Saturday, February 8, 2020

Space race

Having scored an inexpensive stockpile of canned and packaged food, I had to make room for it somewhere in the Rolling Steel Tent. My storage system had become jumbled and inconvenient the past few months. Tools, food, clothing, hardware and what-the-hell-is-this-and-why-do-I-have-it just stuffed wherever they fit. It was reorganization time.

I found a lot of badly used space. Hey, how about combining these two half-full boxes into one? How about putting all the pans in one place? Oh look, this fits here much better than there. And so on.

As I worked I remembered some old advice I was given, had passed on to others, then pretty much forgotten: bags pack more efficiently than boxes. Because not only do boxes hold whatever you put in them, they hold unused empty space. Empty space that mocks your desire for compactness. Meanwhile, bags are happy to compress into whatever form you need.

So I transferred things like ibuprofen, gauze pads and nitrile gloves from their partially empty bottles and boxes and into zip lock bags. All those rechargeable AA batteries? Off their blister packs and into zip lock bags. Those three remaining pencils from a box of eight? Bag ‘em. You get the idea.

Not only did I find room for the new supplies, I was able to rid myself of a shoebox-sized container and three foil pans that had held small odds and ends. Anyone want them? Right now they’re just taking up space.


  1. Not me, but if you have any free space, I'll take it.

  2. I use a hole punch to add a hole in the upper corner of the zip lock bag then group like kinds onto a carabiner for easy access. That way I just have a small grouping of like kind items to sort through.

    All my electronic cords, flash drives, other small items get stored that way.

    Other times small bags get grouped into larger bags when the items are in the same general category.