Sunday, January 10, 2010
Gorillas and Beavers and Hares, Oh My!
My husband has a new hobby. Shopping. Yes, you heard me right. I said shopping. Seems he got a bee in his bonnet about a new hat. Not just any hat. A cowboy hat. He had a straw one but, apparently, straw is not appropriate after Labor Day. He wants one for winter, and the acceptable colors for winter are either black or gray.
I know all that. I grew up in these parts. Practically every adult man I was ever around as a kid wore a cowboy hat. What I didn't know was how complicated this whole hat thing can be. I also had no idea my husband would get hooked on eBay in the process. I have to take the blame for that part of it, because I'm the one who told him to go look around at eBay and even gave him my username and password. I know, I know.
Night after night after night, he comes in from work and goes straight to his computer. Sometimes he doesn't even change clothes first. I'm lucky if I get an air kiss thrown in my general direction as he zips by me towards the office. Occasionally, I'll go to the office and get on my computer too, and then he starts reading hat descriptions off the web pages. Our computers face different walls, but there is only about four feet between us, so there's no avoiding this running commentary. I will 'fess up to tuning him out, because a girl can just take so much yak about a hat. But, once in a while something will penetrate the fog, as I try desperately to pursue my own pursuits online. So one day, way off in the distance, I heard him saying something about cattleman's creases and a silver belly.
"Silverbelly? Isn't that a gorilla? Oh, wait, that would be a silverback. What did you say?"
He rolls his eyes at me and explains that silverbelly is a hat color. Okay, I guess that would be the gray ones then.
"Cattleman's creases? Is that anything like plumber's pants?"
This gets a tiny grin, or maybe it was a grimace, out of him, and he explains there are different ways to crease the crown of a hat. Okay, I knew that. I just didn't know they actually have names for the different crease styles. I turned my attention back to my computer. But not for long because, evidently, he has decided I need to be involved in the entire hat-buying process, and I hear him talking about a 20X. Huh?
"Are you talking about sizes? Because I think a 20X might be a bit big for your noggin."
"No, that's not the size, goofy. A 20X would be like a Grade A egg. There's 6X and 7X and so on. A 20X is a really nice hat, and they can be very expensive."
Mumble, mumble, mumble, and then I hear something about beavers and hair. Yeah, I actually heard the screeching brake sound in my head. WHAT?!
"Okay, you have my undivided attention now. What on God's green earth are you talking about? Are you telling me those hats are made out of beavers?"
Now he is scowling at me with a look of barely disguised impatience (you know the look I'm talking about) and he says, "Okay. Here's the deal. Cowboy hats are made of beaver or hair. The one I'm looking at now is made of Canadian beaver, but they have some made of European hair." At least that's what I THOUGHT he said.
By this time, I'm totally into playing the dippy blonde (while actually fearing I really am one) and I absolutely cannot resist poking the bear, so I look at him and say, "Okay, like that doesn't make any sense at all. Are you like telling me they like make hats out of like the hair of Europeans?"
This gets a full-fledged belly laugh out of him, and he is barely able to sputter, "I mean European H-A-R-E not H-A-I-R. You know, as in rabbit."
No, actually, this is all news to me. I don't know what I thought they made those hats out of. I'm pretty sure I've never thought about it at all. I mean the hats don't have hair sticking out all over them or little bushy tails, so who would think they were made out of cute little woodland creatures?
Bottom line, this makes me feel stupendously stupid today. For someone of my uh, advanced years, I cannot believe I did not know this. In my defense, I have never bought a hat or even been present when someone else was buying one. No, I've just been looking at them for the last (mumble, mumble) years. Makes me wonder what else I've been missing, and it makes me question a lot of things I've never thought about before. So, would someone please explain to me what "rose hips" are and what they're doing in my Vitamin C?
Oh, and the moral of the story? Once in a purple-polka-dotted Pluto, when you least expect it, your husband may actually know more about something than you do. But, let's keep that to ourselves, girls. Just say, "Yeah, I knew that!" And, faster than a jackrabbit, move on to something else. No need to give these guys any excuse to gloat or be more condescending than usual, because they will NEVER...EVER...EVER...LET...YOU...FOR...GET...IT!
Posted by Brenda at 11:40 AM