I got my first pocketknife from my grandmother when I was 10. She gave all of us pocketknives from her vast collection when we reached that age and no, my parents were not aghast. We were all trained to use them as tools and use them responsibly and so we did. There couldn't have been more than 20 or 30 flesh wounds between the 4 of us caused by those sharp little knives.
Back then every boy scout had a pocketknife and usually a sheath knife and a hatchet and camping gear and went camping on weekends and built fires in the woods and on the prairie and I swear, once on a frozen lake. I think the pocketknives sometimes went to school and nobody cared. In the entire time of my education from kindergarten until post college, no classmate was ever so much as scratched by a knife.
After 9/11 pocketknives were relegated to the dustbin of history here in America. One cannot board an aircraft with anything sharper than wit and you'd be well advised to keep that under control as you pass, literally, through the hands of the TSA. God help you if you caught with a simple box cutter.
One cannot enter a courthouse or a federal building or a school with a knife. My last journey by train downtown was to go to my bank near the top floor of the Federal Building but I was stopped from entering by my pocketknife. Not some dangerous thing, it was little more than a penknife. One of the 2 dozen guards screening people entering the building told me that they had no means to keep it for me while I did my business and maybe I could just go outside and hide it in the bushes and come back for it when I was done. I wonder sometimes how many people fall for that scam.
On a recent trip I arrived at an airport with my usual flight bag but I forgot that I had put my grandfather's knife in that bag when my father passed it on to me a few weeks earlier when we made a road trip to visit my parents in another state. I wasn't going to let the TSA confiscate it and fortunately they now have an arrangement where one can pay $25.00 to mail it home.
I don't routinely slip a knife into my pocket. They are handy for many things beyond most mortal ken but I'll only remember to put one in my pocket if we're driving somewhere. The little hatch in our Subaru Outback that guards the dashboard vault that holds the usb chargers sometimes gets stuck in the down position and has to be jimmied open with......a thin bladed pocketknife.
|some of the dozens we have around the house|