Finding the right baseball caps for a cross-continent drive

One of the critical questions I face this week as I prepare to drive cross-country is what baseball caps to bring on the trip and when to wear each of them.

I could, for example, stick with my San Francisco Giants caps all the way. I could wear the standard cap Thursday, a vintage one Friday, the 2010 World Champions cap on Saturday and the appropriate orange-brimmed model on Sunday.

Maybe I should wear caps from eastern times while traveling in the west, and vice versa? That makes each cap all the more exotic.

Or maybe I should wear the cap of the team most appropriate for the region I’m traveling in: Giants out west, Cubs when I reach the “Triple I League” states, Indians when I reach Ohio and Yankees when I hit the East Coast.

I’m not sure what I’ll do. On a 2,900 mile drive over four days, I’ll have plenty of time to contemplate.

9 thoughts on “Finding the right baseball caps for a cross-continent drive

  1. This is a legitimate question to ask! I do think there is an etiquette to fandom and it is entirely appropriate to ask critical questions about how best to represent yourself as a baseball fan—and as a fan of particular teams—in different communities. If we’re talking about language or other cultural contexts, smart people would call this “code switching.” I totally think it applies to fandom—how best to represent your team(s) without disrespecting the communities through which you are traveling…!

    I brought three different Orioles caps and t-shirts with me to Boston this past weekend, very conscious of recent baseball history and recent cultural shifts in the AL East… Wearing the Orioles cap to Fenway on Friday night I felt was appropriate, as I was representing my team (though wearing the cap also meant I checked my behavior more critically, especially when the Orioles pulled in front and won!). On the same trip, finding myself in a packed local Irish pub just off the Faneuil Hall area in downtown Boston, while the Orioles went up 8-0 on Saturday afternoon, I thought it was appropriate for me to set the Orioles cap on the bar—in sight, but perhaps not as obnoxiously so…?

    On a cross-country trip, I think you are perfectly justified to support the Giants throughout. Though perhaps there is nothing quite as affirming to a fan’s identity as being able to wear the cap of your team as you travel through its town—so I also like the piece about wearing the caps associated with different regions. As part of the Oriole diaspora (I’m not entirely sure that term is appropriate), I love the tiny nods to the guy at the end of the bar or the guy three rows back at the game or the guy passing silently on the street in a foreign city who is also wearing an Orioles cap.

    Either all of that, or we’re just dorks for thinking about this so much…!

  2. I’m guessing that Orioles juju you brought with you to Boston made the difference. A couple more series like that and Yankees and Red Sox fans will be petitioning the commissioner to break up the O’s.

    And the “Oriole diaspora.” Hadn’t heard that one before. Seems like a great topic for a dissertation.

  3. I laughed out loud when I read this. My husband and I were taking a life-changing trip to Istanbul to see my son in the Peace Corps, and all he stemmed out about was which baseball hats he should take. Classic.

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