The The Items We Carry group on Flickr used to be really captivating before members started adding promotional photos, multiple angles, or the full contents of their bags. At its beginning, each photo showed the few items its photographer carried in his or her pockets. I followed it for a long time because I definitely take some satisfaction in the constraint of limiting what I bring with me to what can fit in my pockets.
Every day, I am at least carrying my house key, my wallet, and my phone. The middle of these is the most dynamic; it’s a ViewSlimmy wallet by Koyono that helped me pare down what I carry. It has four compartments: a clear one for my ID, one for cash, one for cards (only one credit and one debit), and one left over. When I go to work, the “left over” compartment houses my transit card. I used to carry a blank business card in my wallet as a space for notes, but building Pastecard has let me move that to my phone. Any receipts I might pick up during the day go in here too.
Monday through Friday, I also carry my company badge and its zip-up belt clip, and the key to my work laptop’s security lock. At first, I thought of them as necessary evils, but “evil” is too strong a word. It still feels nice to dump these on my desk during the weekend, though.
As I write this update, I’m on the other side of the country as when I originally wrote the post. I’m also not working. This means I don’t carry my badge, laptop key, or transit card anymore, but I also find myself in a completely different state of mind. In San Francisco, I was intrigued by products or services that could consolidate everything I needed to carry onto my phone. For example, Square Card Case could replace my wallet and Lockitron could replace my keys. This would be the greatest, since I’m carrying my phone around with me all the time anyways.
Now I’m living a beach bum lifestyle and suddenly there’s no desire to have my phone on me all the time anymore. I’m more interested now in the simplest way to carry around my house keys, and sometimes a book or a little cash. There’s nothing to buy at the beach, and I don’t want to check anything on the Internet while I’m there. I currently have a keyring attached to a bungie that I can wrap around my wrist (for pocket-less swimsuits), but suggestions are welcome. These lighter pockets feel even better.