Baseball Caps on Adult Males: A Symbol of Immaturity

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Are baseball caps a good look for adult males?

Should baseball caps be worn by adult men outside of the realm of sport, exercise, work and practical purposes?

Does it enhance the look of a man and contribute to a sexy look or does it promote a juvenile and socially unevolved image?

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Let me start off by saying that I am an avid fan of head wear for both practical and fashion purposes. You will rarely see me out on a summer day without an awesome straw fedora sitting on my head. It guards me from the sun and, in my opinion, looks super classical and chic. I am also known to wear Dutch boys out and about and dark colored fedoras for an evening out on the town.

I had two baseball caps as a ten year old featuring imagery of The Simpsons and Ren and Stimpy. I believe they came with show bags from comic book fairs. Regardless, I never wore one ever again once I went through puberty. It just didn’t feel right. As I got older, my disdain for caps  grew, and it is to the point now that I can’t see a baseball cap on an adult head without getting annoyed.

Of course I don’t feel this annoyance when I see someone wearing one when playing sport, especially baseball. I also have no issue with them being utilized for work purposes: as protection against the rays of the sun whilst one is working outdoors or driving a vehicle.They make my blood boil when they leave the arena of sport and occupation and become a fashion item, statement, or a day to day accessory. Mind you, I also have this reaction when I see women wearing them too, but my perception of the baseball cap isn’t as severe when women wear one, as opposed to men. Though I think it looks just as unsightly on women.

Whenever I see a man in a baseball cap, all kinds of adjectives come to my mind: immature, juvenile, unevolved, emotionally stunted, and infantile. Now I realise that NOT ALL men who wear baseball caps fit into this category. I know many intelligent and emotionally evolved men who wear them, however that is my immediate reaction.

I think this is because I have known and come across so many men who wear them who  are immature, unevolved, and emotionally stunted. There is nothing wrong with being young at heart, but I think there is an issue when a 30 year old man thinks and behaves like a 15 year old boy. In this case there is a lack of social and emotional development and the cap completes the package. Especially if the cap is worn backwards or to the side.

There is something unappealing about a man who tries to cling onto his teenage years, the need to continue to be boyish. That’s why I think it strips away from manliness. Then again, one must look at US culture itself.

There is something very childish and immature when it comes to US male culture. Take a look at the urban hip hop culture. There is so much immaturity and perpetual teenage behaviour coming out of that genre, which has a mass impact on not only US culture but global culture. There is such an obsession with youth culture, which means high value is placed on it. Hence why I believe so many men and women try to retain those elements

Wearing a baseball cap outside of sport is a conscious or sub conscious desire to remain a teenager. I know that many of you will disagree with me on this, and please don’t assume that I am calling you immature or unevolved or silly because you wear one. You may not be  (or you might be lol ) but if you are over 18 I really think you will so much better in a fedora, panama hat, straw hat, cowboy hat or dutch boy. The sooner  our society lets go of this obsession and favoritism of excessive youth, the better off we will be. Then again, this would also require so many childish adult males to grow up into men. Is this possible?

 

 

 

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7 comments

  1. @robengle It’s all a matter of perception and personal taste. I dont always think origins of head wear are important. You are right about the origins of the dutch boy. One doesn’t have to be a baseball player to wear a baseball cap. My issue is with how it makes a man look EXCLUDING sporting and work/practical purposes which I highlighted. For me it reduces a man’s manliness. It’s boyish and a great accessory for a culture that is obsessed with youth. Now I clearly state that just because a man wears a cap, it doesn’t make him immature or emotionally/socially stunted. I believe that the aesthetics of the cap aid in creating that adolescent lookespecially if its a snap back and especially if its worn backwards. It’s just a visual impression that may or may not actually manifest but the baseball cap is the catalyst for that….Re Fedora I disagree that its hipster. Too classical to be hipster.

    1. Why would the style of cap one chooses to wear reduce their manliness?
      You mean in the way that “Dutch Boys” became popular with GIRLS, and did so (style-wise) with females before they did with males?
      I guess that makes you girlish, huh?
      And since you’re again showing how uninformed you are about hat-history, I’m going to help you out – “snap back” hats have been around since the early-1970s, as a means of making a “one size fits all” package so as to reduce the price over individually-sized caps (fitted caps came into style in the 90s, along with a price increase), this was also the era when so-called “Trucker hats” (aka ones with the mesh back, so as to be cooler for the wearer) were in vogue. … Yet another style of cap, or ball cap, that’s come back into style. But, not too fast – do you know when Dutch Boys came into style outside of the painting industry and the military? The 1970s! When the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team chose them over traditional round-top style caps.
      Funny, while I agree the trend of backwards hat wearing is foolish looking, it’s ironic that you never mentioned it in your original column and only now in defense of me pointing out the flaws in your logic.
      Fedoras are classical?
      Try again.
      They’d only be considered classical if they’re worn with a suit; with casual wear they look ridiculous, hipster, like you raided dead grandpa’s 1940s hat collection. And straw ones, they look cheap, and like you’re a farmer.

      1. @robengle I am sincere when I say thank you for the input into head wear history. I appreciate it and I’m honestly interested. Did you know that the forerunner to the modern cap was born by the Brooklyn Excelsiors in 1860?
        No I dont think dutch boys make males look girlish. As I stated earlier, when I say baseball caps reduce manliness, I also say that it makes them boyish. It either gives them a boyish appearance and/or a boyish vibe which I believe is a part of the culture that the cap originates from. There is something in the culture that fosters a lack of maturity in males. As I said its just a vibe or assumption that can be completely wrong, case by case. I also did mention that backwards or to the side makes is worse. For me that initial impression (which can be changed very quickly ) and vibe is stronger when the cap is to the sides or backwards. Now you can disagree re the vibe but that’s how I feel. The only time I haven’t made that initial assumption or felt that vibe was with Tom Selleck wearing a cap in Magnum PI. Not sure why, regardless I think he looked much better without it.
        I think the urban hip hop culture’s penchant for caps/snapbacks also has a lot to do with my attitude because I think there’s a lot of infancy and immaturity in that sector. The whole swag thing is very boyish imo.

  2. I find it rather amusing that somebody that claims to wear a “Dutch Boy” on occasion, which is a style of cap that’s historically worn by painters and members of the military (ranger cap), that’s not a painter or in the military telling others that they’re “emotionally stunted” and childish for wearing a cap. … Because that cap is a sure sign of a wanna-be, a poser – and incredibly pompous and immature for talking down to others for wearing a different style of cap.
    And fedoras? … Well, those are for hipsters – and it makes you look like your great-grandpa dressed you.
    #hypocritemuch

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    1. @robengle I think a straw hat/straw fedora style hat is perfect for summer. Great for the beach. Yes Fedora looks so classical with a suit. I often wear one with a suit. I also think a fedora with a more casual shirt/tshirt and jeans/chino look is great. A blend of classical and modern. I think it’s got a good vibe to it. Hipster? It could be..depends on the guy.

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