Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Man-Bag Dump, 2024 Edition

I've talked a bit about the philosophy behind what goes into my man-bag, now let's get into the kit itself.

Purse Things

Most of these items are ones that I have carried for years. One new addition is the USB rechargeable dog collar light that gets attached to the outside of my bag. It adds visibility when I'm walking at night and serves as a task light for up-close work. Unlike other small safety lights I've tried in the past, it's USB rechargeable. It's a bit thicker than I'd like, but otherwise, it's just about the perfect marker light.

I've been experimenting with carrying a few compressed towels. I added these because I found myself stepping out of the house too often without grabbing a handkerchief, an item that I find to be absolutely essential. I'm thinking the towels may be able to serve as a field expedient replacement. We'll see if they get any use; if not, they'll be evicted from the bag.

Finally, I'm on the fence about carrying the mini-deck of cards and dice. On one hand, these are great for entertainment and improvisational purposes. They are also quite compact. Yet, I'm still not entirely convinced that their bulk is justified. Time will tell if they prove their worth.

  • Buff
  • Flip & Tumble shopping bag
  • Pepper spray
  • Glasses pouch
  • Peanut M&M's
  • Dice and Cards
  • Marker light
  • Glow in the dark tape
  • Reflective tape
  • Extra cash
  • Backup credit card
  • Fresnel lens
  • Large sewing needle
  • Tissues
  • Res-q-me glass punch
  • Car keys
  • Hair band
  • Nitcore TIP flashlight
  • Compressed towels

Tech Stuff

Recently, I've made a significant improvment in the tech side of things. I replaced three specialized cables, a USB C, USB Micro and Garmin Watch Charger with two USB C cables and teeny tiny adaptors. The adapters turn the USB C cables into the other varieties that I need. My phone makes use of a USB C cable, so having two of those cables is very handy.

I'm still making use of the same relatively small Anker battery. While the battery can only bring my phone to 80% of a charge, I find that's sufficient and allows me to save on the weight that would come with a larger battery.

  • Folding keyboard
  • Anker battery
  • USB C cables
  • Wall adapter
  • Micro SD cards
  • Micro SD to SD card adapter
  • USB C to 3.5mm adapter
  • USB C to USB Micro adapter
  • USB C Micro SD card reader
  • USB A Micro SD card reader
  • USB C Host on the Go adapter
  • SIM tool
  • Backup cell phone
  • Headphones


After a hot glue gun incident, I took the hint and added a couple of packets of burn cream to my kit.

Surprisingly, the cough drops saved the day a number of times last year. Who knew how handy they would be?

Not shown below is a 24-hour supply of meds for both Shira and myself. I think it's pretty essential to always have these on hand, as they simplify being stuck somewhere unexpectedly for the night.

  • Cough drops
  • Claritin D
  • Anti-diarrheal
  • Burn cream
  • Cortisone cream
  • Aspirin
  • Benadryl
  • Dramamine
  • Drip-drop rehydration
  • Crystallized lemon flavoring
  • Melatonin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Band-aids
  • Leuko tape

Outdoors and Emergency

Finally, we come to a few odds and ends, many of which make sense in an outdoor setting. Though the plastic bags are especially handy for when we travel with kids and the threat of car sickness looms.

The tea bag is mainly there for its caffeine, so technically it belongs in the 'drugs' section. Yet, this advice I read nearly 10 years ago still resonates with me, causing me to store it among my outdoor gear.

The trauma kit is detailed here (it's the pocket variety). I keep it vacuum-sealed for easy access.

  • KT, Leuko, and Duct tape
  • Portable Aqua tabs
  • Bic lighter
  • True Liberty bags
  • Quart-sized Ziplock bag
  • KN95 Mask
  • Ear plugs
  • CPR Mask
  • Tea bag
  • Trauma kit

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