I was 15 years old when I encountered my first hipster in the wild. Admittedly, it was a confusing sight. He was paused at a stoplight on a fixed-wheel bike, V-necked, skinny-jeaned and hosting enough bright plumage to make the average female peahen go, “Skah ah ah ah!” I didn’t understand what could drive a perfectly sane human being to dress in such a manner.
It’s taken a few years, but I finally understand. I’ve even come to look a thing or two like that anonymous hipster. Believe me, it’s not something I actively sought. Had you told me six years ago I’d end up like that guy, I would have said you’re nuts and swiftly returned to watching music videos on FUSE.
But after years of oppression for wearing junk-cradling pants and chest hair-exposing shirts, I’m finally confident enough to admit something I should have eons ago: I’m a hipster. And friends, it’s not so bad.
If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve already noticed the glaring roots of hipsterhood. It begins when someone compliments your obscure taste of music. “Arcade Fire?” you ask oh so nonchalantly. “Yeah, they’re cool. Their (insert never-heard-of b-side album here) is better though.” It’s at that moment of cherished pretentiousness it begins: the backward slide into the hipster deep. You’ll spend dark nights searching dingy, dark-alleyed avenues of the Internet for music written by one-hit wonders and small-town musicians. Shirts featuring witty band names become a prized but common staple of your wardrobe. And though you’d like to pretend the stray “Hey, I like that song. Who’s it by?” doesn’t mean much, you inwardly hold on to that feeling like Smeagol clutches his precious ring.
Then it will start to influence your style. It might begin with a sweet pair of woolen socks you’d like to show off, or a pair of pants you bought that are meant for someone three inches taller. “No harm in a little cuffing,” you’d probably think. But it’s only a matter of time before you’ll start buying pairs of V-neck shirts and cardigans “for the ventilation.” Inevitably, it’ll lead to one thing: skinny jeans.
You’re likely wondering what would cause a grown, dignified man to purchase such pants. Sure, they keep the family marbles toasty and in working order, but there’s really only one reason why guys would wear something that prevents them from being able to pick up their favorite Kurt Vonnegut novel off the ground: Ass-entuation — or ass accentuation for the layman. I’m not proud of this fact, but hear this, nonbelievers: Don’t think for a second we’re the only ones looking at the nether (nether) regions of the opposite sex.
Believe it or not, wearing those clothes will influence your attraction to the female folk. “Normal” girls won’t cut it anymore. Chances are, you’ll start dating girls who look anywhere in the wide aesthetic range between Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel. Bonus points if they play music and wear thick black-framed glasses.
Of course, buying nut-hugging jeans from stores blasting music from your favorite body part (The Shins, the Head and the Heart, The Flaming Lips — take your pick) and dating indie girls will take a toll on your wallet. When you see your crippled bank statement, you will weep silently into your eco-friendly OBEY T-shirt. You’ll have less money to spend going out, but the need to satisfy that ravenous compliment-receiving itch will continue. Sometime between updating your Pinterest account and FourSquaring the particularly hipster-ridden drinkery you’re at one night, you’ll notice a smeared, chalk-written add-on at the bottom of the beer list: Pabst Blue Ribbon. Friends, a warning — if you make it this far, you’re never going back.