Sunday, September 12, 2010

Scratchings in the sand, part 6

we are not a hat-wearing culture.

for our agricultural origins, a hat is something we wore when our forefathers would go to the fields to work on our crops: a thatch hat to protect our head from the heat of the sun and our vision from the brightness of the day.

today’s culture means that the hat is a fashion-item. and it takes a certain mindset, an arrogance to bring off wearing a hat today. this is whether it’s the perennial hipster fedora hat (even the one made of straw) or the sk8er boi headgear that looks like a sock. It’s a badge of one’s culture, especially for the youth.

ironically, the hats of the yesteryear symbolized the divide between classes as the ilustrados aped the spanish with their crisp suits and walking canes. like the cowboys of the old west, the hats—regardless whether they were black or white—were a mark of distinction, i.e. in this case, those who had money and didn’t have to work with sweat running down their heads and onto their backs.

now the hats are just mere indicators of the latest trend, one way to show that yes, you are in and that you are one of the ‘cool’ kids.

maybe that’s the common denominator of between hats then and now: who is ‘cool’ or cannot be mocked despite looking ridiculous wearing those things on their heads!

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