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Time Magazine Explains The Newest Cool Trend Sweeping the Nation!
July 30, 2009 10:30 AM   Subscribe

Hipsters (A Brief History)
posted by empath (291 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Mailer painted hipsters as American existentialists, living a life surrounded by ...

... free Wi-Fi?
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 10:32 AM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


Really, Time Magazine? Really?
posted by jabberjaw at 10:33 AM on July 30, 2009 [7 favorites]


This will not wendell.
posted by educatedslacker at 10:33 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Sometimes Time's method of inserting links to other stories creates some interesting possibilities:

Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat. (See pictures of Steve Jobs on the job.)
posted by Dr-Baa at 10:34 AM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


Despite constant derision in every medium, hipsters are finally made uncool by Time.
posted by item at 10:35 AM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat. (See pictures of Steve Jobs on the job.)
posted by Bernt Pancreas at 10:35 AM on July 30, 2009


damn.
posted by Bernt Pancreas at 10:35 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Why does this feel like the episode of CHiPs with the punks?
posted by item at 10:36 AM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


I was bummed out that "a brief history" wasn't a hint that the story would be about underpants. Do hipsters wear hipsters?
posted by vespabelle at 10:36 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Hipsters don't sneer at Coldplay? Really?
posted by yoink at 10:36 AM on July 30, 2009


Some of this ridicule is a bit unfair. As stores like Urban Outfitters have mass-produced hipster chic, hipsterdom has become a part of mainstream culture, overshadowing its originators' still-strong alternative art and music scene. Those people, of course, no longer identify as hipsters, but they're not the problem. The hipsters who will be the dead end of Western Civilization are the ones who add nothing new or original and simply recycle and reduce old trends into a meaningless meme. It's for that reason that when Williamsburg's hipster playland is in crisis, there aren't many who are concerned.

Are there five pages missing I didn't see?
posted by Optimus Chyme at 10:36 AM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


(See pictures of Anthony Hopkins on the hopkin).
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 10:38 AM on July 30, 2009 [14 favorites]


Jesus fuck someone get the humane killer and put old media out of its fucking misery already. These death throes are disturbing and painful to watch.
posted by dersins at 10:38 AM on July 30, 2009 [7 favorites]


This is going to wend as ell as "Steampunk: A History That Includes Nothing Pre-2005, Let Alone From The Actual Victorian Era"
posted by DU at 10:38 AM on July 30, 2009


Photo caption:

New York hipsters participate in a water-balloon toss at Tom Stofka Garden in McCarren Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

I don't understand how they determined that these people were hipsters.

Was it just that they were in Williamsburg, white, and within the proper age range?
posted by jeremy b at 10:38 AM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


Thank God. Let's clear out the hipsters to make room for some other youth movent. Maybe something based on being arch and twee, like we all live in a Wes Anderson movie and listen to Belle and Sebastian and have oh so very precious romances like the one in 500 Days Summer because we all read Franny and Zooey when we were 18 and just desperately wish we were a nation like of people like the Glass Family, of very bright, very eccentric, very special people pushing toward adulthood in our own quirky and heartbreaking way.

Because that's not going to get tired and embarrassing anytime soon.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:39 AM on July 30, 2009 [49 favorites]


I thought this was going to be a post about underpants *disappointed*.
posted by tellurian at 10:39 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Where's the seven-foot rattlesnake when you need it?
posted by jbickers at 10:39 AM on July 30, 2009


"...the irony-sporting, status quo–abhorring, plaid-clad denizens of Williamsburg are a distinctly modern species."
posted by ericb at 10:39 AM on July 30, 2009


I remember in the 90s when Time did a cover story entitled "Everyone's Hip...And That's not Cool." It was exactly like this article. In fact, it might have been this article. My point is Time runs the same goddamn stories over and over and over. I don't like hipsters, but Jesus Christ, I loathe Time.
posted by dortmunder at 10:40 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat.

Look out for that big snake.
posted by CynicalKnight at 10:40 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsters are hated so because they condescend. They strike a too cool cynical pose and look down upon any who would stoop to enthuse about anything. And their fashion sense is dumb.
posted by philip-random at 10:40 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


damn. redux.
posted by CynicalKnight at 10:40 AM on July 30, 2009


Hi, vespabelle.
posted by tellurian at 10:41 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Are you going to let our emotional life be run by Time Magazine?
posted by box at 10:41 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Look at this fucking hipster basher.
posted by billysumday at 10:42 AM on July 30, 2009 [26 favorites]


empath i'm going to pee in your whiskey the next time i see you this is seriously the dumbest thing ever written. godamit.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:45 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm totally scoffing at this post.
posted by jon_hansen at 10:46 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I can't wait for Time's scathing exposé where they show that although so-called 'Emo kids' revel in depressive angst, they really want love, happiness and acceptance—just like you and me!
posted by defenestration at 10:47 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I was telling my friend earlier (after he complained about the proliferation of people saying they're into "indie games") that hipsters don't exist, and we shouldn't worry about what is supposedly popular with some group nor attempt to disparage this strawman just so we can feel we are more authentic and self-directed. And now I have proof these hipsters are nothing but a figment of our collective imagination...
posted by palidor at 10:48 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


TIME's here everyone, movement's over. See you at the Steampunk convention.
posted by GuyZero at 10:48 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Those people, of course, no longer identify as hipsters

Huh? I've never met anyone who identified as a hipster.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 10:50 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


The title 'TIME' always used to seem to mean that they were in some way timely.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:50 AM on July 30, 2009


TIME's here everyone, movement's over. See you at the Steampunk convention

Too late, GuyZero. Too late.
posted by item at 10:51 AM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Thomas Crapper on the crapper).
posted by backseatpilot at 10:52 AM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


I can't wait for Time's scathing exposé where they show that although so-called 'Emo kids' revel in depressive angst, they really want love, happiness and acceptance—just like you and me!

It's coming, have no doubt. In 2017.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 10:52 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Hipsters are the friends who sneer when you cop to liking Coldplay.

No, no, they're the friends who really, seriously, love the new Coldplay, not joking.
posted by naju at 10:53 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Here we go again...
posted by hillabeans at 10:54 AM on July 30, 2009


I don't understand how they determined that these people were hipsters.

Blood test for irony levels. Simple, really.
posted by bonehead at 10:55 AM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


I think we can all agree that hipsters suck.

Now let's have another thread about the "real" way to shave.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 10:55 AM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


i wrote this elsewhere today:

"Oh a non-article about a non-movement’s invisible protagonists using similarly made-up blog posts as evidence…it’s like rand mcnally putting atlantis on a map based on Donovan’s coordinates."

i'm going around telling everyone i'm a hipster these days...partially because its one of those things that the more you hate it the more likely you are one (and partially because im so old it will officially kill off the notion for good). real hipsters like me don't give a shit about you and your kakhis, wear whatever you want we can still be friends. the haters are the exclusive ones. have a plastic flower.

(PS I have photographic evidence that empath has joined the darkside, dont make me post it!)
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:56 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


No, they're the friends that pretend to only really like the DJ PBR remix of the new Coldplay song that they downloaded from Hype Machine, but they really just like original but are too embarassed to admit it.

*disclaimer: I don't know if there is a DJ PBR, but if there isn't there should be*
posted by empath at 10:56 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


aren't these just young people having fun, and wearing slightly dumb clothes, which if I remember it correctly is the perogative of youth?
posted by johnny novak at 10:57 AM on July 30, 2009 [14 favorites]


is this something i'd have to have a dead horse to understand?
posted by pyramid termite at 10:58 AM on July 30, 2009 [37 favorites]


I've never met anyone who identified as a hipster.

I identify as a hipster. But a Norman Mailer-type hipster. I even own -- and play -- bongos. Our time in the sun has long passed.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:58 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


What I've learned from Metafilter: hipsters are destroying America, juggalos are virtuous and true. If only hipsters could be more down with the clown.
posted by billysumday at 10:58 AM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


Oh and LSD is making a comeback!
posted by zoinks at 10:58 AM on July 30, 2009


Huh? I've never met anyone who identified as a hipster.

Exactly. Denying hipsterdom is a prequisite for being a hipster. Hipster is the pejorative term hipsters use for anybody who is basically acting just like us them.
posted by justkevin at 11:00 AM on July 30, 2009 [6 favorites]


Oh and LSD is making a comeback!

It never went away if you were hip enough.
posted by item at 11:00 AM on July 30, 2009


I hear more whining about hipsters than I ever hear about hipsters. That said, skinny jeans are the worst.
posted by DU at 11:01 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't understand how they determined that these people were hipsters.

That's got me baffled too. Unless there was a banner or something just out of the frame.

Perhaps it's because they all gathered in a public park to throw water balloons at each other. But that's not hip. That's...fun?

Help me out here. I'm at a loss
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:01 AM on July 30, 2009


Oh and LSD is making a comeback!

drink a case of pbr and you'll have a real comeback!
posted by pyramid termite at 11:01 AM on July 30, 2009


Bob Dylan (Time Magazine Interview)
posted by nola at 11:02 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


That said, skinny jeans are the worst.

Some of us are skinny and choose to wear leg-appropriate jeans, dammit.
posted by item at 11:02 AM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


Let's clear out the hipsters to make room for some other youth movement. Maybe something based on being arch and twee, like we all live in a Wes Anderson movie...

Sounds like fun! I'm in!

*Taps fingers. Realizes he has have no idea how to act arch and twee...*
posted by diogenes at 11:03 AM on July 30, 2009


hipsters have been able to eke out enclaves across the country

Why does this make me think of like, some post-apocalyptic Fallout 3 hipster wasteland scenario?
posted by naju at 11:03 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


The water balloon people in the pic?

I take it, from the laundry list of examples of hipsterdom in the article, that they're there because the park water balloon fight is the cool place to be, and not because they actually enjoy water balloon fights.

As usual, this kind of labelling depends on some serious mind-reading talent.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:03 AM on July 30, 2009


At least now all these Midwestern moms will know why their daughters are coming home on vacation dressed just exactly like them.
posted by The Straightener at 11:05 AM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


Hipsters were usually middle-class white youths seeking to emulate the lifestyle of the largely-black jazz musicians they followed.

Otherwise known as the "One Note Rule".
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:05 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Why does this make me think of like, some post-apocalyptic Fallout 3 hipster wasteland scenario?

I would love to see a version of The Road with hipsters. Would the hipsters be the protagonists or the cannibals?
posted by diogenes at 11:05 AM on July 30, 2009


One of the original hipsters was Harry the Hipster Gibson who claimed to have coined the word.
posted by mareli at 11:06 AM on July 30, 2009


Why can't these young people just stop wearing funny clothes and listening to funny music? Can't they see how many old people they are bothering?
posted by orme at 11:07 AM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


I identify as a hipster. But a Norman Mailer-type hipster. I even own -- and play -- bongos. Our time in the sun has long passed.

These are the ones Fred and Barney used to dress up as, right?
posted by GuyZero at 11:07 AM on July 30, 2009


That said, skinny jeans are the worst.

Not on skinny people.
posted by fourcheesemac at 11:07 AM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


Here comes The New Sincerity again.
posted by fourcheesemac at 11:08 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


I would love to see a version of The Road with hipsters. Would the hipsters be the protagonists or the cannibals?

The people in the cellar: "Oh, a dank pit, this is original... "

That said, if water balloon tosses are wrong, I don't want to be right.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:08 AM on July 30, 2009


I recently got into a sort of mini-kerfuffle (as in, no feelings were hurt, nobody was especially offended, but some strident tones were heard) when, at a bar in williamsburg I said "awww. hipsters dancing." in a sort of snide, overly precious tone. what I was referring to were 20-somethings with some combination of beards, leg warmers, trucker caps, stretch denim jeans, fake thrift store t shirts with meaningless slogans, PBR cans in hand, etc... doing overly florid dancing maneuvers to michael jackson songs (this was on the night the news of his death broke.) we were both drunk, and I was being kind of a dick in that the hipsters were doing some kind of ironic "i'm dancing like an idiot on purpose" routine that was affected and lame, but was also kind of in admiration for their balls to go do stupid dances for fun without shame. said friend (who lives in williamsburg, dresses entirely in denim, is part of a rock band and who loves PBR) replied "dude, that's not cool. some of my friends are hipsters, and I don't appreciate you hating on them like that." what we eventually got into a disagreement about was me saying "look, i'm not hating. but let's be honest, the word 'hipster' wouldn't be an insult if hipsters weren't so obsessed with pretending they're not part of a fashion movement. if hipsters would just acknowledge that they follow fashion and music trends and stop trying to act like their every action is in defiance of modern culture, no one could use the term derisively." to which his reply is "yeah, but if people don't like being called something, don't you think you should respect that?"

which is ultimately a disagreement that can't be resolved. the utility of being able to point to someone who fits a fashion trend and identify that style with a single word (like being able to say a guy with a pink mohawk and spiked collar is a punk) ultimately doesn't trump, in a hipster's mind, their desire not to be labeled. this is both the source of people's frustration with hipsters, and hipster's frustration with the term. that both problems could be solved if hipsters would simply admit that, yes, they are part of a homogeneous culture seemingly isn't even an option. apparently, being perceived as above fashion trends is as much a part of hipster culture as denim and PBR, and there's no fixing that.
posted by shmegegge at 11:09 AM on July 30, 2009 [30 favorites]


I look forward to reading this at my next dental appointment.
posted by xod at 11:10 AM on July 30, 2009 [11 favorites]


Everything is stupid if you think about it long enough.
posted by nola at 11:10 AM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


hipsters who don't like being called hipsters should insist on being called hepsters. would that make all these articles go away?
posted by billysumday at 11:11 AM on July 30, 2009


One of the original hipsters was Harry the Hipster Gibson who claimed to have coined the word.

Did anyone else read that as Harry the Hipster Gibbon?

Because I would very much like to see that.
posted by TheGoldenOne at 11:12 AM on July 30, 2009 [11 favorites]


I don't understand how they determined that these people were hipsters. Was it just that they were in Williamsburg, white, and within the proper age range?

You either haven't been to Williamsburg, or you live there.
posted by nicwolff at 11:13 AM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


I look forward to reading this at my next dental appointment.

If it's a root canal, I recommend reading the recent Sarah Palin hagiography instead. It'll make the pain of dying infected nerves being ripped from their sockets seem relatively mild.
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 11:14 AM on July 30, 2009


Take your grandmother's sweater and Bob Dylan's Wayfarers, add jean shorts, Converse All-Stars and a can of Pabst and bam — hipster.

Jean shorts? I don't think any self-respecting hipster would wear jean shorts.
posted by ekroh at 11:15 AM on July 30, 2009


I used to hate hipsters. Now, with all the hipster hate around, I'm starting to empathize and kind of like them.

I just have to keep reminding myself that they like PBR. Then the hatred flares again and I can go on my way.
posted by gurple at 11:16 AM on July 30, 2009


I don't think any self-respecting hipster would wear jean shorts.

That's because hipsters aren't self-respecting.
posted by billysumday at 11:16 AM on July 30, 2009


I look forward to reading this at my next dental appointment.

You must not be a hipster because everyone knows hipsters don't go to the dentist.
posted by ekroh at 11:19 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsters can't go away! I'm currently 23 bucks up on the ongoing game Hipster or Serial Killer? I play with my wife.

It's easy to play! First, pick your subject. Second, each player puts down a dollar and names the subject as either 'hipster' or 'serial killer'. Third, you suss out who is right by talking about bands that were once good but now or not OR how the Devil makes you kill women to make the oceans clean. Sure enough, the subject's true nature will reveal itself and the player who chose correctly gets the 2 bucks!

When it comes to pale dudes with big, raggedy beards and clothing from the 70s, I usually pick 'serial killer' which explains why I'm 23 bucks ahead and my wife spends so much time in the hospital.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:19 AM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


I read about these hipsters.

Frequently.
posted by Dumsnill at 11:20 AM on July 30, 2009


It seems as though TIME has provided a foolproof way of ID-ing hipsters:

1) Publish an article about hipsters
2) See who balks
posted by mazola at 11:20 AM on July 30, 2009


What many fail to appreciate about this article is that it was actually written on a cold morning in November of 1948, and then sent forward into 2009 by the basement time machine that is Time Magazine's raison d'etre.

Fine journalism consists of capturing the moment; the pinnacle of journalism consists of casting more than sixty years into the future, and writing about something that someone in the future may have read something about ten years previously, while presenting it as something on the verge of happening tomorrow.

TIME: The most important magazine to the world's most important time-traveling journalists.
posted by darth_tedious at 11:20 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


So, "bowling shirts" - hipster or not? Or am I just confusing the "50's" hipster phrasing with the modern version?

(Damn kids, get off mah lawn...)
posted by jkaczor at 11:22 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsters are the friends who sneer when you cop to liking Coldplay. They're the people who wear T-shirts silk-screened with quotes from movies you've never heard of and the only ones in America who still think Pabst Blue Ribbon is a good beer. They sport cowboy hats and berets and think Kanye West stole their sunglasses. Everything about them is exactingly constructed to give off the vibe that they just don't care.

How can they not care if they are constantly complaining, finding obscure movies to use for their obscure t-shirt quotes, or attempting to mock the world with so much effort? That is their power: making a life of toil look effortless.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:22 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


And if you're going to point out that I can't be up by 23 bucks on a string of two dollar bets, you should know that we also play 'Summon The Pedant' and you just made me 50 cents.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:22 AM on July 30, 2009 [21 favorites]


Hm, something's not right. I read the first few paragraphs of the article and I expect "sprawling New Yorker shit" (Charlie Kaufman, Adaptation) which I love. Instead, it ends abruptly :|
posted by Idle Curiosity at 11:23 AM on July 30, 2009


Jean shorts? I don't think any self-respecting hipster would wear jean shorts.

Jean shorts have actually made a huge resurgence in Brooklyn just over this past summer, and seemingly out of nowhere, considering that they were universally loathed and ridiculed just 5-6 months ago. I guarantee you'll be seeing them all over your little hamlet this time next year.
posted by decoherence at 11:23 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsters are the friends who sneer when you cop to liking Coldplay.

Friends don't let friends listen to Coldplay.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:24 AM on July 30, 2009


Did anyone else read that as Harry the Hipster Gibbon?
Because I would very much like to see that.

When it comes to pale dudes with big, raggedy beards and clothing from the 70s, I usually pick 'serial killer'


You both talkin' about this guy?
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 11:24 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Jean shorts have actually made a huge resurgence in Brooklyn just over this past summer, and seemingly out of nowhere, considering that they were universally loathed and ridiculed just 5-6 months ago. I guarantee you'll be seeing them all over your little hamlet this time next year.

In my little hamlet of Washington, D.C., madras shorts are what people are wearing.
posted by ekroh at 11:26 AM on July 30, 2009


Everything is stupid if you think about it long enough. Trust me, I thought long and hard.

Also, yes, TheGoldenOne, I'm glad someone else did too.
posted by doubleozaphod at 11:27 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat.

Does this mean it's okay to round them up and put them in a zoo? Because I would be ok with that.
posted by FunkyHelix at 11:27 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


fwiw, the some of the most fun i've had at parties over the past couple of years has been going to arguably 'hipster-ish' events like Taxlo in baltimore, and Transit in Philly, and the BYT parties here in DC.

Also, some of the worst parties I've been too have been hipster parties (I'm thinking of one event where two 'djs' who could not have been more than 18 years old trainwrecked horrible music for 2 hours and gave themselves a round of applause every time they moved the crossfader over.)
posted by empath at 11:28 AM on July 30, 2009


At this point, I really can't imagine an "alternative" fad or fashion development that wouldn't immediately be labeled as the latest incarnation of hipsterdorm. It seems the term is less useful now as something denoting a particular group of people, than one that generically picks out "whatever it is that kids are doing these days."
posted by decoherence at 11:30 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


fwiw, the some of the most fun i've had at parties over the past couple of years has been going to arguably 'hipster-ish' events like Taxlo in baltimore, and Transit in Philly, and the BYT parties here in DC.

you know, that's a good point. whatever their faults, going to a hipster bar or a hipster party can be a fuckload of fun.
posted by shmegegge at 11:31 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm writing this here as a matter of public record: the Next Big Thing is going to be Cavepunk. Get your fur bikinis ready.

I admit to liking a lot of the same things hipsters like (currently obsessed with toy cameras) but I'm too old to actually be one or feel comfortable around them. (They're all gonna laugh at you!)
posted by JoanArkham at 11:34 AM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Tom Waits, waiting)
posted by brand-gnu at 11:36 AM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


I don't think any self-respecting hipster would wear jean shorts.

lol Jorts are so hipster they're actually played out again.

Here comes The New Sincerity again.

Now THAT i can get behind.

i love being a hipster, i really do. i mean, i used to complain when i saw someone more beautiful and weird than me too, but now i just give them a mental high five. Nice going you ridiculous freak. please continue to be angry about the fact that i and my friends know more about music and hang out with hotter people than you do. it's funny how nerds are totally fine with grown men dressing up like cartoon characters but freak out if a guy wears a blouse and women's jeans or a girl cuts her hair to look like Gem.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:37 AM on July 30, 2009 [9 favorites]


I love hipsters! Hipster love is the new hipster hate! Big wheels are the new track bikes! Huffing paint thinner is the new PBR! Astoria is the new Williamsburg! Exclamation points are the new ellipses! Linux is the new Mac! Self-mortification is the new idiolatry! Running out of things to say is the
posted by Mister_A at 11:37 AM on July 30, 2009 [12 favorites]


If that photo on the cover of Time indicates hipsters, then I thought the article would be about those getting hip replacements, sort of weak looking and elderly.
posted by Postroad at 11:37 AM on July 30, 2009


I self identify as a hipster. The modern kind. I think it is stupid to not realize that there is a certain look people think of as hipster. And, if you look like that, you might not like to label yourself, but others will as mental shorthand.

I'm proud to be a hipster. Hipsters have fun.
posted by josher71 at 11:38 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


(See pictures of Claude Rains in the rain.)
posted by uncleozzy at 11:39 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


(See pictures of Robert Browning by a fire)
posted by shakespeherian at 11:41 AM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


Hipsters wearing jeans shorts are simply co-opting never nude culture.
posted by nowoutside at 11:43 AM on July 30, 2009 [7 favorites]


Next time I post a thread on Metafilter, I'm going to make sure the word "hipster" appears somewhere in the header, because every thread including the word "hipster" gets twice as many comments. It's like adding MSG to food, I swear.
posted by spoobnooble at 11:43 AM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


(See pictures of Lester Bangs, banging)
posted by brand-gnu at 11:43 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


good point, PA.

Ultimately I think it's that "I have more fun and hang out with hotter people than you" thing that gets under people's skin. And it's a class thing. If you're in your twenties (or thirties), don't work, and have enough money to live in a nice apartment in Brooklyn, go to awesome parties, and work on your "art" whenever you feel like it, don't expect a lot of understanding from people who can't do that, but secretly might want to.
posted by billysumday at 11:44 AM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Dorian Gray, un-graying)
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:46 AM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


(See a picture of Picture Picture, Mr. Rogersing.)
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:47 AM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I figured the picture was of hipsters when I saw grown people playing a children's game... instead of having jobs.
posted by elwoodwiles at 11:47 AM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


(See pictures of Christopher Walken, walkin'.)
posted by uncleozzy at 11:50 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipster fashion ethos: yes, this looks stupid, aggressively stupid and outdated, but...fuck you!
posted by gottabefunky at 11:52 AM on July 30, 2009


I don't think any self-respecting hipster would wear jean shorts.

status report: Was at Vancouver's "Hipster Beach" the other day and saw several jean shorts on men and women.
posted by Extopalopaketle at 11:54 AM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Dorothy Parker, trying to squeeze a 1925 Cadillac V-63 Phaeton into a too-small space on W 44th.)
posted by barrett caulk at 11:56 AM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


(See Pictures of You, Cured of Person-of-the-Yearing)
posted by Mister_A at 11:57 AM on July 30, 2009


Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat.
(See pictures of Steve Jobs on the job.)


what
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:58 AM on July 30, 2009


My definition of a hipster is someone that doesn't understand the traditional definition of twee.

"Look, I have a beard."
"How very twee."
"What?"
"Twee. A knowing affectation or display of cute or quaint."
"Affectation?"
"You dropped out of Sarah Lawrence, didn't you?"
"Yeah. Why do you ask?"
"Nothing, nevermind."
Pause.
"So what can I get you today?"
"Tall vanilla latte, please."
"Coming right up."
"Thanks, beard barista dropout boy."
"Fall Out Boy? What?"
"Nothing, nevermind. How about that latte?"
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:03 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Nobody likes hipsters because 'hipster' is an epithet and not a real social signifier. Hipsters are people you don't like.
posted by Afroblanco at 12:06 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


You know, I just read every hipster article linked in this thread and in the post two links deep, and the only thing I read worth thinking about was this:

You get the sense that if Jimi Hendrix were to show up in Echo Park today, he’d be publicly mocked in a style section piece on blipsters for wearing a feathered fedora. Duchamp would have given up as soon as he appeared on dadaist-or-douchebag.com. And Warhol would be demonized as a hipster gentrifier for setting up his factory in a Brooklyn warehouse. Critics continue to complain that we live in an era where all art is derivative and devoid of substance. But if Hendrix, Duchamp, or Warhol were alive today, we’d be doing our damnedest to derail their self-expression, dismissing them as fucking hipsters.

This strikes me as very true and very interesting. In general, I tend to side with 'this is just young people doing what young people always do'. But it's also true that the kind of uncritical mass reverence that these figures enjoyed, if indeed that actually happened, is over. It's true that uncritical mass reverence still exists, but I think possibly it is getting pushed down into younger and younger demographics; people get over it more quickly. (It's also possible I'm just getting older and am less prone to it).

I think it has to do with two things: A heightened awareness of fashion in the general population and specifically among males. Metrosexuality circa early 2000s, etc. Result: greater awareness of the performativity of everyday life in the general pop. The illusion that clothes are an unchosen and direct manifestation of anyone's 'real self' is generally seen as even more juvenile than it always was.

Second thing: increased information exchange. Diversity of information sources empowers the individual. Some big media outlet will always trumpet some celebrity, or in this case some artist, some work of art, some movement; but now a thousand blogs will concurrently tell that big media outlet to go fuck itself; the aesthetic choice is now more up to us.

An example of this happened to me just last night. I read somewhere that “Jenny Holzer text messages at [some Gallery]!” Now, I'm not a huge art nerd, but Jenny Holzer used to be one of my favourite artists. Like top 5. But I didn't even click the link. Because I thought like: anyone can fucking text message. It's hard to explain but it was sort of this moment of: now you're playing on my turf, Jenny Holzer, in an attempt to be relevant, and it makes you into just another person. What could you possibly do with a text message that would interest me. It's not her fault, because if she wasn't trying to be relevant she would likely be even more laughable, but it's almost like something in the structure of society and art and technology today makes it impossible for the kinds of figures that Hendrix, Duchamp, or Warhol became to exist.
posted by skwt at 12:09 PM on July 30, 2009 [13 favorites]


Afroblanco, you can tell us if you secretly listen to Coldplay with the curtains drawn. We won't tell your hipster friends IRL.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:09 PM on July 30, 2009


Kids.
posted by Iron Rat at 12:10 PM on July 30, 2009


It's like adding MSG to food, I swear.

Yeah, and they both give me a headache, too.
posted by YoBananaBoy at 12:10 PM on July 30, 2009


See pictures of Mr. Rogers ... WAIT A MINUTE!
posted by mazola at 12:11 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


You get the sense that if Jimi Hendrix were to show up in Echo Park today, he’d be publicly mocked in a style section piece on blipsters for wearing a feathered fedora. Duchamp would have given up as soon as he appeared on dadaist-or-douchebag.com. And Warhol would be demonized as a hipster gentrifier for setting up his factory in a Brooklyn warehouse. Critics continue to complain that we live in an era where all art is derivative and devoid of substance. But if Hendrix, Duchamp, or Warhol were alive today, we’d be doing our damnedest to derail their self-expression, dismissing them as fucking hipsters.

The reason that this argument fails is because Hendrix, Duchamp and Warhol were authentic; they were original. If the equivalent of those artists were to fail today, it would be because we had already experienced the equivalent of Hendrix, Duchamp and Warhol. These newer copies were just that: copies.

Most hipsters do not have that same instinct for originality and creativity. When the checks stop coming, they won't be able to pretend at originality by buying it, and they will be forced to settle down, rejoining society in bland conformity.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:17 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Threads about hipsters are like Metafilter's version of Punch and Judy shows. Only less entertaining due to lack of swozzle.
posted by everichon at 12:17 PM on July 30, 2009


Oh, I got some swozzle for ya, boy-o.
posted by Mister_A at 12:18 PM on July 30, 2009


empath, there's no DJ PBR, but DJ Earworm has a Coldplay/Kelly Clarkson mashup. Coldplay is also pretty prominent in the State of Pop mashup. I'm not sure either of those would appeal to "hipsters"
posted by vespabelle at 12:20 PM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of SpiffyRob, Robbing.)

(Spiffily.)
posted by SpiffyRob at 12:21 PM on July 30, 2009


A great couple of passages from billysumday's link above:

But if Hendrix, Duchamp, or Warhol were alive today, we’d be doing our damnedest to derail their self-expression, dismissing them as fucking hipsters.

As Pandamonium illustrates, there’s no shortage of hipsters worthy of our mocking. But our challenge is to make the distinction between the artists and the pandas. Otherwise, when the next generation finds its own Jackson Pollock, John Coltrane, or Dorothy Parker, we’re likely to stifle their talents with our misappropriated cynicism. Or worse, we’ll turn them into a joke.

posted by stagewhisper at 12:22 PM on July 30, 2009


If a Jimi Hendrix-like figure were to emerge today, he would not play or dress like he did in the late '60s. since it would have already been done, as BP points out. Also, skwt, you neglect to mention the derision suffered by Warhol, Duchamp, and even Hendrix in their careers. There were lots of people who thought Duchamp was a lazy fraud, who thought Hendrix was just a lot of atonal noise, who thought that Warhol was just an old poof who painted cans and did drugs.
posted by Mister_A at 12:25 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


The reason that this argument fails is because Hendrix, Duchamp and Warhol were authentic; they were original.

Well, Hendrix and Duchamp were. Warhol? I think his whole point was that he wasn't
posted by dersins at 12:26 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


(See Pictures of Paul Potts on the pot)
(See Pictures of Julian Fellowes on the fellow)
(See Pictures of Antonia Banderas on the bandera)
(See Pictures of Jeff Bridges on the bridge)
(See Pictures of Bill Hicks on the hick)
(See Pictures of Christopher Biggins on the big 'un)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:27 PM on July 30, 2009


* whaps Mister_A with top-tube pad taken from fixed-gear *
posted by everichon at 12:27 PM on July 30, 2009


I blame this all on the demise of Lucky Lager the drink of rebus loving hipsters 25 years ago (along with an occasional mickey's big mouth).
posted by Edward L at 12:30 PM on July 30, 2009


I'm not so sure, skwt, that Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol wouldn't have still been Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol if they showed up today and been subject to the same kind of analysis. I get the sense htat Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol didn't give a glorious god-damn what people thought of them then, they were just going to keep doing what they did and damn the people who didn't get it. And something tells me that they would have the same reaction today. And the people who liked them would find their way to them eventually.

I mean, even today, even though the stereotype is that a bunch of people sneer at Coldplay, Coldplay don't care what THEY think, and find fans all the same. I think that critical reactions like the one you're talking about only really stop an artist if an artist is the kind of person who can be stopped by critical reactions. If they're not, they hang in longer.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:31 PM on July 30, 2009


did any one think these gonks where cool in the first place, come on
posted by rodz37 at 12:31 PM on July 30, 2009


Well, Hendrix and Duchamp were. Warhol? I think his whole point was that he wasn't

I'd argue that Warhol was original. Like Hendrix and Duchamp, he borrowed from the real world and made something new. This is what artists do.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:31 PM on July 30, 2009


Like Hendrix and Duchamp, he borrowed from the real world and made something new.

Except I always get the impression that he very consciously wasn't presenting his work as "something new," but as more mass-produced consumer items. Hence "Factory."
posted by dersins at 12:36 PM on July 30, 2009


After one reads Baudrillard, hipsters become a fascinating symbol of modernity. Their parodic symbolism is adopted with such aplomb that it becomes impossible to distinguish reality from fantasy. Ultimately, determining whether the act of being/becoming a hipster is, in fact, an act, or as an "act," the action becomes being, no longer has substance.
posted by Dr. Send at 12:40 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I suspect that was quite a change in process for artists (painters), no? Perhaps Warhol crossed an unspoken commercial line in a way that hadn't been done before.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:40 PM on July 30, 2009


Metafilter linking to Time? Sellouts!
posted by elmwood at 12:41 PM on July 30, 2009


(See picture of David Byrne, who forgot his sunscreen.)
posted by idiopath at 12:42 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Ultimately I think it's that "I have more fun and hang out with hotter people than you" thing that gets under people's skin. And it's a class thing. If you're in your twenties (or thirties), don't work, and have enough money to live in a nice apartment in Brooklyn, go to awesome parties, and work on your "art" whenever you feel like it, don't expect a lot of understanding from people who can't do that, but secretly might want to.

That's a pretty big assumption right there. All the hipsters I know work. And a lot of them live in really shitty apartments and work on their art when they aren't working their jobs not instead of working their jobs.
posted by josher71 at 12:42 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


The thing about hipsters is that I try to be non-judgemental and then I see a few and I can't get the following thoughts out of my mind:
"Why the fuck are you wearing that?"
"Why the fuck are you drinking that?"
"Why the fuck can you not make a genuinely honest statement without 1) any irony or 2) saying it in a way that sounds like it's not really a statement so that if some disagrees with you you can pretend that you didn't really mean it."

The first two are just me being a grumpy bastard, it's the third thing that I find indefensible.
posted by ob at 12:43 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


That said, skinny jeans are the worst.
Not on skinny people.


Sure, if you want to look like this.
posted by anthill at 12:46 PM on July 30, 2009


Hipsters are the people not reading Time Magazine, and boy are we worried about that.
posted by fourcheesemac at 12:47 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Dan Fletcher, the author of the (shitty, shitty) Time article, has a rather amusing set of recent articles at the magazine:

The Evolution of Blogging
By Dan Fletcher Jul 23, 2009

Hipsters
By Dan Fletcher Jul 29, 2009

Tweeting for Health-Care Relief
By Dan Fletcher Jul 29, 2009

Teens Don't Twitter (and Other Faux Lessons)
By Dan Fletcher Jul 15, 2009

Tweleted: Making Mischief on Twitter
By Dan Fletcher Jul 20, 2009

Oh Crap! My Parents Joined Facebook
By Dan Fletcher Jul 08, 2009

Your Guide to the Weird, Wild Web
By Dan Fletcher Jul 16, 2009

So is this dude like the one token under-30 the magazine employs?
posted by Greg Nog at 12:47 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


hipsters are the shock troops of global capitalism, and as such I hate them.
posted by johnny novak at 12:47 PM on July 30, 2009


Warhol's big innovation was in mixing the commercial and fine art in what we now would call a "mash-up." So for example, he'd use a mass-production technique such as a silkscreen to make several dozen images of something, while making each demonstrate an abstract progression. He wasn't the first or only to work along these lines, (see Rembrant for an earlier example), but he was arguably the most successful at making it the focus.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:48 PM on July 30, 2009


Is there a way to tell these people from assholes?
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 12:57 PM on July 30, 2009


Ah, hipster-hate. It's just as inevitable as the hipster trend itself, and therefore somewhat comforting. Remember when everybody hated disco? Oh, wait, some of you still do. How about preppies? Nerds? Geeks? I used to live in dread of being accused of being a geek back in the late-80's / early-90's. Yuppies - remember those hateful souls? There was a time when it was quite popular to hate hippies, too (don't lie to yourselves, it's quite popular to hate on hipsters; even hipsters hate hipsters).

Take a snapshot of this thread so that in 15 years, you will know exactly what to wear, what to play, and what to serve at your 2000's-themed party.
posted by jabberjaw at 12:59 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I live in a full-on Hipster Town (though the preferred term is "townie") where the biggest crime is not being townie enough. Even PBR is too unoriginal for us. It's all about Yeungling these days. All those townie kids are starting to have kids of their own and doing their best to raise them according to traditional townie beliefs. Some of the local bars sell t-shirts that come in little kid sizes.

We also have a Big University, so there's a Townie vs. Student dichotomy of mutual derision. It's like the Sharks and the Jets.
posted by Eumachia L F at 1:03 PM on July 30, 2009


Mister_A, of course any creative public figure has always been/will always be dismissed as a fraud, shallow, etc. by some members of the public. It's to be expected. What's troubling is the lumping together of any creative members of society who appear to be outside the norm as a "hipster", and automatically attributing specific motives and beliefs to anything they produce, thereby dismissing them immediately and refusing to engage with their work. It's intellectually lazy to do so and it's to the detriment of our culture's future.

Sure, there were probably some people who labeled Jimi Hendrix as just another drug addled hippie without ever giving close consideration to what he was producing, and of course Duchamp was dismissed as a lazy fraud, if he hadn't have been then his work wouldn't have been topical, controversial, and subsequently groundbreaking.

The issue is that, for the most part, these individuals were dismissed *as individuals* after their work was engaged with by the public and then either rejected or embraced. Active deliberation is stopped dead in its tracks when it becomes mainstream to label most young artists and musicians as loser hipsters, primarily based on such shallow (haha the irony is funny here) criteria as their location, clothing ,and music preferences.

I lived/worked in Williamsburg and the surrounding areas and there are a lot of pretentious douche-y trust fund cases there. There's also a lot of talented, hard working, creative, absolutely brilliant artists, musicians, and writers who live there. It's generally impossible (except when the entitled jerks are acting like frat boys and sorority girls at a masquerade party) to tell who is who based on appearances alone.

Also, dersins, Warhol was authentic in that he was relentless in documenting (both declaratively and through his art-making process itself) how inauthentic his work was. Pretty Meta, no?
posted by stagewhisper at 1:03 PM on July 30, 2009


There was a time when it was quite popular to hate hippies, too

That time has a name. "Always."

Also, dersins, Warhol was authentic in that he was relentless in documenting (both declaratively and through his art-making process itself) how inauthentic his work was. Pretty Meta, no?

Er, yes. That fact was sort of the (admittedly unspoken) crux of my little joke that started this particular derail.
posted by dersins at 1:07 PM on July 30, 2009


I did not quite grasp or internalize the hipster hate until a recent Ben Folds concert.

Everyone has come to understand (though not love) that an artist with a substantial musical history will tour on their new album, with some songs, usually at the end, from the older material. This is what happens at concerts. At this particular concert, Folds was playing music from his new album, Way to Normal. A new wrinkle in the music business is leaks. Where once a radio DJ might get ahold of an acetate in advance, now whole albums appear in torrents, far ahead of the official release date. Folds cleverly *cough* made an entire fake album, recorded in a night, and leaked it himself.

What we got at the concert was not only the new album, but an additional treatment of the fake album. That's right ... let's go to a real concert to hear the fake album. The orgy of irony culminated with "The Frown Song," which, I kid you not, featured a stage performance of someone in an enormous frowny-face button, shuffling about in time to the music. You know, turn that frown upside down? I got a Mr. Yuk out of that, from the inside, after my consciousness flickered black as my brain itself blinked, attempting to process what was going on.

He then said he was going to hit the classics, and what I got was "Rockin' the Suburbs," (which, incidentally, is a capital I ironic song to begin with). Ben Folds, I hereby absolve you of having to play "Brick," you're probably sick of "Brick," but c'mon, at least "One Angry Dwarf ..." We were instead treated to a round of "Kate," which is a fairly vapid, upbeat little tune plopped into the midst of a good album, and that was that.

The phrase rose, unbidden, to the surface my mind. "Ben Folds, you motherfucking hipster ... you'd rather play fake music you crapped out for a prank and a lark than touch any genuine songs."

It was then that I understood.
posted by adipocere at 1:10 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


skwt: Did you mean this exhibit? That's Jenny Holzer's Text(ual) Messages, not Text-messaging Art. Your prejudice and cynicism robbed you of a chance to appreciate something you probably would have enjoyed a lot. Not that i blame you--there's a lot of dumbness to be wary about in the world. But i assure you that tight shit is still being done by tight bros from right now, with or without trust funds and fashion mullets.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:10 PM on July 30, 2009


Case Rested.
posted by stagewhisper at 1:12 PM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Ian Banks in a bank)
posted by Dr Dracator at 1:16 PM on July 30, 2009


(See pictures of Ian M. Banks in a space bank)
posted by Dr Dracator at 1:16 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I spent my 20s and early 30s in Chapel Hill, NC which at the time was supposedly one of the big "hipster" meccas. I was in a popular band and went to parties with various people who were supposedly cool counterculture people of some kind. My instinct is that labeling people "hipsters" is completely inaccurate and stupid. Sure, people may tend to adopt certain clothing or lifestyle choices similar to those around them, but I never experienced the kind of groupthink or group self-identification posited here. If anything I felt like the people in that culture had much *more* variety of thought, action, and disposition than in a lot of other groups. I mean, really, "skinny jeans look stupid"? What if I said "slacks and golf shirts look stupid and all businesspeople are part of a privileged, vapid class that think they're so cool blah blah blah"? Is that helpful in any way? Is it accurate?

Basically what people are doing is 1) lumping a bunch of people into a non-existent homogeneous group so they can have someone to be annoyed at" and 2) cherry-picking some examples of annoying behavior they've seen or imagined in people with bowling shirts or skinny jeans and then projecting that onto everyone that dresses weird.

I just don't get this entire thread. And for the record my experience was that most of the creative types in that scene busted their asses in crappy low-wage jobs for 40 hours a week or more *and then* went and spent time working on their artistic pursuits. Once I got into the corporate world, everything got much easier.
posted by freecellwizard at 1:17 PM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


hipsters are the shock troops of global capitalism, and as such I hate them.

That blog you linked to is so full of ironic "quotations" -- even in its tagline -- that it's like an irony Ouroboros.
posted by hermitosis at 1:19 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


stagewhisper, what I was getting at was that the unanimous adulation that skwt attributes to those three figures never really existed, and also that there are people out there who are the heirs to these artists who are doing great work in a variety of media, some of which didn't exist until a few years ago.

I understand the value of living in a community with a lot of interesting and creative people; your ideas can cross-pollinate with your friends' and neighbors' and that can give you a better perspective on things. I believe that what irks many people about Williamsburg is the idea, right or wrong, that it is inauthentic, that it was created by the scions of wealthy families as a playground for them to flaunt their detachment from the capitalist society that enables their lifestyle.

Short version: Many people seem to think Williamsburg is full of posers.
posted by Mister_A at 1:20 PM on July 30, 2009


"It's all about Yeungling these days."

When isn't it? I would kill a man in cold blood for a black and tan about now, but Yeungling is exceedingly rare around these parts. I'm not a hipster, though, just a regular non-fashion, non-70s rerun echoboom type curmudgeon.
posted by majick at 1:39 PM on July 30, 2009


I was at a local pub last weekend, ordered a stout I hadn't seen on offer before, and before long was faced with the embarassed confession that they hadn't yet received the stock, but would I instead like the local special? At this point, the lady at the next table had to chime in and insist that I get this -- it's brewed right near here, you know!
Well is it a stout? No. It's a fucking pilsner. Oh well then, no thank you.

I have no idea if either of them were hipsters. But boy did that piss me right off.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 1:45 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Erm. Carry on.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 1:46 PM on July 30, 2009


yeah, yeungling is actually a really great beer for the price. If you're shopping for beer in a price range that is typically identified with Natty Ice and Milwaukee's Best, yeungling is god damn mana from heaven comparatively.
posted by shmegegge at 1:46 PM on July 30, 2009


Freecellwizard, most of us are pissing on Time, not hipsters. You could take this article and replace "hipster" with "hippie" or "beat" or "punk" and it would read identically. It even includes the obligatory quote about the end of Western Civilization. This is your basic "scare the old people!" article.

Right, I'm done over explaining here. Time for an ironically iconic beverage!
posted by chairface at 1:49 PM on July 30, 2009


Dan Fletcher, the author of the (shitty, shitty) Time article, has a rather amusing set of recent articles at the magazine: ...

Before the ones you listed, he was doing Top 10 Worst National-Anthem Renditions and Top 10 Jay Leno moments. At least he's moved past Cracked.com territory.
posted by Gary at 1:50 PM on July 30, 2009


(See Pictures of Momus at MoMa)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 1:54 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


status report: Was at Vancouver's "Hipster Beach" the other day and saw several jean shorts on men and women.

Extopalopaketle, would that be Crab Park by any chance? Because lately, any time I go there (which is often), there will be at minimum 5 people in jean shorts and flannel shirts lying in the grass smoking Peter Jacksons and drinking PBR, with their fixies hanging from the junglegym.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 1:57 PM on July 30, 2009


Is there a way to tell these people from assholes?

Look for the ones lumping a bunch of people into a non-existent homogeneous group so they can have someone to be annoyed at, or cherry-picking some examples of annoying behavior they've seen or imagined in people with bowling shirts or skinny jeans and then projecting that onto everyone that dresses weird.
posted by waraw at 1:57 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


There are more slaves alive today than were traded during the entire history of the Atlantic slave trade. Just sayin'.
posted by MarshallPoe at 2:00 PM on July 30, 2009


Not that PBR is the beer of the gods, but given the choice between PBR and Bud/Miller/Coors, I'll take PBR any time. If I'm drinking piss, it'd better be cheap piss.
posted by qvantamon at 2:02 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I can't believe nobody has linked to the "Rise of the Idiots" scene from the excellent "Nathan Barley" yet...
and what about the Hipster Olympics?
posted by kolophon at 2:02 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I certainly agree that the Time article is lazy, comically out of touch, and inventing a big to-do about nothing.

And I sort of hate the new Coldplay and hang out with people that hate them, but I also went to see them a couple of years ago and they were great aside from the horrible "MegaCreek Ampitheatre" venue. So ... conflicted. Coldplay, you're tearing my world apart!
posted by freecellwizard at 2:04 PM on July 30, 2009


"Why the fuck can you not make a genuinely honest statement without 1) any irony or 2) saying it in a way that sounds like it's not really a statement so that if some disagrees with you you can pretend that you didn't really mean it."

How many "hipsters" do you actually know? Do you know any? Because it sounds like you're responding to the media stereotype of the hipster, not any real people who might be deserving of the name. The hipsters I know, including (I suppose) myself, occasionally do have a detached or ironic view of the world, but they're still real people with real emotions and things to say. The conversations I've had with hipsters have not been any more fake and vapid than conversations with fratboys or anyone else.

I was at a local pub last weekend, ordered a stout I hadn't seen on offer before, and before long was faced with the embarassed confession that they hadn't yet received the stock, but would I instead like the local special? At this point, the lady at the next table had to chime in and insist that I get this -- it's brewed right near here, you know!
Well is it a stout? No. It's a fucking pilsner. Oh well then, no thank you.


Um, this sounds like one of those "if you can't tell who the hipster at the table is, it's you" type situations.
posted by nasreddin at 2:10 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I find this phenomenon of hipster-hating to be incredibly fascinating. I mean, it's like 90% projection anyway, and it's all motivated by this need to be the most authentic ever.

What is it about our interactions with popular culture or our society that we desire so strongly to assert our independence? The hipster and the hipster-hater are two sides of the same coin, really, trying to prove we have free will in a world where the powerful feed us into machines that dispense sugary drinks and fatty snacks. Do we all just add up to a bottle of Pepsi Blue, or do we pass through the mechanism intended to catch and categorize us, falling out into the coin return of alienation? What?
posted by palidor at 2:11 PM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


jwz: The lack of self-awareness here is pretty special.

I remember shopping at the store and seeing this at the stand. Hey! That's me!
posted by @troy at 2:13 PM on July 30, 2009


I'd kill for a waterballoon fight on a hot sunny day like today. I salute everyone who engages in silliness. I have no problem with hipster culture (or heavy metal culture or Christian culture or folk dancing culture... okay maybe folk dancing culture) and I especially like its tendency to be anti-serious. There are serious-as-death hipsters out there and they're about as fun as any other serious-as-death person. Last time I was in Williamsburg* I encountered some people who took the kids' game of kickball dead seriously. They were about as much fun as a slip-up in the dentist's chair.


* I should note that I was told that the ultra-serious kickballers came from Park Slope.
posted by Kattullus at 2:14 PM on July 30, 2009


"Why the fuck can you not make a genuinely honest statement without 1) any irony or 2) saying it in a way that sounds like it's not really a statement so that if some disagrees with you you can pretend that you didn't really mean it."

Ah, but the fakeness is the content of the genuine statement. I get it, I think.

But at any rate whatevs. People want to be prats it's no skin off my nose.
posted by @troy at 2:20 PM on July 30, 2009


Don't even get me started on that rap music.
posted by Mister_A at 2:25 PM on July 30, 2009


RARRRR HIPSTRS R SRS BZNS
posted by everichon at 2:26 PM on July 30, 2009


EmpressCallipygos: I'm not so sure, skwt, that Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol wouldn't have still been Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol if they showed up today and been subject to the same kind of analysis. I get the sense htat Duchamp/Hendrix/Warhol didn't give a glorious god-damn what people thought of them then, they were just going to keep doing what they did and damn the people who didn't get it. And something tells me that they would have the same reaction today. And the people who liked them would find their way to them eventually.

I mean, even today, even though the stereotype is that a bunch of people sneer at Coldplay, Coldplay don't care what THEY think, and find fans all the same. I think that critical reactions like the one you're talking about only really stop an artist if an artist is the kind of person who can be stopped by critical reactions. If they're not, they hang in longer.


I actually don't disagree with you at all. I'm sure D/H/W would (maybe) do the same stuff; but their figuration into the kinds of celebrities they became I don't think would happen. (In turn, no matter how I-don't-give-a-shit they were, this would probably have affected their output in some way.) My argument is that the structure of celebrity has changed a lot in the last few decades. Carl Wilson talks a lot about 'the decline of the monoculture' http://www.zoilus.com/documents/general/2008/001242.php which is maybe the most salient point here.




Blazecock Pileon: The reason that this argument fails is because Hendrix, Duchamp and Warhol were authentic; they were original. If the equivalent of those artists were to fail today, it would be because we had already experienced the equivalent of Hendrix, Duchamp and Warhol. These newer copies were just that: copies.

Most hipsters do not have that same instinct for originality and creativity. When the checks stop coming, they won't be able to pretend at originality by buying it, and they will be forced to settle down, rejoining society in bland conformity.


You are totally wrong. As talented as they all were, they were undeniably helped by the public's need for massive celebrities. Hendrix by the record industry and Duchamp and Warhol by the art world's insane predilection for cults of personality. You're also making a bad comparison: very talented artists of the past vs. people who you define as no-talent trust fund kids. A better comparison is between very talented artists of the past vs. very talented artists now. My point was that I think 'the decline of the monoculture' has dissolved some of the hype, or at least tempered it with a diversity of media, that in days past gave these artists their status.




Mister_A: Also, skwt, you neglect to mention the derision suffered by Warhol, Duchamp, and even Hendrix in their careers. There were lots of people who thought Duchamp was a lazy fraud, who thought Hendrix was just a lot of atonal noise, who thought that Warhol was just an old poof who painted cans and did drugs.

No, yeah, I know. I tried to gesture towards that with “if indeed that actually happened”. Of course you are right.




Potomac Avenue: That was probably it, and thanks for the link. And I definitely didn't mean to suggest that I think that THERE ARE NO ARTISTS RIGHT NOW WORTH PAYING ATTENTION TO AT ALL. I'm not sure why I had that reaction. Ryan Trecartin is basically a YouTube artist and I think he's the most amazing thing ever, but maybe that's because he didn't start out pre-digital and make the transition, so my dumb prejudices don't kick in.



Also, Warhol wasn't original? Yeah, and Magritte didn't paint a pipe.
posted by skwt at 2:33 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Um, this sounds like one of those "if you can't tell who the hipster at the table is, it's you" type situations.

Waaa-? A guy slinging drinks in a pub knows the difference between a stout and a pilsner. I was supposed to forego the rooty dark goodness, you see, to climb aboard the “local brew!” wagon, in complete disregard for what it tastes like. Happening to live in a particular city doesn’t cause me to suddenly wish great things for its resident sports team, and it certainly doesn’t make me suddenly take a big 180 with regard to what kind of beer I want to drink. Talk about choices due to what's on the label.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 2:34 PM on July 30, 2009


Note: I am not slagging pilsner, or those who drink it (I do, on hot afternoons).
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 2:38 PM on July 30, 2009


In fact, I didn't even want a specific brand, past wanting to try something new. I just wanted a broad type of beer. But no, that wouldn't be employing the proper dose of "local spirit". Bah.

Curmudgeon status I'm ok with.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 2:40 PM on July 30, 2009


palidor: I find this phenomenon of hipster-hating to be incredibly fascinating. I mean, it's like 90% projection anyway, and it's all motivated by this need to be the most authentic ever.


A lot of people here might not take this guy seriously, but Carles of hipsterrunoff.com is by far the most engaging writer/artist on this issue I've ever encountered. To sum up, he basically parodies the obsession with being authentic while also not denying that he himself is obsessed with it. It's incredibly smart and honest. Read 100 of his entries and see how he uses the word 'relevant' in this at once elitist and joking but also kind of terrified way (especially when he talks about himself).

Who is the more authentic victim of violence?

HIPSTER RUNOFF | authentic disco

HIPSTER RUNOFF | authentic alternative careers

Miss the days of authentic nip slip theory.

HIPSTER RUNOFF | Who is the Most Authentic Alt

etc
posted by skwt at 2:45 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


I'm pretty sure "local spirit" is orthogonal to the hipster thing. Unless my grandma is secretly a hipster.

Actually, wow, now that I look at her wardrobe...
posted by naju at 2:46 PM on July 30, 2009


skinny jeans are the worst.

I did not spend all that time at the gym so that I could keep on wearing baggy clothes, dammit!

Hipsters, unlike the "alternative" types from the early 90s, at least have a sense of humor. They knew their culture wasn't the deepest, most important, like it really spoke to me thing ever. They enjoyed their disposable pop culture as a form of entertainment.

Insofar as it's going to be replaced with some other trend that Time will cover 10 years too late, it's because hipsters are aging and replacing their chunky framed glasses for frameless or because they've finally scrounged together enough money to get LASIK. And even if they're still living in a hip urban area, they've bought a rowhouse and are now petitioning the zoning board to put speed humps on their street. And the one night they can find a babysitter for their kids they're going to get a nice dinner together rather than go out to see a show.

Meanwhile, a bunch of 16 year olds are listening to some kind of crappy, unappealing music we haven't heard of while some marginally-talented aspiring filmmaker finally got backing for a movie that just seems bizarre but becomes all the rage among a bunch of college students with disposable income who are all dressing funny. And since I don't have time to pay attention to it, I'll have to catch up on what happened when Time publishes the history of the phenomenon in 2020.
posted by deanc at 2:47 PM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


It's all about Yeungling these days.

From what I remember, the Brooklyn hipsters went through a brief Rheingold phase back in '04 or so. What ever happened to that?
posted by deanc at 2:47 PM on July 30, 2009


I'm pretty sure "local spirit" is orthogonal to the hipster thing.

No doubt. Yeungling was just my cue to rant about the pub.
Though beer, balloon fights, odd clothing -- it all comes down to: do it because you like the end product, not because you like the label. (or even if you hate the label)

I wonder though how much of this is true curmudgeonly annoyance at people having fun. You can't deny it's not fun (if it's a water balloon fight, anyway), so the best you can do to poke holes in it is claim that it's self-conscious fun.
Take that, whippersnappers!
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 2:57 PM on July 30, 2009


skwt I actually encountered that site maybe a year or two ago, and was fascinated enough that I read it for a while, but it's one of those sites that I doubt I could visit with any frequency, or perhaps, again. It's an interesting satire but I can only take so much of the hall of mirrors that is ~authenticity~.

Which is why I have read like three comments in this 200 comment (wtf) thread. loooool
posted by palidor at 2:57 PM on July 30, 2009


"It's all about Yeungling these days."

Oh those bastards - Yeungling is MY 'best of the shitty 7-11 beers' beer! If that becomes a hipster token... well, they can have it. As long as they keep attaching themselves to the crappy things in life in some sort of ironic "hey let's not enjoy this thing we all get" way, I can think of it as a pool skimmer, scraping away all the terrible things I don't mind getting rid of.

But if those motherfuckers even THINK of making Chimay or Trois Pistoles the next PBR...
posted by FatherDagon at 2:59 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yeungling is good beer, i don't care what anyone says.
posted by empath at 3:01 PM on July 30, 2009


From what I remember, the Brooklyn hipsters went through a brief Rheingold phase back in '04 or so. What ever happened to that?

it has since become a Schaefer phase.

By the way, if you ever wondered how a horrible beer like Budweiser became the best selling in America, despite being overpriced and tasting like a fart through a garden hose? Try a Schaefer and you'll understand why. Until Budweiser took the top spot, that piss water was the country's best selling beer.
posted by shmegegge at 3:05 PM on July 30, 2009


Oh those bastards - Yeungling is MY 'best of the shitty 7-11 beers' beer! If that becomes a hipster token... well, they can have it. As long as they keep attaching themselves to the crappy things in life in some sort of ironic "hey let's not enjoy this thing we all get" way, I can think of it as a pool skimmer, scraping away all the terrible things I don't mind getting rid of.

But if those motherfuckers even THINK of making Chimay or Trois Pistoles the next PBR...


Jesus, what is wrong with you? Just drink the fucking beer. No one goes around pointing to their can of Yuengling or PBR and going "isn't this cool? I liked it before it was popular." People just drink it, just like your dad in the 70s drank it. If you're that concerned about being judged as a trend-follower or something, the problem is with you, not with the "hipsters."
posted by nasreddin at 3:07 PM on July 30, 2009 [8 favorites]


Does anyone really know or care about the identity of the pint on your table other than yourself or your waitress? It's a beer, not a fashion statement. I drink beer to have something wet and not sweet to go with my spicy food. The rest, is just pretense.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 3:13 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


>Try a Schaefer

"It's the one beer to have when you're having more than one!"
posted by @troy at 3:16 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


Hipsterdom's largest natural habitat, it seems, is under threat.

Have they heard of Portland, Oregon?
posted by Betty_effn_White at 3:19 PM on July 30, 2009


Next week's TIME cover story: Rap: The Sound of the Streets
posted by Ratio at 3:21 PM on July 30, 2009 [4 favorites]


The fact that someone would abandon their beer of choice because an coyly-image-obsessed subculture glomed on to it is an irony to delicious for words.
posted by absalom at 3:26 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


IS THIS IRONIC DELICIOUSNESS YOU SPEAK OF LOCALLY BREWED???!>!
posted by robocop is bleeding at 3:37 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


skwt: I totally missed the qualifier "if that ever happened," sorry 'bout that!
posted by Mister_A at 3:45 PM on July 30, 2009


I was into Portland WAY before it was popular.
posted by josher71 at 3:47 PM on July 30, 2009


IS THIS IRONIC DELICIOUSNESS YOU SPEAK OF LOCALLY BREWED???!>!

NO. Charge me the extra dollar and serve the mofo, already.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 3:55 PM on July 30, 2009


How many hipsters does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

It's an obscure number, you probably haven't heard of it.

or

who cares, the old lightbulb was better.
posted by Betty_effn_White at 4:13 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Well you know, if hipsters are turning t-shirts, badly-fitted jeans, cheap beer, old bikes, and plastic eyeglass frames into their fashion shibboleths, it's at least more benign and democratic than some other subcultures I can recall.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 4:14 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


The H-Word Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Word "Hipster"
posted by dersins at 4:30 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


God, what a cob-nobbler. Okay, I'm swingin' on the flippity-flop, friends.
posted by stevil at 4:32 PM on July 30, 2009


Key paragraphs:
"When I think of the worst end of the hipster sliding scale, my mind goes straight to the too-cool-for-me guy at my video store, who's always too involved in watching the collected music videos of Hall & Oates on the overhead TV to make eye contact while I rent my movie. He's always wearing lame ironic T-shirts, and his attitude reeks of smug... hipsterness. There's no other word for it. And if I perceived the city to be overrun with hipsters like him, I'd be an angry, I, Anonymous-writing citizen, too.

But the truth is, what rubs me the wrong way about this guy has nothing to do with his relative level of hipsterdom. The fact is, the guy is a self-absorbed narcissist who's overly vain about his wardrobe and hairstyle, and is generally unfriendly. As evidenced by sororities, law firms, sports teams, country clubs, sewing circles, and virtually every other social group the world over, this is by no means an exclusively hipster phenomenon. The fact remains that every demographic is composed of roughly 10 percent assholes."
posted by dersins at 4:34 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


But everybody in my sewing circle is a wonderful... oh, shit, it's me, isn't it?
posted by box at 4:36 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Oops, my links didn't work. Well, hipsterrunoffcom, you can figure it out.

skwt I actually encountered that site maybe a year or two ago,

Oh yeah? I actually encountered it maybe like THREE YEARS AGO.

jk

Seriously though, I basically had the same reaction. I spent 10 hours in a row reading it and then never went back. Fwiw though, I think it works better if you don't think of it just as a satire, but also as a sincere expression of the guy's concerns and preoccupations, between which the tone flickers back and forth between ironic and not-ironic like a goddam stovetop LED (?).
posted by skwt at 4:37 PM on July 30, 2009


I would love to see a version of The Road with hipsters.

It's called On The Road.

My feeling about the '00s resurgence of the label 'hipster' is that can be clearly and directly traced back to the episode(s) of Seinfeld where they refer to Kramer as a 'hipster doofus'.

I am also well pleased by the thought that telling kids who are hipster-y that this is the case -- that their lifestyle-as-fashion choices come from a popular but increasingly dated TV sitcom from the 1990s -- might just make their heads explode.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:38 PM on July 30, 2009 [3 favorites]


Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
posted by humannaire at 4:42 PM on July 30, 2009


I am also well pleased by the thought that telling kids who are hipster-y that this is the case -- that their lifestyle-as-fashion choices come from a popular but increasingly dated TV sitcom from the 1990s -- might just make their heads explode.

Not to rain on the smug parade, but why would they care?
posted by nasreddin at 4:45 PM on July 30, 2009


empath speaks truth. Yuengling is good beer, and at a fair price.

And the most fun people to hang out with are redneck transvestites.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 4:49 PM on July 30, 2009


So this guy is the Demetri Martin of TIME, then?
posted by rokusan at 4:58 PM on July 30, 2009


Not to rain on the smug parade, but why would they care?

I'm not sure if or why you're calling me smug, but based on my own long-past experience of being young and impressionable, if my fashion choices had been shown to me to be the direct outgrowth of a dorky TV show from the previous decade that my parents had really liked, I'd have been somewhat mortified.

But perhaps I'm out of touch with new developments in the whole ironic detachment thing.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:58 PM on July 30, 2009


I'm not sure if or why you're calling me smug, but based on my own long-past experience of being young and impressionable, if my fashion choices had been shown to me to be the direct outgrowth of a dorky TV show from the previous decade that my parents had really liked, I'd have been somewhat mortified.

I think "hipsters" would have less of a problem with that than almost any other subculture, really. You think people wear black-framed glasses and vintage track meet t-shirts because they consider them the epitome of radical coolness and novelty? The corniness is the whole point.
posted by nasreddin at 5:02 PM on July 30, 2009


You think people wear black-framed glasses and vintage track meet t-shirts because they consider them the epitome of radical coolness and novelty?

I honestly haven't the faintest idea, when it comes down to it. I've never actually seen or met any of these people.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:04 PM on July 30, 2009


"I'm genuinely ironically detached. Your ironic detachment is a hollow pose!"
posted by yoink at 5:05 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


The word "hipster" can, depending on the user, mean anything from "fashion victim/attention whore" to "bad man listen to music I can't find in WalMart/on Clear Channel make head hurt, make him go away". Sometimes it's even used reflexively, in implicit ironic quotes, in the voice of the latter, for describing oneself and one's friends who are, naturally, not in the least superficial fashion-whoring douchebags.
posted by acb at 5:16 PM on July 30, 2009


I predict that in 2015, the trendy fashion will progress to look exactly like it did in Back to the Future Part II, all the way down to the shoes, because kids will find it ironically hilarious that are fucking with the older generation by dressing like Marty McFly, Jr. We're closer than you think.

But they still won't have hoverboards.
posted by jabberjaw at 5:18 PM on July 30, 2009


I think "hipsters" would have less of a problem with that than almost any other subculture, really. You think people wear black-framed glasses and vintage track meet t-shirts because they consider them the epitome of radical coolness and novelty? The corniness is the whole point.

First, trucker hats were worn by the white working classes. Then they were worn by hipsters (meaning people involved in art/cultural scenes). Then they were worn by fashion victims. Then celebrities and their stylists picked them up, and they were everywhere, and became over-exposed and passé. I'm now waiting for them to get picked up by hipsters as an ironic reference to trend-following normals, rather than the white working class, to see how deep this rabbit hole can go.
posted by acb at 5:20 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I have a case of Yuengling brought up to New England from points foreign and scary (Maryland) by my visiting folks last week.

I've been saving it for a special occasion. That occasion is the 5 day weekend I have planned next week.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 5:22 PM on July 30, 2009


I think, yes, there are hipsters (snobby, usually younger people, have liberal arts degrees from Ivy league schools, they think they're doing you a favor by interacting with them). There aren't many. And, this is important by my own definition, they aren't very politically progressive at all (especially the ones I've met).

There is a lot of generalization about "hipsters." And so now the word is being overused as a general put down concerning anything new or different when it really doesn't apply.
posted by peppito at 5:23 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]



And the most fun people to hang out with are redneck transvestites.

You've been to Midtown Memphis too?
posted by Toothless Willy at 5:46 PM on July 30, 2009


Is "Midtown" an area of Memphis or some sort of metaphor?
posted by brundlefly at 5:52 PM on July 30, 2009


It's a part of Memphis.
posted by Mouse Army at 5:59 PM on July 30, 2009


(See picture of George W. Bush with a pussy)
posted by item at 6:08 PM on July 30, 2009


Everything is stupid if you think about it long enough.

Some things don't take that long, though.
posted by Evilspork at 6:44 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


I bet these so-called hipsters get laid lot more than you guys. A lot more. Just say'n.
posted by tkchrist at 6:59 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


I bet these so-called hipsters get laid lot more than you guys. A lot more. Just say'n.

The thing about hipsters is that they don't really give a shit about nerds. The reverse, for some reason, is not true.

It's me isn't it?

I am too SINCERE to be a hipster!! Tho' I did not read the article come to think of it....
posted by jessamyn at 7:31 PM on July 30, 2009


jabberjaw: But they still won't have hoverboards.

Not ones that work on water, anyway.
posted by Kattullus at 7:32 PM on July 30, 2009


jessamyn: I am too SINCERE to be a hipster!

Sincerity is the new irony, pass it on.

posted by Kattullus at 7:33 PM on July 30, 2009


Thank you for posting this, because I had forgotten I need to stock up on Yuengling prior to my visit home. Kentuckians get excited about Yuengling because it is an exotic delicacy available only in far away places like Virginia!!!! BTW there are no hipsters in Kentucky.

(I was so excited when I moved and I kept finding bars that served Yuengling!!! Then I realized they ALL serve Yuengling. And it was less exciting.)
posted by little e at 7:59 PM on July 30, 2009


(See picture of Dash Snow, dashing through the snow)
posted by nicwolff at 8:03 PM on July 30, 2009


I'm too hip to comment on this.

Really. No irony, not kidding. This is beneath my notice at this point.
posted by drjimmy11 at 8:13 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


(See pictures of George McGovern governing.)
posted by minkll at 8:59 PM on July 30, 2009


Midtown was Midtown before there were hipsters, friend.
posted by absalom at 9:05 PM on July 30, 2009


Does anyone read the hipster hate down here?
posted by clearly at 9:23 PM on July 30, 2009


I bet these so-called hipsters get laid lot more than you guys. A lot more. Just say'n.

Yeah, but they're getting laid by other hipsters.

It's sort of like homely couples - sure you're happy that they've found each other, but y'know, yuck.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:41 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


Okee doke. *Hits annoyance point.*

I:
*Live on North 1st St. in Williamsburg
*Don't care about plaid
*Love our waterfront
*Am sans parental help (Whoa!)
*Don't care about water balloons, in reference to the photo
*Absolutely love our bookstores
*Am completely and safely vigilant of the herpes and bedbug outbreaks
*Own more Ralph Lauren and Miu Miu than vintage. (Just sayin', but simply to prove a point)
*Go occasionally to Union Pool or The Levee (Geh!)
*Spend more time geeking about omglinguistics! than bands
*Don't care about McCarren Park, except for the dog run
*Enjoy the "empanada man"
*Have had pretty squicky encounters with the gutter punks
*Recognize neighborhood people from "Look At This F****ing Hipster," and see the humor in this fact
*Have made friends with members of the Polish and Puerto Rican constituencies
*Can't stand American Apparel, and it doesn't matter why
*Love Brooklyn, whether stroller-pushing Cobble Hill or drug-induced Willamsburg

And last but not least, I'm tired of people calling the Hipster™ the "Demise of Western Civilization." Do I like 'em? Nah, the lil' urchins take up sidewalk space. But, I mean, COME ON. Doesn't Western Civilization have better things to worry about than ten blocks of Bedford Avenue, recession or no?

Phew. As you were, soldiers.
posted by functionequalsform at 10:45 PM on July 30, 2009 [2 favorites]


Doesn't Western Civilization have better things to worry about than ten blocks of Bedford Avenue, recession or no?

Hipster hatred is the "Birther" bullshit of the so-called progressives?

Just a passing thought ... while listening to Electric Light Orchestra, smoking Dutch cigars, sipping Belgian beer.
posted by philip-random at 10:51 PM on July 30, 2009


Oh, and "I know you are but what am I?"
posted by functionequalsform at 11:06 PM on July 30, 2009


i'm glad i live in a part of the country where a pbr is just considered a cheap beer - if i want cheap and cool, i do what i did in the 70s and try to find stroh's
posted by pyramid termite at 11:09 PM on July 30, 2009


Do I like 'em? Nah, the lil' urchins take up sidewalk space.

*checks out functionequalsform's flickr stream linked on her user page*

I have nothing against hipsters (or you!) at all, but the fact that your friends appear to dress solely in skinny jeans, American Apparel, and ironic mustaches tends to give lie to your proclaimed distaste for hipsters.

Not that there's anything wrong with that-- I'm just sayin'.
posted by dersins at 11:14 PM on July 30, 2009 [5 favorites]


Hipster Run Off on that Wedding Dance Video that was going around last week. Will a Helvetty tat improve my personal brand?

Also, Hipster Run Off Exegesis deconstructs Carles writing.
posted by johnny novak at 11:27 PM on July 30, 2009 [1 favorite]


The problem with hipster hate is that it contains an element of reactionary "whassamatta, you too good for what everybody else likes?" conformism. I mean, everybody else is satisfied to listen to music Clear Channel will playlist and WalMart will stock, watch Hollywood blockbusters and read Dan Brown novels. They wear normal shoes which cost $30 and don't come in fluorescent colours, use normal computers without fruit on them, and drink instant coffee. It's good enough for them, but not for you. What are you, some kinda douchebag?

If you dig beneath the surface, you can find metaphorical homophobia too. Metaphorical homophobia is hatred for those who are, in the hater's view, metaphorically homosexual (as in "whatareya, some kinda fag?")

It's like goth-bashing in the UK. Yes, the subculture is a bit silly, but the kinds of people who are either goths or hipsters are generally more intelligent, culturally sophisticated and less mentally inbred than the kinds of people who want to beat them up.
posted by acb at 3:03 AM on July 31, 2009 [2 favorites]


BTW there are no hipsters in Kentucky.

Isn't Louisville an up-and-coming hipster enclave? Or do they all come from Indiana?
posted by ekroh at 5:49 AM on July 31, 2009


Can anyone pinpoint when PBR became the official beer of hipsters?
posted by newpotato at 5:51 AM on July 31, 2009


1. No one likes gutter punks.

2. I just moved to Baltimore from Brooklyn and Functionequalsform's comments and pictures made me very homesick.
posted by josher71 at 6:02 AM on July 31, 2009


Oh fer fuck's sake.
posted by bwg at 6:02 AM on July 31, 2009


I think it was around 2001 or so. PBR's No Marketing Marketing probably appealed to the growing iconoclastic, freethinking people who would eventually evolve into the common hipster.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 6:04 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


Isn't Louisville an up-and-coming hipster enclave? Or do they all come from Indiana?

The last time I was there it seemed to have the same not-particularly-trendy vibe of awesomeness as ever. (Except for the horrible parts which had the same not-particularly-trendy vibe of alternating rapidly between shitty country music and shitty hip hop while everyone does jello shots.) But I will admit it's been a couple of years since I spent a really significant amount of time in the area.
posted by little e at 6:19 AM on July 31, 2009



It's like goth-bashing in the UK. Yes, the subculture is a bit silly, but the kinds of people who are either goths or hipsters are generally more intelligent, culturally sophisticated and less mentally inbred than the kinds of people who want to beat them up.


I'm not really old, but I'd like to think that one of the things that I've learned over these last few years is that you can't really judge people by how they dress. They're two different things. Liking obscure music just means you like obscure music. It doesn't have anything to do with how smart you are. Listening to 'mainstream' music doesn't make you stupid. Reading Dan Brown novels doesn't -- OK, maybe I'm with you on the Dan Brown novels.

I think the human mind likes to form patterns. Not all of these patterns make sense: "I passed all of my exams the last time I wore this shirt, this must be a lucky shirt!" "My sister ate a lot of meat, and she had a son, if you want to have a boy, you need to eat a lot of meat while you're pregnant." Some of them are even harmful: "All people of (race) are like (stereotype)." So it's natural to want to believe that all people who wear Old Navy and 'normal shoes' are one way, but I think this kind of oversimplifies life.

I think another thing everybody does is to think that they're way more awesome than everybody else. A good illustration of this is the AskMe from a couple of weeks ago, where some guy wonders why people react poorly to how logical he is, which completely misses the point that pretty much everybody thinks of themselves as a good person who is basically logical, which doesn't mean that that's how everybody else sees them. (This includes me.) It's natural to think "I, and by extension, everybody like me, is way more awesome than everybody else." But realize, of course, that everybody else is thinking that.
posted by Comrade_robot at 6:20 AM on July 31, 2009 [5 favorites]


Fantastic comment Comrade_robot.
posted by josher71 at 6:25 AM on July 31, 2009


However, wanting to beat up people who dress funny or are into art or music or other such faggy things is, I contend, generally a reliable predictor of low intelligence.
posted by acb at 7:48 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


How many "hipsters" do you actually know? Do you know any? Because it sounds like you're responding to the media stereotype of the hipster, not any real people who might be deserving of the name. The hipsters I know, including (I suppose) myself, occasionally do have a detached or ironic view of the world, but they're still real people with real emotions and things to say. The conversations I've had with hipsters have not been any more fake and vapid than conversations with fratboys or anyone else.

posted by nasreddin at 5:10 PM on July 30 [+] [!]


Yes, I know quite a few. A lot of the places that I've hung out at for the past few years have their share of hipsters. Secondly, as I'm in the arts, there are a lot of hipsters in the scene. The thing that I take issue with is, as you say, "a detached or ironic view of the world". It's fine to be like that sometimes, but in my experience it's damn hard to get anything but a "meh" from most people that I think of as hipsters.

Yes, of course hipsters have real emotions and things to say. It would be better just to come out and say them. It's actually ok to have emotions and to show them.

As far as the fratboy comparison goes, well, of course conversations with fratboys are fake. But hipsters, by definition, position themselves as being in the know about something, be it music, art, film or whatever. To then have to deal with someone who actually has taken the time to learn this stuff but then seems to see the world as an exercise in competitive irony is frustrating. I guess it's the trying to act cool thing that most annoys me.
posted by ob at 8:49 AM on July 31, 2009


Just drink the fucking beer. No one goes around pointing to their can of Yuengling or PBR and going "isn't this cool? I liked it before it was popular."

See, in my mind my comment was a joke - replace 'Yuengling' with 'The Decemberists' and 'Chimay and Trois Pistoles' with 'Fuck Buttons and Dan Deacon', and suddenly the comment is the very thing it decries - hipster elitism! Maybe the tone was off and it just sounded pissy instead.
posted by FatherDagon at 8:53 AM on July 31, 2009


Can anyone pinpoint when PBR became the official beer of hipsters?

Well, the NY Times wrote about it in 2003, which proves it had been going at least since 1998, since the Times is consistently a minimum of 5 years behind any style trend. (And, anecdotally, I noticed Portland hipsters slowly transitioning from Oly / Rainier / Schlitz to mostly Pabst over the five years between 1995 and 2000.

Interestingly, I moved to NYC in 2000, but didn't start seeing PBR appear in the hands of hipsters there for another couple of years. Way to lag behind the hipster curve, New York.
posted by dersins at 8:57 AM on July 31, 2009


Carles of hipsterrunoff.com is by far the most engaging writer/artist on this issue I've ever encountered. .. Read 100 of his entries

But...but...I like my eyesight!

Somene I know on LJ started a site called When Goths Cry. It is really depressing, and not for all the reasons he thinks.
posted by mippy at 8:58 AM on July 31, 2009


BTW there are no hipsters in Kentucky.

Oh, c'mon. Go to the corner of Bardstown Rd. and Bonnycastle and hang out for an afternoon. Or are they "punks" or "hippies" because they have a twang? They wear the same stupid skinny jeans and those Rachel Ray scarves.

"Hipster" is like "Fag." It means you look or act someway that the accuser doesn't like.

Pure prejudice, imo. And it's almost entirely based on fashion choices. Ugh. (Or inferiority complexes.)

People who buy used clothes and drink cheap beer used to be called thrifty. People who like to read books, listen to music, and discuss art used to be called literate. And people who like to get together and play games like kickball, water balloon toss, etc. used to be called fun.

I'm too old to be a hipster, but if they existed in the 80s and early 90s, I'm sure I would have been pigeonholed as one. I sure heard "Fag!!" quite a lot in Louisville. Just taking a walk with another man will still bring it.

Oh, and LSD is making a comeback.

Oh, don't we wish. Not since 2000, I'm afraid ... you got a good connection? Fucking psilocybin everywhere, but no vitamin L ...
posted by mrgrimm at 10:02 AM on July 31, 2009 [3 favorites]


If you dig beneath the surface, you can find metaphorical homophobia too. Metaphorical homophobia is hatred for those who are, in the hater's view, metaphorically homosexual (as in "whatareya, some kinda fag?")

Exactly, acb. Emos, goths, hipsters ... I hear "fag" whenever I hear those terms used pejoratively.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:29 AM on July 31, 2009


As far as cultural reporting, Time should be called "Jumped the Shark." Well, maybe as far as any reporting ...
posted by krinklyfig at 10:54 AM on July 31, 2009


no vitamin L ...

It's around. It's rare, though, and there's bunk shit out there being sold for far too much money.
posted by krinklyfig at 10:55 AM on July 31, 2009


It's around. It's rare, though ...

Oh yeah, I've found some the past few years, but it's *definitely* harder to find these days.

I always scoff at law enforcement's claims of knocking out X% of the nation's drug supply, etc., but I tend to believe the reports of Pickard's stash, just based on my anecdotal experience this decade. 90-95% of the world's existing supply? Sounds crazy, but I believe it.
posted by mrgrimm at 11:08 AM on July 31, 2009


I'm going outside.

I suggest you all join me.
posted by regicide is good for you at 11:27 AM on July 31, 2009


I'm going outside.

I suggest you all join me.


But, but ... I can't walk!
posted by mrgrimm at 11:45 AM on July 31, 2009


The hipsters I know ... (are) still real people with real emotions and things to say.

The hipsters I know only think they have something to say. But it fails the "something" test.

Somewhere above, somebody had a link to Look At This Fucking Hipster, with the caption joke about getting a "tofu dog, because I'm busy live-blogging this picnic."

Here's the thing. That imaginary live blog of the picnic? If it were real, you just know that blog would be tedious to read yet breathtaking in its pointlessness.

And that's hipsterdom in a nutshell. Tedious. Pointless. Twee.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 11:50 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


I thought I had come across LATFH before, but it turns out I was misremembering the word order.
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:32 PM on July 31, 2009


(With thanks to McClintic Sphere)

Gwine cross de Jordan
Ecclesiastically:
Flop, flip, once I was hip,
Flip, flop, now you're on top,
Set-REset, why are we BEset
With crazy and cool in the same molecule?
posted by Forrest Greene at 12:55 PM on July 31, 2009


The hipsters I know only think they have something to say. But it fails the "something" test.

Somewhere above, somebody had a link to Look At This Fucking Hipster, with the caption joke about getting a "tofu dog, because I'm busy live-blogging this picnic."

Here's the thing. That imaginary live blog of the picnic? If it were real, you just know that blog would be tedious to read yet breathtaking in its pointlessness.

And that's hipsterdom in a nutshell. Tedious. Pointless. Twee.


Ironically, this is one of the most tedious and pointless comments in the whole thread. (I don't know about twee, but I'm not sure you even know what that word means.)
posted by nasreddin at 1:02 PM on July 31, 2009


I came to this party LATE, and I dunno if it's on this thread yet, but here's your requisite Onion article. (And one of the funniest ones ever).
posted by zardoz at 1:27 PM on July 31, 2009


(I don't know about twee, but I'm not sure you even know what that word means.)

He doesn't. Twee generally means super sweet, almost sickeningly so. I don't think it has anything to do with hipsters aside from the indie-rock connection. Twee pop from labels like K Records was pretty big in the '90s.

And that's hipsterdom in a nutshell. Tedious. Pointless.

Even that amended list of characteristics fails.

I associate Tedium and Pointlessness more with corporate culture than with hipsterdom. From this thread it seems like entitlement, snobbery, fashion victimization, and mockery of mainstream culture seem to be the main offenses of hipsters. And that they look stupid.

Kickball, water balloon tosses, bicycle soccer, etc. seem like hipster pastimes. I doubt the games are Tedious, and the Point is to have fun.

Can we say the same thing about our TPS reports (or whatever your TPS reports are called)?

It seems like everyone has a different definition of "hipster." Some are trust-fund babies; some work as baristas. Some sneer at Coldplay; some mashup Coldplay with Kelly Clarkston (though mashups seem very un-hipster to me). *shrug*

To each his or her own ...
posted by mrgrimm at 1:29 PM on July 31, 2009 [2 favorites]


Hating hipsters on the basis of an imagined live blog of a picnic seems a little bit of a stretch.
posted by johnny novak at 2:20 PM on July 31, 2009 [2 favorites]


Interestingly, I moved to NYC in 2000, but didn't start seeing PBR appear in the hands of hipsters there for another couple of years. Way to lag behind the hipster curve, New York.

Wrong neighborhood, maybe. We were serving it at Welcome to the Johnsons (LES) in 1999, we had to convince our distributor to start carrying it, and it quickly became our most popular beer. The $1.50 a can price didn't hurt, but we had tried Genny Cream Ale and Strohs for the same price before we hit on PBR. As far as I know, we were the first bar in the area to have it.
We just recently raised the price to $1.75 a can.
posted by newpotato at 3:08 PM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


Ha! That's funny because Welcome to the Johnsons was definitely the first place I saw it it NYC. The first time I went there would have been 2002 or so, and I remember liking the place because it reminded me not of the suburban rec room it intended to, but of many of my favorite divey hipster bars in Portland. The buck fifty pabsts didn't hurt.

Also, I got carded. At the age of 32. WTF, Welcome to the Johnsons?
posted by dersins at 3:14 PM on July 31, 2009


I am going to manufacture a shirt that says, "I am the only hipster." and then I will sell zillions when lots of people wear them ironically and people don't know if the irony makes them a hipster or not and then everyone who cares will face brain explosions and the rest of us can go on with life.
posted by lauranesson at 3:26 PM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]


Nice pants.

Also, sounds like at least 50% of the people here don't know what the word hipster means, and incidentally thank something this isn't the Shoreditch of the internet.
posted by Magnakai at 4:09 PM on July 31, 2009


I'm a hipster
posted by tehloki at 5:08 PM on July 31, 2009


I smoke electronic cigarettes and wear wolf shirts
posted by tehloki at 5:09 PM on July 31, 2009


I make signs for the government
posted by tehloki at 5:09 PM on July 31, 2009


I drink
posted by tehloki at 5:09 PM on July 31, 2009


As far as I know, we were the first bar in the area to have it.

Nah, Pabst was available for $1.50 at Hogs & Heifers back in '91 or so. Wannabe-rednecks were the pre-hipsters.
posted by nicwolff at 5:18 PM on July 31, 2009



Yeah, but they're getting laid by other hipsters.

It's sort of like homely couples - sure you're happy that they've found each other, but y'know, yuck.


That's sort of thing people who never get laid tell themselves. Like. Because their standards are so high.
posted by tkchrist at 6:51 PM on July 31, 2009


Look at this fucking magazine. pls. we know print is dying. send hope
posted by Eideteker at 4:59 AM on August 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Basically what people are doing is 1) lumping a bunch of people into a non-existent homogeneous group so they can have someone to be annoyed at

Oh for goodness sake, you cannot tell me that there is not hipster fashion and a hipster lifestyle. I'm not suggesting that everyone who wears the clothes or lives the life is trying reeeeal hard, but rather that there is something of an identifiable hipster culture with its own clothing trends and mores.

To that, however, I say, so what? People will dress funny in their 20s and then usually stop. The ones still dressing like that at 55 are the ones who most people cross the street to avoid. They'll party down and eventually stop, or maybe not. What difference does it make? Oh noes, legwarmers! Skinny jeans! Stupid geek eyeglasses and jobs at Pearl Paint in Manhattan! Crappy beer!*

Seriously, who cares how young people want to dress or act? Dollars to doughnuts they'll grow out of it eventually, just like you and you and you.

*Let them drink the crappy beer. Means more good beer for everyone else!
posted by Never teh Bride at 1:15 PM on August 1, 2009



Also, I got carded. At the age of 32. WTF, Welcome to the Johnsons?


Sorry about that, but we and every other bar does this because we get targeted by the cops for not proofing EVERYONE. See how many multi-thousand dollar fines you pay before you make it a policy to proof everyone who walks in the door. If it helps, you can send me a picture and I will post it in the office and make you an honorary employee so you don't get proofed. For some reason, I'm gonnaq guess you've moved on to other bars, though.

Nah, Pabst was available for $1.50 at Hogs & Heifers back in '91 or so. Wannabe-rednecks were the pre-hipsters.

You mean post frat boys and B' and T' ers? Hipsters wouldn't go near the place, even ironically.
posted by newpotato at 3:09 PM on August 1, 2009


Oh, c'mon. Go to the corner of Bardstown Rd. and Bonnycastle and hang out for an afternoon. Or are they "punks" or "hippies" because they have a twang?

Joking. Attempting to make fun of the excessive and genuine enthusiasm (my own included) with which Yuengling is greeted in some parts of the world, not make a serious statement about the geography of hipsterdom. That said, I've spent plenty of time on Bardstown Road and I have not seen these people. Admittedly when I'm there I'm usually far too concerned with important things like eating Irish food and my own non-ironic beer consumption to pay much attention to others' fashion statements.

I'm from the mountains, Louisvillians aren't twangy to my ears.
posted by little e at 11:09 PM on August 1, 2009


Nah, Pabst was available for $1.50 at Hogs & Heifers back in '91 or so. Wannabe-rednecks were the pre-hipsters.

Pabst Blue Ribbon was the one true beer as espoused by Frank Booth in Blue Velvet in 1983. My feeling is that this is also no coincidence.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:35 PM on August 2, 2009


I make signs for the government

That's actually a half-truth. He's really a bike courier, but he makes a lot of deliveries to government signs.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:58 PM on August 2, 2009


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