Do You Like My Hat?

I generally do not pay much attention to the Diamondbacks promotional schedule unless of course we are talking about bobble heads. I can give you the dates of each one of those giveaways (by the way the final one is September 13 for the Dan Haren bobble head). I don’t have to keep trace of the promotions; my kids do a more than adequate job of it. At the beginning of each season we go over the Diamondbacks schedule with a fine tooth comb. I am of course looking for interesting games and match ups (and the occasional bobble head). The kids are scouring the schedule to see when the cool giveaways are and what dates they have to be nice to their younger brother since he is the only one age eligible for the Sunday promotional items. So to say I was ill-prepared for tonight’s game would be an understatement.

The promotional calendar simply stated, “Eric Byrnes Hat Night”. That seemed harmless enough. After all, what could there be different for an Eric Byrnes hat than any other hat? The promotion was sponsored by Fox Sports Arizona which is the exclusive home of the Arizona Diamondbacks television broadcasts. It is also the home of “The Eric Byrnes Show” which began last season to chronicle the quirky Diamondbacks outfielder. It was therefore not a surprise to see the Fox Sports logo on the hat along with the logo for “The Eric Byrnes Show”. If that had been all there was to it, it probably would not have been so bad. I can deal with seeing 25,000 Diamondbacks hats with corporate sponsorship logos on the side or back.

Since the game was being played on a Saturday it only seemed appropriate that the hat be the black cap with the Sedona Red “A” logo. What I did not expect in any way was the fact that each cap had locks of blonde hair flowing out the back of it so that when you put the hat on your head you had the same unmanageable hairdo as Eric Byrnes. The hair is held in place via a Velcro strip along the band of the hat. This makes the hair detachable I guess so that you can take it off and wash, rinse, and repeat.

Lying in the box inside the turnstiles were literally thousands of these hats. It looked like a box of dead puppies and quite honestly smelled a little funky too. The ticket takers were busily handing out these prizes to each fan as they entered the gates. People seemed to be genuinely excited to be getting these hats as they immediately put them on. The change to their appearance was significant. The fans started moving around like Eric Byrnes. There were some who immediately went into Byrnes’ batting stance while others began doing the band leader or the flying nun.

We went into the concourse where everyone seemed to be wearing their Eric Byrnes hats. It reminded me of the Flintstones episode where aliens invade the earth and select one human that they clone over and over to do their bidding. They select Fred Flintstone and Bedrock is overrun with Freds acting very weird. Yeah that was definitely what this was like.

Perhaps the strangest sight was when we ran into the band of teenagers wearing the hats. As you know, most teenagers seem to like to either wear their hats to the side or on backwards. It used to drive my dad insane if I came into the house with my baseball hat on backwards. I would get a lecture for an hour about how I needed to properly wear a hat. I never understood his obsession with hat brim direction until tonight. With the Eric Byrnes hat on backwards the golden flowing locks hung down in the kids’ faces. They looked like Cousin It from the Aadams Family.

After seeing everyone walking around with their Byrnes hats on I have come to the conclusion that not everyone is a hat person. There are definitely some people who should not wear hats and even more that should not wear a blond wig. It was also a little creepy to see women and men with the same hair color and style. But they did seem to be enjoying themselves which I guess proves out the theory that blonds do have more fun.

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