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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Pocket knives

For about 24 hours recently, I thought I'd lost my pocket knife. There are certain things in life that it's best not to get too attached to because you're eventually going to lose them- pens, and socks for sure, and also pocket knives. Because of this realism and because I don't feel right without one, for years I've kept a back-up in the top drawer of my dresser. I had the back-up in my pocket for a day until my wife Pam found the lost one.

The choice of which particular knife receives the honor of becoming your pocket knife is, of course, highly individualized. My choice is a Swiss Army model Spartan which has six blades as well as the traditional toothpick and tweezers. I use all the blades, especially the two screw drivers which seem to be well-chosen because they handle so many household chores. I don't want one of those huge Swiss Army models; mine fits so well in my pocket I never am conscious of it until I need it.

The last 10 years or so I worked I had to stop carrying it because company policy viewed a knife as a weapon and forbade the practice. Twice it caused me some inconvenience; once when my son Greg was 14 and I took him to a Metallica concert. The pocket knife showed on the metal detector, and I was refused entrance as long as I had it.  I thought it was kind of ironic that among all those burly biker-types this mild-mannered father could be perceived as dangerous, but I had to go back to the car to stash it. The same thing happened in Annapolis when I showed up at a recreational fishing hearing about yellow perch. There was a number of fishermen out there at the same time hiding their knives among the shrubbery outside the state government building.

I haven't permanently lost a pocket knife in some time, but I feel certain my good luck streak will end sooner or later.

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