So…anybody out there know anything about Wish.com? I somehow stumbled upon ’em in reference to this big sale on Benchmade knives they seem to be having. After a cursory lookover of the website I downloaded their app and started poking around a little, seeing as how 1) I’ve always been a knife guy; II) Benchmade in particular has for years now been my edged weapon of choice, and C) I’m always searching for a bargain.
But these prices make “bargain” look positively exorbitant. I mean, a North Fork folder, stabilized-wood grips, not my preferred style but whatevs, usually seen at between two-three hundo, on offer at Wish for…hmm, lemme see now…
Or how about, say, something in a fixed-blade? Sturdy, reliable, handy for all kinds of jobs; one can never have too many of those around, and the only one I currently own is a gorgeous Arkansas Toothpick-style blade, custom made for me on the cheap by a local knifemaker (BEWARE: SEVERE DIGRESSION AHEAD) who worked as a night security guard at the old NCNB building downtown, one of my dailies when I was working for Airborne Express. I got to know the guy, name of Bob, quite well over several years; night shift, for him and me both, was decidedly lacking in the frenetic pace of activity seen during the daytime hours. So most nights, we had plenty of leisure to just relax and chew the fat for a while. Which, once he figured out I was the same kind of dyed in the wool blade enthusiast he was himself, we did.
Eventually, he offered to run me up a rig of my own design from the ground up—with hand-tooled ginyoowine leather boot-sheef to match, no less—for the low, low, fire-sale price of only 90 smackeroos (any fellow cut ‘n’ slash folks out there will know very well just what a steal that was). Needless to say, I jumped all over the deal with all feet and hands. If I recall correctly, I ran a pitcher of that purty thing here on CF not all that long ago…let me just rummage around in the Media folder and see if I can…ohhh yeah, here t’is:
You can’t tell too good from the pic, but the haft is some kind of exotic, rare South American wood, can’t remember what it’s called, which is naturally blue in color. The blue has darkened and deepened a lot over the years, but still retains a much lighter hue along the grain that makes for a lovely, stripey contrast I’ve never seen the like of. Blade is double-edged–ie, a small sword, in keeping with the Arkansas Toothpick definitional standard–and full tang. Heft and balance are perfect, as you would expect, and the blade is honed to such a fine edge I once sliced the tip of a finger off while cleaning and polishing it when I had let my attention momentarily wander—an embarrassing knife-noob fuckup I have NOT repeated since, and won’t again. I didn’t even know I’d done it till I saw all that blood beginning to smear along the blade’s entire length, upon which remarakable discovery a great gobbet of fingertip slipped slowly off the cutting edge and plopped sickeningly to the floor at my feet. Never have tried this knife as a thrower, which I’m inexperienced, untrained, and indifferent with/to anyhoo and so try to stay away from.
So where were we? Oh right, checking Wish listings for prices on Benchmade fixed-blades. Here we have a Nimravus dagger-style, tactical nylon sheath, aluminum alloy grips, asking price TWENTY WHOLE DOLLARS?!? SRSLY???
COME ON, MAN!!!!
Okay, I hate to go all gimlet-eyed cynical and suspicious-like here, I really do. My natural inclination is to be more the trusting, optimistic, and respectful type. I’ve always been a guy who prefers to assume the best of people, until they give me a good reason not to. All the same, though, I also have no desire to be a sucker or a mark, and I do NOT react at all well to being played for one.
I’ve never heard about any fly-by-nighter outfits daring to produce el-cheapo Benchmade knockoffs out there, which damned sure doesn’t mean there ain’t none. Given Benchmade’s long-established rep for quality in materials, design, and workmanship—all the moreso given its renown for NOT being excessively gentle with its pricing—it would take one ballsy sumbitch to even attempt it. But these days, who knows.
In the case of the fixed-blade linked above, the merchant is something yclept “China Knife,” which I think might possibly provide something of a minor clue as to what might really be going on here. I can tell you for certain that I have never, EVER come across ANY legit Benchmade product of ANY kind, not even a wee small whetstone, being sold that cheaply. So it seems to me these impostures can no-how no-way be on the up and up, which to me means same-same for Wish itself. Thoughts, anyone?