Words @ War: Battle of the Hipsters

Poor excuse to pretend to be poor

It’s 1992. I’m in kindergarten, being teased mercilessly for my over-sized, falling off my nose, gaudy pink glasses that make my eyes look like saucers and put the kid from “Simon Birch” to shame.

Those glasses were a part of me; they were my identity until I was in middle school when my family finally had the money and insurance to get me a pair of wire-frame glasses and eventually contacts.

Skip forward 21 years—those gaudy, over-sized plastic magnifiers are everywhere, being worn by people who actually choose to wear them over something more practical. Retrospectively, I should be happy I was 20 years ahead of fashion. But truthfully, I’m irate that a bunch of snooty brats found one more thing from my past and stole it.

That’s not the only thing they’ve stolen, either. Most of the stuff I have been doing for years out of poverty is now under the umbrella of a fad known as being “hipster.”

You’ve seen them on campus and in cities, and they’re spreading faster than rats in the sewers of New York with their shaggy ‘I-paid-too-much-to-look-this-injudicious’ clothing and ‘have-you-heard-this-no-name-band-yet?’ attitude. They walk around with their thick-rimmed glasses, held up by their noses which are stuck straight up in the air, and will actually drink PBR over another choice of beer if given the chance.

Of all of the fads around right now, this one by far causes me to become most annoyed, even more so than leggings being worn as pants. And it’s all due to the fact that the persons propagating this fad know nothing about what they’re doing; they’re just doing it for attention and to look cool.

Fact: I have a record collection of over 800 albums, 33s, 78s, and 45s. I also have cassettes. I have very few CDs or Mp3s. I don’t have the money to buy the latter two, nor have I had a vehicle that plays them. Cassettes work in my truck, and I can pick up great music at a bargain in vinyl form from yard sales.

Fact: I have two typewriters. You may have seen the oldest one in a column earlier this year. I have them because computers are expensive and we didn’t have one in my household until I was in high school. I had to actually type or write reports long-hand until then.

Fact: I wear high-prescription glasses (+4.50 for all you optometry students, it was +6.50-7.00 in 1992). The lenses alone cost a small fortune, the frames were an after-thought and in 1992 my choice of frames were either pink or brown, no wired frames, no light-weight carbon fibers or comfort fits.

Fact: I know no-name bands because I couldn’t afford to go to big-name concerts. At upwards of $60 a ticket, I still can’t. I’d rather support local music than some idiot who made it big by beating a xylophone to the pattern of “knick-nack patty whack” while screaming about an ex-girlfriend (on a side note, Goyte is a decent artist).

Fact: Paying to look like you’re a poor bum who can’t afford a haircut or a decent pair of pants is counter-productive. I’ve been shopping Goodwill long before Macklemore and Ryan Lewis deemed it cool. I’m not going to pay $75 for a pair of jeans with pre-ripped holes when I can get, for $5, a pair of respectable trousers from a thrift shop.

Fact: Being hipster is just a fad—a stupid, stupid fad that serves only to rob idiots of their money through vinyl records sold at Hot Topic instead of legitimate record stores like Vertigo in Grand Rapids. It shows how easy it is to goad the masses with trendy products.

In conclusion, if you’re choosing to be poor, you’ve got a strange and perverse look on life. Get out of my closet, stop robbing my past and please, stop being a poser.