Morning Walk #48
I've finally found my dream backpack
Hi. I’m Stepa Mitaki. I’m a product person and an entrepreneur. I’ve been working in 🏙 govtech for eight years and currently work at a UK-based 🏦 fintech startup Silverbird while building a new company in 👩🏼⚕️ healthtech on the side.
Morning Walk is a personal weekly newsletter where I share some musings on tech, digital healthcare, working on startups, productivity, some nerdy stuff and an occasional share of reflections on the Ukraine war and how it feels being Russian at this moment in history.
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🎒 I've finally found my dream backpack
My story with backpacks was pretty long and miserable. I always had ugly ones. Ever since I bought my first laptop backpack to carry my first MacBook in 2009, I have never had one I enjoyed. I would search for a few days here and there and then just give up and settle for the least awful option.
Before I headed to the US for a month-long trip in 2015, I determined I'd finally get a good one. I did some extensive research and found nothing. Well, there we a couple of options, but they would start at about $500, which was nuts. In the end, I bought Nelson Backpack from Herschel Supply, the carrot one. I wasn’t crazy about it, but it looked nice to me at that time.
This one was fine for the first couple of months, but it wore off a bit, and I looked like a schoolboy carrying that bag. Within two years, I started being a bit ashamed of it.
I started looking for an alternative, but nothing clicked. Hell, with the internet, I thought I’d find the perfect one in person one day and would just ask the person wearing it, but this never happened.
All the backpacks I saw on people on the streets were ugly. Too bulky, too square, too fancy, too boyish, or hanging too low.
To me, it had everything I needed from a daily backpack. Slick design, slim fit, plenty of pocket options, and not to mention exceptional durability (I can tell from experience). To me, that was an Apple of backpacks 😍
The Thirteen Daybag is a minimal do-it-all backpack. Compact with surprising capacity and plenty of pockets, the Thirteen is ideal for both busy commutes and leisurely strolls. Comes in US-made X-Pac fabric.
One of the reasons I prefer the iPad over the laptop is that it’s lightweight. The same goes for this backpack. It is small enough, light, and looks fantastic. Here is the video showing all of its features:
I won’t recommend this specific option if you’re often traveling and need to pack plenty of things, but Able Carry offers a range of other options.
What do I need a daily backpack for? I mostly use it when I occasionally go to a coffee shop or a coworking station to get some work done, attend a meeting, go to the park to enjoy the last summer days, or go on a short (no more than two days) trip.
What I have inside on a daily basis:
iPad Pro 11’’
Magic Keyboard (might leave it at home if I know for sure I won’t need it)
Wallet with cards and a driver’s license
Book (I always carry a physical book with me, even without a backpack, I might go out carrying just a book with me with nothing else)
Optional (if I know I will be out for a while):
If you’re like me and have been struggling with finding the right backpack because most bags on the market just look ugly, I think you might love this one.
Recommendations of the week
Marissa Moore (CB Insights, Barclays, Johns Hopkins) shared an interesting perspective on the current state of telehealth lobbying. The article does a nice job summarizing the change afoot, and why it might behoove virtual care startups to get more involved in driving legislative change. The piece included this interesting data looking at disclosed lobbying spend from a number of venture backed startups. The numbers are minuscule - not a single company on this list spent more than $500k in lobbying over the last 3+ years.
⏰ Why You're Not Doing Creative Work (read, partly paywalled)
An interesting piece from Superorganizers on different modes we are working in: exploring (incubating) ideas and executing them. The latter is well-known, and a pretty straightforward one but the former is a different kind of animal we need to treat differently.
In creative work there are two phases: exploration and execution. In the exploration phase, you don’t know what the thing is going to be, you don’t have all of the information or ideas you want to have, you don’t even know if what you’re thinking about is important, and any little breeze in the wrong direction might blow you off course. In the execution phase, you are inspired, you know what the thing is, you know how to make it, it feels urgent; all you need to do is sit down and do the thing.
👨🏻🎨 Roberto Ferraro (Instagram account)
I discovered this niche of illustrators on Instagram, drawing similar pictures with some sort of personal development advice. Nothing particularly novel in terms of the advice itself, but something strikes me about these illustrations that I just enjoy staring at them.
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That’s it for today. Thanks for reading. Until next week 👋🏻
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