Good Mornin’! Good Mornin’!
There’s just something about a great hat. No matter the style or color. If it fits and feels good and hopefully looks great, then it’s a keeper. My favorites are those hats from the 1960s that real men wore – Fedoras. From Frank Sinatra to my grandfather, Pop, they all looked great. They were fashionable and I’m sure functional as they blocked the sun and either allowed some wind to glide through in summer and kept the cold out in the winter.
Now there’s actually a thing, National Hat Day on Friday January 15th. I could have told you about it next week but this way you’ve got a week’s warning to find or purchase or borrow your favorite hat.
A couple of years ago I started counting my hats, the ones I could actually find, and had between 50 and 60. I’ve added at least a dozen to that number in the past two years. One of the originals is almost as old as I am – a piece of red flannel material that was once a cowboy hat I wore as a toddler. I’ve seen pictures of me in it. The thing about hats, at least mine, is they each tell a story.
I have my baseball cap from my one year of Pony League play. There’s my first fitted Ole Miss block M hat I bought after my grandfather’s funeral in 1998. It’s worn out and sweat stained and has lost its form but I still have it. There are hats from businesses and vacation locations. I have a jester hat and another that looks like Tom Petty would have worn it. I even have my Boy Scout hat we always kept folded in our belt. I have little hats that Russian Orthodox priests would wear. I have my treasured New York Yankees hats, at least three. I have John Deere hats, though I wish I still had the ones I wore out as a kid. My hats tell stories like an old song.
There’s one hat that never made my collection. There probably could be a country song written about it. Back in the late 80s while living in Nashville, a friend of mine used to book country artists for concerts. Somehow, he got me into an event where Michael Martin Murphy (She Ran Calling Wildfire fame) was playing with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra. We hung out after the concert with him and he had a very expensive and beautiful and I’m sure, important to him, black Stetson cowboy hat. He was a nice fellah and we were all having fun, so I went out on a limb and asked him for his hat. I figured, you never know what might happen.
He said no, and the night went on. I don’t have the hat but I have the story. And now my collection continues to grow as I saw a black Fedora online that looked like it needed a forever home. It should be here and on my head by the time you read this. Every hat I have is a favorite and they rotate through depending on the weather and occasion. And I continue to rotate and wear them all and you’ll find at least four to fourteen in my truck.
What’s your favorite hat? Get it out and celebrate with me next Friday.