Monday, September 12, 2011

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 12

If you haven't noticed, I've taken the easy road out of the challenge for the past few days.  Today, I'm going to attempt to make up for it.  Many people have said that you can learn a lot about a woman by looking at what's in her purse.  To a lesser degree, the same statement is true about men as well.  You can learn quite a bit about a guy by what he carries in his wallet.  Since I never leave the house without mine, it seems this is a perfect time to show you what's in my wallet.

 This is my wallet.  It doesn't look all that special does it?  It's a basic black billfold...with a secret.  This wallet is actually a Faraday cage.  My wallet has a thin layer of conductive metal inside which, when closed, blocks RFID tag signals from escaping.  Why would I want a wallet that does that?  Check out my letter to the editor of my hometown paper that was published today.

Of course, as is standard in any modern person's wallet, I've got credit and debit cards.  Don't bother trying to steal my numbers, they're blurred out.  First is the Amazon Rewards Credit Card, prefect for me, or anybody else who reads at all.  You get 3 points for any Amazon.com purchase, 2 points for food and gas, and one point for everything else.  The newest advantage of the card is that (when paying with your Amazon.com card), you can redeem points for any amount directly on the website.  No longer do you have to wait until you have enough points to redeem for the $25 gift certificate.  Next is a generic giant evil bank Visa, which was the first credit card that I had and is kept around only in case of emergencies and to lower my credit utilization rate.  Lastly is the debit card that ties to the best checking account in the country.  The Schwab Investor Checking Account has been voted the best account in the country for many years running.  Not only is it free and actually pays interest, but you also get free checks and (here's the best part) you get reimbursed for all ATM fees anyplace.  They don't just reimburse you their fees and up to a certain limit.  You are reimbursed for the ATM fees charged by the other bank as well, with no limit.  This means that you can use any ATM anyplace you go, at any time and not worry about the fees.

 Here we've got my driver's license, my work ID, my work driver's license (yes, a special license to drive a bicycle indoors), and an old picture of my niece.  I have newer digital pictures of my Mereth, but haven't had them printed to put in my wallet.

 We finish up with both the most common and most uncommon things that I carry.  There's a small amount of cash (I pay for pretty much everything on my Amazon card), Jordan Harbinger's business card (for any guy I meet who is in desperate need of Jordan's help), and a credit card sized multi toolThis little multi tool is the most useful thing around.  Of course the little tiny hex adjusters and "compass" are useless along with the key ring attachment, but you've got a bottle opener, can opener, cutting blade, flat head screwdriver, and little saw.  I can't tell you how many times this thing has come in handy.  Also, since the Faraday cage works in both directions (keeps waves in as well as out), you can theoretically carry this card through airport security without any issues.  I haven't tried this, but it would theoretically work.

There you go.  Not only have I given you a peek in my wallet, but I've also shared some of my favorite financial accounts, a great little tool to have on hand, and a way to both protect yourself from identity theft and thwart the TSA*.

* Again, I have never attempted to carry the multi tool through airport security.  If you attempt to do so, you do so at your own risk.  Knowingly carrying the multi tool through security is a crime and you assume all risks associated with attempting to do so.

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