QUOTES & FUN HAT SAYINGS
"Leave everyone wondering which is the more interesting piece of work... you or your hat."
To put on your "thinking cap" is to give some problem careful thought. [Teachers and philosophers in the Middle Ages often wore distinctive caps that set them apart from those who had less learning. Caps became regarded as a symbol of education. People put them on (literally or figuratively) to solve their own problems.]
"If a woman rebels against high heeled shoes, she should take care to do it in a very smart hat."
-George Bernard Shaw
AT THE DROP OF A HAT
Fast. [Dropping a hat, can be a way in which a race can start (instead of a starting gun for example). Also, a hat is an apparel item that can easily become dislodged from its wearer. Anyone who wears hats regularly has experienced the quickness by which a hat can fly off your head.]
"Wearing a hat is like having a baby or a puppy; everyone stops to coo and talk about it." -Louise Green
THROWING A HAT IN THE RING
Entering a contest or a race e.g. a political run for office. [A customer wrote us with the following: "I read in "The Language of American Politics" by William F. Buckley Jr. that the phrase "throw one's hat in the ring" comes from a practice of 19th Century saloon keepers putting a boxing ring in the middle of the barroom so that customers who wanted to fight each other would have a place to do so without starting a donnybrook. If a man wanted to indicate that he would fight anybody, he would throw his hat in the ring.At one point, Theodore Roosevelt declared he was running for office with a speech that included a line that went something like, "My hat is in the ring and I am stripped to the waist". The phrase "my hat in the ring" stuck, probably because "I am stripped to the waist" is a little gross.]
"Live your life, do your work, then take your hat."
-Henry David Thoreau
Three consecutive successes in a game or another endeavor. For example, taking three wickets with three successive pitches by a bowler in a game of cricket, three goals or points won by a player in a game of soccer or ice hockey, etc. [From cricket, from the former practice of awarding a hat to a bowler who dismissed three batsmen with three successive balls.]
"Saying you don’t look good in a hat is like saying you don’t look good in shoes."
A FEATHER IN YOUR CAP
A special achievement. [I assume that the origins on this expression hail from the days when, in fact, a feather for one's cap would be awarded for an accomplishment much like a medal is awarded today and pinned to one's uniform. A feather, or a pin, add a certain prestige or luster to one's apparel.]
"You cannot hide in a hat; you will be noticed…"
HOLD ON TO YOUR HAT(S)
A warning that some excitement or danger is imminent. [When riding horseback or in an open-air early automobile, the exclamation "hold on to your hat" when the horse broke into a gallop or the car took-off was certainly literal.]
"So many hats and only one head!"
WEARING MANY HATS
This of course is a metaphor for having many different duties or jobs. [Historically, hats have often been an integral, even necessary, part of a working uniform. A miner, welder, construction worker, undertaker, white-collar worker or banker before the 1960s, chef, farmer, etc. all wear, or wore, a particular hat. Wearing "many hats" or "many different hats" simply means that one has different duties or jobs.]
"Cock your Hat…..Angles are Attitudes"
PASS THE HAT
Literally to pass a man's hat among members of an audience or group as a means for collecting money. Also to beg or ask for charity. [The origin is self-evident as a man's hat turned upside down makes a fine container.]
"With the wave of the hat, voila! You are mysterious...no, you are sexy...now proper...now playful."
KEEPING SOMETHING UNDER YOUR HAT
Keeping a secret. [People kept important papers and small treasures under their hats. One's hat was often the first thing put on in the morning and the last thing taken off at night, so literally keeping things under one's hat was safe keeping. A famous practitioner of this was Abraham Lincoln. The very utilitarian cowboy hat was also commonly used for storage.]