Thursday, January 3, 2008
Brrrr. It's barely in the double digits in southern New England today, and by the time I get home from work tonight, it'll be even colder. This is the time of year when I always think about buying a new hat.
It's not that I have a large collection. I'm not Carrie Bradshaw with her Manolo Blahniks. I hardly ever even wear a hat - just during the coldest winter days, or in the summer if I'm sightseeing someplace and the sun is really bearing down. But I do like trying them on.
I remember as a kid there was time when I absolutely had to have a Greek fisherman's cap. I don't remember why. I'd never been to Greece. I'd never met a Greek fisherman. Maybe it was my lame attempt at looking cool. Whatever the reason, I don't think I ever got one.
For the past few years, my Holy Grail of headgear has been a World War II aviator's hat, also known as Yukon trooper's hat and, unfortunately, as a bomber hat. (Or even worse, a mad bomber hat!)
I'm not trying to make a fashion statement. My purpose in acquiring one is purely utilitarian. It's just the perfect winter hat - unlike the knit variety, it keeps your ears warm without having to pull it so far down on your forehead that you can't see where you're going. My ears tend to get very cold.
I actually have a bomber hat - but it's kind of thin, made of polyester. While it's ok, it doesn't provide the level of luxurious warmth I'm seeking while I'm driving around doing errands or going to and from work. (But it has to be synthetic. There's no way I'm wearing the fur of a dead animal on my head).
I see a lot of people with great looking bomber hats this time of year, and I'm always a little envious. I'm often tempted to stop them and ask where they bought it, but then I lose my nerve. A lot of them probably wouldn't be available in my size anyway. They seem to be a popular item for the under-2 set.
I've tried some on in stores, but they've never seemed right - too big, too small, too thin, too furry, or they made me feel like Elmer Fudd when I really want to feel like a World War II flying ace. Once I saw the perfect hat in a Land's End catalog, but when I tried to order one, I was told it was sold out for the season.
So, I keep talking about getting one, and searching. Eventually, the weather gets warmer and I forget about my quest. But winter always returns. Like it did today.
To all my Iowa readers, if you're going out to caucus tonight, please stay warm!