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What’s in your bag, Paul Miller?

Broken headphones

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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. This week, we’re featuring Verge senior editor Paul Miller.

I carry a bag because I need my laptop with me, and because I have a laptop-sized bag, I end up with a lot of junk that accumulates in the pockets and crevices. Therefore, I wouldn’t think of this setup as some sort of thoughtful expression of my needs and priorities. It’s more of a snapshot of which particular junk is the best at hiding.

Vaya Simple Rolltop Backpack

This photo is disgusting, and I’m sorry. My bag is very dirty. I’ve been wearing it constantly for over three years straight, and apparently I’m also a chimney sweep? But this bag checked all the boxes for me when I bought it, and I have zero complaints. It’s not a messenger bag, because those hurt my neck and shoulders. It has a water bottle holder on the side because sometimes I get thirsty. There’s a laptop sleeve on the inside. You can strap a skateboard or a U-lock to it without much trouble. And it’s waterproof enough that I can bike in the rain.
[Copy editor’s note: I have requested that Paul wash his bag. I will update this post if / when that happens.]

iPhone 7 with original dongle and Zero Audio Carbo Tenore headphones

I don’t always listen to what Vlad says, but I bought this pair of Zero Audio Carbo Tenore headphones just like he told me to, and I don’t have any regrets.

I do regret #donglelife, but I’d rather have good headphones and the dongle inconvenience than bad headphones and Bluetooth freedoms.

You can’t see in this photo, but my iPhone 7’s screen is still cracked.

Senso Bluetooth Headphones (broken) and Apple EarPods (semi-broken)

I am a headphone murderer. I’m mean and bad to headphones, and I’m sorry. I bought these Senso headphones to try out the Bluetooth life because they were cheap and had good reviews on Amazon. I didn’t love them, but I also didn’t mean to let them get crushed at the bottom of my bag and become totally busted.

My EarPods are my headphones of last resort. The sound only half works in one of the ears, and obviously I can’t use them with my laptop. But sometimes I forget my regular headphones or lose the dongle, so I’m left with no choice.

Passport and wallet

I renewed my driver’s license, but it never arrived in the mail. So when I want to buy cigarettes or drink alcohol, I have to pull out my passport to prove how old I am. Please don’t rob me.

My mom and dad bought me this Knomo wallet at a mall maybe a decade ago. I like it because it’s easy to get my subway card in and out. It’s totally falling apart, but I think I can squeeze another year or two of life out of it.

At Burger King, I got a two-cheeseburger meal, which is like three or four dollars. What a deal! Don’t know why I saved the receipt, though.

Health products

I used to have a toothpick container in my bag, but then it broke and now I just find toothpicks everywhere. Here are a few of them. Also I forgot this fidget spinner was even in my bag, and I promise I haven’t fidget spun since the fad ended!

Maybe Emergen-C is just a placebo but it is the most effective placebo for oncoming colds ever discovered on this planet. Fisherman’s Friend is only for very bad coughs, if the Emergen-C didn’t work out.

The tablets are some form of acetaminophen. Maybe a sleepy kind? Not sure, there’s not a lot of info on the back. Guess these are nice to have, though. Glad I found them.

Prada PR 17TV eyeglasses

These are my new pair of glasses! I have another, secret pair of glasses that I call my “racecar” glasses because they make my face look like a racecar. These new glasses are maybe cool enough to actually wear out and about, but I really just need them for reading.

Sony a5100, and a bag within my bag

I need something more formal to hold my new camera, but for now this canvas tote is doing fine. I don’t think that’s a blood stain on the bottom right corner, but it certainly does look suspicious.

I really love this camera. It’s really affordable for what you get, and the lenses I buy for this will work great with higher-end Sony E-mount cameras if I decide to upgrade. Unfortunately, I skipped the kit lens and got Sony’s 50mm prime lens as my starter. It’s wonderful and creates beautiful images, but it’s a 75mm equivalent on this crop sensor, and therefore the type of shots I can get is very limited.

MacBook Pro and magic combo cable

This is a 13-inch MacBook Pro. Late 2015. Boring!

But check out this USB cable. It was a pack-in with my Senso Headphones for some reason. That Lightning connector pulls off to reveal a Micro USB connector, but thanks to a marvel of engineering, you don’t immediately lose the Lightning adapter. This is my backup for when I forget all my “regular” cables, and it ends up saving me at least once a week.

I also have an Anker battery pack that I forget to bring with me sometimes (like the day of this photo shoot), but it’s the same one Dieter has.

Plastic gold coin, headphone dongle, Lexar E Ink JumpDrive

That 8GB Lexar drive is ancient, but look at that E Ink capacity indicator! I already wrote a whole piece about how disappointing this replacement headphone dongle was, but somehow it’s still floating around in my bag, being disappointing. The gold coin somehow ending up in my backpack is a distant effect of a prank by my roommate. I have a whole bag of them under my bed, if you’re interested.

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