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- Image via The Pub Scout
I was enjoying the company of a few friends at an outdoor movie the other night. It’s not my go-to for a Wednesday night out, but it happened to be a really nice evening. Plus, the movie was Back to the Future and there was booze for sale so I was on board. As we spread our blankets down onto the lawn of The Long Center, I had my first realization of just how diverse Austin actually is since I had moved here from central Florida. There were your run of the mill people like me — traditionally dressed, conservative, and not too overstated, but then there were others. From parents, to college students, to hippies, there were plenty of different demographics that were all simply enjoying a great movie in an amazing place. Then, there were the hipsters to my left.
Equipped with a monotonous drone and apathy towards anything others might find enjoyable, these two hipsters literally rambled and ranted through the entire movie on topics your typical hipster stereotype usually does.
“The music scene here is just so bleak now-a-days.”
“I would be more interested in her, but she has too many yuppie friends.”
“This world is just filled with sheeple. Everyone needs to wake up.”
Never in my entire life would I have thought I could be pissed off while watching a DeLorean travel through fucking time, but there I was. Drink in hand, mad, and in total disbelief of the people sitting next to me. I started to question why the hell anyone would go anywhere if they were just going to be miserable through the entire experience? Perhaps they found the idea of watching a movie from 30 years ago (holy shit) to be ironic in that special way hipsters misunderstand irony? Maybe they wanted to get some fodder for their never-read poetry by looking out on all the “conformity” that happens when people are all happy in the same place? Why do I think they attended the event? I think they keyed in on the fact that people are generally quiet at movies, and for the first time in their lives people would be forced to actually hear their opinions whether they liked it or not.
The amount of angst these men, that I am assuming were my age or older, had towards anything and everything for a solid two hours was incomprehensible. It truly made me wonder how someone could have the effort to be pissy for so long. Then it dawned on me; they had to be.
Consider the hipster’s manifesto on society. Anything that becomes popular is a result of consumerism, and therefore trash. People that enjoy these things are so cleverly dubbed by the hipsters as “sheeple” because they believe they must follow a herd mentality in order to feel comfortable. Then there’s the kicker — the hipster rejects the “mainstream” in order to embrace their true “individuality.” However, there is a deep underlying flaw with this method of becoming an “individual,” because it actually doesn’t provide them with the end they are trying to achieve.
Instead of making the effort to fill their lives with aspects of society and culture that actually interest them, hipsters dedicate their time to being contrary of the mainstream things that they hate. What’s hilarious about this is that in order to consistently oppose the mainstream, you have to constantly assess what is or isn’t popular. This lifestyle doesn’t lead to individualism; it leads to becoming a husk of an actual person devoid of any real contribution to society.
Because hipsters have spent all of their time worrying about what may or may not be mainstream, they haven’t found anything that actually defines them. Even though I don’t think they realize it, they cope with this lack of personal definition being a contrarian provides them by filling the void with a commentary of resent towards the world.
It’s the story of the heckler. The hipster is the guy who can’t seem to grasp why everyone else is enjoying a show he absolutely hates. Instead of just letting everyone else have a good time as he waits for the next act, he feels the need to ruin the moment by making his two cents heard. Except in the hipsters’ case, the act they hate is life, and the whole world wants them to shut the fuck up so we can go on enjoying it.
All of this has culminated to hipsters becoming the exact opposite of what they wanted. They all dress the same, have the same fucking opinions, and only take the world at face value. Now isn’t that fucking ironic?