My knife lives a mostly sedentary existence. It can lay latent in my pack or hooked on my pocket for weeks without use. Yet, it performs admirably when it is called to duty, even if the particular job might fall well below its station.

“The more comfortable you are with your knife, the more you will find it being a natural extension of your hand. Again, like your iPhone probably is.” —Ben Brooks

The knife’s tasks are mostly mundane: cutting Amazon packing tape, Toys R Us blister packs or sales tags from new clothing. Nothing difficult, nothing close to it’s intended use. However, it’s presence and utility are appreciated when the need arises.

On an occasional camping trip or outdoor expedition, the knife catches a glimpse of what it’s life could be like. Cutting through rope and wood. Bathing in sweat and dirt. But these moments are seldom and fleeting as the excursions become more suburban.

“The carrying of a pocket knife is a man tradition that should be continued.” —Art of Manliness

But today the knife has felt its purpose. Today the knife went to sea, its excitement building with each strike of the hull against the surf.

Today it was passed between expert hands as it cut tangled lines, opened cheap Island beer, and sliced cured game. It looked proud when the others remarked on its keen edge and its clever-yet-sturdy design.

It reached its full potential when it pierced the flesh of a freshly caught spring salmon. And as the fish bled out, as the knife was doused in its first true filth, it felt alive.

Today the knife knew its purpose when it rode home on the pocket of a 5 year old boy’s hero—his Dad who got to drive a boat, caught a fish straight-out-of-the-ocean and then brought it home for dinner.

Check out Patrick Rhone’s awesome video review of the knife I carry.

A knife's purpose | July 2, 2014 by James. Looking for more? Check the archive or follow the feed. Want to say hello? Send me an email. Or a beer.