Sunday, January 20, 2008

Capping It Off

It's freezing cold on Martin Luther King Day with a high temp of 24 degrees. I just dropped off some proofs with a client. It was so cold that my cigarette froze to my mouth. I had to warm up to pry it from my lip. I made seven hats for a fundraiser this past Sunday evening — a good cause with excellent eats, live music, and a raffle. The hats went over very well, people ran to the raffle table to get a chance to win a Hugo, jewelry, cakes, art, vynil, and more. One woman won two hats: varigated blue and walnut. She was asked to "do the right thing" and pick another prize to which she yelled "Go to hell!"

This hat isn't gender specific, but I find that men instinctively wear it differently from the women. Women carfully arrange their hair so that the hat sits evenly, only showing the lobes of their ears (inset left). On the other hand most men wear it off-centered with the visor to the left or right side, or on the back making sure their ears stick out like pot handles (above). JR owns the bodega next to the bagel shop on Bergen Street — he loves his new red hat. An Irish woman won the green hat, she actually called it "bonnie".

Someone asked if I named this cap after Hugo Chavez's infamous red berret. NO. That would be like naming an eagle motif sweater "the Hitler Pullover". I actually named this cap after Hugo Weaving ("The Matrix", "Little Fish"). No real reason other than it looks like a hat that he'd wear.

The newsboy hat has many names and varitions: Gatsby, Cabby cap, (US) Paddy, Scone (Ireland), Windsor, Beagler (England), Cheese-cutter (New Zealand, Australia), Ya-she-mao, Mao cap (duck's tongue in Mandarin). My friend Pat calls it a "Scally cap" (Boston). He said that Scally means "fat alcoholic Irish racist douche-bag from Boston." His wife Ellen corrected him "It was actually named after Scollay Square in Boston, newsies would dispatch from Scollay and set off to hawk news papers on city corners — to their racist Irish douche-bag readers." Pat and Ellen are Boston Irish from Milton, they can say these things.


Tryste said...

Scally is also the word used by people in Northwest England to describe white trash locals ;-)

The Yarn Monkey said...

Ouch! Out here we try to be more politcally correct, we just call NASCAR dads.

Hey, maybe this is also the origin of the words scallywag and rapscallion.