just finished my first bartending shift at the tavern; my feet are sore.
also, i’m supposed to be working on an estimate for a freelance gig.
idk how i went and got myself all busy.
i revealed my “what’s in my bag?” post to a co-worker today. i also told another co-worker why my non-given name is spelled the way it is (because the domain was available!).
add that to the list of reasons i love my job. aside from being able to bike to work, i’m constantly challenged, i get to work with very smart folks, the projects are interesting and varied, and i get to work from home tomorrow because i want to.
i woke up with a smile this morning, thinking about how much better life is when you don’t dread your job. i even tried, for about 30 seconds, to come up with something i didn’t like. i couldn’t, so i stopped trying.
here’s what i submitted to the cool tools “what’s in your bag” series.
i carry a lot of items with me; some of my friends call me swiss-army-bekee because it’s likely that i have the resources or tools to help them in a pinch.
i’ve had my share of Timbuk2 bags, and have been using this one for a little over four years now, it’s their Classic Messenger – Small. it has all the right pockets and zippers and enough space for a big haul.
I’m not sure I can put into words why most of these things are useful as a lot of them are in case of an emergency or an immediate need that I haven’t had but am preparing for, but I’ll do my best, albeit sarcastically.
- Three Sharpies: large, regular, thin point. You never know when something will need to be marked up or written on.
- Fisher Space Pen – Orange
- Travel-size Vicks Vaporub. In the event of the onset of a cold, or a dead body.
- Burt’s Bees lip balm. The winter is dry in Wisconsin.
- White Monkey Holding Peach Balm http://www.amazon.com/White-Monkey-Holding-Peach-Balm/dp/B00175YLUW. I just like to say the name, it works as well as Tiger Balm.
- triple antibiotic ointment
- Sephora mirror http://www.amazon.com/Sephora-SEPHORA-COLLECTION-Compact-Mirror/dp/B004XN9L5A. I joke with my friends that this is to signal the rescue helicopter, but I don’t camp or get myself into places where this would be needed.
- glasses repair kit
- emergency sewing kit
- Gerber paraframe mini http://www.amazon.com/Gerber-22-48484-Paraframe-Knife-Serrated/dp/B000G0OMK8. I have this in my bag in case I forget to put my CRKT knife in my pocket in the morning.
- Leatherman Squirt http://www.amazon.com/Leatherman-831195-Squirt-Black-Keychain/dp/B0032Y2OT6
- Paracord bracelet. I made this to justify carrying a micro grappling hook (see below).
- Light My Fire utensil http://www.amazon.com/Light-Fire-Original-BPA-Free-Multi-Color/dp/B00BUIWK36. I don’t know why I carry this; I’ve never used it, but I know the second I take it out of my bag, I’ll need it.
- Emergency poncho. This probably is as effective as a paper bag, but I hate getting rained on while biking.
- Black Diamond carabiner. I bought this thinking it was steel, but the product description lied. I keep it just in case I need to zip line somewhere.
- mini keyring Sharpie. I bought this on a trip to NYC because it’s orange.
- Gerber hook knife http://www.amazon.com/Gerber-30-000637-GDC-Hook-Knife/dp/B00B0I46OC. This doesn’t seem at all useful to me… I should probably gift it to someone.
- True Utility flashlight http://www.amazon.com/Utility-TU283-MicroLite-Flashlight-Batteries/dp/B007N0WLNY. One can never have enough ways to see in the dark.
- True Utility nail clippers http://www.amazon.com/Utility-TU236-Clips-Clippers-Stainless/dp/B007IOHPLI. Because hangnails are annoying.
- 3′ measuring tape
- various spare keys
- bag of stones
- various otc pills (aspirin, benadryl, etc.)
- Altoids Smalls
- mini deck of cards
- Field Notes notebook
- Coleman first aid tin http://www.amazon.com/Coleman-Purpose-First-27-Piece-Metal/dp/B00BIRMTY4. I bought this on a whim because I’m a sucker for these things.
- reusable gear tie http://countycomm.com/gt3.html
- bike tire levers
- bike tire patch kit
- presta to schrader converter (not pictured)
- Wacom Intuos stylus http://www.wacom.com/en-us/products/stylus/intuos-creative-stylus-2. This functions with the iPad (not first gen), I bought it because I had started a web comic that I have not updated since I bought it.
- Apple earpods
- 32g flash drive
- 8g flash drive
- 2g flash drive. The only people that have used any of these are co-workers.
- dental floss
- Cocoon grit-it organizer http://www.amazon.com/Cocoon-CPG4BK-Grid-It-Organizer-Black/dp/B003OXJL5K. This seems like a silly item to spend money on, but it really does make organization easy.
- paperclips, safety pins
- Fisher Space Pen – Black
- Leatherman juice s2 http://www.amazon.com/Leatherman-Juice-Orange-Multi-Tool-70202001K/dp/B001F8HKYA. This was my first Leatherman.
- True Utility lighter http://www.amazon.com/Utility-TU262-FireStash-Miniature-Lighter/dp/B007IOHPQS. I used this at a friend’s February outdoor wedding to light their Wishing Balloon. It worked way better than everyone else’s Bics.
- Nano Light Streamlight http://www.amazon.com/Streamlight-73001-Miniature-Keychain-Flashlight/dp/B0011UIPIW. I should carry this somewhere more convenient. It’s extremely bright for the size.
- Crank Brothers bike tool http://www.amazon.com/Crank-Brothers-Multi-Bicycle-5-Function/dp/B002VFZ688. This is perfect for adjusting seat heights and basic bike maintenance.
- Planet Bike tire gauge
- micro grappling hook http://www.countycomm.com/microhook.html. I don’t know if I’ll ever get the opportunity to use this, but I sure would hate to miss it if it comes up!
- pocket screwdriver http://www.countycomm.com/1x4driver.html
- pil holder
- Overland Equipment wallet
- Baggu bag https://baggu.com/. I frequently stop at a local market to get something on the way home to make for dinner, this fold-up bag is perfect.
- Moleskin notebook
- Gerber suspension http://www.amazon.com/Gerber-Suspension-Butterfly-Opening-Multi-Plier/dp/B000EDPT9K
- two Duncan yo-yos. You never know when you’ll need to relax with a yo-yo.
- random book (usually a cookbook)
- Guest Check pad. This is typically where my weekly grocery list gets penned as I think of items to purchase.
i’m also a web developer in the midwest who has recently had the good fortune to land a great job that i can bike to year-round. as you can imagine, nothing else is going to fit in that bag up there, so i bought a Classic Messenger – Large. when it arrived, i was sorely disappointed in the lack of internal pockets. so, i came up with the best solution i could, and that was to carry the Small bag inside of the Large when commuting to work!
it seems crazy, i know, but i kind of am. so, inside this bag (aside from the other bag) is as follows:
- Dog keyfob http://www.defensedevices.com/dog-defense-keychain.html. I bought this when I bought my house seven years ago, thinking I’d need it in the neighborhood on dog walks. Thankfully, I’ve never had to use it.
- Gerber shard http://www.amazon.com/dp/B002ZK45IQ. This tops EDC lists all the time, but I have yet to have occasion to use it.
- Nomad Key Charger http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IIYAIVG. Invaluable. I got so tired of untangling the white Apple cord to charge my phone at work. I’ve read reviews that the part that attaches to a keychain breaks easily, but I haven’t had that experience.
- True Cash Stash http://www.amazon.com/dp/B002JUDJBG. It’s nice to know that I have $20 hidden with my keys, just in case.
- Key ring kit http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0057OIR2C. I’ve found these keyring attachments to be useful, both for easy removal of items (the Nomad charger, for one), but also to differentiate similar-looking keys from one another.
- Timbuk2 bag rain cover http://www.timbuk2.com/messenger-bag-backpack-rain-cover/884.html?dwvar_884_size=7&dwvar_884_color=8004. Works great! Even though Timbuk2 bags are water resistant, sometimes I’m carrying a laptop in addition to my iPad and don’t want to chance anything getting wet.
- Park Tool bike tools http://www.amazon.com/PARKTOOL-AWS-13-MICRO-HEX-WRENCH-RING/dp/B00NMUYYZM. I just got this because my local bike mechanic has it on his keys and I want to look cool.
- emergency poncho (see explanation above)
- Planet Bike 5-beamer
- Planet Bike rear light
- Arcteryx rain jacket (when weather dictates – not pictured)
- Marmot rain pants (when weather dictates – not pictured)
- Genuine Innovations tire repair wallet http://www.amazon.com/Genuine-Innovations-Tire-Repair-Inflation/dp/B009ZMYQ18. I just bought this and haven’t had to use it.
for some reason today, i can’t get my brain to work. i’m supposed to be starting on a new project and i can’t seem to get the traction i need to just. begin.
i feel almost like i’m floating or on a boat or something. i’m not sure if it’s because i’ve been working on one project for so long and it’s almost so close to being over that i just can’t switch gears.
i got sushi for lunch, hoping the fish would help, but it hasn’t so far.
i keep meaning to catalog and participate in cool tools’ what’s in your bag? series of posts. it’s a feature on his site, reminiscent of timbuk2’s whats in your bag and part of the every day carry phenomenon. the difference between cool tools and the other sites is that they’ll give you $100 if they feature your bag; and my bag is nothing if not featurable.
i started a list of components and quickly became overwhelmed with the thought of pulling everything out of the pockets in order to photograph, and then putting it all away, back in the right spots.
in work-related news, i’ve been made project manager for one of our design-firm clients and it’s gotten me a little stressed out (among other personal issues). new projects/situations usually do this.
i’ll leave you with a photo of merle. she did this to herself.
working for the doll factory, whenever i considered looking elsewhere for employment, i was throttled by the generous holiday calendar, early-out fridays, and that bonus week between christmas and new years’ that everyone (in the front of the business, anyway) got to have off. after enduring a relatively hellish fourth quarter last year, having to work almost every day over bonus week, and not getting any emotional or physical credit for it, i knew i had to get out of there; even if it meant giving up that bonus week and half day fridays.
my stress level is greatly reduced. i don’t get the sunday blues, i don’t even dread monday morning! i can roll in when it happens to work out for my sleep schedule, and i can leave and work from home or anywhere, if i needed to.
and, to top it off, i just secured a holiday from christmas eve to the 5th of january. take that, doll factory.
on monday, i was told i get to train a client on how to use their site.
today, i am frantically learning how to use their site so i can tell them how to use their site. O.O
also, i solved one issue about biking in the heat; i brought a spare shirt. it is nice to not have to wait to cool down and dry off. it’s also nice that my office is usually empty until at least 9, so i can sweat a little without being a hot mess. i don’t know about the helmet, tho. it’s just so friggin’ warm, and it’s only 60°. wait til it’s 90° :/
so, on top of this training i’m magically performing, we have the party this weekend. thankfully, george came over and mowed on sunday for us, and matt cleaned the house up, so i feel less stressed about it now.
i’m skipping yoga tonight; i need to clean out the fridge to make room for food, and wash the stove top. we’re going to get groceries on thursday, and will spend much of friday prepping the food that we can. i’m sure we’ll make a couple trips to woodman’s before the party starts, at the very least for ice.
an ex-coworker lives nearby and we saw her on a dog walk this weekend. she asked how things were going at the new place and if it was a better fit.
i thought that was a weird question, because it seems to me that the old place isn’t a good fit for anyone. but, maybe that was just my limited knowledge of the general mood of my closest coworkers, and not a good representation of the rest of the people who work there. but, i don’t know. everyone always seemed pretty grim.
anyway, the new place *is* a better fit. arguments about jquery libraries and mysql statements fill the room, people actually chat around the water cooler, web development actually happens.
i was the judge of a blue suede shoe contest between the president and a vp on friday.
there is no “jeans day” incentive bull jazz, jeans are welcome any day. in fact, a couple of the developers don’t wear shoes most of the time.
i get to walk down regent street to grab lunch, if i want. there is life going on all over.
so yea, a better fit.
i’m in a room with four desks, three of us are pointed toward the middle of the room, the three of them are guys. i can’t watch sappy videos or comment on my friends’ posts about their dying dog because i’ll start crying.
i know how uncomfortable guys get when gals start crying.
i just mentioned to a friend that it’s so weird to look forward to work when i wake up in the morning.
how can it be that life ends up like that?
i’ve already learned so much at the new place. last week, every day, i went home with a headache. i don’t think my brain remembered what it was like to ingest new information.
additionally, we procured helmets for safer biking. with all the cross streets that i have to endure, and the two or three pretty heavily trafficked intersections, it seems wise to protect my noggin. especially, since i need it.
in other news, i haven’t wrapped any rocks lately. i need to get on that… it’s fun, and i could make a little money on the side, at least to support my rock and silver habit.
i’m getting extremely behind on my dailies (this is what matt and i call our rss feed subscriptions). i’ve so many unread that feedly just shows a little dot instead of a number next to most of the categories.
okay, that is all for now.