A Man of Many Hats


Phil P. Telfeyan ’05 is just your average suspender-wearing, multi-lingual, habitually-embellishing Harvard first-year who wears a different hat everyday and hails from Mira Loma High School in Southern California. Despite a courseload that includes Math 55, Telfeyan frequently complains about “this school being easy.” [SEE CORRECTION BELOW]

Sighted at a showing of “This is What Democracy Looks Like”—a documentary on the Seattle WTO protests—Telfeyan is no newcomer to the activist scene. His brother was present at the Seattle protests and Telfeyan regrets that he could not be there. Telfeyan, however, claims to have staged his own protest senior year at Mira Loma. His high school tried to stop Pajama Day, a popular school spirit activity. Telfeyan reacted by going on a hunger strike and chaining himself up to an oak tree for three days. He reports that he was not completely tied up, and could have left at any time, but the move was symbolic. Happily, Telfeyan’s efforts paid off: the administration reinstated Pajama Day.

Telfeyan’s humble abode in Lionel B-22 is decorated with cellophane flowers. Telfeyan reports he was inspired by the Beatles classic “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” where John Lennon croons about yellow and green cellophane flowers. Telfeyan says it lends a peaceful feel to his room, and that it is purely for personal comfort rather than to exhibit as art.

Most noticeably, Telfeyan has a penchant for hats. Asked about this unique interest, Telfeyan’s roommate B. Reed Winegar ’05 comments “there are a lot of them.” Telfeyan’s original attraction to hats is rooted in nostalgia. He explains that he has fond memories of wearing baseball caps in Little League, he has worn hats since high school, and has continued at Harvard. His taste for hats evolved into more sophisticated territory as he grew up. He is very specific and has a quota of one hat per style (one beret, one fedora, etc.). He sleeps under an expensive, plush blue wool cap. Different hats occupy his entire immaculately organized bookshelf. Telfeyan, whose favorite hat is a green beret, explains that all of his hats are from back home and that he probably single-handedly supported his local hat store, an opinion shared by FM. He reports being disappointed with the hat selection in Boston. First, he went to Lids and discovered it was just for baseball caps. His trip to Toppers at 230 Newbury St. was just as unfruitful. But there is still hope: the store manager anticipates a new shipment of hats for the winter. He would be lucky to earn as loyal a customer as Harvard’s own Phil Telfeyan.

CORRECTION: The Oct. 25 magazine article "A Man of Many Hats" provided the incorrect location for Mira Loma High School. It is located in Northern California, not Southern California, as the article stated.