Are you a hipster fuck? Of course you are. That guy is, that guy over there,with his artisanal hair, organic beard and full sleeve tattoos. Reading a fixie blog too. He’s definitely a hipster.
Nothing to be ashamed of. I’d happily be a hipster. I’ve just eaten a paleo pizza for breakfast and prognosticated on the coffee ad nauseum*. I shop at farmers markets, eat from food trucks…man I even had some of those skinny leg jeans back when everyone was wearing them. (Yeah, I still have them. They’re jeans, they’ll last a decade, so I’m stuck in a fashion time warp now because I’m too cheap to throw stuff out. Last time I make any attempt to be fashionable I can assure you.) I even write a fixie blog. Okay, it’s not a fixie blog. It’s just a bit confused and needs a lie down but it’ll be better in the morning.
* Just kidding about the coffee. Just drink that stuff already and stop boring me with your useless coffee connoisseurial one-upmanship. And yeah, I know you put footnotes at the bottom of the page and if I thought anyone ever read that far I’d do just that.
|(Why so earnest?)|
Yeah I’d happily be a hipster. If I could grow some of that cool hair and hang out in the right places drinking the right drinks with cool and interesting people I’d totally do it. My problem is I’ve been through that self-important phase of my life and it’s hard now to pretend to care what other people say. Sure single-source whatever whatever and organic bullshit and stuff. Sure, the military-industrial machine is corrupt and Monsanto is poisoning our soil and we should get back to core values. Yes, I agree. So what? I’m still not a hipster.
And I can’t grow the hair.
It’s mostly the about the hair.
So here I am with my face pressed up against the glass looking in at the hipsters. There’s a circle of fog on the glass where I’ve leaned in a little too close. And what I see is a bunch of people denying that they’re hipsters. Hipster, me? Yes you, you hipster fuck.
Ask a hipster if they’re a hipster and you’ll get an answer wrapped up in denial. “What is a hipster? It’s just a term. Hipsters don’t exist.” Yes, same way goths, emos, rude boys and Tony Abbott don’t exist. (He’s not real, surely. We’ll wake up from this one day soon and some other wanker will be PM.) They’re kind of right, hipsters don’t exist. In the public mind the hipsters are a moveable feast, it’s a pejorative-laden term dropped onto anyone too cool, too young and too fucking hip to be bearable. Somehow naming them helps. Being young and cool is more forgivable if we can write you off as a bunch of hipster fucks.
Us non-hipsters on the outside are having a hard time dismissing you though. Emos were annoying fucks, with their hair brushed over their eyes and that permanently hurt expression. Didn’t you want to just punch them on the nose, given them something to feel sorry about? Well we didn’t need to because we could call them emos and then at least we had them contained in a box while we waited for them to go away. But hipsters keep changing. You’re whatever is hip. You’re new and fashionable and cool and…well you’re everything we hate because we can’t be you.
But what the hell are you?
Let us look at this presentation I prepared earlier. Slide one:
And slide two:
How can they both be hipsters? What do they both have in common? Okay, granted, one is a lumbersexual. But if lumbersexual isn’t just the latest variant of hipster then I’ve been sharpening my artisanal axe for nothing.
Fixies and hipsters are still inextricable linked. Which is great for me. I’ve been called a hipster, someone trying to run me down for cycling fixed. I positively glowed with pride. What? Me a hipster? Get away with you. You really think so? Hipster? But the truth is, if ride down the street with an axe over your shoulder and you’ll get arrested. (Or that’s what happened to me anyway.) But as fixies give way to cyclocross and cyclocross gives way to the next trend (it has to be unicycles surely) fixies will remain as the image of cycling people use for hipsters. Because that’s the image they first formed of a hipster and they don’t realize that, like hip people do, hipsters move and change. Hipsters aren’t a thing. They’re just hip.
I got this guy when I googled “hipster fixie”:
If he wasn’t sitting on a fixie in front of street art he’d just be some dude in shorts and shirt. Put him on a fixie and he’s fixie bike hipster guy in the Google machine. Love that.
On the other hand, give someone the right haircut and they’re totally a hipster. I’m proud as punch that my local footy team has acquired the league’s only true hipster:
The term hipster has come back from the dead. The beat guys attracted a generation who donned pretentious hats and smoked cannabis while pretending to like jazz. These guys were dismissed and lampooned as beatniks (and the beats hated them, same way old time New York messengers get in a tizzy whenever someone else rides fixed) and then later as hipsters.
Jack Kerouac coined the term beat. It meant beat down, like a tramp, but also angelic, like beatified. I mention this because I know more about Jack Kerouac then I do about hipsters. If you really want to know about hipsters ask Samuel Johnson. The point is, people have grafted the word hipster back onto the young and hip for lack of a better word. And I say, it’s yours. Embrace it.
Don’t disclaim the hipster nomenclature. Consider yourself lucky to be dissed as a hipster. Eat local, eat from vans, eat paleo for all I care, ride fixies or don’t, bore people about coffee, have a hive of bees on your roof. Whatever. Just be the hipster you want to be. And get yourself an amazing haircut. It’s the one thing you won’t be able to do when you’re older.