Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Hip Question

-Facebook chat
-skinny jeans
-Adam Lambert
-one-of-a-kind threads
-acoustic guitar
-The Colbert Report
-going green
-Barack Obama
-Tower of Power

-Internet Explorer
-plaid shorts
-Clay Aiken
-clone clothes
-The O'Reilly Factor
-plastic bags
-Fox News
-the Church
-John McCain (c'mon, you knew it was coming)
-Huey Lewis and the News

Okay, so those last two on each list were kind of a joke. But still, this list was not at all easy, and it's mostly due to the phenomenon of the hipster. I don't know about you guys, but I find it completely bizarre that there is a subculture of people who all like the exact same things and dress the same way and make fun of other people for not being "scene", yet flip out if you give them a name and point out the fact that you've seen about five other people with the pair of Converse they have on. Now, I'm not bashing Converse, obviously, as I own a pair or two and wear them constantly. However, I am fully aware that my gray Converse sneakers were mass produced and that they sell them at Target (mostly because that's where I got mine, but that's beside the point); . It seems that nobody really likes hipsters (including hipsters, who don't want to realize that they follow a mass movement), but at the same time I think that if liking "hip" things qualifies one as a hipster, we all have one in us somewhere.

For me, the lines between "hip" and "square" get blurrier every day. The prevailing attitude that I gather from most of my peers is that individuality is cool, but if you look around, everyone tends to follow the same sorts of trends. From what I gather, the members of our "cool culture" are all a herd of followers who really just can't admit to our own conformity. So what does this say about coolness? Is it cooler to ignore the fact that we like being "hip" and keep on being the same while we pretend to be different, or should we preserve our cool by finding new, more individual tastes and interests? I propose a separate solution: how about we all just embrace our conformity? You like what you like, and if they happen to be the same "hip" things that all the other cool kids like, so be it, and if they happen to be super-dorky things that lots of people like but no one will admit to (I'm looking at you, Huey Lewis), then so be it. Maybe it really is hip to be square.

1 comment:

  1. This is a central problem for cool. While there is an individualism to it, it also is nurtured by subcultures and trends that eventually become mainstream because their more shallow parts seep into the rest of culture.