A caller to our local radio station, Cape Talk, phoned for help.
She reported that her tin opener had broken, just as she was about to open a tin of beans. What to do? She’d stocked up on tinned goods. The family were waiting impatiently for supper.

So she rushed to her nearby supermarket to buy a new tin opener but discovered the kitchen gadget section was red taped off. She argued valiantly with the floor manager that a replacement tin opener was an Essential Item, and therefore permissible. But he wasn’t having it, and chased her away.

She returned home, frustrated. Now what? Aha! Cape Talk listeners always provided the answer to everything. So she phoned in. Sure enough, within seconds of having her plight broadcast, a brisk lady was telling her to use her Swiss Army knife. Not quite adding: pull yourself together woman! But her tone said it all.

Of course! Everybody has a Swiss Army knife, or a rip-off version, in their house – don’t they?

In case of desperate times, makes sure you have a Swiss Army Knife available. It has more gadgets concealed in its chunky metallic innards than you ever dreamed of. Plus, and this is the really good one, it has a thingy which extracts stones from horses’ hooves. What more you could possibly want?

The moral of the story is: always hide a back-up tin-opener and a box of matches in the back of the kitchen drawer. Would you believe I once worked for the Boy Scouts of South Africa? Always be Prepared was the old motto. Not a bad idea.




  1. What more could I possibly want than a thingy which extracts stones from horses’ hooves? Umm, perhaps the courage to lift that hoof in the first place 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi there. Dozens of years ago I was a Boy Scout in the USA. Their two main sayings have stuck with me: Be prepared. Do a good turn daily.

    See ya —

    Neil Scheinin

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Being in the guides like you it was be prepared. However on camp guide leader had forgotten to take a tin opener! But the hammer for the tie lines and a sewing needle and eventually all 6 catering cans were opened.


  4. I really don’t understand why some sections are cordoned off in shops… It’s not like toasters and kettles and light bulbs are agreeably NOT going to break during the lockdown period. And what’s with not being allowed to buy stationery for the entire period? What about parents with kids who still want to paint, write, draw, or do crafts? Or adults who like journalling? And why can’t you buy pool chemicals to stop the pool turning green – for five weeks? Or herbs and vegetable seedlings for the garden, if you’re wanting to use the time to put in a kitchen garden? And why can’t new mothers buy clothes for their newborns, when even PnP and Woollies sell those in their bigger stores? How many husbands would have liked to use the time sensibly by doing maintenance or repairs on their homes, but they can’t even order in the things they need? I understand the need to limit movement, but some of these restrictions are a bit odd.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It is a myth that a Swiss Army Life can remove stones from horses’ hooves. I tried it once in Argentina and the stone did not budge. The gaucho came to my rescue and, using his knife, extracted the stone.


  6. Hmmmm… A Swiss Army Knife ….
    Oh dear, do not posses one………..


  7. Seriously, you’re the best! 😂😘


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