the perfect bag…

As many of you know, I love bags. I’m not sure if this alone qualifies me as Metro, but I’m sure it figures in there somewhere.

Ever since I made my first belt-hung pouch, I’ve been addicted to finding the perfect bag to carry all my essentials. Of course, that list has grown a lot over the years, and it’s once again time to rethink the strategy.

My recent interaction with Timbuk2 (great stuff) has got me thinking again about how I lug my stuff around. I used to have this little not unpurse-like dealie that held my currency, cards, palm pilot, and a notepad and pen. For many years that was all I needed. During my recent trip to the land of the rising sun, I observed that a large number of men were using waist-level bags for their gear. I’m soooo ahead of my time (laughing at self).

Then, I got a laptop. I decided I needed a laptop bag. At this time, I was looking for something integrated. Carry it all in one bag. One bag to rule them all, so to speak. I first used a Victorinox laptop messenger bag. It worked well until I got my powerbook. It wasn’t really big enough for the new lappy, and I wanted more padding, since I spent my own money on the thing (as opposed to being a work-owned machine). Ultimately, I found Timbuk2. The Commute bag had everything I was looking for.

After about 3 years or so with the integrated approach, I’m ready to move on. As anyone who has lugged a lot of junk around at a conference all day with a messenger bag can tell you, they kill your back for long hauls. So, I’d like to be able to transfer key gear from a messenger bag to a backpack, for “better body mechanics”, as A2C would say.

So, this is the approach I’m taking now: modularity. I’m going to get a laptop sleeve and several small gear bags for things like cords, and get a plain messenger bag, and a plain backpack. I’ll see how this goes in terms of convenience and comfort. I can already think of some situations where the backpack is going to save me. Also, there are times I don’t want to lug the laptop around at all (I know, I know, perish the thought!), and it’d be nice not to lose the space dedicated to an integrated laptop compartment in my bags.