Time Out! I am Not Afraid of What I Know.

February 7th 2011


Cold when we thought we lost a dog in the backyard this morning.  Then sunny when we found Baby, the French Bulldog on the roof of the next building over. Phew!

Coffee: Enough

So, I am sharing a moment I had with this hat:


It happen just a few hours ago…This hat is almost perfect. Almost…I wouldn’t have it any other way.  So let me set the scene.

This song is playing on the record player at the hat shop. Please listen to this while reading on.

A couple notes:

1. You will need to click on the link that says “embedded code has been disabled.  Watch on YouTube”, meaning another window will have to be open when reading this.

2.Pay attention at 3 minutes and a few seconds.   I think the lyric is, “…and some times I want to wrap my cord around you” )

Sometimes I wanna wrap MY COAT around you
Sometimes I wanna keep you warm
Sometimes I wanna wrap MY COAT around you
Sometimes I wanna burn a candle for you”

I am standing at the hatting bench by myself and I have this blank hat body in my hand and the music is playing and I am just blocking another hat.  But, it wasn’t just another hat.  I can’t say that I always feel this way, the way I am about to describe, but sometimes I do,  so I thought I’d take a TIME OUT  to bear witness.

I am one of those people that learns by doing, by feeling, by seeing.  I need to fully experience the “thing”  in order to know for sure and feel confident in my skill .

My high school year book quote was:

“I am not afraid of what I know”.

Look it up.

(Saint Ignatius  graduating Class of 1998).

In my recent years, I have come back to this quote, but not with the same eyes.  These eyes have seen more now.  So, if I am not afraid of what I know, then the reverse has to be true:

“I am afraid of what I don’t know”. Right?

“What does this have to do with THE HAT IN QUESTION” ?

I can hear you saying to yourself.

You see, I felt every inch of this hat.  I looked at this hat from every angle, right from the start.  I took its measurements: the crown height and brim width.  I saw where there had been a break in the straw and another had to be replaced.  I smelled the natural bleaching agents that were used where the dark straw had been woven into a pattern at the tip of the crown.

So with that knowledge, I know this hat’s strengths and weaknesses. I know what it’s capable of, and most importantly,  this is not the most beautiful body that has every been in the WORK SHOP OF PAUL’S HAT WOKS, but, it also wasn’t trying to hide its imperfections. I now can help it be a beautiful piece of art.   Knowing is half the battle.

My mantra holds true.

As for the lyrics to the song playing on the Rolling Stones album, I did not know Mick was saying “my coat”  I thought he was saying “my cord”.

As this part of the song was playing, I had begun wrapping the blocking cord around the body. Sometimes not knowing is better.

“Huzzah!” as Paul 1 would say.

Thanks for reading.

p.s. Where are your hand writing samples?  A week into February and not one subject to analyze.  Are you scared?