Thursday, April 10, 2008

My run-in with a Swiss Army pocket knife

Today, while waiting for the train, minding my own business, trying to avoid all the smokers, the funniest, most Swiss thing happened to me.

I was sitting on a bench on the train platform, waiting for the ever punctual S12 and minding my own business, when all of a sudden the gentleman sitting next to me leaned over and ever so coolly and calmly displayed his Swiss Army pocket knife.

Now, don't freak out! Switzerland is probably the safest place on Earth. I don't think the Swiss even know real crime - I think not recycling properly is their number one offense. Therefore when I looked more carefully, I wasn't surprised to see that that indeed it wasn't the knife tool that he was displaying, but rather the scissors.

Then I realized what else he had in his hand - my jeans... more specifically a long string that was the unraveling off the back of my jeans. In the US, this style is acceptable. Long jeans are worn by all and the whole scraggly look they get when they're worn down over time is even fashionable... but I have noticed here that no one has this problem. Everyone no doubt has a seamstress named Maud that takes care of this issue for them here. (Hey Maud - give me a call, you know the number...)

Then to my surprise he asked me politely (in Swiss German - how I understood I have no idea, perhaps the whole theatric drama of it all helped my understanding), "Do you mind if I cut this before you trip?"

And of course, I signed with relief and said "Yes, please!" And he did! And I didn't trip and die! And for that I am forever grateful and find myself now yearning for my own Swiss Army knife so that I, too, can do the common man some good... Yes, perhaps I'll even get one with a USB memory stick....!

Man, I love the Swiss.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

This is my favorite story! Have you finally bought yourself your very own knife?


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