I am the king of procrastination and delaying the inevitable. I am constantly doing things in half measures knowing that it would be best to do things the proper way the first time. And the sad truth for me is that this weak will to do the smart thing the first time leads me to accumulate a mountain of second rate things in my life. The biggest pile of junk I have is ineffectual culinary gadgets.
And, I love gadgets, but I always tend to gravitate to the less expensive option rather than just plopping down the cash for the better quality option first. I guess, I do this because I don’t have a lot of money to plop down in the first place and I am always skeptical of how much better the expensive option can be over the cheaper alternative.
This is why I have a battalion of useless to ineffectual knife sharpeners at my house. I do not mean steels. I am referring to implements designed to sharpen your knives, but in actuality leave you with a slightly less dull version of the previously very dull knife you had. I guess in the world of cause and effect, and advertising a less dull knife fulfills the contract of a knife “sharpener”. It does not, however, produce a knife which I consider sharp.
I never thought of sharp as a subjective term, but I guess it is because to me sharp means having an implement with an edge capable (at a minimum) of slicing through meat, and vegetables. I have quality knives (Wusthuff Trident) and have tried several gadgets to sharpen them, but they all produced a slightly less dull version of my already dull knives. That is, until, I bought a Diamond whetstone ($40.00) knife sharpener from my local hardware store, and sharpened my knives with it.
Now my knives are sharp, really sharp. I’m talking Tarzan, Crocodile Dundy, throw a strand of hair into the air and slice it sharp. I do not know why I waited so long to buy a whetstone. It’s like when you make an embarrassing mistake and you are too afraid to live up to it.
Like, say, if you got really drunk one night with your wife’s kid sister, and you make-out with her in some dark bar because her mouth makes that same funny smile her sister’s used to before it started yelling at you all the time about helping around the house with dishes and laundry and stuff. And you know you should tell your wife about the whole stupid thing, but you feel that would be even worse…for you. So you don’t say anything and walk around waiting for the day that she will find out and you will be forced to confess.
Well that’s the feeling of having a drawer full of useless knife sharpeners and knowing you should buy a whetstone, but you don’t and you continue to deal, live and operate with slightly sharp knives. It’s an awful feeling. But, once you have bought the whetstone and sharpened all your knives, scissors, flatware, and anything with an edge you can get your hands on, you feel so much happier and relieved.
Kind of like how you feel right after your sister-in-law goes through her Twelve Step Program and tells your wife about that night in April of ’07, and your wife slaps you, hard, and kicks you out of the house. For that one moment as you stand looking at the neighbor’s lights go on at 2 am, and seeing them all staring at you while you stand frozen on your front lawn in your underwear, hearing a police siren in the background, one octave lower than your wife’s never ending screeching at you: you are blissfully relieved that you do not have that “feeling” anymore. Only, this new “ feeling” last only until your wife’s lawyer informs you that your underwear is the only thing she intends to leave you with.