Crossing Guard's Funny Hats Land Him in Hot Water

Filed under: In The News

Cat in the hat hatCrossing guard Larry Douthwaite has been keeping kids in Littlestown, PA, safe for 15 years. And for most of that time, he's been wearing one of his collection of crazy hats to work each day. The hats -- a flowerpot, an ear of corn and the like -- were a huge hit with the kids, who call him "Hat Man."

"It was for kids first," Douthwaite said. "And then I noticed it was a great thing to help me be safe because people would see me more readily." How can you miss, let alone not love, a grown man who wears a model airplane on his noggin?

Unfortunately, his hats were not such a big hit with one misanthropic member of the local town council, who said Douthwaite's hats were unprofessional and a driving distraction, and ordered a cease and desist. Douthwaite complied, although he admitted to feeling "disappointed. But I have to listen to what I was told," he said.

Enter the cavalry -- his fellow Littletowners. This week 20 of them showed up for a council meeting, many wearing funny hats of their own. "I think they are tired of having fun things sucked out of their life," Douthwaite said. (Show of hands?)

Dad Donald Bateman, who came to the borough council meeting wearing a tall Uncle Sam hat, said "sometimes when my daughter feels bad she'll go to school just to see what [Douthwaite's] wearing." Who can argue with that? I would wear a funny hat, too, if it would get my kids out of the house more easily in the morning.

Happy ending: The borough council voted unanimously to allow Douthwaite to wear his hats. He returned to work on Wednesday in his pharaoh hat. Of course.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.