Every man needs a hat. A true hat. I am not talking about a baseball cap worn to declare your love for a particular sports collective or aid you in getting that artful flip to your too long bangs, and I certainly do not mean a trucker cap whose primary purpose seems to be to disguise the unwashed uncombed mass of keratin and oil that passes for a hair style these day. No, I mean a true chapeau.
Whether you favor a porkpie, a bowler, a trilby (my personal favorite), the classic Bogie style fedora, or, for the especially daring, a tophat is irrelevant. By the simple act of choosing and wearing a true hat, one immediately presents themselves as a man of style, class, and no small amount of panache. Image is everything as they say and a hat adds to and creates a lasting and positive image in those one meets.
The shine of a man's shoes is quickly forgotten. How often do you find yourself staring at a man's feet? The press and cut of his trousers? Dismissed once a man has taken his seat. The color and cut of his shirt or sport coat? Often so formulaic and predictable as to not even leave an impression three minutes after they have faded from view. A quick test. What color shirt is the man wearing who shares the adjoining office? Most would find it difficult, if not impossible, to answer that question. However they would remember if he was wearing a hat or not. See, a hat leaves a lasting impression.
It sits directly above the eyes, is always in the viewer's field of vision, and the manner in which it is worn speaks volumes about the wearer. Is it pushed back? A style indicative of a casual and assured manner. Pushed forward and low over the eyes? Obviously, a stern, detail oriented, and businesslike man. Or is it cocked just slightly to one side and slightly lower over the right eye? This man possesses a whimsical nature and a wry since of humor.
But, you say, "It is impolite to wear a hat inside, and most business is conducted inside."
This is true. However, as a man doffs his hat, runs his hand through his hair, places his hat on the rack or tosses it casually on a nearby chair or his desk, you notice it. Your eyes are drawn to that single red feather tucked into the black band. The hat is always there. Even unworn, it is present.
President Kennedy did the men of his nation a disservice when he elected not to wear a hat as he was sworn in as President of the United States. Seemingly overnight, hats went out of fashion. In one fell swoop, President Kennedy robbed the vertically challenged of a few more inches of much needed height. He forced the follicly depressed to adorn their pates with what appeared to be the carefully tanned hides of the recently deceased family cat. He took away the one accessory that men could call their own and lefts them with nothing but pinky rings and wrist watches. Well, sorry Mr. Kennedy, but hats are making a comeback.
With actors such as Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp, George Clooney, and Justin Timberlake all sporting this stylish accessory, it is only a matter of time before we will see the chapeau adorning more and more heads. Finally, we can reserve those sweat stained baseball caps for yard work. Give them pride of place alongside the weedeater and the leaf blower. Go ahead jump on board, beat the rush, get yourself down to your local milliner, and grab yourself some new headware. It won't hurt, and your head is not that big.