Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Crooked Knife Series: No 3

A lot of people who think of themselves as outdoors folks, and rightly so, aren't interested in knives (crooked, straight or otherwise) nor are they enamored by making wooden spoons or building their own camps or constructing selfbows or atlatls or forming their own cordage or learning how to make bow-drills and bucksaws or acquiring all the other skills that some of us hold dear. And there’s nothing wrong with that. A majority of people would rather simply buy a tent and the rest of their equipment and then head off into the woods to enjoy nature oftentimes packing freeze-dried food and fancy portable stoves and a host of exotic devices and products. Then there are those who would rather make their own gear, cook fresh food (unprocessed), and build their own camp from shelter to cooking set-up. I've even run into people who craft their own packs from pieces of canvas or leather and fashion their cooking ware from tin cans. In truth marketers, manufacturers and promoters don’t particularly like people like that. Those sorts of people don’t buy ad infinitum and aren't part of the consumptive lifestyle that’s become the norm in our society.

I get interesting notes from people who want to make their own outdoor gear and learn everything they can about the wilds. The common thread I see in those folks is their undying respect for nature. It’s as if they have both a spark of minimalism as well as the desire to experience the circle of creation from gathering the raw materials through the building process onward to the final result. Like many great woodcrafters have said, “The more you know, the less you need.” Perhaps the greatest example of this in recent times is the story of Ishi who walked out of the northern California wilderness and introduced the world to the purity of absolute woods knowledge. So for that group who admires the things we make ourselves here is crooked knife number 3 in the series.


No comments:

Post a Comment