October 03, 2008

Not the good scissors

If you grew up with a Mum like mine, you're probably familiar with the above phrase (I'm assuming it's not just an Australian thing...) In our house there were "good" scissors (roughly, the cooking scissors, mum's sewing scissors, the pinking shears). Any attempt to do something mundane like cut paper with the "good" scissors prompted an outraged maternal cry of "NOT THE GOOD SCISSORS". In later years, this prompted us to enquire where the evil scissors were (and I bet Joss Whedon could do a lot with that concept) but then we would resignedly hunt around in the scary junk drawer for the generic plastic handled scissors which were deemed acceptable for whatever we were proposing to cut.

Now that I own my own expensive cooking shears and sewing scissors, I can relate to the concept a little better and have always had a pair of "not the good scissors" in my own junk drawer.

Until this morning. When I went to find them so I could cut some wrapping paper and, well, this happened:

Which I guess makes them ex-scissors in anyone's book. So I now need a new pair of evil scissors. Which would make them newer than any of my other scissors and hence, potentially "good" scissors in their own right. Good-not-the-good-scissors is one of those circular concepts that might just lead to the universe exploding in a poof of exasperation and existential uncertainty. Leaving me with still no not-the-good scissors.

To make things even more confusing, on closer inspection, my ex-not-the-good-scissors appear to be an old pair of Wiltshire staysharps which suggests quite strongly that they started off life as a pair of Mum's actual "good" scissors. I seem to remember the Wiltshires being her sewing scissors of choice at one point. Oh how the poor scissors have fallen. A cautionary tale. Or perhaps a tale of valiant utensil service over the last twenty years or so. You decide : )...I have scissors to buy.


Bronwyn Parry said...

We had 'good' scissors and 'paper' scissors. We were indoctrinated quite young into the proper uses of scissors, as Mum made a lot of our clothes, and as soon as we were old enough to reach the foot pedal on the sewing machine we started sewing for ourselves. So we were intimately familiar with the challenges of trying to cut fabric with the 'wrong' scissors.

I didn't learn until quite a bit later that if you need to sharpen scissors, cut aluminium foil with them. Not as good as a professional sharpen, but it does give a little extra oomph.

Mel said...

I'll have to remember that! Though I won't do it in front of Mum as she'd probably faint LOL

And yes, sewing does imbue you with the proper level of scissor appreciation!