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BELIEVE IT OR NOT DEPARTMENT
Not too long ago, at the San Jose Knife Show, a visitor remarked on how interesting it was that a hotel would invite us exhibitors in for the weekend, at the hotels' expense.

Ole' buddy Sornberger said that if he won a million in the lottery, he'd probably keep on making knives until it was all gone.

Do not heat the blade beyond 400 degrees F. That could anneal the hard edge. If this should happen, the blade may be rehardened. All you have to do is send it back and beg Bob's forgiveness.

Always work with the cutting edge away from you, unless you enjoy having stitches put in.

Never grind after a meal that includes broccoli, cabbage or Brussel sprouts. One burp inside the dust mask could have near fatal results.

A word of caution. Any blade can be broken, no matter if the back is soft or hard. Metal may have flaws, or the idiot factor may have simply taken over. Japanese blades do not have the springy qualities of European swords. They bend, easily. People often try to do really dumb things with swords. It's part of the masculine thing.

I have nightmares about a blade loosening in a handle, sailing into a crowd of spectators.

The fact these blades are a fair copy of an ancient Japanese sword has absolutely no magical effect. In fact, it almost invites accidents when people try things that they should know are wrong. Please, don't let me hear that you've had a serious accident with one of mine.

I had a guy spend some time at my counter one day, explaining how expert he was with the use of the Katana, or Japanese sword. He decided to show me the proper, chopping stroke, using one of my boldly curved, Tachi blades.. The ceiling was high enough, and there wasn't anyone else around, so I said he could demonstrate. This fellow tried an overhead stroke. With a tremendous yell, he swept the blade way back over his head in the backstroke. Then he let out another, different sort of yell. He'd wound up so far on the backstroke that the tip of the blade went about an inch and a half into the top of his right bun. Never did come back to show me how the rest of it went. Moral of the yarn. Anyone can do some Errol Flynn stuff with a button tipped foil, but when you're messing around with two and a half feet of sharp steel, you'd better know where it is, all the time.

BOOKSHELF

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