“You Need to Use Your Head for Something Besides a Hat Rack” – The Book of Rabyd 3:1
Chapter three of the Book of Rabyd represents some of the sayings and ‘-isms’ that have dominated the Raby Family for years. They are not necessarily principles or wisdom but just stuff that is around our family that we just say as part of our particular family collective. This one is from my father and I have no idea how many times he said it to me. “You Need to Use Your Head for Something Besides a Hat Rack” was on his lips every single time I did something stupid. It was a polite way of him telling me I should use my head to think rather than just have it occupy space and hold up my hat.
My father was not an educated man. He was dyslexic or at least we think so. He was a blue-collar man who had a gift for manufacturing. He learned machinery and grinding early in his factory work days and knew math very well. He just could never read very well. These days, he might have been diagnosed early and he might have learned to read much better. He was, however, a math genius in his own way and he believed highly in learning and common sense.
I don’t actually use this expression of his much myself. I, however, hear it all the time in my head. I always hear it when I am about to do something stupid or have not thought things through before I am about to act on them. Most people don’t wear hats these days so I wonder if somebody would get it, but I certainly do.
This expression being 3:1 in the Book of Rabyd is more about my love for my Father than anything else. I want the expression preserved for my kids and grandkids and all the rest. I think it is a very polite and creative way to tell someone to start thinking and using your head. I know he was proud of me when I graduated college but he did not live to see me get my master’s, but I could not have made either without this expression rolling around in my head. Thanks, Dad, I still miss you.
The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.