Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Stuff I Carry, January 15, 2011 Edition

Left to right, top to bottom:
Note: everything labeled “custom leather” was made by yours truly
I occurs to me that I either made or customized all but six of the things in this picture and of those by the time I’m done with the notebook I will have written on every page.

Customized Vintage American Optical Model 58 Flight Goggles with bayonet side arms
            GI Issue purchased used at the Hollis Flea Market
The frames are 12kgf – I don’t think they make ‘em like that any more…
Relensed with my bifocal scrip with the darkest polarized lenses available
Custom leather glasses strap

Custom 3-Piece Glasses
Another vintage frame, AO 12kgf bridge, 14k (solid) temples & bows
Relensed with my bifocal scrip

Custom leather key strap with solid brass snap swivel

Custom leather horizontal carry knife sheath
Wet molded for the Camillus Heat assisted opening knife it contains

Vintage ‘antique brass’ belt buckle
Fitted with a 1 Troy ounce bullion silver Engelhard American Prospector

Custom leather “knife sheath with cell phone holster”
            Knife: Victorinox MiniChamp SAK – the older version with the tweezers
               Bought at Hollis from someone who bought a bucket full of knives from TSA
               With a coyote tan gutted paracord 550 fob made by yours truly
            Phone: Tracfone Motorola V170
            Misc: Spare key in special inside pocket
            The case was wet molded to fit its contents

Custom leather flashlight case
            Flashlight: Streamlight TL-2 LED
            Pen: None (that part came out a bit too tight in this version of this case)

NRA Lapel Pin

Parker 3’ tape measure

Custom galvanized steel Byzantine chainmaille keychain
Clipped to the brass snap swivel of the key strap
            Chainmaille made by yours truly…

Vintage glasses case for the three-piece glasses
            Another flea market purchase

Two of the most important things I carry:
            Top spiral notebook
            Pre 1973 cap click Parker Jotter ballpoint pen

            On a custom leather watch strap (prototype – the real one will be much better)

I almost didn’t buy this watch when I saw it in that cigar box full of broken Casio’s and Timex’s on that table at Hollis.  Thought it looked too blingy.  I mean really!  All those rhinestones?  That just isn’t ‘me.’  But it does look like a real chronograph.  Iduno…  It was just the watch.  Didn’t have a strap and the battery was dead.  I like automatics and don’t usually wear battery watches.  And all those rhinestones!  I put it back in the box and started to walk away.  Got all of about five steps when I stopped, turned and went back.  I picked up the watch again and looked at it.  Iduno…  I suppose I could wear it while working on my van.  Assuming it works…  I held it up and hollered to the vender who was down at the other end of the table “How much?”  He looked my way and hollered back “Five bucks!”  I looked at the watch, and all those rhinestones.  Ah what the hell?  I pulled a five out of the money clip I used to carry and bought the watch.  I shoved it in my shirt pocket and made my way to the next table.

After the flea Mum and I went to Wal*Mart to do some shopping.  While we were there I popped by the jewelry counter to throw a battery in my new watch just to see if it worked.  The girl on the counter said she couldn’t put a battery in my watch because they didn’t have one like it to give me if she messed it up.  I said “Well, I’m kind of a watch guy.  If you’ll let me use your case opening tool I’ll take full responsibility if I mess up the watch.”  She shrugged and said “OK” and handed me the tool.  I spun off the back and she popped in an open sample battery.  The watch fired right up.  What’s more, the chronograph actually works!  So I bought a new battery and a strap and put it on my wrist.  You know, it’s kind of growing on me.  Even with all those rhinestones.

From there we went to Searstown Mall in Leominster.  I was getting curious about my watch and my friend who has a jewelry kiosk there may like to see it.  Turns out she wasn’t in when we got there.  But the girl on the counter thought it looked better than the rhinestone bling I thought it was.  She took out the tester and sure enough “Bwaaaap!” and the red light lit.  “Nope.  I guess not” she said.  “Bwaaaap!” said the tester as she tried again.  “Bwaaaap!” a third time, then “PING!” and the green light lit as she moved the probe a little bit.  “Oh! I’m missing the diamonds and hitting the bezel…”  (!!!)  “PING!” “PING!” “PING!” “Yup.  They’re real.”

‘Scuse me while I pick up my jaw…

A little time spent with my good friend Google revealed that while this is a several years old version, it is in fact a real one.  According to Oprah’s got one, this star has one, that star has one, one of the guys on The Soprano’s has one, etc. etc. etc.  And I could have one too for waaaayyy more than the five bucks I paid for mine!

That was the last day of the flea for the season ‘round about three years ago.  I’ve been wearing it almost every day since.

Wander around the flea market long enough and you never know what you might find.  ;-)

BTW: This is probably the only Michelle CSX Diamond Chronograph on this kind of strap anywhere on the planet!

Leather checkbook cover used as a Roper Wallet
Purchased at the little flea market at the foot of ‘Wal*Mart Mountain’ in Lunenburg and adapted to work with my filing system

Vintage plastic pocket comb with stamped metal cover

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