- Jun 26, 2005
- Reaction score
I own several, and never wear them. I was reading some of that Hatless JACK book by Neil Steinberg and the author states some things Ive come to believe for a while now. According to the author, there was a time when leaving your place without a hat on was about as possible as walking out without shoes on. It was so ingrained in one's head to wear a hat that it was done unconsciously, and its absence was a palpable strain on your nerves. Now that the axis has shifted, there is nothing left to the hat but the desire to stand out and enjoy a "fad" which in itself is the very antithesis of what could make the hat a staple anew. I do remember when I first watched old movies that the men in the hats always seemed more decent, more important, more serious, more trustworthy. Even the way they wore the hats determined their mood and character with gangsters wearing them rakishly tilted. Men without hats were always pimps, or playboys (which was actually bad then), fugitives, the insane, children etc.. And these vibrations were all transmitted to me watching black and white movies without any knowledge about hats or hat etiquette. Thats the power of advertising or film for you. Today, if you see someone with a hat on in a film you get the sense that the director/costume designer wants you to think the character is an oddball or a lightweight or someone in need being noticed. It would be interesting to hear women's opinions about seeing a man with a fedora or a dress hat on (as opposed to a baseball cap). If it helps at all, I do like hats. I especially like summer hats, panamas, optimos and the like (not boaters especially). I wish we wore them as part of the outfit, but then theres that dandy thing you know where youre looking forward. When my life is more settled, hats will feature more. As it is now, with the places I go to, with the obligations I have, with the type of girls I like to cavort with, the hat simply gets in the way. And, me worrying about my hat just isnt stylish. I should point out that the IDEA of the fedora is always with me in theory as I have more than a soupcon of that American Hero we all know from the old movies of the 30s and 40s in my style repetoire. The guy with the DB chalkie, the spring in his step, the girl on his arm and the snap brim just jauntily so over his brow... with that Glen Miller music in the background.