I would have jumped on this piece in The New York Times from yesterday, originally called “Will.i.amsburg” but now, mercifully changed to “How I Became a Hipster”, sooner, but I’ve got a Google alert set up for “NYT” + “hipster” and my laptop regularly bursts into flames from overuse.
Reactions to it have been, predictably, :/-y. “”Will.i.amsburg”: or The Day the New York Times Officially Became an Internet Troll” writes Brooklyn Magazine. “Oh no. It’s happening again. The New York Times is discovering that Brooklyn is a popular place, and it’s running trend pieces about how hipsters love the Williamsburg neighborhood therein,” facepalmed The Atlantic. “The New York Times Runs Out of Brooklyn Trends; Just Sending ‘Investigative Humorist’ to Mock Williamsburg Now,” reads The New York Observer‘s headline.
So what fresh coil of writhing worminess have they exposed from this clearly unturned stone of culture this time? Mostly jokes about what people are wearing and how they announce their individuality to the world. “You know you’re in hipster Brooklyn when someone who looks like a 19th-century farmer tells you that his line of work is ‘affinity marketing.'” begins Henry Alford, who goes on to describe the hippest hipster borough in all of Hipstopotamia as a “beehive of instrument-bearing musicians, nose-pierced locals, and twentysomethings who use the word ‘ridiculous’ in nonpejorative contexts.”
Alford’s mission—which, okay, let’s be honest, I would’ve taken this assignment myself, so who am I kidding here?—was, as he explains: “to see what sullen 25-year-old men had to tell me beyond ‘Leave me alone during this awkward period of beard growth.'”
So many more beard jokes follow. Soooo many beard jokes. “Ocean of beard” is kind of funny though, I have to give him that. Elsewhere, we learn hipsters like fixed-gear bicycles, kale, craft cocktails, and banjos. Scoops, all.
And then who knows what else, because I stopped reading it. Which is sort of a lie, because I’ve always already actually read this before. Is that irony? I’m told hipsters like that, although both of those words don’t really mean anything anymore, so I’m not even sure what I’m actually talking about.
Concludes Alford: “If every youth movement says as much about the status quo as it does about itself, then this new eco-conscious, agrarian-seeming, hair-celebrating nexus of locavorism is maybe telling us that the rest of us need to plunge our fingers into the rich loam of the earth, literally and metaphorically.”
Maybe we could start plowing the soil for new trend piece topics in the meantime?