You hear a text jingle from your pocket.  You pull your phone out but there’s no longer cell service despite being in the middle of a city. Something is seriously wrong and you figure that out faster than most.  It’s time to get by based on what you carry with you every day.  Doesn’t matter how cool the contents of your gun safe are or how many MRE’s you have at home.  When something goes wrong you’re left with what you’ve dedicated to carrying.

Your everyday carry (EDC) should be refined often.  Just in the course of writing this article I’ve decided I can and should be more well stocked with whats in my vehicle.  Even without carrying a ton of stuff in my pants pockets, I can also put a few more things in my jacket which stays close at hand or in the car nearby.

The things that follow me every day are:

  1. My wallet.  Money, ID and a Ranger coin.  Also a brief medical/religious preference card is in here so a paramedic or first responder can know whats going on.
  2. Spyderco Rescue 93mm sheepsfoot blade.  Abused, misused and barely sharp enough to slice, this is my backup knife and is only in my pocket because my preferred knife had a pocket clip failure and was lost.  Despite being used as an impromptu can opener, this will still saw through flesh and bone.  This will be replaced ASAP.
  3.   Suunto observer.  Despite repeated failures of the OEM elastomer band, (hello aftermarket!) this watch has been with me 15 years and through 5 combat deployments.

The things that stay with me most days are:

  1. Glock 17 with 17 round magazine, loaded with HSM 115 gr JHP’s that I bought long ago for about $6 a box.  Those were the days!
  2. Nebo flashlight.  I like the AA battery usage as it is the most common battery in America still.  The sharp-edged front can be very useful and has never been flagged when passing through TSA.
  3. Gatorz sunglasses.  They’re polarized and durable.  Plus, as any SEAL will tell you, looking good is half the battle.

The Car-Kit I’m building right now:

  1. Red Rock Outdoor Gear Transporter pack.  This came in as a test and review piece and I ended up living out of it for a month while fishing in Alaska.  Deceptively roomy while still compartmentalized enough to be organized, this bag has earned it’s way into being essential to my EDC.  At $51, I’m shocked it’s priced that low.
  2. MRE.  With a family of 5, this gets rotated out often enough even in non-emergencies.
  3. Water.  Whether in a hydration engine like the Geigerrig Guardian or a plain old Nalgene bottle, enough water to get us home is vital.
  4. Two extra 17 round magazines for my Glock 17.  Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.
  5. First aid kit.  We have an  Adventure Medical 2.0 that stays in the car.  I added some Quik-clot packets as well in case we are in or come across a severe car accident (or minor apocalypse).
  6. Extra AA batteries.

You can’t plan for every emergency while continuing on your normal daily life without driving a Humvee loaded down with shock troopers.  Plan for the basics.  Food, water, security and getting home alive.  Don’t imagine what you might carry someday, take a look at what you’ve got now and decide if that’s adequate.  If you aren’t in the habit of carrying something, you really aren’t likely to have it when you need it.  They say it takes about 30 days to make something into a habit, so start today.

This article was originally published on the Loadout Room and written by 


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