Big Straw Hat
I was in Zellers the other day shopping for maternity underwear, when I happened across a big straw hat. I thought to myself, I am often getting too much sun in the forehead region, I ought to buy myself that hat. Then I hesitated. Certainly there must be a reason why I don’t own any such hats. I like them, but they’re not flattering on me. What if they’re dorky? What if they’re not cool?
I pictured myself gardening in my big straw hat. I thought I seemed cool to me. And I thought of my friend Jen, who is very stylin’ and SHE has a big straw hat which she looks adorable in. And finally, I thought of an episode of FRIENDS wherein Rachael bought a lovely big straw hat and it looked cute on her too. I turned over the hat and the tag read Alfred Sung. That’s GOT to be stylin’, I said to myself. I looked at the top of the hat - it had subtle silver sparkles. That's GOT to be stylin', I said to myself. There was even a cute straw bow on the side. That's GOT to be stylin', I said to myself.
So I bought it.
I wore my hat for the first time on Thursday. And my friend Mao approached me and carefully asked, while smiling, “Is that your hat?”
I said, “Yes.”
Then he said nothing, so I asked, “Why?”
And he said, “I was going to make fun, but then I thought I’d better make sure it’s not your hat.”
Later, I found Mao and I said very confidently, “Hats are IN!”
He said, “That one?”
I told Jen. She pointed out that Mao was wearing a lumberjack shirt. She said not to take fashion advice from Mao. I felt better.
Then today, I sported my hat as I walked in the late afternoon sun to the library. I was wandering around the children’s books when a 3-year-old Chinese boy at one of the preschool computers (with the colourful keyboards) turned and made a toothy attempt at smiling at me. I smiled back. Then he turned his whole body to me (I was holding my hat in my right hand) and he said, “Are you a cowboy?”
I said, “What?”
He said, “You have a cowboy hat!”
Out of the mouths of babes….