My previous hat was from the 1996 World Series. I scored my ticket off a bet I had with a stoner friend from Long Island, who would be gone a few years later on the 11th of September.
I bought the hat at the beginning of game 6, and was ballsy enough to spend the dough on the grey market hat that proclaimed them champs. I didn’t put the hat on until they won. Our victory seemed a pretty thin thing that game. Wolers v. Maddux… I remember cheering myself hoarse at the play that got the Braves coach ejected. I remember the woman next to me being near tears when we had to bring in Wetteland to replace Riviera. Even though we had the lead, she seemed assured that it meant we were going to drop the game. I remember the rush when it finally ended. One of my best weekends ever.
I had planned on retiring the hat in 2006. It was in some pretty sad shape, but, I’d say for the last 6 years or so, it has been like a second skin to me. The lining had been forcibly removed, I had staples holding the 1996 WS patch on (grey market goods definitely are not as durable), and the fabric surrounding the bill of the cap was just starting to tear in the center. I have lost it before, but never for as long as I have now without being able to find it while searching for it. I have no idea what happened to it.
My new hat is just a regular season standard issue. It fits about the same, but, it just isn’t the same.
I am not one to get wrapped up in material goods. Stuff is just what ties us down – it makes us forget the impermanence of our existence, and that the focus should be on experiences; both those we have with others and the ones other have with us. Looking back over my journal, most of the “stuff” posts I make are about broken functional items in my life – computers, phones, digital video equipment. These are things I can, truly, live without. While they have great functional use in my life, there is no emotional tie to them.
I guess perhaps it is because I do not obsess much about “stuff” that the few things I own that have some sentimental value to me are that their loss is that much more poignant when they are gone. You may think that I am being a bit melodramatic to write so much about something as dumb as a lost hat – but it feels like I have been separated from a physical remembrance of one of the periods of greatest metamorphosis I have ever gone through.
Providing I don’t find it, I hope whoever does has a big fuckin cranium, and isn’t a goddamn Mets fan.
That was a good Series.