Americans have a profound longing for heroes - now perhaps more than ever. We need our explorers, our sports icons, our Medal of Freedom winners, our Nobel laureates. We need our Greatest Generation warriors, our 'Sully' Sullenbergers, our Neil Armstrongs. On some level, we still subscribe to the myth of the man in the white hat.
I first wore a hat after seeing a friend wear a hat. It seemed like a neat way to keep snow off my head without having to wear a beanie, so I tried it on for a while. Turns out I started wearing the hat at around the time people took pictures of me and put them online and in newspapers, so it kind of became part of my public image.
Cold weather probably played a bigger role in bringing back the hat, but sadly, the hat common to New Jersey guidos, South Carolina rednecks, Idaho potato farmers and Los Angeles gang bangers is the ubiquitous 'tractor hat,' which is derived from the cheap baseball style cap with the adjustable plastic tab.