We all carry knives on our tool belts. Not the big ‘backwoods hunter’ knives, but smaller ones – some people carry the hardware store style utility knife, but I prefer an actual knife – a folding 2.5 inch blade that’s half smooth and half serrated. The reason for this is that a smooth blade won’t cut things like rope (well, it will, but not easily) and a serrated blade won’t cut gels.
Since I try to keep the tool belt as lightweight as possible, I go for the item that will do two jobs.
Normal use dulls knives, of course, and it’s not worth it to pay to have my army surplus store folding knife sharpened, so I generally wait until the knife is really, really fucked up and then I replace it.
My old knife was really, really fucked up. So dull that the blade wouldn’t have cut butter even if I’d put my back into it, and at some point the tip had broken off (I lost my screwdriver and was trying to make the knife do the job).
So over the weekend I stopped in at the trusty surplus store and bought a new knife. One with an actual edge and a tip.
Except that during a lighting set-up today, I was hurriedly cutting gel and forgot that the new blade, being actually sharp, didn’t need to be applied with quite so much force as the old one.
I stabbed the tip into the gel, pushed too hard and ran the tip of the knife up under my fingernail.
If you’ve never had the misfortune to stick a knife blade under one of your fingernails, I can assure you that’s it’s excruciatingly fucking painful, but surprisingly doesn’t bleed very much.
After biting my tongue to hold back the world’s loudest swear, I finished cutting my gel, went in, handed the gel off and then went outside for a really good scream.
The nail’s turning black now (guess that’s where all the blood went), but it doesn’t hurt at all anymore.
Filed under: mishaps, Work