“People get those Brooklyn goggles,” Patrick McNeil, a Brooklyn painter exiled to the cruel hinterlands of the suburbs remarks in this New York Times piece “Creating Hipsturbia.” “They think it’s the center of the earth.”
Funny that you mention that.
The hipster trend piece paper of record reported exclusively this weekend on “Brooklyn,” an amorphous blob of 2.5 million homogenous citizens, all of whom are currently wearing some sort of hat or pants of one disagreeable fashion or another, knowing those guys.
A yoga studio opened on Main Street that offers lunch-hour vinyasa classes. Nearby is a bicycle store that sells Dutch-style bikes, and a farm-to-table restaurant that sources its edible nasturtiums from its backyard garden.
Across the street is the home-décor shop that purveys monofloral honey produced by nomadic beekeepers in Sicily. And down the street is a retro-chic bakery, where the red-velvet cupcakes are gluten-free and the windows are decorated with bird silhouettes — the universal symbol for “hipsters welcome.”
Only in Brooklyn! Except not in this case, because the tragic Guy de Maupassan twist in this lede is that we’re reading about an entire other place outside of Brooklyn, a suburb of New York, in fact. Call it Hipsturbia, they write in the latest installment of the reverse-engineered trend piece from clever portmanteau genre.
To ward off the nagging sense that a move to the suburbs is tantamount to becoming like one’s parents, this urban-zen generation is seeking out palatable alternatives — culturally attuned, sprawl-free New York river towns like Hastings, Dobbs Ferry, Irvington and Tarrytown — and importing the trappings of a twee lifestyle like bearded mixologists, locavore restaurants and antler-laden boutiques.
Only in everywhere!
Real estate prices. Artists. Affluentialization. Farm to tail. Fernet. Bikes.
With an increase both in density and in the atmosphere of busy professionalism, Brooklyn no longer feels as carefree as it did, said Ari Wallach, a futurism consultant, who recently cut short a Brooklyn real estate search.
“There is more looking down, less eye contact,” said Mr. Wallach, 38. “The difference is between the first three days of Burning Man, when everyone is ‘Hey, what’s up?’ to the final three days of Burning Man, when the tent flaps are down. Brooklyn is turning out to be the last three days of Burning Man.”
Speaking of futurism consulting, how long you think it is before the first “Brooklyn hipsters colonize the fucking moon” piece in the Style section?
He is not the only one. Mitchell Moss, an urban-planning professor at New York University, said that funkier suburbs like the river towns are getting a new look from “overeducated hipsters,” not just because they have good schools, spacious housing and good transit, but because lately the restaurants are good enough to keep them in the suburbs on a Saturday night. “The creative class is trying to replicate urban life in the suburbs,” he said.
Another reason for Brooklynites moving to other places? Basic patterns of human behavior that have existed forever in which people who lived in one place for a while then go on to live in an another, separate, and oftentimes different type of place than the one they had previously lived in.
Hold on, this story is still going on. On the third page now, Jesus this is a lot of words on the idea on hipster Orientalism.
Furthermore, the relative lack of racial diversity is striking to newcomers.
Is it though?
Marie Labropolous recently moved from a one-bedroom rental in Brooklyn to a four-bedroom 1970s split-level in Hartsdale, about 10 minutes from her shop in Dobbs Ferry. She and her husband, Simeon Papacostas, now have space for a music studio in their basement, where they enjoy regular “pajama jams,” she said.
“Hastings-on-Hudson is a village, in a Wittgensteinian sort of way,” someone said at one point in history, but also in this piece.
“We are constantly hearing about the slow-food movement, the slow-learning movement and the slow-everything-else. So why not just go avant-garde into a slow-village movement?”
Slow death movement.
Speaking of Wittgenstein, this piece reminds me of something he once wrote. “A man’s thinking goes on within his consciousness in a seclusion in comparison with which any physical seclusion is an exhibition to public view.”