I like to blame all my inefficiencies on not being allowed to be a boy scout. I consistently lose pine wood derby because of it (it has nothing to do with the aerodynamics of my dinosaur or fail whale car I'm sure). I'm not so good at camping. I'm going to go ahead blame them for my lack of knife skills too. I know, I know, I could have been a brownie. Let's face it, other than the cookies, girl scouts got nothing on boy scouts.
I did get to attend some boy scouts meetings since my brother got to participate and my dad often helped out. I even got to go when they learned about whittling. I asked my dad with puppy dog eyes if I could try too, I think I was 6 at the time, so he gave me his knife and soap. I cut myself immediately. No tears, just the revelation that knives are something I'm not good at. Soap and knife were taken away but my dad did make me a nice little soap whale.
Yesterday was the day I had to face my nemesis. After a brief demonstration we were asked to perform nine different knife cuts ranging from 1/2x1/2x3 inches to 1/16x1/16x1/16 inches. Heart palpitations. I took as long as possible to set up my station but at a certain point I had to get started. The chef instructor was walking around checking our work and I guessed at some point he would be wondering what I was doing. I started off by turning my potato into a nice little rectangle. Man, potatoes look like butter after you square them off! I started with the big cuts and gradually got smaller. I had to blanch a tomato and cut it up but luckily I am a pro at that after all that canning (I did learn a way to cut up the tomato real tiny without coring it and without getting seeds mixed in). Garlic was no problem because who hasn't minced garlic before. I also learned that if you cut the root end of an onion first, no tears!!
I got all my cuts done (first to finish even) and approved by the chef. The knives did claim their victims though. Two girls cut themselves, almost immediately. My time will come. I know this. I am just happy I didn't go first.