February brought a lot of change for me–a new job, a new perspective and a new appreciation for many things. So long to the days of working long graveyard shifts and the lack of energy, enthusiasm, and drive. Today is all about being as productive as possible, making the most of the day and advancing further than I ever dreamed. This keeps me on the go a lot, and with a lot more paperwork.

Even in this day in age, digital is still not king, and many people and companies still want literal paper trails. Being on the move constantly doesn’t always afford me the ability to be near a printer, which can severely complicate things. At least you would think.

Out of many things that I’ve come across at Goodwill, I was quite surprised to find something I really needed: a portable printer. Not just an “Oh look, its smaller” printer, but a small, portable Bluetooth and battery-powered printer. Literally portable. It’s as portable as my laptop, and made to be moved around frequently.

I was surprised to find something like this at Goodwill for under $20.00 with its battery pack, its original power supply, and in pristine condition. It even came with new ink. Ok well the full ink was a perk, not necessary, but it’s always a nice bonus.

I keep telling myself that I’ve got to stop keeping all these great finds. I don’t need all these electronic toys, but I can’t resist. They all play important roles in their own way.

Case in point was the transition week between the old job and the new. Because the two were at different times, I could work both of them, one overnight, and one during the day. It didn’t really afford me much time to sleep, let alone get the initial paperwork like a simple W-2 done. But as the ever tech savvy person that I have needed to become, I had every tool I needed to get everything accomplished.

I grabbed my netbook, the new portable printer, and mobile scanner, (oh yea, this scanner is awesome, USB powered and so small, but sadly not a Goodwill find so no great story) and run out the door. Since I had papers to fill out, sign, and sent back, a bit more work was involved than just modifying a digital copy and sending it back. Plus I literally had no time to go to the hiring facility and fill it out in person.

On day 1 on the new job I started whipping out piece by piece of my literal, mobile office to get these pressing matters addressed. I threw my phone in WI-FI hotspot mode, connected the computer, plugged in the scanner, fought with Bluetooth set-up to sync the printer (I won BTW), and went to town on the paperwork over my lunch break.

I was the new awkward guy, so I sat at my desk for lunch, taking advantage of those great little bistro boxes from Starbucks and chowed down. Of course my desk is next to a high traffic area, so it didn’t take long for people to notice my little office within an office. I was getting all these little “oohs” and “aahs” and “where’d you get that?”, all with a little bit of a jealous undertone. I wasn’t trying to flaunt, but I was getting attention, they were impressed. Great first day. And since then, this little printer has come in handy so many times.

And, as for my awesome scanner, one of my previous jobs was throwing it out since they’d decided it was no longer useful to them. Wasteful people. My newest keyboard (I may have too many now) is great–a combo keyboard with a built-in trackpad is awesomely useful. Coupled with any combination of trinkets in my bag of goodies (you may think this bag has a Portal to infinite space inside), like my nifty Bluetooth speaker power bank, and my phone for internet connectivity, and I have a mobile office, a mobile theater, and mobile gaming console. Portable everything!

When it really comes down to it, it’s what you can do with your tech, not how much it costs.