A Swiss Army Knife In Your Life Prevents A Lot Of Strife, by M.T.

Swiss Army Knife
Swiss Army Knife

So, it was the 1970’s. I was living in Denver, Colorodo at the time, so it was only a 13-15 hr. drive (nothing for me…LOVE DRIVING) to…would you believe it, Las Vegas. I went out right after I got off from work that Sunday morning. This trip out is what ended up giving me the brilliant idea (which wasn’t typical for me) to hit up Vegas and spend my entire weeks vacation there. You see, the week before I had made a nice amount of money by putting in a lot of overtime, and I guess I was in a hurry to lose all that money huh.

I was just browsing around a few stores…looking to burn just a LITTLE BIT of my hard earned money. That’s where I saw it, in some display case…the Victorinox Classic (would you believe it) this was going to be the first ever folding knife I would ever buy. Good thing too, cause this knife would later on SAVE MY LIFE!!! After pondering the decision for a sec I said “what the heck.” While the sweet little girl behind the register was boxing and bagging this knife up I saw (sitting on the counter) this little pamplet for some Vegas attraction. That’s when the decision was pretty much made for me…”Vegas,” I said, “here I come.”

So there I was, leaving Denver heading for Vegas (with Victorinox in pocket…my new pocket rocket). The drive to Vegas went great, scenery was beautiful, temp was great, and my nerves were shot by the time I reached Vegas. Why, because, well, lets just say that back then (my 20’s) I was a MUCH bigger risk taker…more so than I care to remember. I want go into too much detail about that (my risks), but lets just say I never went anywhere without my herbs…nuff said?

Had a blast in Vegas though. And this is where my story really starts to pick up. I was up about $1,400.00, yeah, the craps table was definitely on my side (along with fate) the first night I was in Vegas. I had just got done with my turn on the craps table and the man next to me had just picked up the dice…with a smug look on his face too. This guy was on fire, even more so than I was, which was amazing because winning $1,400.00 at the craps table back then was no easy task. The cheering for this man (who seemed to be a dice magnet) was relentless. That’s when I noticed it, a hangnail on my thumb (something I could not stand…still can’t). So I whipped out my new Victorinox, popped out the file, and thanks to my gracefulness, dropped it on the floor. “Oh well” I said, bent down to grab my knife, glanced up, and to my utter amazement noticed that this supposed ‘dice machine’ was nothing more than a cheat. The guy had a second pair of weighted dice in his hand. Even though I just barely caught a glimpse of these dice it was enough for me to go to the pit boss, report this cheating douche-bag and get him arrested.

The casino owner was so grateful for my help that he comped my entire weeks stay there…can you say “SWEET!” That’s when I turned to the owner and explained how it was all thanks to this little Swiss Army Knife (and my clumsiness) that his casino was prevented from being robbed…he couldn’t believe it.

Well, at this point I bet you can believe that I was on cloud 9. I was up $1,400.00, saved a casino from being stolen from, was kind of a hero (at least in my own mind) and apparently had a new good luck charm in pocket (my Victorinox Classic). The rest of my weeks stay in Vegas went great. Except for that last night, I guess my new knife’s luck (or mine) had finally run out. That’s right, lost about $600.00 on the craps table that night, right before leaving Vegas to head back to Denver too. Can you believe that (like an hour before leaving…my timing SUCKED). Oh well, at least I was still up $800.00 and had my whole hotel bill comped (could’ve been worse).

Anyway, so on the way back to Denver…that’s when things got hairy. About 5 hours into the drive back (it was around 3:00 a.m.) my 1972 Ford Pinto started fading out one me. With my head lights getting dimmer, engine clanking out one me and car slowing down I thought to myself…”you’ve got to be kidding me.” Pulling off to the side of the road I said “what a way to end this fabulous week huh, with getting stuck out here in the middle of nowhere!” Nowhere was right too, I had broken down right between Green River, UT & Grand Junction, CO…there’s nothing for over 110 miles.

Getting out of the car heading for the hood I was like “great.” I mean, I’m by far from a mechanic, but what did I have to lose right. Opening the hood with a little extra force (from my great mood) I noticed that there was a wire or two that looked like they had come loose from somewhere. It didn’t take me long to realize where these wires went…you’d be amazed at how far common sense will get you. Whipping out my new Victorinox Classic I thought to myself “man, who would’ve thought that this baby would’ve come in handy so much on this trip.”

Unfortunately, I shouldn’t of counted my blessings quite yet. While I was attempting to reattach all the wires I happen to glance up…and what did I see, that’s right, here came Mr. Police Officer. Of course the officer had to pull over (thinking back now, I guess it was nice of him), but when this all was going down I was sweating bullets. Think about it, I had a car with stashes of my (lets just say) “herbs” all over it, and a nice amount right in my shirts front pocket too. Can you all say “jail time.” “This is it” I thought as the officer pulled off the road, got out of his patrol car and was approaching.

Luckily I had almost reattached all the wires by this point (correctly I hoped). As the officer reached my side he could probably see the sweat pouring down my face. “Can I help you” the officer said. “NOPE” I yelled back, a little too loudly now that I think about it. I wanted to get back on the road (and away from this officer) as soon as possible…so that’s when I thought of a plan to do just that. “Excuse me officer” I said, continuing on with “can you please stay right here next to the hood while I try starting the car up, just in case I need something adjusted?” “Sure” he said. As I got back into the car all I could think about was getting the stuff that was in my pocket front out, and stashing it away somewhere.

The only problem was that I wasn’t in reach of any of my stash spots. With only seconds to decide I slid out (discreetly) my Victorinox Classic and slit a small hole into the drivers seat right between my legs. Luckily my front pocket stash fit perfectly into this hole I made. It even matched a few other holes around the inner upholstery…so it didn’t stand out. I then proceeded to take a deep breath, slid the key into the ignition and to my great delight…the car (lights and all) started right up. “Phew” I thought, bullet dodged…literally.

After closing the hood, stepping to the side and saying “goodbye” the police officer proceeded to get back into his patrol car. And as we both pulled away (driving off in opposite directions) I thought to myself, “what a week this was.”

Well that was it. the rest of the drive back to Denver (on the I-70, and even over the Continental Divide) went off without a hitch. As I pulled up to my apartment around 8:00 a.m., walked up to the door, slid my key in the lock I said to myself “who would’ve thought that this whole weeks adventure started with the purchase a single SWISS ARMY KNIFE.”

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