I was sitting at dinner the other day and a friend of mine came up to me and said, “I wana be a hipster this year. Will you teach me how?”
My first reaction was, well, nothing. I was so confused and taken aback by the question that no words formulated in my brain. I just said, “Uhm, yeah, sure. I’ll like, write you a list of steps or something.” It was stupid and I’m sure I sounded stupid, but it seemed to be the only appropriate response.
The hipster label is dumb. Really dumb. That being said, I guess I can see where the labelers are coming from. If one were to examine what exactly a hipster is (if one could possibly do such a thing), I suppose I would fit into some of the stereotypical hipster conventions. It is what it is, and people can call me whatever they want to call me. I don’t give a damn, two shits, and/or three words that start with “f” and rhyme with duck.
However dumb I might find the label, I saw an opportunity to create the list that I’d mentioned to my curious friend. I thought it might make a good blog post. And also, if she cares to read it, she can learn the ways of the mystical hipster.
So, here are 19 steps that any schmuck can follow that will turn his/her life from pop culture to counter-culture:
1. Denounce anything that is popular/gaining popularity. “Nike and Uggz are the spawn of Satan,” says the loyal hipster.
2. Puff some cigs.
3. Listen to vinyl.
4. Insist that a band’s “older albums” are the best, even if they’re older albums were recorded on one of those Fisher Price tape recorders.
4. Develop a love for antiques that runs deeper than most of your friendships.
5. Tell everyone how much you prefer to hand write things.
6. Read poetry, even if it makes you feel like you’re trying to understand Swahili.
7. Watch a buttload of indie movies. I recommend Charlie Countryman and Wrist Cutters.
8. Take obscure pictures of inanimate objects and post them on Instagram.
9. Accumulate at least five really old, really baggy sweaters.
10. Play some sort of instrument. Bonus points for shit no one ever plays. Like a banjo. Or a didgeridoo.
11. Wear the proper footwear. Vans, Doc Martins, Converse and Toms are all perfectly good examples. Bonus points if your shoes have holes in them/look like they were worn in a battle zone.
12. Read “On The Road” like it’s the Bible.
13. Talk about weird bands that no ones ever heard of as if they’re the Rolling Stones.
14. Drink lots of coffee.
15. Get a tattoo or piercing .
16. Regularly use the phrase “I liked that before it was cool.”
17. Be misunderstood. More misunderstood than Shia Lebouf. Or slam poetry.
18. While we’re talking about slam poetry, start doing it. Right now.
19. When you’re making lists of things, use an odd number. Like 19. Because 20 is just too mainstream.
Well folks, there you have it. Nineteen steps that are guaranteed to turn you into a hipster. Now, this is by no means an exhaustive list, so if you have anything to add, please do so in the comments.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little list I put together. And to my friend who wants to become a hipster, well, here ya go. But before you all leave to prepare yourselves for the weekend, ponder this thoughtful Morpheus meme.
Until next time.