Cool Shit (no, literally)

While reading some really geeky material (the core rulebook for Anthropik’s role playing game “The Fifth World“–want to join me, anyone?) I ran across one of the most amazing accounts of feral ingenuity:

Most of the items salient to forager life are easily lost, but just as easily replaced. They are often crafted ad hoc and on site. Take, for instance, this account by Wade Davis of a certain Inuit on Baffin Island:

His family took away his tools and implements, hoping that it would oblige him to go into the settlement. Did it work? No. He simply stepped out into the arctic night and in the darkness, pulled down his trousers and defecated into his hand. As the feces froze he shaped it into a blade. He put a spray of saliva along the edge and as the shit-knife took form he butchered a dog. He skinned the dog with it and made a harness, he took the rib cage of the dog and made a sled and harnessing the sled to an adjacent dog he took off over the iceflows.[1]

Moral of the story?  Don’t fuck with hunter/gatherers.  They know shit.


6 responses to this post.

  1. Any day I get to type “shit-knife” is a good day.


  2. Posted by Rix on 05/23/2007 at 3:14 pm

    True that, brother. My thanks to you, Wade Davis and the unnamed Inuit for making today a good day for me.


  3. Posted by neworangutang on 05/24/2007 at 7:59 pm

    I am only in awe in the amount of knowledge we have lost.


  4. Posted by mike on 05/25/2007 at 6:41 am

    okay okay,

    just carry a leatherman


  5. That kicks ass! WOW! Shit-knife! that dude…. wow… I thought it was going to say he killed someone with the knife made of his poop. lol.


  6. I think you missed the point, Mike. Someone ganked his leatherman, so he had to make a shitman in order to get the hell out of there.


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