Knives, Minds, and Tongues
Updated: Nov 16, 2021
Some things are just better sharp.
I have a secret. It’s a big one.
For all the time I spent in the firearms industry, I prefer knives. Really, anything with an edge. Hatchets. Machetes. Chinese throwing stars. If it can slice, stab, or stick, it’s good in my book.
Hear me out. I like a tool that I can carry both for self defense, and to cut that annoying piece of string. Come on — when’s the last time you took out a gun to open a box? (Side note: If you’ve used a gun to open a box, please stop reading and immediately proceed to the Contact Us page. I’d like to hear from you.) I know, a gun is only a million times more effective for protection and there’s the annoying fact that in a knife fight, everyone loses. But dammit, I just refuse to see logic here. Unless the logic is carrying both a knife and a gun. In which case, we’re on the same page. Pew pew. Stab stab. They exist in harmony.
BUT. There are different types of knife people. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you’re Average Joe Knife Guy.
Average Joe Knife Guy
You bought one from Walmart years ago and couldn’t tell me the brand, but “it’ll still slice you open real good.” No issues here. You’re a perfectly respectable gentleman who recognizes the use of a tool and has found one that he feels he can rely on. You’re no fuss, no muss, and hell — if it gets lost on a job site or falls out of your pocket at Tractor Supply Co, you’ll mutter a single, solitary “god dammit” under your breath and then head right on down to the nearest Wally World to get you a new one. The world needs Average Joe Knife Guys.
What we don’t need more of are . . .
These guys. These guys are the worst. They even probably hate themselves just a little, and that’s why they try so hard. Coincidentally, they also got a body lift for their truck instead of a suspension lift because all they cared about was that their truck was taller than their buddy’s. These guys will whip out a pocket knife when no one asks (or even wants) to borrow it. And you know why they do it? Not because anyone needs it for fuck-all. No. Purely as some pseudo-macho flex to show that they, in fact, carry a knife. And for those who don’t know, that also means that they have an absolutely ginormous penis. Now you know.
Luckily, the Try-Too-Hards are also the easiest to defeat. Next time they whip it out (for the love of god please just the knife), reach for your pocket and politely say “Oh, no thanks. I have my own.” This tactic works especially well if you possess ovaries.
But you know who hates the Try-Too-Hards the most? The . . .
As a self-professed nerd, that is definitely not an insult. But for anyone who has attended a knife show (BLADE Show fam what up), you know exactly who I’m talking about. You can picture him. He has somewhat awkwardly long hair. You’re not shocked if it’s tied in a low ponytail with some sort of sinew — likely a scrap that was left over from when he was making his super fucking cool lanyard for his brand new Timascus® bead. He wears a button down shirt — not a dress one — over the top of some sort of psuedo-niche metal band t-shirt that signifies to the world he is not to be fucked with. As your eye delicately travels down, you can’t help but see what is undoubtedly a fashion statement of a belt buckle. It will be big, and if this dude is for real, it was made as a side-project by a bladesmith with whom he’s obsessed. Sorry, meant to say friends. With whom he’s friends. The jeans can range from Levis to something with rhinestones. Dealer’s choice. Shoes are most likely some sort of brown leather square-toed cowboy boot to give him a little height and show that he would have SLAYED if he’d live in the Wild Wild West.
These dudes can’t stand the Try-Too-Hards for a variety of reasons. One, the Try-Too-Hards were probably jocks in High School. And let’s face it, our friendly Knife Nerds were . . . Not. But Knife Nerds also can’t stand the Try-Too-Hards for a much deeper reason. They don’t appreciate the craft. Knives, while tools, are also pieces of artwork — well, maybe not the ones from Walmart. But they are beautiful and to be respected. Not to act as stand-ins for your other areas of perceived inadequacy.
Which brings us to . . .
The Quiet Professionals
If we’re to describe ourselves in gun terms, we’re not the guy going out and buying a DPMS. Oh, no no. We have a lovely little Noveske or maybe an LMT in the safe, possibly a few silencers, maybe we’ve dabbled in reloading (although now you’re toeing the line of Knife Nerd territory, you long range freaks). But we’re down to shell out some cash for the right toy. Shit I meant the right tool. Tool. Of course I meant tool.
The same is true for us with knives. When we’re a little hesitant to loan you our blade and give you a look of distrust when we do, it’s because (unless we recognize you as a fellow member of the Quiet Professionals Clan), we don’t trust you to know the value of what’s in your hand. Did we just hand you a Hinderer? A Strider? Winkler? And don’t get us started on how long that fucking wait list was. North of eight months of hoping to see the other part of your payment process to know what your place in line had come up. It’s was proverbial Christmas Day.
The point is. We know our tools. We’re not flashy about them, but god dammit if you open up the flood gates or give us a sign that you’re a fellow Quiet Professional, we will gush about our favorite knives and pull out pictures as if they were our children. Oh, hell. They are our children. More quiet, useful, low-maintenance versions of our children.
Oh, and we all think we’re John Wick.
Now, on to the list . . .
Salty Fox’s Fave Folders
Daniel and I have gathered a decent little collection for ourselves. Enough to make a Try-Too-Hard shit his Affliction jeans but not enough to make a hardcore Knife Nerd do more than cast a casually interested glance.
Ranking these is like saying “which type of pizza is the best” or “would you rather spend a day with Dana White or Joe Rogan”. No matter what, your options don’t suck. So take these rankings with a grain of Salty Fox salt. And also, these are just the favorite folders. We'll do a fixey version at some point.
1. Half Face Blades SHPOS Folder
That sonofabitch Andrew Arrabito. Anyone who meets him likes him. Well, except bad dudes. He just kills those. But this former SEAL-turned-bladesmith has an undeniable gift when it comes to creating edged weapons. His artistic flair and undying dedication to his craft have brought about some of the most beautiful blades I have ever seen. His combination of character and craftsmanship lands this SHPOS folder at the top of the list.
Not to mention the name is pretty awesome. Sub Human Piece of Shit. You do you, Bito.
2. Spartan Blades Spartan-Harsey Folder - Special Edition Kraken
This one is essentially in a tie for First on Awesome Points, but was only narrowly beaten out because I find myself reaching for the lightweight nature and the easy-grip ring of the SHPOS.
Spartan Blades stands on its own, but throw in William Harsey, Jr., and you’ve got a real treat. This was a special edition a few years back and has a Kraken on it. What more can I say. It’s badass.
3. McGinnis Knives Mini Exos - SilencerCo Limited-Edition Collaboration
Ok, this one is a favorite for a somewhat-douchey reason. It’s so damn hard for people to flip. That is, until it isn’t. Grab this thing wrong, and you’re going to be fighting with that little flipper until your index finger is bruised. But hold her right, and she flies open faster than . . . I probably don’t even need to finish a comparison. Just . . . Fast. You’d think it had an assisted open. And it does — it’s called physics. The proportions and construction of this blade make the opening action so smooth and buttery.
Not gonna lie though. Sometimes I hand it to people just to watch them struggle so that I can turn around and let it fly. See? Douchey.
4. Hinderer XM-18 3.5” - SilencerCo Limited-Edition Blackout Bowie Tip
IT JUST LOOKS SO FUCKING COOL. All blacked out. The scale even has a pattern that matches the Omega silencer from SilencerCo. It just has big dick energy written all over it, and I’m here for it. Throw in a Bowie blade, and dayum, son. Ain’t nobody fucking with this flipper.
5. Hinderer XM-18 3” Spearpoint
IT’S JUST SO FUCKING CUTE. Like the little sister of the Hinderer above. This one will cut you, but it’ll probably smile and do some kind of endearing giggle at the same time, so you can’t help but go “awwwwww, how cute.” Cute little orange scale. Cute size. Just cute.
6. Emerson - XYZSOMETHING
I’m just gonna be honest here. I have no idea what particular knife this is. Bought it at a knife show and called it a day. Maybe a Knife Nerd will read this and judge me. But anyone who has ever sniffed around the possibility of liking knives knows the name Emerson. The man’s a fucking legend, so even if you’re just a dumb girl at a knife show and you’ve got cash to burn and want to drop it on the Emerson that’s sitting on the table, you do it and you don’t feel bad about it.
Ok, boys and girls. That concludes our show. We stereotyped some people. Talked about some knives. All in all, I’d call that a good day.
The Salty Fox