I didn’t grow up doing super fancy kitchen stuff. My mom passed on a love of baking, but cooking? Not so much. Holiday dinners were a big deal in our family but I remember the other meals as pretty standard. Well, except for those family recipes that were melt in your mouth delicious, but even those were just…well, dinner.

Fast forward twenty years and I was cooking. Not super fancy cooking, mind you, more like enough-nutrients-to-get-us-through-the-day cooking. I wasn’t really motivated to cook “well” until the kids were older. Actually I probably wasn’t really motivated until gluten was taken off the table and I started experimenting because if I couldn’t eat bread then by God I’d at least eat delicious vegetables. Prep work became important. And when prep work became important good knives became crucial.

Enter my set of Wüsthof knives.

I love these things, I really do. Until I worked with truly sharp knives I didn’t understand how much easier they made cooking. I mean a knife’s a knife, right? Except no, a knife isn’t a knife, there’s actually a great deal of difference between knives and it matters. This didn’t much matter during my Kraft mac and cheese and Le Sueur peas years but food – real food – prep changes the name of the game.

You know what else it changed? It added Neosporin and a collection of Bandaids to my junk drawer. Because when a tiny slip leads to a tiny slice that starts gushing blood it’s pretty inconvenient to run across the house in search of first aid supplies. (Psst – if you do have to run it helps to hold the cut body part above heart level while applying pressure. Pro tip there.)

So the last time we were at the lake I was making shredded chicken for tacos, and when I went to half the onion the dull knife slid right down the side and ripped into my finger. I suppose the good news was that the lake knives are dull and if I’d done that with my Wüsthofs we’d have been hauling my iced down finger to the ER so they could reattach it. The catch-22 is that sharp knives will never betray you like that. Slice your finger right off? Sure. But they won’t glance off onions because sharp knives cut into stuff LIKE THE ONION.

Anyhoo, that leads to change #2 in the house: the purchase of blade guards and a knife carrier so I could bring my own to the lake. Because in corona times ain’t nobody got time or the immune system to visit the ER.

Linda hosts Stream of Consciousness Saturday. This week’s prompt is “sharp.” Use it in any or all of its definitions. Have fun!