Tuesday 20 September 2011


One of my more obscure interests is sharpening, I'm proud to be able to bring a cutthroat razor up to a shaving edge and to be able to shave with it. Yes I have cut myself. No I've never opened an artery. Last Christmas I bought myself a low speed water-cooled grinding wheel. Sharpening knives and chisels is now so routine that I decided to learn to sharpen scissors, and I can bring dress making shears up to a perfect edge.

The highest office in the scissor world is held by the hairdressing scissors, and they are very hard to sharpen. My barber has been incredibly indulgent and let me practice on a few pairs of her scissors. The first pair that I did weren't up to scratch, but this weekend I had my hair cut and received the verdict on the last pair of scissors that I had sharpened for her. I thought nothing of it at the time, but the rubber stop between the finger rings was missing and the blades closed so far that the points were crossed and the edges protruded past the backs of the other blades.

"How were the scissors?"
"Well the edge is good, they feel really nice, cut really well, everyone here is impressed, but then...... I wiped some hair off them with my hand and cut myself really badly."

I have repaid my barber for her trust and help by giving her what was essntially an unsheathed knife, and expecting her to work with it in her hands for hours at a time.

Richard "'Nevermind' can't be 20 years old this week, that would mean I was almost 40" B