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April 25, 2017

Take a look around. Can you tell which knife is the “good knife?”

You are going to to a potluck dinner party. Hoping to impress, you have brought brought your famous “Seven Crab Dip.” Before you put it out, you ask your host if you can chop some fresh chives for garnish. Your host shows you to the kitchen…

You see many knives, but you know that every kitchen has just one “good knife” that is actually sharp and can cut things. Take a look around. Can you tell which knife is the “good knife?”

A ceramic pairing knife in a bold color.


This knife looks new, you think. Is that a strength or a weakness, you wonder. The blade may not yet be dulled by years of cutting frozen pizzas directly on the baking sheet, but was it ever sharp to begin with? Or was was its manufacturer counting on its “fun” and “hip” design, not the quality of its steel, to try and pull millennials away from the hedonistic orgy that is app-based food delivery? This knife can’t compete with the sick rush that comes with ordering nine samosas from the toilet, you think, but that is an argument for another day.

A bread knife lying next to a poorly sliced pepper.

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A bread knife wouldn’t be your first choice for an even julienne, you think as you examine the contents of the cutting board. Just look at the mess its toothed edge made of this bell pepper: the torn outer skin, the frayed inner flesh. Maybe this was the work of a child, you tell yourself. Or a drunk. Or worse yet, a drunk child. Is a bread knife really your best bet in this kitchen, you little baby boozehound? The thought brings a tear to your eye.

A sturdy-looking pair of scissors.

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These look much more heavy duty than regular scissors. These might even be considered “shears.” Do shears count as a knife? Yes, you decide, on a count of the fact that they both cut. In fact, you think to yourself, in many ways shears are a superior instrument to a knife: two blades, increased control, the ability to give your food decorative edging. But is possible to cut chicken with scissors without looking absolutely unhinged? Shears may be a “great” knife, but if using them makes you look like a goddamn serial killer, can they really be the “good” knife?

A large knife that your host gives you and tells you is the good knife.


How cordial of your host to hand you the “good knife” and save you from all that embarrassing rummaging. It certainly is large, you note. Your basal ganglia grows warm and tingly. Big… is… good… But as the saliva begins to pool in your mouth, you wonder why your host was so eager for you to use this knife. What happened to that knife that you were pulling out of the drawer just a second ago? What is your host wrapping in a dishtowel and casually dropping behind the microwave? Are you being played for a patsy in some kind of cutlery cover-up? Where are the emails?! LOCK HER UP!

That knife from that infomercial.


You remember coming home after a night of drunken revelry and watching the infomercial for this knife while waiting for your food to show up. You watched in blurry-eyed amazement as a man dressed in a apron and high on cocaine used the knife to slice through tomatoes, steak, and watermelon, then phonebooks, cinderblocks, and a tire. Woah, you thought to yourself, is that guy gonna eat a tire? Two hours later, you checked your phone and realized that you missed five calls from your delivery guy. When you speak with the restaurant, they tersely inform you that you will not be refunded the price of your nine samosas. Will this knife live up to it’s lofty promises of easy slicing and tires for dinner or will this evening also end in disappointment?

Well? Did you find it? Do you know which knife is the “good knife?”

The “good knife” is…

Your hands, God’s perfect knife!

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God himself hath made for you the perfect set of knives and placed them at the end of thine own arms, where it is most convenient. And yet you spite him and worship not his creation, but the work of man. The Kingdom of Heaven is filled with those who praise God by humbly tearing their food into large and uneven chunks. Those who defy him will spend an eternity in Hell, having their genitalia finely minced by Satan’s dull Wusthof. Praise be to God.