Linda, I just had to write this. On carrying a knife on a date— Noreen Tyers
Back in the 1950’s and earlier from my childhood, I was used to the sight of the pocket knife . Most men, and boys always had a pocket knife, in their pocket.
My Grandpa always had a pocket knife, and he did amazing things with it. While Grandma rested her leg on the footstool he built after dinner, he would sit on the veranda and whittle. He whittled amazing things like a little axe placed in a slice off a branch of a white birch tree.
It fascinated me as a child, what could come out of an old branch or a piece of wood from my Grandpa’s waste bucket, and it was created by a pocket knife. I was so enthralled with the little axe in the branch, that one evening when I skipped down the street to visit my grandparents, there was the finished product. A little axe in the branch. He said, ” Would you like it?” and I said yes. I still have that little axe in the birch, slightly worn and dried out a tad. It has seen the dab of glue when it was accidentally knocked off the fireplace mantel, by one of my children and snapped at the grain. My little axe still sits in the corner shelf my grandfather also made.
My Grandpa always carried that knife in his pocket, and I can remember it did get a lot of use when we went on our Summer Holidays at Richard’s Castle. It did do amazing things, like sharpen a pencil when it broke, cut a flower on our walks that I happened to admire. He usually brought along an apple and he would wipe off the knife and cut off a slice of apple.
I have to say that when he went fishing the pocket knife sat on the seat beside him. There just might be a need to cut a piece of fishing line off his spool of line and whittle a little stick and make me a fishing pole. I have to admit after a couple of sunfish catches the stick might have broken, but no tears, as another fishing pole could be created in no time.
I have to say many a screw was tightened when the screw driver was not present and an emergency happened. I even watched him cut a piece of cardboard out to place in his shoe when it developed a hole in the sole and he didn’t have time to take to the Shoemaker—-at least that is what he said. There was also those times Grandma would fold a piece of waxed paper for something and say can you cut it on the crease, out came the pocket knife and he slid it on the crease.
Now on a picnic one never knew what the pocket could cut, fruit, the top of something, and funny thing is he always wiped it off with a little hunk of rag. I have to say that the item the knife created that took my interest, was a chain he whittled out of a branch. Every evening, one summer the chain was whittled out and the shavings from the wood was dropped into an old large can. The chain was also put in the can behind Grandma’s Adirondack chair where he would bring it out while he sat on the edge of the veranda. Another link would be started. I did learn a lot of things could be done with that little knife.
As a young person, I learned that a knife was not a toy, it was not to be misused and when I was a little older I was taught how to sharpen it. Now, be careful do not cut yourself.
When I was seventeen I met my husband and he carried a knife in his pocket, like my grandfather, and the knife was always used for doing things that just came up. Cutting off a taste of fudge off a larger piece of fudge you might have bought. Yes we went fishing, we cut fruit and cut off a hunk of rope to tie something together. He also carved with his pocket knife, and I have a Donkey he carved when he attended Hopewell Avenue Public School.
You know fear of my boyfriend carrying a pocket knife never entered my mind, nor did I ever see him misuse it. It is sad to think that these thoughts now enter a young girl’s mind when and if they go on a date. Give me the olden days when a knife carved our initials in a tree, at the cottage in the summer and thought of love not to hurt or use as a weapon. The idea just never entered my mind and I am glad it didn’t. It is a shame we now have to.