Knife. Camera. Action!

Presented for your edification, the first knife handling lesson.

Object of lesson: do not do this with a knife.

This knuckleheaded kid did this to himself a few days ago, and he was due for surgery Friday. Presurgical situation was no sensation in his right pinkie finger beyond the proximal interphalangeal joint (second joint from the tip), and little motor control of the finger. (He had less serious wounds to the proximal section of the ring finger and to the palm).

Apparently a lot of people follow this young man, Lance Stewart, and enjoy their frequent (daily?) slices of his well-heeled if rudderless life. He likes knives, so his fans send him knives (them that has, gets). He’s deuced lucky to still have fingers.

If you replay the video, you can hear the dull thwack of knife meeting flesh and bone. In this, it probably helps that he did this with the mall-shop decorations he did, and not with, say, a pair of quality katanas or even British GI kukris.

His YouTube style is, uh, not for everyone. Hey, it takes all kinds to make a world, and he did put it out there for all of us to see, and perhaps someone will learn from it (even if it’s a lesson most of us who’ve worked professionally with knives would never have needed).

Note that the video appears to have a different splash screen than it had yesterday (then, it was his moment of anguished screaming), so we don’t know if he’s edited the video, but in the version we watched, the knife error comes up within the first 15-20 seconds, but do keep watching for the fainting at 0:55 or so, not to mention the wailing, the gnashing of teeth, and the lamentations of the women.

At one point, someone chastises his friend for keeping filming through the whole thing, and the friend points out that Lance wanted him to. We’re one day closer to the world depicted in Idiocracy, and it seems that the TV show featured there could be a reality any day. At least on YouTube.

Despite his failure to engage forebrain before dual-wielding mall-ninja machetes, Lance seems like a personable kid, and we wish him a complete recovery from his injury.

21 thoughts on “Knife. Camera. Action!

  1. Nynemillameetuh

    One magical Easter when I was ten years old I negligently cut my finger to the bone. There was no screaming or crying on my part. Just a mother worried that I’d bleed on the new carpet. The trip to the hospital was in the family car – no stretcher needed.

    The Old Man took one look at the situation and decided that I learned my lesson. Being respected and trusted enough to not repeat that mistake made a lasting impression. My knife-handling skills dramatically improved. Long story short, don’t be a punk and you may gain something from the experience.


    Way back in the day I manned a recruiting stand at a careers exhibition, with my pack and webbing used as an exhibit. A couple of school kids came up and engaged me in conversation, which turned out to be a distraction so that their buddy could steal my Gerber Mk 1 from the harness.

    When I eventually noticed the missing knife I swore and walked over towards the cop stand, because they were also recruiting at this gig. On my way I passed the mens room, and as a guy came out I glanced in and noticed kid number 3 standing in there crying, with the tip of one of his index fingers missing. He’d run his finger down the blade to test the edge, and to his misfortune it was shaving sharp, hence the fingertip on the floor in a puddle of blood snd tears.

    Unfortunately he’d dropped the knife on the tip and broken off a couple of millimeters but I had it fixed up and it now spends its days in retirement opening the mail like Hognoses’s Randall. Every time I use it I grin while thinking of that punk, in his mid 40’s now, but still missing that piece of his finger. Poetic justice is the best kind.

  3. Slow Joe Crow

    For extra stupid points, it appears he was trying a live action version of Fruit Ninja, my daughter’s favorite game in elementary school.
    My personal knife mishaps were less permanent, although closing a brand new pocket knife on my finger was memorable because the sharp blade cut the nerves so cleanly I didn’t feel any pain until the cut started healing

  4. Hillbilly

    I know I’ve cut myself with a knife, but none really stick out in terms of being memorable. On the other hand I have a couple of good chainsaw stories (they make a mess).

  5. Antibubba

    I’m glad he posted it. Not because I like to see idiots cut themselves up, but because it’s instructive to see how people react to a life-threatening situation. We have our hapless star, who screamed and passed out. We have one or two screamers in the background who don’t seem to have the wits to do anything else. There’s the cameraman tasked to keep filming NO MATTER WHAT ( and does so even as he’s awkwardly applying pressure to the wound). Eventually, something helpful is done, medics are called, and Lance maybe gets to keep his fingers (and doesn’t die).

    The smart thing is not to do something stupid in the first place, but the smarter thing is to have a plan in case, to keep a mishap from progressing to full FUBAR.

  6. Farmer Bob

    how about stop the bleeding, start the breathing, protect the wound, and treat for shock? or scream like a girl and pass out. whatevs.

    1. DitchMonkey

      Ate a chimichanga, drank a full throttle while watching. Now I have to clean energy drink spray off the monitor. We forget that most folks in the cities and suburbs haven’t had to see wounded people or animals, or ever had anything worse than a skinned knee or a paper cut in their entire life, and frequently react like the individuals in the video. Volunteer at the local ER, take an EMT course, First aid course, go help a farmer for a weekend – any experience will help you react in a more beneficial manner than these folks did. If the blade cut his unprotected wrist instead of his pinky / ring finger he would have been in trouble( families reaction would have been worse – more blood – and worse for the perpetrator / victim of his own retardation – more time wasted freaking out instead of stopping the bleeding). Don’t be THAT guy.

      1. John Distai

        The kids growing up in the cities and suburbs thing really strikes home. I grew up in those rural, semi-farming areas and understand what you are saying. My wife and children are products of the city and suburbs. I’m sad for the experiences they will miss to teach them about the real world.

        I’ve cut myself plenty of times, some seriously. My typical reaction is “G-D! (or fuck!) Aw fuck! That was deep! Oh shit… there’s meat hanging out. I’m going to need stitches. (To my spouse, spoken calmly) Please drop what you are doing and drive me to the hospital. Please get some rags so I don’t bleed all over the car….(she gets hysterical) No, I don’t want to have a hysterical conversation, band-aids, neo-sporin, gauze or anything else. I need stitches. Grab some crappy towels out of the linen closet, grab the kids, and stop panicking….C’mon, hurry up! I’m dripping blood all over the place! Please just get the rags and let’s go…”

        While driving…

        “Watch the road. Stop worrying about me. I’m not going to bleed to death. Please don’t get us killed in traffic because you are panicking. I need you to calmly, and safely drive us to the hospital. That is your only job right now, and we need you mentally focused on doing that. I have the pressure on my cut. I’m going to be okay.”

        My kids get a tiny nick that draws blood “Daddy! I NEED a band-aid, it’s bleeding!”
        “No, you don’t, it’s barely bleeding”.
        “Mommy can I have a band-aid?!?!”

  7. Kansas City Kansan

    I think my boy should see this. Maybe he won’t try dual wielding without gauntlets. Maybe this is why parrying daggers were not around for long.
    Good for emergency training discussions.

  8. Tierlieb

    Well, look at it this way:
    They got a test run. They botched it. They will do it better next time.
    You know, next time, when something actually serious happens.

  9. Mr. 308

    I did the ‘catch the falling knife with left hand’ thing once while mincing up a windfall bunch of garlic. Almost caught it too. Super sharp 8″ Shun chefs knife.

    Two benefits came from this; Much smarter instincts about grabbing those things that one may accidentally drop and, I haven’t dropped any knives, chefs version or other, since.

    As to Idiocracy, I think that a president Trump is pretty darn close to President Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho. And what can I say? Who am I voting for… it sure isn’t gonna be Hillary.

    There may not be a TV show literally called ‘Ow My Balls’ but the content I do catch – by accident – on broadcast TV nowadays is functionally equivalent.

  10. Ben

    Emerson opener while driving. Crazy that you can cut through cargo pants and several layers of thigh skin and not feel it until the blood pulls up in the seat…or so I heard anyway.

  11. bloke_from_ohio

    I have a buddy who put a cheap folder through his thigh on a school bus. He was faffing about en-route to a marching band performance. We were about the same age as the kid in the video. I don’t know if he actually bottomed the blade out on his femur (as he claimed), but the wound seemed impressive at the time.

  12. JV

    Dear Mr. Hognose Sir,

    I’ve read every post on the blog but never felt competent enough to comment. Ineptitude with knives, however, is definitely me. Just this Saturday I got a knife out to fix a splinter underneath a kitchen counter before it was found by kids the bad way. Of course no boy scout reflexes remain and I end up cutting myself bad enough to need proper dressing. Nothing bad with kids seeing blood and that parents don’t freak out about it, so no real harm done. Turns out in the morning I need do redo the dressing as it was too tight, and ufortunately the bleeding starts again. “Why don’t you call a nurse and discuss what you’re doing wrong?” says wife and so I do. Moral of the story: If you call a professional hotline, it really really helps their stress level if you mention rather quickly that it was an accident, at least when you call in with a very calm voice and go “Hello, my name is [ ] and I’ve cut my wrist”.

    Thanks for a great blog!

    1. Hognose Post author

      JV, we had a very funny experience with that same kind of thing. While waiting for class to start at the Defense Language Institute, several students (most of whom are bookish MI geeks who have never turned a screwdriver in their house-cat lives) were assigned to assemble wall lockers. Future and past SF guys, and anybody else with experience doing hands-on work, wind up leading the willing but very, very green house-cats. A simple instruction sheet with an exploded drawing told you all you needed to know, although we often found some kid with a 140 IQ staring at the drawing like a hog lookin’ at a wristwatch.

      Anyway, they’re bright kids, and everyone soon masters box wrenches and screwdrivers — six months from now they’ll be dealing with eight grammatical cases, tonal languages, functional vs. durative verbs, or tonal languages in some tongue they’ve never heard before, so a wall locker is hardly an insoluble mystery. And then came…

      KaBANG! One of the house-cats, a guy named Greg who was using the military to get the skills for an NSA job like every other member of his shadow-of-Meade family, had been working on a locker, door-up, with one hand holding the heavy door open, and the other working inside the frame on the latch. His arm holding the door got tired and the door came down KaBANG! on his wrist.

      So we pile him into a car and take him to the military hospital at Fort Ord. (He bleeds all over the car. Smart thinking to take a g-ride instead of a personal vehicle). The ER bundles him into treatment.

      Forty minutes later, a doctor comes out. “He’s sedated and on his way to 7 West.”

      What’s 7 West? What about his wrist?

      “The wrist is going to be fine, but we’re worried about at the suicide attempt!”

      “Suicide attempt! There was no suicide attempt. A locker door slammed on him while he was assembling it. It was an accident.”

      They don’t believe us, and go to question Greg about why he wanted to end it all. Through the Thorazine (or whatever) haze he finally convinces the doubting pshrinks that no, he wasn’t trying to off himself, he just sucked at assembling wall lockers.

      Finally, hours later, a still dopey Greg is released from 7 West and we are given him to take back to Monterey. “And if he winds up back here again, it’s your ass.”

      On the way back, someone noted it was just about the end of the day, and Greg’s mishap had sprung us from an afternoon of wall locker assembly.

      “Greg, old man, do you think you could do the other wrist tomorrow?”

      Alas, the next day, we were back on wall lockers… one man short. But at least he wasn’t in the nut ward.

      1. Mike_C

        Haha, Brilliant!
        I “pulled a Greg” some years ago. I was assembling a particle-board bookcase (Ikea “Billy” as it happens) in too strait a space, so had the vertical side pieces leaning against the wall instead of laid down on the floor. I probably did something stupid and bumped the uprights, which began to fall. Reflexively I reached out to catch the far piece. Caught that, but the nearer one caught me on the wrist, non-finished sharp edge first. I must have rolled my wrist because the two edges (board was about 10-mm thick) made two beautiful parallel drawing cuts, 1.5-inches long (yes, we casually mix SI and Real units here), nearly perpendicular to my forearm. Neat cuts too, you could see all the skin layers they teach you about in Anatomy and it took seemingly seconds for the cuts to well up with blood. After which they bled like stink. Anyway, for weeks afterwards I had these scabbed-over, livid red marks of obvious slashes on my right wrist, and it was summer, so they were often visible.

        I remember thinking, “Crap. That’s going to be misinterpreted…” when I saw the cuts. Which they were. Got a lot of strange (well, stranger than usual) looks and a few psych types actually started to ask me questions. I was offended by the last. “No! I’d have cut lengthwise,not perpendicular to the wrist if I was trying to off myself. Which I wouldn’t do by cutting my wrists anyway. Sheesh.” Incidentally, this answer for some reason was NOT reassuring to the psych types :-) Go figure. Takes all sorts to make the world go ’round, I guess. Still have a very faint scar from that incident. (Bookcase is still up too.)

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