Monday, August 30, 2010

I Bought a Hat

Simply reading the title of this post many intelligent, free-thinking individuals would simply write off (so to speak) the rest of this post and avoid it like twelve year old boys avoid Catholic preists.  For those of you who actually read this post you will be sadly let down when you discover that it contains no nudity, or hardcore violence, and disappointingly few erotic photos of animals dressed in various sexy outfits.  It's just a pointless story of a grown man and his hat.

Now fashion-wise I am admitedly not very "hip" or "with it."  My recognizable outfit is a pair of jeans, a (usually tight-fitting) t-shirt that may or may not be embelished with some kind of superhero paraphernalia, and a pair of crosstrainers (not to be confused with running shoes as a nice young man at a local Footlocker condescendingly pointed out to me one time.).  For colder days I accessorize with my trademark gray hoodie.  In the fall my trademark piece of fashion is a heavy, black leather jacket, which is quite awesome and could concievably be used as some kind of light armour n the event of zombie apocalypse.  This is not exactly cutting edge fashion here.

The thing is that for most of us not handing around with Heidi Klum or Derek Zoolander cutting edge fashion is not on the forefront of our minds.  Like most people I tend to get caught in a fashion rut.  I find a look that works for me and then just do it to death.  My fashion evolution has actually been rather stunted.  It hasn't really changed all that much since high school (from which I graduated just ten short years ago).  Oh sure there has been some micro evolution.  I've changed from straight leg jeans to boot cut.  I ditched the baggy t-shirt for something that shows off my incredible physique.  I started wearing undershirts.  My briefs became boxer briefs.  I even added some chords and khakis in there every once in a while.  For a while I tried to accessorize by wearing vests, but natural selection won out and they died a terrible death one winter thanks to my wife who fucking hates vests for some reason.  She never was the same after that alien abduction.  The point is that my fashion sense has remained radically the same for the past fifteen years or so.  This is not necessarily a bad thing.  I mean that rut gives me confidence.  I fucking know how to wear a t-shirt and jeans like nobody's business.  I can wear the shit out of a t-shirt and jeans.  A t-shirt and jeans is my power suit.  I absolutely in no way regret my t-shirt and jeans status.

But lately my personal fashion has been on my mind a lot.  I have no idea why.  Perhaps I'm nearing mid-life crisis mode.  In the popular media it's always depicted as a sudden jolt, but perhaps it happens slowly with the pressure building up for years.  I figure by the time I'm 35 I'm just going to drive home one day in the Batmobile wearing leather pants covering a tattoo of the Rebel Alliance symbol on my penis and a goat dressed like Marylin Monroe in my back seat.  But only time will tell.  Right now I'm trying -slowly but surely- to move into button shirt territory.  For my day job I usually wear a button up shirt, but they're all more formal.  Now I'm trying to move into casual button up zone.  I can tell you, it's not easy.  After being stuck with the same style for so long it's really, really difficult to feel comfortable in a style that you don't feel like you own.  It's like wearing somebody else's skin.  I'm having to ease myself into the fashion shift gradually.  This usually involves unusually long amounts of time in front of my bathroom mirror modelling my new duds.  I'm not sure if this is normal behaviour or if I am becoming a true product of our society and am becoming obsessed with my personal appearance.

Then about three or four weeks ago I was at Winners with my wife and daughter shopping for god knows what (I usually fuck off to the toy section to look for Star Wars figures while my wife does whatever women do when they shop) when we walked by the men's clothing section.  There was a display of hats and just for fun I started trying some of them on until I hit the hat pictured above.  I wasn't looking to buy a hat, I was just goofing around trying to make my wife and daughter laugh.  But my wife made some sort of passing comment about how it seemed to fit with my style.  I have not been a hat-wearer since about grade 3 so I put the hat back on the rack and we went about our business.  But the seed was planted.  Later on that evening after my daughter was in bed and my wife was taking a nap I snuck out of the house with the stealth of a ninja and headed back over to the store and bought the hat.  As I waited in line and then paid for my new hat I was nervous as hell.  I was sure the cashier would see through my ruse.  She would just somehow inherently know "This guy doesn't know how to wear a hat" and then begin to publically deride me while everyone in the store would point and laugh.  I barely got through the whole ordeal.  When I got home I  immediately went to the downstairs bathroom and started modelling the hat in the mirror so I could get used to the "new vibe" it would give off.  It was several days later before I even dared to wear the thing in public.

The point of the story isn't that my fashion sense has improved exponentially or that I somehow have better taste.  I really like the hat, but maybe I look ridiculous.  It doesn't matter though.  I didn't buy the hat to look better.  I didn't really buy a hat at all.  What I bought was an ideology.  I purchased a paradigm shift.  The moment the transaction took place my world view shifted.  See I bought the hat mostly because it was something I wouldn't do.  I was in danger of becoming complacent, as we all are.  Sometimes we just need to do something crazy - even if crazy constitutes something as seemingly mundane as buying a hat.  To quote a favourite film of mine: You have to shit or get off the pot.  I'm not exactly sure if that's entirely applicable to this situation, but it sounded poetic.  Now if you'll excuse me, I have a hat to wear.  But first... The Whores!

This one's for you Adam...


  1. I am SO turned on right now. Also, the hat is nice.

  2. You've got more than a hat Sir, you've got a Trilby. Trilby's were introduced in the mid 20's and have been a popular casual style for years. It was most famously, the hat of choice, of a Mr. Frank Sinatra. Wear it proud dear friend, wear it proud.

    In case you're interested in the subject matter;

  3. Thanks for the info, mysterious hat guru guy!