EDC (Every Day Carry), what is that all about? It’s pretty self explanatory… It’s what you carry on your person every day to enhance your state of readiness. It is NOT your survival kit when heading out into the field. These are items you use on a regular basis and a few extras just in case you find yourself in a bad way or lost. The photo above shows what I carry on my person daily. Some items (such as the firearm and the large folding knife) may be omitted depending on where I am traveling and legality issues. The gear I carry can be worn in a fashion that it doesn’t appear that I am overloaded or that my pockets are ridiculously stuffed. From Left to right, top to bottom, these are the items pictured with a brief description: 1. Wristwatch (Casio Forrester with a watchband button compass). I chose this watch because it is inexpensive yet very durable (I’m brutal on watches). I also have several colors so that I have one no matter what I am wearing. 2. Glock 23 (with Lasermax guide rod laser sight, full capacity magazines and the holster pictured is a Desanti paddle holster). 3. Chapstick (in addition to it’s intended use, it is a great fire extender and be useful as a lube for your tools. 4. Small Bic lighter (fire). 5. Paracord Bracelet. This is one I made myself using a “Ladder Rack Knot”, about 10 feet of paracord and a whistle buckle. I also have a bit of kit woven inside that contains a small ferro rod, 2 fish hooks, 2 fishing sinkers and approximately 10-15 feet of fishing line. 6. Keys (featuring a P-38 can opener). 7. Money clip/ Cash. (This is a CRKT money clip with a small lock blade knife). I have attached a lanyard for the following reasons: A. Making cordage is time consuming and a pain in the ass. If I get into a bad situation where it is needed, I’d rather spend the time on what I need the cordage for rather than braiding kudzu vines or some such nonsense. B. On two different occasions (just carrying my cash loose in my pocket) I have lost a grand total of $3,685.00 (Yes, I know how stupid that makes me. No need to remind me in the comments). So unless I find a way to fit more than 550 pounds of cash into my pocket, it should be secure. 8. Neck Knife (Timberline). On the backside is a small signal mirror held onto the sheath with two small ranger bands.
9. Bandana. Because Grandpa said that a gentleman should always carry a handkerchief (plus I’m bald and sometimes just need to cover my dome). If heading into the field, I replace the bandana (or add) a shemagh. 10. Leatherman Wave. I carry some additional items with the Wave that make this holster it’s own little survival kit in and of itself. The flashlight is a Mag-Lite Solitaire. The lip balm containers hold the following: The first one has 2 heartburn pills, 2 anti diarrheal pills, 2 antihistamine pills and 4 aspirin. The second one has 2 safety pins, approximately 20 feet of fishing line, 4 fish hooks, 4 fishing sinkers, fishing swivel and a sewing needle. 11. Smartphone (Motorola Droid Maxx). 12. Large folding knife (Smith and Wesson Border Guard). A man should always have a knife (I tend to carry several, each has it’s own tasks. I don’t use my “food knife” to cut other things or my “defensive blade” to whittle sticks or cut cordage, etc.). 13. Marine Corps Challenge Coin. This one is strictly sentimental. Call it a good luck charm or whatever, it’s always with me. 14. Wallet/ ID, Credit Cards, etc. (Maxpedition wallet).
Now you may feel that I carry way too much or way too little in my EDC kit. That’s OK. EDC is very personal and each person knows what works for them and what doesn’t. A lot of us share our EDC with each other in order to inspire (or be inspired) by others; to think about and share different points of view. No one knows better than you what you are most likely encounter on a day to day basis or what type of tools or meds you may find a need for. Build your kit around your needs, not mine or anyone else’s.
You may be wondering, how do you carry your EDC kit? Since the fanny pack went out of style (best invention in years. Damn shame that it fell out of favor!), I carry mine on my body. The wallet, bandana, challenge coin, lip balm and folder are in pockets, the rest is on my belt (money clip is in pocket, but attached to my belt). Some people carry their’s “off body” (small gear bag, backpack, briefcase, purse, etc). The advantage to “off body” carry it that you can carry more gear and it is easier to organize. The advantage to carrying your gear on your person is that no matter what, it’s with you. You don’t forget it in the car or leave it at a friend’s house. It can be quite a challenge to figure out how to carry these items without looking like your pockets are stuffed to maximum capacity. Here are a couple of easy to carry containers that I have used for different kits: The snuff containers hold quite a bit and fit easily into a back pocket. My current favorite, the lip balm container (these are small enough that it is easy to carry a couple with different types of kit in each. The energy drink containers are a bit bulky for me to use for EDC, but I do put them in my pack when heading into the field to carry stove fuel. The clear plastic “cigarillo” tubes are even thinner than the lip balm containers and you can see the contents if you carry several with different types of items in each.
For those of you that aren’t comfortable or prohibited from carrying knives, I had one of these in my pocket nearly every day when I was in the Marine Corps and came in very handy for things that a lot of people would use a knife for on a day to day basis. It’s very thin and less fear inspiring than a regular knife.
I hope this post gets you thinking about your own EDC kit and helps you to improve your state of readiness. If you have an item that you carry everyday that you feel is extremely useful, or have any questions about the gear I’ve shown here, please share it in the comments!