What's in your bag? is a recurring feature where we ask people to tell us a bit more about their everyday gadgets by opening their bags and hearts to us. Show us your bag in this forum post. This week, we're featuring Thomas Ricker.
I've had a love affair with computer bags for more than fifteen years now. A fixation betrayed by a dozen or so unused bags, each loved intensely for a time, then tossed to the side of the road like a sex crime, abandoned in favor of another.
My hauling needs have stabilized over the last two years allowing me to settle on just two bags: one that I use for everyday bicycling through Amsterdam, another for professional press events and travel. Preferences honed by nomadism and an obsessive avoidance of girth.
The North Face Base Camp Messenger Bag is my everyday tote. It has two suspended internal pockets, one for my 13-inch MacBook Air, and a smaller sling for a tablet, usually an iPad. The bag's slim but roomy enough to carry my computing devices and a DSLR fitted with an 18-200mm lens. And its waterproof, bike-messenger design makes it ideal for cycling in any kind of weather.
13-inch MacBook Air
It's the original ultrabook and offers a near perfect blend of power and portability. Not only is the 13-inch MBA (late 2011) a neat compromise between Apple’s 11-inch MBA and 15-inch MacBook Pro, it also runs Windows 8 with aplomb. I’ll upgrade to its successor when it finally goes Retina.
Nikon D7000 lenses
The D7000 is my Verge-issued workhorse for photography and video. The AF-S Nikkor 18-200mm is a highly flexible lens for event coverage while the AF-S Micro Nikkor 40mm brings industrial design to life in a way that words alone can't express. Sometimes I use it to photograph kittens, dinner, or kitten dinners.
iPhone 4 and Lumia 900
The iPhone 4 is my primary mobile computer. The Lumia 900 is my exotic mistress. As a long time iOS user I find Windows Phone to be visually stunning, but unable to satisfy the obscure needs that Apple’s App Store readily services.
Magic box o' pills
This Altoids tin is the contributing factor in 90 percent of my “random" airport pat-downs. Ever since it made its first appearance at CES about five years ago, I’ve been the man — our man in Amsterdam — that everyone counts on to ease their pain. So hit me up on the sly if you’re ever suffering from common trade-show ailments like deep fissure leakage, head mumps, or Android overload.
Moleskine notebook and pens
That's right, it's another literary romantic with a Moleskine. I use it for note taking whenever I can't be bothered to produce electronic scrawl. There was a time, however, when I would draw inside a Moleskine using nothing more than a lit cigarette — a highly effective ruse to meet women of crude susceptibilities. My choice of pens is arbitrary, thieved whenever and wherever the need compels.
Standard issue earphones that I carry for utility rather than quality. I have a set of Klipsch cans I wear when the audio (or desire to pose) is more important than convenience.
Elgato Turbo.264 HD
Once a must-have, the Elgato Turbo.264 HD harkens back to a time before The Verge’s amazing video team. Still, I like to carry it around just in case I find myself in a situation where my MacBook Air needs a bit more oomph to process video. I have no idea if it's even Mountain Lion compatible, but I definitely enjoy carrying something called “the cat.”