Tuesday, November 28, 2006

VW - Custom Hat

He kept looking at my head. Every time I reached for a tool, the guy was alooking at me. I finally eased the creeper all the way under his bus and out the other side, got up and took a peek in the passenger-side mirror to see what was hanging out of my nose. Nothing. And no funny smears of grease. Beard wasn't on fire. Teeth hadn't fallen out. But he kept looking at my head!

Finished up, told him he could rebuild the starter if he wanted to but I didn't know any source of new solenoids and that was the real problem. He didn't care; as a mechanic he probably made a fine programmer. Paid me; told me I could keep the old starter if I wanted it. I didn't, which kinda surprised him (I got enough junk to worry about). Then he sez: "I don't suppose you'd consider selling your hat?" My hat?

Took it off to see the gold coins I'd missed. Nada. Old, faded olive-drab looking thingee, kinda greasy around the bill. Got a little VW bus embroidered on one side; you gotta look for it. Over on the other side it sez 'VANS'.

"Where'dya get it?" He's all puppy-eager. Clean hands. '73 Westy, all polished up and neat.

I couldn't recall. "Some race... " SNORE? Some guy was handing them out to the pit crews.

"Would you take ten dollars for it?"

That caught me. It was a second before I started to laugh.


Hell, the damn fool was serious! I handed him the hat; he handed me a twenty. He put on the hat, one size fits all. Drove off happy as a clam.

Couple days later I was over by the airport, stopped in at the VANS sneaker factory, picked me up a new hat. $4.95.

"You wouldn't believe what happened to my old hat," I told the kid. But he didn't want to hear unless it involved ten foot waves. Took my money, gave me the hat.

Veedubers is some strange folk.

-Bob Hoover
-July 1995

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