The Review Vault

Penguin Hats Bring Joy to All

- 2012.01.04

Rating: 5 out of 5 rating

On the 68kMLA (68K Macintosh Liberation Army), a very popular thread was born that took on a life of its own. It focused on Hats and Feets, which you can read about in The Hats and Feets Uprising. I can't help but recollect this thread during the course of reviewing a hat that is beyond anything I could have possibly imagined, a hat that has truly given meaning to the word unique while perched atop the hat is a penguin which stands at attention.

<cue March of the Penguins>

Gavin Shapiro is the man behind - or rather under - the Penguin Hat. Per his website, penguinhats.com, these lines say it all: "It is without a doubt the most attention-grabbing hat you will ever wear - on or off the ski slopes (for extra attention, try Penguin Hats during the summer months)." And: "Penguin Hats are particularly great for people who love penguins . . . you don't not love penguins, do you? Of course not! Penguins are universally cherished by everyone around the world and are nowadays commonly prescribed to people in place of antidepressants."

Penguin Hats

My first look at the Penguin Hat came via my good friend, Michael Neely, who had just purchased one and posted a picture to Facebook showcasing it. I was intrigued instantly! In due time, my Penguin Hat arrived. Upon opening the box, my eyes were greeted by arctic blue tissue paper, which gave the feeling of being in Antarctica. Then came the moment I had been waiting for - the penguin with those dapper eyes looking back at me. The feeling was indescribable. I felt like I had arrived! This would clearly be the dawn of a cultural phenomenon!

After removing the Penguin Hat from the box, I noticed how it was made. The craftsmanship is of the highest quality. There is also a plastic lock to secure it under your chin while walking. On the Penguin Hats site, it states, "Penguin Hats are the finest winter hats available, designed specifically to simulate the experience of having a penguin sitting on your head." That is an assumption I consider accurate. The penguin is not heavy on your head, and it is soft to the touch. The Penguin Hat keeps your head very warm, as well as your ears.

I should also mention the equally awesome Penguin Hats stickers. These stickers are great for handing out to interested family, friends, and enemies alike - maybe even a penguin or two.

I had tried the Penguin Hat on, but now came the real test, reactions from the public. Thus, I began my reaction-finding mission by wearing the Penguin Hat while out and about. The reactions were beyond my wildest expectations. Almost everyone loved it, save for a few. Kids as well as young, middle-aged, and older adults thought it was really cool (pardon the pun). The Penguin Hat also made a few excursions to work, where reactions were mostly positive.

To see the smiles on people's faces during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season was truly a sight to behold. The joy it brought people really made me smile. That is a joy you just can't put into words. To quote Garfield the cat from A Garfield Christmas Special, "Please permit me one sentimental moment here will ya . . . I have something to say. Christmas . . . it's not the giving, it's not the getting, it's the loving. There, I said it, now get outta here."

The Penguin Hat will be a permanent fixture in my household and will make regular excursions among the public. I give it five out of five Macs. You can order your own Penguin Hat through penguinhats.com for $24.99. A five pack of stickers can be ordered for $1.99.

A big thanks to Gavin for bringing joy to each individual, one penguin at a time! LEM

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