Hats - and, MY! How times change
J. Hugh Sullivan (sull@MINDSPRING.COM)
Tue, 29 Oct 1996 13:18:54 -0600
Let me preface my remarks by saying there are always exceptions - even to
the generalities I record here.
Speaking only of the South and the forties:
1. If we were not in uniform, we uncovered and placed the hat over our heart
for flag raising, playing of the National Anthem at sporting events, etc. If
uncovered, we placed the right hand over our heart.
2. If covered, we uncovered when we went indoors.
3. When covered, male adults tipped their hat upon meeting ladies. (The
female is always given the benefit of any doubt)
4. The Navy (WW2) uncovered when indoors and did not salute when uncovered
or in civilian clothes. I responded to salutes by saying "Thank you for a
fine salute; the Navy does not salute uncovered or in civvies". Many
military installations had signs at "oases" stating "He who enters covered
here buys the house a round of cheer".
You may view it differently but we were taught that the first three were
matters of good breeding and respect. There were severe penalties in most
families for violations. In my family it was a visit to the switch tree -
which, after I was gone, grew peaches I hear.
Now - speaking of wherever I am in the nineties:
I STILL DO!
There are two major differences: (1) the funny looks I get when entering
military installations (2) the sense of loss I feel when I am one of only a
few in a crowd of 50,000 who knows to place my hand over my heart for the
presentation of the flag at football games. The feeling improves when others
note and echo the action.
Hugh (back from a month at our house in AL)
Eagle, Class of '43
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City