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Almost no one cares if you're using a knife

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by stabman, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. Pilsner

    Pilsner Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Oct 28, 2017
    Isn't it really about context, and "knowing one's audience"? To my mind, it isn't so much the size of the knife that matters, but the manner in which it is used and why. To a casual observer, somebody opening a thumbstud or spydie hole folder, rapidly, will look exactly like they are using an automatic knife. If one opens the same knife slowly the reaction is different, if there even is a reaction.

    There will always be threads, not like this one, where the OP bemoans the 'sheeple' who 'freaked out' when he 'deployed' his 10" saw back Bowie knife to open a packet of biscuits, whilst shouting WOOOSHAAAA and dressed in full tactical camo.
    Armadew, SharpieB, sharp_edge and 7 others like this.
  2. mfm22


    Nov 9, 2010
    I have a SAK Ambassador [ very small] on my key chain - don't think twice about it - it's always in my pocket
    Went to a " wine & food" event at Nassau Coliseum [ long island NY ] - Get to gate need to do pocket dump & go through metal detector
    guard looks at key chain & asked is that a flashlight ? - I have a small fenix on keys also - I say , yes it is - puts keys in tray and I go thru detector .
    the guard next to him picks up keys and says - you can't come in with this knife - holding the SAK !!
    Took a long walk back to car to leave " knife" - sometimes people care way to much
  3. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    Unfortunately for knife knuts, you're right. But what's the fun it that? I however routinely carried a SAK, but don't care much for the scissors. Have a scissors on my Leatherman Ps4 Squirt if I really need to use one (but that is seldom). It is pretty much always with me. I could use one single SAK for 90% of the things I use a folding knife for and be content, but I do like a little variety. It's a hobby ya know...
  4. jc57

    jc57 Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 28, 2012
    Add me to the list of people who don't care.
  5. James Y

    James Y

    Feb 18, 1999
    Once back in the '90s, a woman saw me cutting paper with the tiny scissors on my SAK Classic and said, "I hope you realize that's a deadly weapon you're carrying!" She said it with a particularly snotty tone, so she definitely wasn't joking. Also, I was still being as discreet as possible.

    The great majority of the time, though, I never get a reaction, or even have anybody notice when I'm using a knife. And if I'm in public or around others, I certainly don't need to whip open my Spyderco Military (for example) to open a small package or cut off a loose hanging thread from my shirt. I always have a small SAK (Executive) for things like that. Ever since that one obnoxious lady in the '90s, nobody has ever given a second look, or even noticed, when I use that.

    I've even used mid-to-large-sized, one-handed folders at work with nobody caring. At first, some people were surprised I had a knife, like "Whoa, James has a knife!", but since I was using it for legitimate cutting chores at work, everybody has become pretty blasé about it. I never made a big deal about it, and I wasn't trying to impress myself or anybody else. There are always discreet ways of using a knife.

    In my life, I have seen some guys who get all bent out of shape when people react with surprise/alarm/wariness when they flick open their large folders with a dramatic flourish to open a bag of chips, or just to show it off. Then they lament the 'loss of manliness' in modern society. What the hell do they expect? Those guys are comparable to the klutz who shoots himself in the foot to prove to everyone that guns are safe, then gets mad that it upset others.

    OTOH,,a high percentage people seem to lack awareness.

    Once when walking in a business area in broad daylight, I saw a homeless man digging in a waste basket pull out a cheap, black, tanto-bladed 'tactical' folder and, for some reason, he began trying to stab it into a nearby palm tree. The first few times it didn't stick and fell to the ground. He than began grunting loudly and vigorously stabbing the tree several times until it finally stuck. Not 20 feet away was an outdoor area of a restaurant full of 20-somethings who were talking and didn't even notice him or what he was doing. I and one other man noticed and gave him a very WIDE berth while keeping him in sight. It was obvious he had mental issues.

    *Sorry for the mega-post. :)

    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    Pomsbz and DocJD like this.
  6. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    I agree with the "care way too much". People hide behind "just doing my job". Unfortunately, people have been killed for "just doing my job". I like some common sense included with rules. I have more than a couple times tucked my little Leatherman Squirt (or a small SAK) in a bush near the entrance of the court house when conducting personal business there. I was willing to risk loosing the tool over the hike back to the truck. I try to remember for the most part ahead of time. They are attached to my keys and I really don't think about them as cutting instruments. But I feel sure some motivated prisoner could find a Squirt to be very useful in jail.

    So now we can assume if someone is repeatedly stabbing a cheap knife into a tree, he has mental issues? ;) Yes, to the awareness issue generally.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  7. mfm22


    Nov 9, 2010
    I just cut a muffin with a plastic knife - take that knife and sharpen down on the concrete side walk - = 3" shiv-
    many common place items can be converted into a deadly weapon - Pens are a perfect example -
    Talk about common sense -- I'm not giving up my SAK ANYMORE !! LOL

    Just realized .. the plastic knife gets past metal detectors !! go figure
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  8. basmca


    Aug 1, 2017
    Never seen a pocket clip on anyone in my life. (Only the guy working in a knife store but that doesn't count..)

    Guess it's not as much of a thing here in Holland.
    SAK's are common though.
  9. mfm22


    Nov 9, 2010
    SAK.JPG -- Intimidating ? hardly [ except in our politically OVER correct world ] ... useful / functional / necessary - totally
    jmh33 likes this.
  10. marcinek


    Jan 9, 2007
    That phrase makes me giggle. Sorry. "Whew! Somebody open a window...I just cut a muffin!"

    That said, I have said it before and will again...I live and work smack dab ground zero in the middle of what one might consider "SheepleVille."

    I carry a knife. I have a SAK on my desk in the office. (People borrow it constantly and think is the handiest thing they ever saw. Just happened a couple days ago. Somebody needed a can opener, and I had one on the SAK. Blew peoples' minds.) I see pocket clips on mass transit quite often.

    Nobody cares.

    Sometimes they want to talk about my knife and/or show me theirs.

    And in the rare, rare event someone is bent outta shape, I try to educate politely, and if that fails, move on.

    I don't know where all these "sheeple" are...I must be doing it wrong. Maybe whipping out an oversized penetrator out of my pants as noisily and dramatically as possible in public for tasks that could easily be handled by a Vic Classic would be better.
    Pilsner, Mecha and danbot like this.
  11. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    Have to say that I hate plastic knives. It's one of the reasons I carry a knife most of the time. I guess I would cut a biscuit with a plastic knife at Hardee's.
  12. FullMetalJackass

    FullMetalJackass Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 10, 2016
    Use a knife in public, get kids smiling and parents freaking out :)
    Wisdom is a matter of age, or so they say...
    DocJD likes this.
  13. Wanimator


    Mar 7, 2014
    Nowadays it would be a toss up between an Opinel Garden and a Pakkawood HAP-40 Endura in my pocket. Both are fitting to the way I look, dress and seem to act. Most people think the mahogany is beautiful and like the laminated blade on the Endura. It's an aesthetically pleasing user for me.
    DocJD likes this.
  14. Mecha

    Mecha Madscienceforge.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Dec 27, 2013
    "Yes, he has a knife, and he's sharpening a huge stick right now," said the engraving booth girl into her phone, in in a hushed and hurried voice. "I think he's one of those drifter types, the ones who hang out under the bridge, but crazier-looking."

    The security guard picked up his pace. There'd been a lot of trouble in the mall parking lot lately, the usual petty crimes and tussles, but nothing bad like stabbings. Someone making a pike at the mall sounds like a real wack job, he thought.

    The stick carver suddenly raised his head up from whittling and locked eyes with the engraving girl, whose nervousness couldn't be hidden behind the hand covering her phone as she told the security guard to hurry up.

    "Oh hey, hi, uh, is that bamboo?" she blurted out awkwardly with a nervous laugh.

    Wordless, the whittler's lip raised in a sneer, and he turned his hollow eyes back to his work to began carving the wood again just as the security guard approached warily, assessing the situation. The stick didn't look pointy at all, it just looked like it was carved with the senseless scrapings of a madman, like the fingernail marks on the stone walls of an Elizabethian asylum cell.

    The crazy whittler noticed the security. "It's just a sak," barked the mad whittler, speeding up his carving. "I need to put the tip on it."

    Right, thought the security guard. The stick is a sack. Jeez, what are these kids smoking these days? Shaking his head in pity at the sorry plight of yet another burnt out youngster, and seeing that there was no real danger from this particular poor soul, the security guard nodded at the watching engraver girl, and moved along.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    DocJD, palonej, USMCPOP and 6 others like this.
  15. ourgon


    Feb 27, 2013
    Try the same with some 4" folding knife with flipper/auto opening. Or with tactical looking fixed knife.

    SAK is neutral like country which made it, never heard negative thing about mine in public places.
  16. shinyedges

    shinyedges Unfaltering Love & Undeviating Will Platinum Member

    Jun 5, 2012
  17. mt666tm


    Nov 20, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    FortyTwoBlades and stabman like this.
  18. stabman

    stabman Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 17, 2007

    Your description is more detailed, (with inner monologue even!), but I prefer my version more. :D
  19. bearfacedkiller


    Jan 23, 2014
    I carry large knives often including a Spyderco K2. The Spyderco Military is one of my most carried knives. People seldom say anything and when they do it is usually a mild comment. I also don't flick my knives open and own very, very few flippers. I open my knives slow and boring cause I am a slow and boring kind of guy. :)

    I did have a coworker ask me why I needed such a large knife to cut up a peach that I was going to mix with some cottage cheese. I told him that if he thought a four inch blade was a large knife for cutting up a peach that I would hate to see what he had for kitchen knives. He smiled and laughed. I usually have a nonchalant reaction and I think that is key.

    I don't draw a lot of attention when opening or using a knife and I do not make a big deal about people mentioning my knife. If anything I use it as an opportunity to educate. That works for me.


    Jan 6, 2016
    I use my Ontario RAT II folder at the Walmart pickup counter to open boxes when picking up an order. No raised eyebrows so far, though it's usually just the clerk there.

    Years ago in a Thai elementary school classroom, I was invited to teach one English class. One kid in the back was playing with a farmer knife with an 8 inch blade. Appropriate for about 4th grade. No one but me took notice.

    On one subsequent visit years later, I was walking in town with about a 12" pointed blade sort of like a Kukri. It was wrapped in newspaper. A street cop questioned me about why I was carrying. Well, you have to carry it home after you buy it, right? A luggage inspector at the airport was rather surprised at the 40+ pounds of knives, hoes and other hand-forged stuff I was taking back. On the way to Thailand, back when you could carry a pocket knife on a plane, we had a layover in Japan. Security there wouldn't let me carry my knife. I explained that is was a nice one, made in Seki. They somehow sent it along in a box and I picked it up when I landed in Bangkok. Nice people.
    jakemex and DocJD like this.

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