It’s been nearly 10 years since NBC aired an episode of the hit comedy “The Office” in which a running side gag involved Ryan Howard (B.J. Novak’s character) refusing to tell complimentary co-workers where he acquired his narrow-brimmed hat. Whenever the character was asked about where he bought his chapeau, he’d respond with one simple line.
“I’d rather not say.”
“The Lover” first aired on Oct. 22, 2009 and during the gag, Ryan was reticent to let people onto how he was forming his fashion-forward style. At the time, Ryan’s choice of cap fit modern popular style. Hipsters everywhere were wearing hats last seen in the late 1960s, a nod to both old school sartorial flare and the irony that accompanied donning men’s headwear some 50 years too late.
But fast forward to 2018 (almost 2019) and this style of hat is reviled, a symbol of flash-in-the-pan hipsterdom of an era past (not to mention of internet trolldom). People hate these hats so much they’ve started campaigns against them in certain towns where they were once prevalent.
Wearing a fedora — or any of the styles commonly mistaken for a fedora including the trilby, panama, bowler, porkpie, or gambler — is so passé it’s perhaps now bordering on ironic once again.
That brings us to the Los Angeles Lakers, who, for some unknown reason, decided to give everyone at Staples Center on Sunday night a fedora.
Or, at least what the Lakers believed to be a fedora. The hat they handed out, akin to common misidentification at the turn of the decade, was actually a trilby.
What on earth possessed the Lakers to hand fans what was surely one of the worst giveaways of 2018, I have no idea.
Perhaps they’ve had these hats stored away for a decade and someone found them during a recent search of the bowels of the stadium? Maybe they were a delayed White Elephant gift? Whatever the case, there’s no accounting for just how hilarious a gift this was by the Lakers to their fans.
Of course, if you’re a Lakers fan and you want to know how you look while wearing your free
fedora trilby after Sunday’s game against the Kings, I only have one way to respond to you:
I’d rather not say.