At a certain time in life, one realizes that there are certain things that they can never be. You cannot be an astronaut. You cannot be a firetruck. You cannot play professional baseball.
However, there are some people that can fill these positions. Everything is relative, and they have their respective impasses to other desirable tracts. But it does not quell the desire to still be such things. I will, and never shall be, able to become a hipster. I realize this: the barriers to entry is too great compared to the efforts that I wish to exert. That, and I prefer to shave.
The old adage goes as so: “Those who cannot do, teach.” Of course, I have never been down in the trenches, or should I say, the moshing pits. I can only comment on what I see, in brief glimpses, from what I read online, and other slighted empirical methods. I try my best to read Philebrity, to keep “hip to the streets”, but it’s like reading a foreign publication – this is certainly the same alphabet I use, but the names, venues and issues are outside the realm of my understanding.
Most of my clothing was purchased five years ago, or poached from the closet of septuagenarian. My physique most closely resembles packed hamburger. Bartender, can I get a Dogfish Head? As I write this, I’m listening to Randy Newman. This is just a short list of my problem areas.
So, as I do research for this post, and I look at the pictures of the checkered-plaid, bicycle-riding, appropriately-scruffy, scrawny forerunners of cool, I have come to a realization that I am not uncool, I’m just ahead of my time.
In todays subculture, music is the great arbiter. Maybe it’s because music has always been the medium of the people. The music scene is certainly the most important nexus of hipster culture. And boy, is there a lot of it. There are people who can casually throw out a list of the super-obscure, the kind of encyclopedic knowledge and criticism attributed to librarians and curators. I do not have the patience for keeping track of the exponentially growing list, much less the live performances of packed, sweaty throngs. But these performers, as they wield the power of creating the music that controls the culture, they are like demigods, those to aspire to.
Sometimes the music is easy to control and manipulate. Then, spectacle becomes the next important trait. You gotta fit the look. From this, the lesser spectators can only mirror, and you mirror back any trends. It’s a continual creative process.
I signed up for last.fm, in efforts to expand my bland musical tastes to something more exotic. But, as I retreat to safer artists, I view their information on last.fm’s external application, which has revealed to me some interesting images.
Let’s take a look at some of the lamer adult rock idols. Some might easily slip into the latest hipster occasion, sipping Pabst and waxing on the adoption of public bicycle programs based on European success.
If we were to pull away it may reveal a fixed-gear bike, a 40 oz. cleverly concealed in a paper bag, and probably Art Garfunkel.
“Torchy Rock” ironically is the name for Urban Outfitters’ Spring ‘08 catalogue.
Throw on some tattoos and you got Yusef a hipster!
C’mon, JT, you can’t convince me that your mustache is anything but ironic!
He considers Miller “High Life” as one of the “Finer Things.” It’s ironic, get it?
She ironically complains about the big yellow taxi that cut her off on the way to Johnny Brenda’s.
These days he seems to think a lot, during his lunch break at Trader Joe’s.