A Tip of the Hat


Speaking of hats, there’s this A&J from June of last year. As you might divine, it is an unvarnished memory and observation of my own. Daddy would be 100 years old this coming Monday, Halloween, were he still living. My younger brother and his family are coming over Saturday, and we’re going to have a family party in Daddy’s memory. I’m sure there will be stories told (Again!) for the benefit of my niece and nephew, who never got to meet their paternal grandfather, and for our own amusement, of course. He was the prototypical Arlo.

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120 thoughts on “A Tip of the Hat”

  1. My dad too and he would have been 100 in June. I was thinking about the one and only baseball game he took us to. My brother and I, like Dad, wore suits and fedoras. So did everyone else. It was a different world for sure.

  2. I don’t get dressed up just to go out in public, but there is something to be said for doing it. It is a good look.

    My father would never even go out to the 7-11 on a Sunday morning to get the paper unless he was showered, shaved, and dressed well.

  3. My Dad never wore a hat that I can recall. Maybe in the early 50’s before I was born. He wore a baseball hat from time to time when he retired. He was always out in the sun and usually was pretty tan. My Grandpa on my mom’s side had a bout of skin cancer as he was a farmer, but my Dad was fortunate.

    The other thing that I cannot recall is whether he wore sunglasses or at least clip-on ones. I have slow reacting pupils, so I often have sunglasses on when I am outside. Studies have shown a link between eye protection and cataracts. Of course now the surgery is pretty straight forward and new lens for the eyes can be inserted. Not the thick glasses of years ago.

  4. I am an avid follower of Shorpy.com photo site, and it is amazing on the older photos of people dressing well every where they went. A picture of a ball game, suits and nice hats. Of course in the older photos it would be a straw boater, or a derby, but always hat and suit. When did we get so crass and relaxed that even pajamas in public is acceptable? Just another geezer wishing my eyes weren’t assaulted by so much tacky dress. My Dad never wore blue jeans in his life, always dress pants, even working around the house.

  5. My husband, not quite 50, wears a top hat with a holly sprig from Thanksgiving until New Year’s Day but the rest of the year he wears a fedora. Most of his friends also wear hats, anything from a boater to a pork pie, on a regular basis. Milwaukee has a great haberdashery and millinery shop where you can off-the rack or custom-made hats and fascinators.

  6. Why am I so ignorant that I have never heard this group? What a gorgeous version of Hallelujah, one of my absolute favorite songs. They are singing with Dolly Parton right now right now. Why can’t I look like Dolly?

    Because she never eats food and spits it out.

    Thanks for posting them, a new group for me to love.

  7. I do not dress as I once did but I am still way over dressed in comparison to rest of people around me.

    In 1960s we still wore hats and gloves to work, on airplanes, to church, to theatrical performances, any place special. I have photos of me in that red convertible touring America in dresses and hose.
    Men wore suits and ties and hats, even to go deer hunting if they were gentlemen. Even cotton farmers.

    Ghost I have always lo ved Cary Grant. “Would you like a breast or a leg?” She asked. “A breast, I’m a breast man.”

    Grace Kelly and Cary Grant, picnic in sports car in To Catch A Thief. He was wearing suit as I recall.

    I do like the fur ball Mickey is accessorizing with.

  8. Another good one from that movie.

    “I am sorry I sent her to finishing school. I think they finished her.”

    Have seen this movie only once, age 11. Yet Cary Grant made that kind of impression on a young girl, setting standards. The debonair bad boy.

  9. https://goo.gl/images/yv9wpX

    Cary Grant forever. I guess I did marry my version of Cary but he gave up the three piece suits when we moved to Oklahoma. He never gave up the button down laundry ironed shirts and khakis, nor did he ever wrinkle or sweat.

    He switched to sports jackets and dress slacks and a tie for most dress occasions.

  10. My dad’s oldest sister was a teacher for her entire working life; her first teaching job was at a Grades 1-6 one-room country school. And she was a no-nonsense and “old school” (in all meanings of the phrase) person for her entire life. When I attended her funeral service some years ago, a former minister at her church recalled his first meeting with her. At the conclusion of the service, as he was standing at the front door to speak to the members of the congregation as they left, my aunt approached him.

    “That was an excellent sermon you gave,” she told him. “But it would have been much better had you been wearing a black suit instead of a brown one.” The minister laughed politely for the split second it took him to realize that SHE WAS NOT JOKING.

  11. This weekend I was in line behind an elegant and distinguished lady holding a bright pink dress hat she was re trimming. I complimented her and she to me about the suit and ensemble it went with. I asked if breast cancer and she said entire church was honoring those gone and still here. Men were wearing pink ties and shirts.

    I hugged her for that but also for the church full of suits and hats. Only the ladies of the black churches do that now, suits, hats, ensembles. I love and respect them for that, love the honor they show their sanctuaries. I told her so, why must we in traditional white churches dishonor in our attire?

    If that is prejudice I am on the other side.

  12. I can’t play the You Tube at work so I am not sure what version this is. My daughter-in-law’s Aunt asked me to sing at her husband’s memorial service and wanted to use “Hallelujah”, but not with the original lyrics. There is another version that is appropriate for Easter, but we chose just to have the accompanist play it on the piano and I sang “You Raise Me Up”.

    Ghost my accompanist was asked by the family to play at a funeral and his tie had musical notes on it (he often does not wear one) and a family member told him that his tie was irreverent. I told him that sometimes people say stupid things in their grief….then again some people just say stupid things!

  13. I’ve mentioned it here before but when ever I lector or sign at church, I almost always wear a suit and tie. One of our very young cantors sang and her dress barely covered her. It is difficult to tell someone that is volunteering how to dress, but you would think common sense would dictate that you would wear a different dress. Not sure how our musical director (the one with the music note tie) handled it.

  14. Steve I will never forget the first wedding I attended in a Catholic Church and women had bare shoulders and much more. I was horrified. But the couple who went with us were worse. She had on a lace crocheted dress with nothing underneath. And yes there were things poking out through holes in chest and bottom.

    I said, well she is a Yankee but it offended me.

    My daughters wedding was in the Cathedral Basilica and all bridesmaids and bride wore stoles and jackets with gowns. The captors all wore black pants and sacramentals.

  15. My dad was 48 when I was born and I’m a couple of years older than Jimmy (he’d be 113 this year, to save you the arithmetic), but the only hat I remember my father wearing was a hard hat. Perhaps he wore something more stylish when he as younger. So many things I would like to ask him now that I’m his age.

  16. Jackie I’m afraid Ghost is going to start pestering you for the name of the church where you saw that! I’ve heard of some crazy wedding stories, but never attended one like that.

    I just got an email from a major TV network to possibly appear on one of their programs. This might just be an initial screening, but I have my fingers crossed. I don’t want to discuss any more, but IF I get invited, I will be sure to let everyone know. It would be shown sometime next year, so there is plenty of time.

  17. It was in New Orleans and woman in question was Mike’s boss” wife. I won’t dignify her by calling her a lady .or reveal her faith but that faith doesn’t approve either.I have done hundreds of weddings and we did not enter any church to set up flowers in inappropriate clothing. We even wore our heads covered but I had to geniflect for us all the Lutherans, Baptists and Methodists who worked for me wouldn’t.

    Once I had to stand waist deep in a glass baptismal font over altar two stories up to design the major florsl piece and did it fully clothed.

  18. Jimmy, my Dad is 83 and still with us. He was not a church-goer, but he did get dressed up every Sunday to do his errands around town. No hat– this was mid-1960s to mid-1970s I’m recalling. And some of the suits had the wild patterns or colors of the time. But the shoes are most memorable for me– well-shined wing-tips! He worked hard factory jobs, and I imagine dressing up and looking sharp was a treat for him. Now in my own job, I always wear a t-shirt (sometimes an A&J), jeans and sneakers. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve looked for chances to dress up. Birthday dinners, school ceremonies, and especially comic book conventions. It’s fun for me to put on a suit, tie and wing-tips to a comic-con! If I see someone I know, I say that I heard people ‘dress up’ for these things, but I appear to have misunderstood (joking on the cos-play scene). If I see people I don’t know, they might think I’m important. Marina Sirtis of Star Trek: NG said to me, “Thank you for dressing up. Some of these people look so slovenly.” If that didn’t make my habit worthwhile, walking into the autograph hall and hearing Tia Carrere shout out to me, “Hello, man in a suit” clinched it!

  19. So Jackie, re: flowers in the baptistery: no waders? My Baptist pastor when I was a kid would put on chest waders over his suit/under his robe when he did a baptism… 🙂

  20. GR6, only if the pole dancer has no children of hers enrolled in the school.

    Back from New Orleans. Three days to get rested before we head to San Francisco for Halloween.

    Found a surprise in our mail. Kickstarter gifts are arriving. 🙂

  21. I need to go to post office again to look for Santa and the Secret Squirrel. And take my raincheck in for third frame and putting mine into mats. Red mats with black inner edges and high gloss black frames, really sharp.

    Need to drive north anyway, I have consumed entire inventory of the Lowe’s south of me in that patio stone. We need more.

    Will you be leading the Maypole dancing at spring carnival, Ghost? I’d contribute to that one. In tights, jerkin and a Daisy crown? No wait, that’s Jon in the Garfield strip. This is A and J so it has to be lederhosen.

  22. Rusty, I was assured the bapistry was drained. Not chest deep. The arrangement hung from glass, taped on. Taped to a humid piece of glass high on back wall over ministers head.

    Assistant manager was Baptist so she prayed all through service that it not kill minister by fslling.

  23. Good morning Villagers….

    OB…another good one 🙂

    Got ‘railroaded” yesterday into helping out at the other henhouse. Can you believe that they are going to have an United Egg Producers inspection today, and ‘culling’ the hens next Tuesday! It is not as an intense one that our house went through, they won’t be counting number of hens in cages.

    So there’s Ian and me knocking ‘crap’ off the back of curtains when along comes a Corp man. He asked how we were doing, I said “tired, very tired and kicking $hit” (one never knows what is going to come out of my vocal chords when I am tired 🙂 ). I also told the Corp man “this is ludicrous, and I am only doing it so that Mike (my boss) will go ‘out’ with 5 Star ratings on both of his henhouses”. The Corp man said he appreciated that…..yeah, yeah, sure, sure I thought.

    I own a black, felt fedora and I love to where it, I also have Mom’s cream colored one with a black band. Not worn my fedora though in years. Think I’ll wear it when job hunting…that should be for a good impression. Maybe I’ll go to the bathroom and come back hired….like GR getting elected in his new civic duty volunteer work.

    …and it’s hump day for some of you.

  24. I missed most of yesterday’s comments. I do not ever recall a time where I have attended Mass without a tie, coat and dress pants. I got that from my daddy, my grandfather and the brothers of the Sacred Heart, who taught at Catholic High, Baton Rouge, LA. We could not wear blue jeans to school because, as we were told, you do things in blue jeans that you don’t do in dress pants. (My daddy called them “dungarees”!) As a result, I still do not wear blue jeans to this day, much to the chagrin of my wife. I dearly love cargo pants. Speaking of my grandfather, he was a legal immigrant from Italy (circa 1900) and very proud opf his American citizenship. He would not even go sit on the porch without a suit, starched white shirt, tie, vest and hat. I still wear hats in the Winter. My daddy advised me to do that when I had sinus problems. It helps.

    Prayers for everyone. God bless us every one. God bless the USA.

  25. From the Department of How ‘Bout That: Recently, I used the word “seppuku” in a post. (Not a word you see a lot in everyday life, I think you would agree.) Yesterday on the way home, I saw a “Japanese” sedan with the personalized tag SEPPUKU on it.

    Now I’m trying to decide why one would put that on one’s automobile.

  26. I’m still wondering how, if Arlo’s dad tied his tie before he put on his pants, he was able to tie it with the requisite length of “tip of tie reaching center of belt buckle”.

    OCD dresser? Who, me?

  27. Jimmy, this really resonated with me. The 23rd would have been my grandpa’s 115th birthday. He’s been gone over 50 years now, but I still feel his hugs and smell his cigars. BTW, he always wore a well-used fedora.

  28. JACKIE-sheesh girl, Lowe’s delivers!!!!!! And it is raining today. Stay home for a minute?

    GR, I imagine repetition and muscle memory kicked in.

    Everyone, have a lovely day.

  29. Lowe’s charges me $75 to deliver to me so I have to have something worth paying that for. There are 15 patio paves tones in truck and 36 pots of mums. They kill the plants, my truck bed has a tonneau over it.

    Sitting on kitchen patio with Dickens and Skipper in my pajamas having breakfast. Totally overcast and cool but no clothing necessary out here. Can tan anytime out here, it’s a living room filled with hanging baskets, planters, bird feeders and no roof.

    Waited 20 years for this room when I put up that privacy fence, I planned rest then too. Long time realizing a dream.

  30. My uncle wore a hat, tie, jacket when hunting. Not same he wore to church or to work. He was dentist and pulled teeth in tie and white jacket, dark suit to church. He went to seminary to become minister but went on to dental school, out prayed anyone I ever heard. Not sure I ever saw him without tie except in bathing suit!

  31. Looking for my other Arlo and Janis strip to have it framed. I may need more pansies and violas, noticed there are none out here. The herb garden and baskets are doing beautifully.

    Now you have me listening to Karen Carpenter. What a loss of talent.

  32. My Mom’s dad worked for Sears Roebuck for years in the Engineering department. {Yes, they have one; how else do they keep the elevators and escalators running? 🙂 } He would put on a suit and tie before he left the house, then change into his work clothes at the store, then change back to go home. On Sundays he wore a suit, starched white shirt, tie, wing tip shoes, and a fedora to church-Episcopal, by the way. The rest of the time he wore “putter pants” (chinos), a plaid cotton shirt, and a baseball cap.

    Jackie, it’s funny that you should post the link to Sharp Dressed Man as my sister and I were just talking about the video to Legs a day or so ago. I love ZZTop!

    Hi Ghost Sweetie!

  33. That’s Dickens favorite part of my anatomy to put his head at night to sleep, so finding him in pajamas wouldn’t surprise me. When he was a tiny puppy he slept in my top while I worked at desk to stay warm, snuggled in between. Too big at ten pounds to do that now.

    Just baking a cranberry, raisin banana bread pudding for lunch. Have no idea how it will taste. Just had some extra French bread and two overripe bananas.

  34. Well, I suppose if one wore a necktie into aerial combat, wearing one to church or even the ballpark wouldn’t be that much of a stretch.

    http://www.thefedoralounge.com/attachments/p68-69_edited-jpg.3325/

    I’ll have to say that my dad and all his brothers were “sharp dressed men”. One in particular always looked as though he’d just stepped off the pages of GQ magazine. Even my oldest uncle, who was a farmer, took at job at a men’s haberdashery when he retired; donned a suit, white dress shirt, and tie; and looked as though he were to the manor born.

  35. I’m seriously thinking of taking an honest-to-Odin* vacation…you know, one of those things where one devotes a week of one’s life to going where and doing (or not doing) what one wishes. I’m not sure I remember how to do that, but I’m willing to make the attempt. (I’m thinking perhaps the week of my natal anniversary.)

    For those of you thinking, “Who are you and what have you done with Ghost?”, I say “Even the Energizer Bunny needs recharging on occasion.”

    *The god of healing. Also the god of knowledge, sorcery, battle, and poetry, but there is only so much one can do in a week.

  36. My father Jack Hodgson was shot down and died flying a spy plane in a necktie and leather flight jacket. And yes he worked for an upscale haberdashery in high school and college before enlisting. My favorite photo of him is an 8 by 10 of him with his car, dressed like a 1940s movie star and just as good looking. His uniforms were custom made, he was a small man but gorgeous.

    Ghost you know that you have a standing invitation here or anywhere else. When is your birthday, my schedule is ok until I have knee surgery? I am not a good influence for workaholics.

  37. Thank you, Jackie. I won’t be able to venture that far afield quite yet, but perhaps soon. And my birthday is…soon. 🙂

    I immediately thought of your father when I saw the photo of those WWII RAF airmen.

  38. Jackie, Did he go by the name Judd?
    6 November 1951 While conducting an intelligence gathering mission, later claimed to be a “weather reconnaissance mission under United Nations command”, a US Navy P2V-3W Neptune (BuNo 124283 – not 124284 as listed in some sources) of VP-6 was shot down over the Sea of Japan, near Vladivostok, by Soviet La-11 Fangs flown by I. Ya. Lukashyev and M.K. Shchukin. The Soviet pilots reported that they intercepted the aircraft in the area of Cape Ostrovnoy approximately 7-8 miles from the shore. After they fired on the aircraft, it fell, burning, into the water and exploded 18 miles from the shore. The crew of Judd C. Hodgson, Sam Rosenfeld, Donald E. Smith, Reuben S. Baggett, Paul R. Foster, Erwin D. Raglin, Paul G. Juric, William S. Meyer, Ralph A. Wigert Jr. and Jack Lively were reported as missing.
    So sorry for your loss.

  39. My dad flew first for RAF and the US Army Airforce. He was shot down by friendly fire from RAF while filming behind enemy lines for Battle of Monte Cassino in Italy.

  40. I have never clicked on this cartoon on GoComics.com before this morning. In fact, I’d never even noticed this cartoon on the list at GoComics.com before this morning. But for some reason I did and clicked on it (10-26-16). In the context of recent discussions here, that is more than passing strange, I’d say.

    http://www.gocomics.com/lay-lines

  41. Yes, I am my father’s child, there is no doubt . I always wished to know him. Talking to the men who flew with him in Italy brought him to life for me for the first ti.e in my life. But I was always proud of him. My love of so many things comes from him.

    Funny, I was thinking of my dad when I read Jack Hoover obit. my dad got his pilots license at 14 in North Carolina and flew crop duster and air show routines which would explain how he ended up in a reconuisance squadron.

    My mother said all he ever wanted to do was fly either forI militany or civilian. He was so smart, graduated high school at 14 and dropped out of Wake Forest to enlist.

  42. I’ve been skimming through the newspapers that came while we were away and found this interesting tidbit (in case anyone outside of Florida thought I was exaggerating last month when I said how nice it was to get away from political ads for a few days): “A recent NBC report found that presidential campaigns are spending a fourth of all their money on TV ads right here in the Sunshine State.”

    PBS and Turner Classic Movies are godsends!

  43. Debbe 😉 A set of skates would have been just the thing to accessorize your orange string bikini. 😉

    Ever see a movie titled “Boogie Nights”?

  44. Or turn it off entirely and if you don’t miss it for two years you will have missed the majority of the annoyance.

    And you will be rid of another addiction in some cases.

  45. Have I mentioned my butterfly garden? We have hundreds of butterflies of all varieties that swarm daily out in front yard where most of the blooming flowers are right now. It is like one that you’d often pay to enter where the butterflies land on you or near you, unafraid and fluttering.
    That and birds and cats make yard so peaceful.
    Gardening is the slowest of the art forms. You have to kneel and pray a lot as well, an act of religious faith to plant.

  46. Watching World Series games now, but they will be over soon. The only football team I follow is sucking wind this year as, frankly, many of the other NFL teams are, and I appear not to be the only one with that opinion. Not too many weeks of college football left. Don’t watch basket games at all. Now you know why I wouldn’t have bought a TV to replace the one that quit on me.

  47. GR 6 on 26 Oct 2016 at 8:17 am #

    I’m still wondering how, if Arlo’s dad tied his tie before he put on his pants, he was able to tie it with the requisite length of “tip of tie reaching center of belt buckle”.

    When you do it often enough you know. I was going to say I adjust the tail (as did my father)
    to a button on my shirt – but i don’t think I even need the shirt.

  48. Good morning Villagers….

    Yesterday’s posts brought back some fond memories of my Mom and Stepdad. He would color coordinate his shirt and tie to the color of her ensemble when they went to church…..they would even do that when they went bowling….only no tie for those events. They belonged to three bowling leagues…Mom did love her bowling and had many trophies.

    Yeah, GR 🙂 , forty years ago I’d have done that…..had no inhibitions back then.

    The Boss stopped by yesterday, we talked, he’s still going to let Ian and me draw unemployment. He told me he has a couple of ideas in his head…The Corp is not the only egg producer around SIN…..The Corp wants him to remove the cages…..I don’t think so. He’s going to keep Ian and me around to clean up after the hens leave…..we’ll work in the afternoon when it’s a little warmer in the henhouse. I hope Skittles can help us. I’m going to ask.

    Oh, and the other henhouse got its 5 Star rating, so Mathies Poultry is a 5 star layer facility….take that to another egg producer. Going to research and see what’s around.

    later…..

  49. Debbe, I’m here. Settling in to new home and putting things away/back together. Got a situation similar to some you have had with Ian. When I moved I sold my car back to my brother, sent title, bill of sale, etc. He told me he was insuring it under his own policy, then said that wouldn’t take effect till last Friday. Meanwhile, he let his son drive the car. His son, the demolition derby-type driver who’s wrecked everything he ever had. Guess what? He had an accident before brothers policy took effect and tried to file claim on my insurance. Claims person called me and I explained situation, including that I had Not given this person permission to drive the car. So whether brother pays out of pocket or whatever, that is his problem.

  50. Mark, objectively, that was a merciful alternative to weeks or months of suffering. But I know from experience how hard it is to be objective at a time like this. You have my condolences, my thoughts, and my prayers.

  51. Ghost, it is exactly what I wanted for her. Her own mother had multiple strokes, ending up bedbound, unable to speak and on tube feeding, going on for years. Mom went quietly in her sleep.

  52. Mark, I am rally sorry about your loss, but my own mother had been miserable for years and by the time that she died the strokes had changed her to a condition that left her unrecognizable.

  53. Mark, as others have said, the circumstances always differ when you lose a parent, and not infrequently you do know it’s for the best, but it is always a time of grief. I too send my deepest sympathy.

    Ghost, if you do come to visit that cousin in Tucson, I’m going to be REALLY sad if you don’t get in touch with me some way!

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