I’ve been accused of being many things, namely an emo (never true), a hipster (marginally true), and an asshole (very true). But only the hipster label bugs me the most. You buy one v-neck shirt and suddenly people expect you to grow an ironic mustache for their amusement.
Now, I have been flirting with the hipster culture for a few years now. It started with listening to The Queen is Dead shortly before everyone suddenly found The Smiths to be relevant again, and it culminated with buying a v-neck tee and a vest within the same month last summer. But I’ve come to realize, like everything in popular culture, that hipsterdom is merely a trend. I think it was my friend John who said that the hipster lifestyle is a cultural dead end. How long can one dress like a homeless schizophrenic and get away with it? What constitutes “good” music? If everything about your personality is willfully ironic, then who are you really? Such questions may never be answered, as most hipsters are too busy drinking and snorting away their trust funds for researchers to collect any clear data.
The one thing that the hipster trend has in common will every trend ever is that the entire culture is centered around the music. The way you dress, act, think, and talk all depends on what kind of music you’re listening to. Music cliques have been around for years (SLC Punk does an excellent job of shedding light on the subject) and they will never go away. And that is a really shitty way to live your life. But what’s so fascinating about hipsterdom is that while most trends have a lifespan that exists between Sophomore year in high school and Junior year of college, there are dedicated hipsters who are well into their late 20’s/early 30’s… and they have little hipster babies.
Predictably on my part, there are two things that I admire about hipster life: indie music and Brooklyn. I’ve experienced both and I love them. Also, I do like Pabst Blue Ribbon, but only because it’s all I could really afford at school and it gets you drunk quickly. But even though I indulge in fringe hipsterdom, I’d never really fit in if I were to just be myself, mainly because I don’t spend $200 on clothes that look like they’re worth $20 (I’m looking at you, American Apparel), and that I actually enjoy the work of N.W.A. without the slightest hint of irony… though I suppose I should since I’m very white.
Actually now that I think of it, it really just boils down to not being able to pull off the v-neck/vest look. I should just stick to the dinosaur hoodie.