Saturday, December 23, 2006

New Yeller.



This is my newest hat, and current favorite.

Why? It's the school bus yellow color. It really helps my 5' 2" wife find her 6' 1" husband when we are out shopping. She looks for the yellow hat.


The Cabela's label is imitative of the type of label the Department of Defense used to put in U.S. Government issue military gear, so it has a utilitarian style that appeals to my faux-utilitarian fashion sense.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Out of the closet.



During the 2004 Election Cycle, I had a friend suggest it was not possible to wear this hat with this pin on it.

My response, from my perspective, was that it not posible to NOT do it.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Cedar-chopper Pop.



Bodacious Bar-B-Q is an East Texas institution (Tyler). It is from whence Dallas' "Baker's Ribs Barbecue" has come from (family connections).

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Monday, September 18, 2006

Wearing it.



Hosea Foster Downing, my 23 month old grandson. Notice the hat (Klipsch & Associates, mine) and the Rhinoceros shirt (his). He's into horns.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Accused.


Exhibit "A"

I am often accused of never throwing away a hat (or much of anything else), and I have to admit that on the surface, the evidence looks pretty damning.

I introduce the photo above into evidence as Exhibit "A", proving that not only do I throw things away (including several notebooks on Satan's handiwork: Theology, and an early MP3 player), the court will also notice a HAT.


Not guilty.

The Old Man lives!



Here's a 6X Shantung that I got on Jefferson Boulevard in Oak Cliff/Dallas. Worth-Walden Hat Company. When you walk into the place, it's like stepping back in time to 1950. Again, the classic "Rancher" style I prefer...even rarer in a straw.

I don't know if Worth-Walden is still is business. They were among the last of their kind a few years ago when I got this hat, and the owners were getting pretty old. I need to go check, because if they are, maybe I'll take my felt rancher and my Dad's to them for reblocking and restoration.

Friday, August 04, 2006

The attack captured!



Hosea Foster Downing, caught in the act of snatching Pop's hat. He was ready, but the camera wasn't.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

As LBJ imitator.


Cruising the Texas Hill Country, behind the wheel of a Lincoln Town Car, ca. 1994.

The featured hat was made by Manny Gammage at Texas Hatters in Austin (then) in approximately 1975. Gammage later moved his shop to Buda, and now to Lockhart (where I think his son runs it).

When I asked Gammage to make this hat, he remarked, "Only old men and Mexicans wear hats like that!", the first part of which explains why I wanted one. I grew up calling this style a "Rancher's hat", but it became known as an "LBJ" due to Lyndon Johnson's preference for the style. Stetson calls it an "Open Road". I noticed that Texas Hatters now calls it a "W" after the current Resident of the White House, however, I've never seen "Mr. All Hat and No Cattle" wear a hat like this, prefering the more flamboyant styles made popular by Hollywood.

It is my intent to take this hat and a similar Stetson of my Dad's to Texas Hatters for complete refurbishments this fall. I will make damn sure they don't put "W" on the ticket to indicate style.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Pop's! Hat!


The aforementioned Panama.

The pheasant headband came off a 30X Stetson straw hat I wore out. A City Councilwoman noticed my hat one day during a meeting and said, "Oh, I saw one stained just like that in a store on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills."

Mine didn't come this way. I sweated the details.

(However, the 30X Stetson straw that I wore out did come from Neiman-Marcus...their flagship store in downtown Dallas, not Rodeo Drive. It was at a Last Call sale, marked down from $150 to $25.)

Monday, July 31, 2006

"Did you go to William & Mary?"



Yes I did.

In 1993. While on vacation to Jamestown and Williamsburg.

Soren head.



I've posted this picture to show me wearing my Kierkegaard ballcap. It's my favorite hat. That's the third ballcap that patch has been on over the last 25 years. Cap Number 4 is imminent.

Most people think it's either: A) Funny; "A Kiekegaard ballcap, how funny!", or B) a bit pretentious; "Oh, an existential philosopher's name on a cap. You want people to think you're an intellectual, right?".

They're all wrong. It's meant as a warning, a danger sign. "Danger! Stand Back! Unsafe!" it says.

Soren Kierkegaard recognized the complete decay of the institutionalized/established church, and saw that the only thing to be done was to tear it down to its very foundation and build it up again, but following the plans more closely this time. Less wood, brass, and stone, and more blood, sweat, and tears. A new reformation.


This is not what church leaders want to do (or hear). They want to continue the construction they have done, adding layer upon layer of decoration, paint, carpet, insulation, stucco. Laying on their efforts to stand above the efforts of their predecessors until the framework crashes down beneath the burden of weight.

So in the end, we both strive for the same result...but for different reasons.