Thursday, February 24, 2011

What’s in your wallet?

I sound like a commercial but I’m not pushing one type of credit card over another.  What is in your wallet?  The other day I decided to clean mine out.  Organization is really important in the survivalist world.  It's easy to get overwhelmed with too much stuff and not knowing what you have.  Looking through my wallet I was amazed, rather stupefied, at how much stuff was in it.  I had no idea other than it was so full that it wouldn’t stay velcroed shut – I was using a rubberband. 

My wallet in a bi-fold wallet.  I bought it 12 years ago when son went into the army.  The outside of the wallet says US Army with the army eagle symbol.  The other part that faces out has a space for the driver’s license.  It’s got a plastic cover so you can show your ID without taking the license out of the wallet.  When you open the wallet up there are lots of spaces for credit cards and that sort.  The stack of cards was almost two inches thick!  I had the grandkids and my medical cards and the dental card.  I had three credit cards – American Express (for shopping at Costco), Discover (for shopping at Sam’s Club), and Visa.  I also had my ATM card.  The grandkids just got new bank accounts.  I had their ATM cards too.  I had the AAA card, several gift cards, library cards, and a couple of store discount cards. 

I had cards that work provides and I have to carry.  I have my ID, credit card, vehicle rental card, gas card, phone card, ICS qual card, med qual cards.  

Not cards, but still taking up space, were a spare key, a small Rite-in-the-Rain book, a folding scissor/screw driver/misc. tool.  My Rite-in-the-Rain book has the words MEDICAL INFORMATION in red on the cover.  It includes a short medical history, prescriptions list for each of us, eyeglass prescriptions, blood type, and the doctor’s name and phone number (the Kaiser cards are still in the wallet). And finally, some money.

What if I lost my wallet?  How easy would it be to list all this stuff and come up with the numbers to speed up the replacement?  I ended up taking all the cards out of my wallet and putting them on the scanner.  I scanned them –front and back, saved the file to the computer, and printed up a page with all the cards on it.  Most of the cards didn’t make it back into the wallet. The kids ATM cards, gift cards, store discount cards, and most of the credit cards can also stay home. Some cards, like the library cards, I leave in the console of my pickup, since a trip to the library may be a spur of the moment thing.  The wallet is much lighter now.       

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