Nerds wear glasses wether you’re in Sydney or Seoul, rich kids from Boston have the same Jimmy Choos as rich kids from Berlin, stoners the world over move more with their eyebrows than they do with their actual bodies, and young mums are always either extremely pink and ‘yummy’ or extremely grey and ‘yucky’. We have stereotypes.
I am aware that this particular group of social goons is possibly one of the most controversial out there, and we very much love to stereotype them don’t we?
What even is a hipster to begin with? I’ll admit I’m not that sure. And yes, you’re right, I chose to write about them for exactly that reason!
But I do have some valid points.
You see, here in Saigon there are an awful lot of hipsters…and they are the exact same slightly snobbish material statements as the hipsters back in Sydney. Let me tell you more…
1. Hipsters all wear hats
Or glasses. Or jackets, or just something that screams ‘hello I am subtly different to you because I am wearing this statement on my head/face/shoulders so be impressed thank you so much!’
2. Hipsters never eat normally
In Sydney it’s the triple decaf cream tickled double shot latte without the ‘te’ please at the cafe with no lighting and low tables, the organic quiche instead of that horribly mainstream sandwich, the home-brew or choice red wine in place of that mass produced (and un-deniably delicious) Heineken. And the bars themselves? Only if it’s old, sells a lot of whiskey or is completely secret.
From my experience the cool, financially endowed and stylish of Saigon also tend to drink exclusively at boutique cafes and underground bars. They tend to prefer western food to widely available Vietnamese delicacies and like to take a lot of photos of themselves being incredibly individual and post them on Facebook. Wait, let me take a selfie…
3. Hipsters look funny
They always stick their butts out, or slope their shoulders. Either or. Ahh actually it’s usually the slump thing, at least here in Saigon. You get your occasional butt lover who whacks out his rear like he’s trying to morph into a duck, but the majority of indie ladies and gents like to hide under their gorgeous black hair.
Vietnamese locks are luscious, usually long and quite thick, and when combined with a generous gate-coat or jacket, big styled boots and the token hat or glasses, they form the perfect curtain behind which the Ho Chi Minh Hipster can pretend to be subtle.
4. Hipsters take selfies
So there was a time when I thought being hipster meant being quiet, studious and stubbornly anti-mass-media. But then, if that’s the case, why are there so many hipsters pouting on my news feed…. Maybe they’re not real hipsters. Maybe?
But as I mentioned above, here in Saigon (and believe me it was the same in Sydney), if you are an indie lady or a trendy man you will make sure everyone knows about it. OMG, look at me I’m in that cafe that no-one knows about again. And OMG I totally didn’t just say OMG because it’s so mainstream, but I totally thought it and you totally knew that I was implying it…
5. Everyone wants to be a hipster
Okkkk I guess this is a product of the indie selfie invasion into social media that I mentioned above, but just be honest – you wish you could wear that hat too. Those sunnies are way too out there for you, but to be honest you’d just love them on your nose. Those boots? Haha how impractical! Right? Well…
The world over, everyone wants to be stylishly secure. But the ironic thing is that hipsters, for all their defiance and careful individuality, are probably less secure than us…
6. Everyone doesn’t want to be a hipster
Therefore, everyone actually doesn’t want to be a hipster. I don’t want to hide behind my hair, wear so many pieces of unique, boutique material that you can’t see my absolutely fabulous hips, or eat only the weirdest of things even though I just want a plain old sandwich! I will deal with my insecurity and identity questions not by covering up, but by expressing them…
7. Hipsters have a lot of paper
And a lot of pens, or pacers if you’re a true indie devotee. They write a lot. They read a lot, and draw a lot, and then spend a while thinking about what they’ve just written or drawn or read. Or maybe they just pretend it all. Maybe they’re really daydreaming about pink Target socks and Macdonalds chips…
8. Hipsters are loudly quiet
We’ve covered the silence of the average adult hipster, but have we covered their extreme volume? Hipsters are loud! They may say one word to your every sentence and look consistently pensive, but these very things are possibly the loudest and most obnoxious statements in existence!! The very fact that you look troubled and mysterious and haven’t used your voice in 4 years shouts a big fat ‘NOTICE ME’, my dear. Now take off you beanie and start being sensible…
9. Hipsters drink beer
I drink beer too. Ok let’s be honest everyone drinks beer. It’s a nice thing, beer drinking. And I guess this is a sympathy section for those poor hipsters that I’ve been strategically tearing apart these past few minutes. Don’t get me wrong! You’re a human too, and we can bond over beer. Let’s do it, I’ll get this round, you can buy us both peanuts (or organic almonds if you’d prefer) and we’ll sit down and discuss life…
Let me end this post with a bit of a reality check: I am a stereotype too. I, ladies and gentlemen, am a ‘Zebra’.
I was a tomboy in my early years, at school I was the token weirdo – that one strange child who preferred to play with her imaginary pet penguin than eat lunch in the playground, in high-school I was a proud nerd – I didn’t wear glasses but I was stick thin, shy, perpetually studying and oddly devoid of any sexual appeal.
Finally, when I graduated I had an identity crisis. I went to uni for a bit, travelled, worked, dropped out of life, got very sick, got very healthy and finally left it all to travel. I am a zebra among horses, a travelling weirdo, and I am just as much a stereotype as any hipster, religious believer, badass, nerd or yummy mummy. And even as I tease the indie souls of this world here, on my blog, I know that someone, somewhere, is making fun of me…
But I don’t care, because variation really is the spice of life.