The cultured teenager

the best of literature, film and music, shown through my rather short-sighted eyes

Monthly Archives: April 2012

Mass Hipsteria

Okay, I may not be the fountain of all knowledge, but logic is against hipsters; how can it possible to be ‘cool’ by specifically doing things which are considered not ‘cool’. Wearing unfashionable clothes, listening to obscure music and wearing comically large glasses. This is, from what I have judged, the Hipster ideology, and well, for the first two rules, I conform to this and am therefore accused as being a Hipster. My friends call me a Hipster, but, although I am not one, as I never really make much more than a half-arsed attempt to look cool, because if you knew me, it would be clear that any attempt would be futile, I don’t have an issue with the ideology. Take listening to ‘non-mainstream’ music for example; I do listen to music which isn’t popular in the vast majority, but this isn’t some egocentric quest for people to think I’m cool by listening to Mystery Jets, but mostly because what I like just happens to be unpopular. I have a clear cut opinion of the music I like and the music I hate, and the average person seems to like what’s in the hate pile, but every now and again things cross over. For example, some of my favourite bands, Muse, Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian, The Black Keys, Radiohead, The Beatles, The Foo Fighters, are undeniably popular, but I would never consider not listening to them for that reason. I like Hipsterish music and unhipsterish music, which in turn makes me more unmainstream than Hipsters themselves achieve, through my ability to have an individual taste of music and opinion.

Just as much as I think popular music is, in the most part, less enjoyable to listen to than a recording of KFC’s most ardent customers emptying their bowels, I would say this about most popular culture in general. Popular fashion is similarly something I would never consider forcing myself to adhere to, but I am not trying to make a fashion statement by wearing unfashionable clothes to look cool, because what I wear is just what happens to have come into my possession after I have a poke around what has had the biggest price cut in the sales and contemplate whether or not I would give a crap if someone saw me wearing it. Yes, my clothes don’t look vulgar, but my aim is just to look relatively normal, not better than normal and not to look as though couldn’t give a toss, but just to fit in. But that is the issue with Hipsters, there aim isn’t to fit in, but to stand out, like a sore thumb in pastel coloured skinny chinos and espadrilles, and this is where the ideology collapses. If you are not doing what is popular, you should be doing that for yourself, because you enjoy other stuff, but not to make a point, because then when there seems to be someone stood around every corner doing exactly the same thing, with their floppy hair and large glasses, the word ‘mainstream’ just becomes reinvented, starting a new cycle of avoiding what is commonly considered cool. You are either cool or uncool, or somewhere in between, but you cannot be both, so just accept it, and allow me to listen Foals and watch foreign language films without people judging me for doing so. Regards 🙂