Shaykh Daoud’s Blog

Bad Hats and other Annoyances

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The Duke of Wellington – the Iron Duke of Waterloo fame, that is – was not a great democrat in the modern sense, although he was willing to accept gradual change. He is said to have observed of the House of Commons after one of the early moves to Parliamentary reform that had allowed middle class people in that he had never seen so many bad hats in his life. In those days MPs and Peers of the Realm wore hats in the chamber – nice looking, expensive silk toppers if you could afford one. If not, something much cheaper that looked it.

I watched the Easter special edition of Dr Who. Towards the end of the episode, troops from UNIT turn up – and, with Arthur Wellesley, one could say that one had never seen so many bad hats in one’s life. Or rather badly worn berets.

I know that they’re actors; but surely the producer (or whoever) could have found a soldier – ex or still serving – to show them how to wear a beret properly. They looked like a right lot of (there’s a bad military word that would be used to describe them here: let’s just say that they looked like a proper bunch of civilians).

Which leads me to another lot of bad hats: parking wardens, meter attendants, and Blunkett’s Bobbies (or Fake Fuzz). That is to say, people who wear Forage Caps. If they’re going to wear the things, can someone please show them how to put them on properly.

If any of the offenders is reading this, the way that it is done is:

1. Place the peak bit square across your forehead, about 1 inch (approximately 25.4 mm) above your eyebrows, with the cap badge in the centre above your nose;

2. Hold it in place with the thumb and index finger of your left hand (right hand if you’re left-handed) spread across the front of the brim above the peak taking care not to smudge the capbadge;

3. With your right hand (or left hand) press the back of the hat down onto your head so that the whole thing sits square on your head with the back of the hat now sitting down.

4. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, take a trip to Horseguards and wait for one of the duty NCOs to appear and look at his hat. Let it burn itself on your consciousness. And don’t in future ponce around the streets looking like a proper wally (or civilian).

And then there are the prayer hats. Or rather lack of them. I’ve watched lots (and lots) of people turn up at our local mosque wearing some sort of hat – usually baseball caps in quite an impressive array of sponsorships – and then take them off to pray bareheaded.

They could have turned them around, baseball catcher style, and gained the sunnah of praying with the head covered that way.

I usually wear a bonnet; and get weird looks. I suppose some people, with the Duke of Wellington, are wondering what this fellow in the odd headgear is doing there. Ah, well…

© D Rosser-Owen 2009

Written by David Rosser Owen

April 21, 2009 at 6:36 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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