This shot shows very well what a long distance touring bicycle should be carrying and how it is stowed away. The front packs carry my food and very light gear such as raingear or a single sweater; my passport and trip journal are in a few plastic bags tucked close to the inner wall of each pannier. Notice the cooking gear on top of the front rack...i do not axle based panniers since you would lose this precious space. If you are worried about two much weight on your front axle, you are carrying too much weight to begin with!
The rear panniers carry my clothing and heavier stuff such as my tools, bottle of fuel, or sparer parts. Atop the back rack is my traveling home: tent, rain fly, poles, foam pad. Also my tire pump (i can reach back while riding and use it to shoo dogs) and any spare tires i may have to carry. Soap and toilet gear go in the small assorted zipper bags.
The handlebar bag carries my camera, wallet, film, food i want to nibble on route, and an assortment of bric-a-brac i have to have.
So how did the shirt save my life? In Aberystwyth, I was in a cafe when i was 'accosted' by a couple punk-rocker types...ya know, green hair, nails thru the nose, the whole bit. They were quite aggressive and overbearing until the noticed my "We Are the Jam" T-shirt; the Jam were a fairly well know alternative/punk band in the 1980s. These zeebs were so suprised I had even heard of the Jam thet they decided that I had to be so cool they left me alone. Gee!! the power and joy of music! Ramones, anyone?????