I had to whip into Monterey to deposit my paycheck which is something I enjoy because it involves a seven-block stoll through downtown. It's a nice October day and that means that there's fun mix of people on the sidewalk. Perfect day too, no line at the bank or at the drugstore so I was able to finish my business quickly. As I was standing at the corner waiting for the light to change I notice an old guy on the opposite corner wearing a Captain's hat, you know like the 'Skipper" on Gilligan's Island? This got me to thinking:
At what point did this guy look in the mirror and say " I've got it, a Captain's hat!"
See, I grew up around a lot of retired military and none of those guys ran around in their Caps once they'd retired. You'd think that the guy who'd commanded the Enterprise in WWII would wear his Admeral's Cap and a t-shirt that said " I Commanded the REAL Enterprise in a REAL war, so suck on it you dirty Hippie", yet he preffered Flannel and sometimes a fishing hat (when he was going fishing). You'd think a guy who'd shot down 12 ME109s over Germany would dress like Colonel Hogan every friggin' day but he didn't. So what promted 'Captain Old Guy" to dawn a $25 Captain's hat and wear it when he goes out on the town? Does he sit at the bar and tell stories about the sea and the "One that got away"?
In Monterey, CA, there are maybe fifteen old-timers who can be spotted wearing Captain's hats. To be fair, some of these guys are retired Sardine and Squidboat Captains and to be sure they'd earned those caps but what about the other guys? Sometimes I go down to the Warf and watch the fishing boats pull in and I've noticed that today nobody wears a Captain's hat, today they wear Giants or 49ers ball caps. I wonder how many of those guys will one day exchange their sports cap for a Captain's hat? I don't know what would be worse, guys sitting around in their Captain's hats or walking around Monterey one day and noticing that the old guys wearing those caps have gone and nobody has replaced them.
You go, Captain Old Guy!