0. WHO AMONG US HAS NOT searched for the perfect shouldered carryall? Here are five of my favorites:
1. In high school, I owned a black, one-pocket, snap-closure American naval officer’s bag suitable for a notebook, pens, paperbacks and other adolescent contraband. I carried that thing around town, in caves and forests, and up hilltops and tall buildings. It finally developed more holes than I could repair, and made way for…
2. A US Army musette bag. My advanced daily collegial cargo-needs (see previous paragraph) were more than amply met by this six-pocket (three large, three small) wonder. True, it was a bit hard on any 8-1/2×11″ documents, but I could fit into it everything from #1 above with the addition of a wallet, keys and even more pens.
3. Next up was the Swiss Army (do we see a pattern here?) medic’s bag. One large and one small pocket, with a drawstring insert in the former presumably to keep plasma/saline bottles from banging around. (I mostly used mine for securing beer or wine containers.)
4. Speaking of drawstrings, during the year I lived in New Hampshire I managed to acquire a string-closed backpack small enough to secure my daily necessaries but large enough to use for hitchhiking on New England back-roads from Plymouth to Burlington, VT. (Fit nicely under the Burlington-SFO airline-seat too!)
5. Perhaps the ultimate bag so far was one I bought from Galls, that secretly famous purveyor of first-responder equipment, when I worked as a newspaper reporter. It was a police officer’s day-bag with pockets of all sizes for pens and notebooks; tape recorder; radiophone; flashlight; Swiss Army knife; space blanket; ration bar; first-aid kit; and even spare socks, shirt and underwear (my motto is, “You never can tell…”). Unfortunately, I lost it to mold when my apartment flooded a few years back, and never had the heart (or, let’s be realistic, need) to replace it. Requiescat in pace.
What kind of bag did Will Thrustwell carry (or wear?)
Two, actually. One was a grey leather coin pouch with black drawstrings; I don’t remember the other one so well save that it was brown leather, like the coin pouch also attached to my belt, and I made it myself. It held various trinkets/props as well as a few ahem anachronisms. Thanks for asking!