That fucking hat, Garcia was known to say in response to questions about the famous Herb Greene photos wearing the only hat silly enough to distract from the sweater/necklace combo. It was barely even his, Garcia would say–in an affable sort of way, of course–and he gave it away right afterwards. He wore it maybe three times in his life, as a goof. certainly never onstage.
But humans like turning images into icons. It’s fun for everyone but the subject, it seems, and combined with the paucity of pictures back them: this is the image that took with the general public. Captain fucking Trips.
For Enthusiasts, it’s a nice image for its nudity: no half-tinted sunglass or giant beard. Just a young man with old eyes.
The rest, though, see it as a sweet reminder of a weirdly hopeful time. There was an entire season dedicated to love! The had been Winters of Discontent and Autumns of Lumbago, but now people had flowers in their hair and none of the teen foxes were wearing brassieres and the music was real loud, but no matter how loud it got, it needed to be turned up: it was freedom rock, man.
We’re in the future now. When you see the Deadhead sticker on a Cadillac, you can’t look back. You can never look back.
Unless of course you have a hundred grand. (And not, like, a hundred grand masquerading as your home and car and savings: it needs to be a hundred grand you just have lying around.) Then, not only can you look back, but you can reach your grubby moneyed paws back and snatch up Garcia’s hat. You don’t even have to go to Christie’s in London to buy it nowadays: call in, or bid online, or send one of your hired goons. (TotD assumes that anyone with a hundred grand lying around has access to hired goons.)
Perhaps it will go to a good home. It should be in the Smithsonian, but it will most likely end up in Jim Irsay’s office and get destroyed when the Waffle House waitress he let wear it during fumbling pill sex ODs and crushes it.