Knife Of The Pocket Sort

Dave Sanders


My favorite pocketknife is a CASE (Barehead Slimline Trapper to be exact).
Yellow–‐handled CASE is what I always called them.
Yellow and Silver and Gold.
Clip Blade. A clip blade is a thin blade with a sharp point.

Ideal for piercing

4.125 in x 10.48 cm closed; 2.3 oz

This knife is mass-produced, yet somehow unique. 4 golden bolts hold it together on each side of the handle, and the letters CASE are emblazoned within a circle, only on one side.

This is not a case in point but a CASE with a point, typically used to make a point or point out something. It comes from a traditional point in time, a point that still exists, but only when it’s convenient. The knife’s point is housed in the nostalgic yellow similar to that of household appliances from the 70s, darker than eggshell lighter than the yolk.

A notch on the front side of the blade is the perfect width for a thumbnail. Case XX etched on the same side. Tempered not once, but twice—XX.


31048     etched on the other.



to create              to construct      to cut to carve           to clean

The CASE sat in a case in the front of our smalltown’s hardware store. I tell my dad I always wanted one.
A year later, through teary eyes, he hands it to me before I move across the country.
It is almost an afterthought.

Yellowhandled Barehead Slimline Trapper—clip blade.

I run my thumb across the simple lettering CASE as if I am interpreting Braille and offer a thank you. I slide the knife in my front pocket. A screen door shuts two parents outside; now just waving hands in a rearview mirror.

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