I think it might be time to accept a few sad facts. There is one thing I really can’t accept about myself, but it might be time to face facts. It is not that I am short. It is not that wearing make up or nail polish makes me want to puke. It is not that I am a lesbian. It is not even that I am ultimately doomed, and this is merely a respite, a little time with the kid. I am not sure I’ll ever truly give up that fight and admit defeat. No. It is far more serious than that. You won’t believe it guys. It is truly shocking. Here goes:
I am a hipster.
It’s true. I can’t deny it any longer. I am a living, walking, talking example of one of those ‘you might be a (insert category of choice) if…’ comedy skits, but I ain’t no redneck, despite being poor, white, trailer trash at heart. You see I might be trailer trash, but my ‘trailer’ will always have a sound system, a patchwork blanket so old it is an antique, and a few cute postcards stuck on the cork pinboard, advertising the Moulin Rouge, or showing scenes from an Edward Hopper painting. I might be a hipster…
The cupboards in my trailer will be full of books on everything from punk to communism, from Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, to some rock biography or other. Of course, living on the road, my friend, might keep ya free and if not clean, but the least I could try and do is at least be stylishly grubby.
Even out there, in the big beyond, you would hear The Velvet Underground blasting out from my guitar or else speakers if I had the power and a working CD player. I played The Mekons and Royal Trux to chipmunks and gophers on the midwest prairies, whilst customizing my own tee shirts with sharpie pens and a pair of blunt scissors.
Of course things are somewhat more genteel nowadays. I am writing this from my desk in my sweet little apartment in the tough part of the city. To my left is my sweet little garden with the cactuses and bamboo that I have been cultivating since I moved in. To my right is a copy of Carlos Castenada. I am wearing my Davie Bowie tee shirt and my skinny black gap jeans with my terfy Joan of Arc Bangs, and my raspberry colored home highlights.
I am unreasonably obsessed with my vans, and went into paroxyms of delight at the Daniel Johnston designs that just came out. All this aside it never occurred to me, sitting here drinking ice elderflower tea out of a mason jar, that I am a hipster. It never even passed through my mind that I was not merely kinda cool or quirky, but that I was a full on hipster. One moment, I just need to turn Miles Davis down a little, it is a bit early for me to be playing Bitches Brew this loudly…I was just writing a little piece about the upside of anarchy, and how I take more than a little pride in being totally apolitical. I’m not too good for politics, they are just too bad for me. I have other things on my mind, like whether I can get my African Violet to reflower, and if I could possibly get a tattoo of the Velvet Underground’s Loaded album cover on my arm at some point despite my lack of ID. I would settle for some house plant related flash. Somehow my un-inked skin seems a little blank, like I am letting the side down or something.
I decided that I had to know for sure. When I have mentioned the disturbing possibility that I am a bit of a hipster, to anyone I know, their reaction has been one of utter incredulity that I am not aware of my hip-uber-alles status.
Here are the facts.
- Andy Warhol is my favorite artist of all time. If it wasn’t for Andy there would have been no Velvets. The fact he brought in Nico for the first album, despite Lou’s alleged sulking at her inability to hold a tune without being smack-ily flat, was the mark of a pure and rare genius. Banana. Peel it and see. It speaks to the soul.
- I don’t care for kombucha because I am not a millennial. I do, however, own an ironically flowery teapot and only drink tea, with plant milk…because..did I tell you I’m a vegan?
- Fuck Wes Anderson. I don’t feel the need to prove my good taste by watching The Grand Budapest Hotel. I do, however, tend to watch arthouse, subtitles never dub, darling, and will happily debate anyone on the utter doomed stupidity of live action anime adaptations. They are wrong. The end. I am right. Trust me. Especially Death Note.
- I am not a hipster because none of this is a pose. I regularly listen to European Son, and don’t skip it. I adore The Mekons and Royal Trux. I detest Neutral Milk Hotel and God Speed Black Emperor shite. I like what I like and I don’t like what I don’t. To that end I will never be ashamed of saying I prefer Pablo Honey to In Rainbows. I just have eclectic taste. Besides, Radiohead’s In Rainbows has become far too popular for my liking.
- Yes, yes, I have a little bit of a quirky sense of style. I like to call it ‘possible apocalypse dressing’. I will not be hobbled by stupid high heels, unstable footwear without toe protection. I will never be seen without a baseball hat at least on my person, or a sturdy denim jacket. OK, so I customized the jacket with Japanese embroidery…and I might own a few too many amusing pins. Does this really make me a hipster.
- Who would drink bog standard anything when they could have a nice craft beer/coffee/cordial? That is not hipster, it is just not losing the will to live. That said, there is nothing wrong with slumming it. Mc’D’s make the best take out coffee in the USA.
- Yes, yes I like thrift stores. I saw a beautiful designer (Avec Les Filles, darling) jacket in a local one. Double breasted. Would look great with a tie and button down shirt and ubiquitous black jeans. It was still $200. Thrift stores were ruined by actual hipsters who can afford to buy new. But of course that is not so environmentally friendly.
- I live in vintage band tees. Or modern facsimiles of them. It makes me happy. It is my uniform.
- As for jeans, I cut mine. Never fold or neatly shorten. The edges have to be raggedy.
- I write poetry and have a blog.
- I considered it almost the ultimate luxury when I got a Loungefly wallet for Christmas. It is the Alice in Wonderland one.
- I adore beat poetry. Most of my friends have curiously colored hair or very impressive beards.
- Of course vinyl is better. Lethally so. It is also too expensive, so no record player here. That fact sometimes makes me cry. Victrola fangrrrl 4eva
- If you are too correct I won’t hang with you. You gotta go with the flow.
- My signed copy of The Great Shark Hunt by Hunter S Thompson is the material possession that brings me the most joy.
- My guitar is not a material possession. It is part of my soul.
- Big Thief are the only modern band that matters. Everything else is vaguely or completely shite. Adrienne Lenker is a Goddess. So there. I said it.
- Using strange things as guitar picks or drumsticks is creativity in getting a good sound, an interesting sound. That isn’t hip. It is art.
- Art is everything. Creativity is God.
I think it might be too late for me. I am doomed to live my life out as a hipster, sitting in my favorite chair in Cafe Vesuvio, with a fucking sprite (that I can’t even drink because allergies), instead of a double cognac and ice, reading a copy of something obscure by Jim Carroll, and jotting ideas in my poetry sketches book. I can hear the call of the wild ones on the road. What can I say….What is wrong with being a hipster anyway, just as long as you are sincere and know what the fuck you are talking about, I suppose….