Thursday, November 15, 2007

Open {click}

I recently purchased a new pocketknife. I have a thing for pocketknives. I feel strongly that a well prepared man should carry with him a blade. Something sharp and utilitarian, available at a moment’s need for whatever task may be at hand. I have had a fair number of knives in my life, but I tend to favor cheap small blades that are easy to carry, have no gewgaws, and are easy to replace if lost or broken. A knife is simply a useful tool. Having one makes life easier, and in some cases, I really believe it can save a life. It’s one of those things that you may not need most of the time, but when you do, you really need it.

I tend to carry one of three different knives, depending on the occasion. When dressed for business, I have a lovely little 2-inch penknife with an imitation antler handle. The blade is narrow and the handle makes it look just a little bit classier than your standard working blade. It’s small size means that I can carry it discreetly while wearing suits and sport coats. For camping I carry a Camp King, the classic boy scout knife. It has a simple blade that is half way between a spey and a drop blade in shape (rounded with a slight point), an awl, screwdriver, can opener and bottle opener. It is a civilian version of the classic “Demo Knife” carried by soldiers since WWII. I like it’s basic utilitarian design, no frills. Tough simple and cheap. I carried this the entire time I walked the AT in 1996 and came to love it. It is, however, just a little bulky for carrying around when dressed up.

For casual use, I have carried several different knives. I recently purchased a nice little folding lock blade with a 2 inch modified clip blade. I was inspired to purchase this knife (for the extremely high price of $7.00 at Lowe’s ) by Chick Wetherbee, the instructor of my fire making class.

What’s so special? I can open it and close it with one hand.

That may not seem like a big deal, but I cannot stress to you how cool it feels to take a knife out of your pocket, open it with the same hand, use it, close it, and put it back all with the same hand. It feels cool, and it really makes the knife much more useful.

So I’ve been practicing. Open it. {click} Close it. Open it.{click} Close it. I’ll sit in front of the TV or talk on the phone and practice opening and closing my knife until it’s second nature. You never know when I may have to rush over to a car wreck and reach inside to cut the seat belt to free the poor slob who just crashed. One wants to be ready. Life could depend on it.
I like my new knife.

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