Saturday, August 23, 2014

Bag it and tag it

This isn't my usual kind of acquisition, but it's one I felt needed sharing. I recently ordered ThinkGeek's newest addition to their "Bag of Holding" line, the Bag of Holding Con-Survival edition.

My new Con-Survival Edition Bag of Holding from ThinkGeek.


Considering the crowded trade floor at most cons, they made this bag slightly smaller than their original. Other geekcentric features include the mesh pockets on the side. You could carry a water bottle in each, but one of them has drawstrings at top and bottom, so you can carry longer items, say a poster tube, a spyglass, a lightsaber, what have you.

Please note that's not a puddle of Wite-Out,
it's the glare from the overhead lights.

Yes, that's 1:08 a.m., and I was still at the office.

Additionally, the front zippered compartment drops like a drawbridge, giving you access to a pocket covered in clear, thick, flexible plastic with a Velcro closure. Its ingenious design gives you access to your iPad or other tablet without having to drag it out of the bag. I will say it works for quick things, like say checking your schedule or scanning your email. I've found that if I have to do much typing or clicking of icons, though, I go ahead and remove my tablet. That clear cover requires just that extra "oomph" of effort to make haptic contact with the touchscreen that my fingers tired quickly. But it is, as they say on their site, ideal for checking the Hall H schedule from the dealers' room at Comic-Con.

Those are three-month prescription bottles, folks, to give you a sense of scale.
Also, you can barely see some of the side pockets lining the inside.

 This thing is chockablock full of little pockets and compartments, just as you'd expect. The main interior section is roomy while maintaining the bag's convenient size. I'd wager you could carry three, maybe four, hardback gaming books in there with no problem. For me, this is going to be my daily carry bag, so it is, of course, filled with all my meds. I used to carry them in a black leather shaving bag, so this definitely puts that bag to shame.

Rue Morgue, in my opinion the best magazine covering the horror genre.


One feature I appreciate is that, on the back, there's a document pocket. It's sized to hold letter-sized sheets (8.5 x 11 if you're in the U.S. In Britain it's what, A4?) My one tiny, nitpicky complaint is that, if you do put full-size sheets of paper or, say, a magazine, or a manila folder in there, it blocks the Velcro tab that's about an inch down inside the pocket. A flap would've been too much and spoiled the bag's aesthetics, but I wish the designers had thought of something else. I seek closure, dammit.

For customization, ThinkGeek has provided a fuzzy front panel, actually the "loop" half of "hook-and-loop" fasteners, i.e. Velcro. All those faction patches you have? That Viper pilot unit patch from BSG? Bring it on. If they don't already have Velcro backing, just iron on some hook material (available at most craft stores or from scifigeeks.com) and customize to your heart's content. They even get you started with rubberized patches of their logo and their little monkey mascot.

The Skorne Privateer Press pin is much bigger than I expected,
and the quality of the cloisonne is exceptional.

As you can see, I've added my Skorne faction logo pin from Privateer's Hordes. They do include a shoulder strap, which would be a great place for pins as well, but I'm not using it. In fact, my wife and I each have these bags, and that's the quickest way to tell them apart. She uses the shoulder strap so she can more easily hang the bag on her wheelchair.

These bags are popular, so expect some delays if you order one, as they go out of stock quickly. As of this writing, it looks like they're expecting more next week. I bought Tracey's the day they came out. I ordered one for myself a few days later and they were already gone.

OK, enough of me wearing my reviewer hat. Back to the boards, everyone, and I'll see you across the table soon.

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