1. Carry it around every day. A lot of people who are invested in what little space there is in their pockets make room for a pocket knife. Pocket Dumps, Everyday Carry.
2. Be wholesome. Mumbelty peg is a game of knife feats. It’s competitive and skill-driven, and the loser is punished heartily by having to pull a peg out of the ground with his teeth. The American Boy’s Book of Sport has diagrams of the knife-flipping tricks one must accomplish in order to be crowned winner.
There are other variations of mumbelty peg, including an ill-advised one that requires a pair of duelers with more stupidity than skill. The one who throws a knife closest to his own foot wins. Stick your own foot and you win automatically.
3. Skin a raccoon. If you come across a furry friend that’s given up the ghost, this guide teaches you how to turn that fresh road kill into a pair of fur socks (or cap, or pouch), using only nature’s tools. Which means the animal’s own brains.
4. Whittle. Art of Manliness’ guide to whittling takes you from knowing nothing to knowing something about how to fill up your time with little more than a tree branch and a pocket knife.
5. One thing you can’t do with a pocket knife is use it as a weapon. If you think through defending yourself while getting ambushed in a back alley, you’ll quickly come to the conclusion that you will have to get very, very close to an attacker before you can scratch the surface of the person’s skin with a pocket knife. If you’re thinking of attacking someone, you better hope that person is already in a coma, because you’re likely to get a knee to the balls before you can set your pocket knife in action. Here’s a run-down by an expert on why knife fighting is a crazy myth that, if executed, will end in tears and/or prison: “Knife Fighting Lies,” No Nonsense Self Defense.