quickly. I don’t recommend it at all.
  • When I am going swimming and don’t want my clothes or towel to get funky, I have a mesh stuff sack that works great.