Saturday, January 9, 2010

Hats for every reason

Always wondered why some people wore hats all the time. Like today's trendy tattoos, I have come to conclude that hats define individuality. My husband has been lamenting the follicles that challenge hair growth with each passing year. It seems to bother him more than anyone else. This past year he began wearing a driving cap, which sometimes goes to bed with him. I try not to chuckle until he has fallen asleep, then remove the cap from his head, without a twitch that might awaken him. Guess when you wear a hat all day, you forget it is there.

Scoring through boxes of old pictures, found that my folks felt a need to place a hat on my head from the time I was an infant to heaven knows when. It might have been the flat spot on my skull that they were trying to hide. Having been graced with lots of hair, I do not believe anyone would have noticed the flat spot.

The 40s, 50s and 60s were hat days, and really did not pay much attention to who wore hats in the late 50s, but remember women wearing all kinds of hats in the 60s. Plumes, net, flowers, felt, woven, scarves, snoods and other couture hats that were simply hideous. Never really had a desire to wear one then, yet I enjoyed entering my Godmother's closet that held dozens of fancy hats. Then there were the gloves that matched the hats - short, long, fancy and just plain awful.

One lady in the neighborhood wore one of those Little House on the Prairie bonnets when she worked in her garden. As a kid it was confusing as to what era we were living in, but heck it was her choice of hat. It did not stop us from jumping the fence to pick green apples off her trees. She would coming dashing out of the house with a broom, hollering, with her bonnet flapping in the wind. We never determined what kind of hair she had or the color. It was only a guess what she was going to do with the broom.

I can fully understand and appreciate a knitted cap that covers the ears and nose in cold weather. That gives much purpose to a cold head and appendages that when cold, the entire body trembles with a desire to be warm.

So much for hats in our lives. If the hat fits, wear it! Just waiting for the trend to turn around when hats are in vogue. Not really sure that I will take to anything but a woven cap in the winter, but hey, they are fun to observe. I still enjoy seeing pictures of the Queen because hats still live on with royalty.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Pea Shooters and Comics Capers

Memories are the one thing no one can take from you. During a gathering of friends on New Years, there was much laughter about crazy times growing up. It is a wonder we all made through childhood, teen years and through the tumbler twenties. No wonder our parents had gray hair, wrinkles and cringed every trip we made out the door.

I was lucky enough to grow up with dozens of cousins. Since we all lived in close proximity, would guess that the neighborhood thought we were a gang. There were gangs growing up in our small city, but somehow we never crossed their paths, nor they ours. Perhaps they knew we existed, but were afraid of us because we could shoot peas out of a pea shooter from the roofs of abandoned buildings with them never knowing from where they got "pinged".

Wandering further than instructed was a secret that was well kept by all of us. No snitches in this group. Every week the comics distributor would tear off the cover of last weeks unsold comics and they were dumped at the city "dump" as it was called then. Today, we know the dump as "landfills". Still find that a landfill is where they collect anything people do not want - a place to dump trash. While the walk was four miles from the neighborhood, it was taboo and punishable to wander this far. Taboo to kids? Are you kidding?

Why buy comics when you could get your fill of Blondie, Archie, and Tarzan minus the cover for free. With ten of us that could carry ten to twenty comics, there was much swapping during the week until the next trip. On the way there, a stop at the local candy store meant we loaded up with all the sugar that kept us bouncing off walls for the next couple of days.

We thought our parents were clueless as to what plans we had for the summer day, but they always seemed to possess a sixth sense, or so we thought. Someone would see us and snitch, so this sixth sense stuff went out the window. Did it stop the comic collection caper at the dump? Not hardly, and punishment was always worth another trip.

There were many adventures that kept us physically fit. Foot power was certainly the only way to get to where we wanted to go. Cannot imagine asking Dad for a ride to the dump to collect comics. While our capers may not have been prudent, they sure were fun.