Stay Sharp

Any time I put a new razor head on my razor and I shave I have a little monologue in my head that goes: “You should do this more often because you don’t cut yourself and it’s so much smoother and, really, it’s worth it.”

Now that same monologue is going to kick in when I get my kitchen knives professionally sharpened. I’m such an idiot for not doing this more often. At the Atwater Village farmer’s market, there’s a man who sharpens knives (you can see him above). All I had to do was carry my knives to the market–a 20 minute walk–and cough up $11. That’s a small pittance considering the impact it immediately makes in the kitchen.

A Razor/Knife Analogy

We all shave (well, except for you, Moses). Men shave their faces, women shave other parts, and we can all agree that shaving is always better and smoother with a fresh, super sharp razor. Today, after replacing the head on my Mach 3 Turbo, and shaving my face so smooth a baby’s bottom sued me for plagiarism, it occurred to me: “shaving with a super sharp razor is like slicing with a super sharp knife.” Those of you who’ve shaved with super sharp razors may have never sliced anything with a super sharp knife. But the feeling is the same: the same way a fresh razor glides across your face or legs, cutting hair so swiftly and painlessly you can barely believe it’s happening, a freshly sharpened knife glides into whatever it is you’re cutting with imperceptible precision and ease. Who among you replaces your razorhead more regularly than you sharpen your knife? This post is for you. Sharpen your knife and tell me you don’t become a sharp knife junkie. Just don’t shave with a sharp knife unless your name is Sweeney.

A Ceramic Knife

In certain movies, there’s always a bad guy who thwarts a hero or a town from getting what he, she, or they want but, at the end, learns to love that thing for him or herself. For example, I’d like to cite “Footloose” and “Chocolat,” two movies that I’ve seen but totally forgotten. I do remember that Kevin Bacon wants the town to dance and Juliette Binoche wants the town to eat chocolate, but that Kevin Bacon is challenged by John Lithgow who hates dancing and Juliette Binoche is challenged by Alfred Molina who hates chocolate. Suffice it to say, the heroes win out and in my fantasy version of these movies–fantasy versions because I don’t really remember them–John Lithgow, at the end, sees the error of his ways and starts dancing and Alfred Molina gorges himself on chocolate.

I start my post this way, because I feel like the villain of a movie about knives–a movie in which a hero named SuperChef tries to convince the town to use the sharpest knives possible. I am a double villain because I wrote a chapter in my book about knives and keeping them sharp, I even bought a whetstone, but the truth is my knives really aren’t sharp enough. Which is why, the other day, after work at Food Network, I headed downstairs to the Bowery Kitchen to buy the sharpest knife I could. (I’m a pretty easy villain in the grand scheme of things, I cave pretty quickly under knife guilt….)

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