I’m in kind of a weird situation right now where I’m both prepping my kids for the upcoming school year and still lining up a bit of leisure and con travel for myself. Because of this I’ve kept a keener-than-usual eye on things like travel bags and lunchboxes. As luck would have it, a recent dispatch from the team at ThinkGeek spotlighted a pair of items that suited my needs nicely.
First up, for daddy, is the Bag of Holding – Con Survival Edition. This sleek carry-all continues the proud tradition of ThinkGeek’s own exclusive Bag of Holding, but with an even more utilitarian slant. With an adjustable shoulder strap and a rugged top handle, this bag can easily rest low and close to your hip or be scooped up one-handed as you bolt through an airport or conference hall. Swiveling carabiners prevent tangling, and the strap itself is designed to allow extra space to display your favorite pinbacks.
Its main compartment is amply sized – 13.5″ tall x 10″ wide x 3″ deep – and accommodates my 11″ MacBook Air with space to spare. Five smaller internal pockets of varying sizes are also available, with the lean front-facers ideal for things like charging cables and the larger pockets in the rear perfectly sized to accommodate your smartphone and Nintendo 3DS XL (or PlayStation Vita, if that’s your thing.) Two exterior mesh side pockets also work well for storing water bottles or similar containers, and one even has a secondary lower toggle pull that can be fully extended to accommodate bulkier items like rolled posters.
Where this special edition Bag of Holding really succeeds, though, is its unique front pocket. Beneath its loop material-covered façade – which is specifically designed to allow for easy attachment of hook-backed morale patches, of which it ships with two – and dual zippers lies a hinged compartment that can easily flip out to display your map, hold your passport, or even allow for touch manipulation of your tablet through its clear vinyl interior wall. Though obviously sized for the iPad, complete with elastic corner loops, my Kindle Fire HDX fit and functioned equally well. And, of course, there are a number of other features behind those zippers, including a four-pocket pen and checkbook sorter and a headphone/cable passthrough port.
Add to this an extra document pocket in the back, and you’ve got a near-perfect pack for not only conventions, but business travel and daily commutes as well. In fact, my only complaint is a lack of protective padding in the tablet pocket. With that small caveat, I urge you to drop a quick $29.99 on ThinkGeek’s Bag of Holding – Con Survival Edition – providing you’re lucky enough to catch it in stock.
The second item I got to check out, this time with my kids in mind, was the Adventure Time BMO Tin Tote Gift Set. This official, Cartoon Network-licensed item is styled after the metal lunchboxes of old, but with the adorable countenance of Adventure Time‘s resident sentient game machine.
The lunchbox itself is simply adorable, with BMO’s face on the lid, and his back grill and side markings printed on the rear and periphery. The set also comes with a 300ml stainless steel beverage holder featuring the many expressions of BMO. Though insulated, it’s not exactly thermos quality, and the official product labeling simply refers to it as a flask, which I figure is an apt enough descriptor.
Because of its height, the drink container can’t sit upright inside the lunchbox – it’s just too tall – but the leak-proof lid does fit securely enough to avoid making a mess of your lunch even when rested on its side. The lunchbox itself is well made, though noticeably thinner and more fragile than its rugged spiritual forbearers. Still, it does offer plenty of space to pack a nutritious, delicious meal, and its design is sure to delight old and young fans alike.
This functional collectable is recommended for kids 14 and up. Personally, I trust my nine-year-old to take it to school without destroying it (and to be able to open the sturdy drink container), but, sadly, I don’t think my excitable six-year-old is up to the task.
The Adventure Time BMO Tin Tote Gift Set is also available for $29.99. And while I can’t see it lasting as long as my vintage 1986 Transformers set, it’s yet another fine bit of functional fan service from ThinkGeek.
Review materials provided by: ThinkGeek