My homies and I all wanted to be savages. We dressed the part. Braving Seattle’s trademark grayness in baggy fleece sweatpants, hooded sweatshirts, and sneakers. We wore fitted baseball hats or sweatbands if we wore anything on our heads at all. My first fitted baseball hat was a royal blue NY yankees hat I bought at the now defunct Mr. Rags at Northgate. I was 12 and in the 6th grade. You know how sports hats come in different colorways nowadays? It didnt used to be like that. The NY Yankees hats were the first hats you could get in a wide variety of different colors. Id seen a rapper, Ma$e? Wearing a lime green one on TV. And I wanted one like that. I didnt have the balls to pull off the tennis ball green hat so i settled on a bright royal blue. All my hats before that were the kind you got from your baseball team at the Boys and Girls club, or the kind given away at Mariners games.
Savage was like being gangster, or being brave, or being tough. Being a bad kid. Tipping portapotties. Stealing 40s and candy bars from gas stations on the way home from school and drinking them in Ravenna Park on Friday (on a school day if you really wanted to be savage). Stealing porno and graffiti magazines from the Tower Records on the Ave. Smoking a joint in the bushes by the 20th Street bridge where up until recently you had played hide and seek, and capture the flag, and where the neighborhood easter egg hunt was held every year. Spray-painting your tag name on one of the flat panel trucks on 65th (Extra points if the spray paint was stolen). Savage was the opposite of being a pussy.