I. AN UNWARRANTED ATTACK ON THE FELLOWSHIP
Long ago, last August, I valiantly journeyed into the dark nether-realm of the Twitter kingdom. While there, I attempted to engage in the repartee being held amongst the various scribes, wizards and virtuosos of modern lore. In my attempts, I came across a brash, red-haired, fair-skinned maiden who, by no sarcastic intent of her own, had admonished her fellow wordsmiths on the proper use of the King’s English, all the while using it incorrectly herself. Normally, I would turn a blind eye to a gesture of this caliber but, alas, the hypocrisy of preaching to the masses while ignoring her own advisement lured me in to politely call attention to the humorous blunder. Little did I know of the aftermath that my friendly instruction would bring upon myself and those dear to me.
In what seemed to be only sparse grains of sand through my hourglass, a full-fledged verbal attack of my own character and that of my trusty colleague, Eric Thomas Craven, had begun. Oddly enough, this attack was not perpetrated by the original syntax scholar herself. Instead, it was the stratagem of a creature that I had encountered before in my adventures, though only for a brief period, that had remained in my memories as one of the most slimy and bitter fiends that I had ever had the displeasure of rubbing eyeballs with. I pictured it as I last saw it; adorned in yesterdays’ pajamas with an unkempt nest of greasy seaweed pouring down its’ begrimed features; smoking compacted herbs contained within a papyrus shell as its’ offspring slept in the next room; intentionally referring to me as “that guy in that band” (as to mock some delusion that it mistakenly figured I had of myself) amongst other “Juno-esque” witticisms. I was also reminded of tales that other villagers had bestowed unto me regarding this dastardly miscreation. These consisted of such evils as the blatant and pathetic act of coin thievery from former bunk-mates and dwelling, recklessly, in territories (with its’ child in tow) frequently occupied by random drug addicts and other undesirables. “What self-righteous audacity?” I thought to myself as I witnessed how the Almosttiffany (that’s the moniker that the creature chooses to go by) declared that I was a 30-year-old loser, going nowhere and doing nothing with my life. It went on to proclaim that I was a drunkard, announced my good friend, ETC, as “that guy that makes poop videos” and informed me that that’s all either of us would ever amount to be. These seemed more like ill-perceived observations than the intended insults it had hoped to deliver. I giggled as I pictured this thing (that could maybe be considered ALMOST HUMAN) sitting in its’ flimsy, glass hut, attempting to chuck boulders at us and coming up with only pebbles, all in an effort to defend its BFF’s failure at cleverness. Needless to say, I sheathed my half-drawn Sword of Rebuttal and decided to take a more rational stab at defending myself.
II. DEFENDING THE KINGDOM
After momentarily contemplating the creature’s attempts at belittling us, I sent a messenger pigeon to ETC informing him of the things’ slanderous venture. I knew that shortly he would arrive to assist me in my newfound quest to clear our quasi-sullied names. In the meantime, I felt it was my duty to proceed with debating the creature’s baffling opinion. “What great feats will you have accomplished by the ripe age of thirty?” I solicited the thing. It was then that the creature laughably informed me that it already had obtained a more fulfilling existence than I by accidentally concieving, birthing and actually taking responsibility for its brood. Call me deranged, but I failed to see any logic in this theory. It then proceeded to boast of a magical ring that it had recently acquired from a seafaring voyager. It planned to use this ring to navigate itself and child to the distant and remarkable land of San Diego, where upon its’ arrival it would be made Queen by this naval nincompoop. Meanwhile, ETC and myself would be left here in the menial trenches of Horseheads to rot with the other local underlings. I chuckled at its’ naive chicanery. Having had my own exploits into the western regions end in eventual homecomings, I knew this monster couldn’t possibly obtain the crown out there. Furthermore, having served temporarily in the King’s Air Force, I was well aware of the uncontrollable desires that burn within the loins of young sailors and soldiers and how it usually leads to infidelity during their war-time absences. It was obvious, from my standpoint, that the creatures’ best laid plans would shortly blow up in its’ hideous face. I attempted to explain to the creature that life can and will change in an instant, with or without its’ discretion, and it too would most-likely end up a “loser” similar to the one that I apparently was. The creatures’ gargantuan pride had my warning fall upon deaf ears, but as the great book of fairy tales tells us, “pride comes before the fall”. Obviously, I didn’t need an enchanted ring to see her future.
It was around this point that my companion ETC arrived on the scene. Having also encountered the beast before, under different circumstances, he was well aware of its’ wicked ways. His appearance was conjoined with a verbal, long-sword onslaught of ridicule angled at the demon. It seemed to have no effect on the slimy things’ pride but did manage to sway it to retreat back to the murky burrow from where it had emerged, but not before it exclaimed one final and confusing allegation. My ever-fading memory robs me of the exact statement, but within it, my not-so-humble accomplice and I were refered to as “the oldest hipsters in Horseheads”. Then, as expeditiously as the creature appeared, it vanished. ETC and I were left, confused and somewhat feeling robbed of a victory. In both of our minds, the same catechism loomed: what the fuck was a hipster???
III. A QUEST FOR THE ANSWER
Having temporarily vanquished the Almosttiffany, my compatriot and I decided to adopt a new mission. We were to get to the bottom of this strange language that the creature heckled us with before its’ departure. Was the term “hipster” some accursed slang that meant certain doom for the both of us? I had heard of a Toddster before. Many of my tipsy evenings at the local tavern had been spent having my beverages prepared by one, but this new vernacular had both of us completely stumped. Fearing, at worst, our inevitable demise, we decided to consult the great and wise Wikipedia, a knowledgeable yet sometimes misinformed Elder who lived on the far side of the Wikimedia Forest. Surely, he would have an answer for us.
After venturing through the Bogs of Google News and stopping for a moment to visit some mutual friends that seemed very self-absorbed (just chattering away about all of their personal problems and tedious daily agendas) in the Facebook Meadows, we arrived at the shadowy threshold of the Wikimedia Forest. It was shortly thereafter that we were able to find Wikipedia and pose our curious inquisition. “Wikipedia, we so gratefully beg of thee… what is a hipster?” ETC bravely asked the astute being. We waited patiently for a reply. Suddenly, the wise one spoke. “Hipster is a term frequently used to refer to a subculture of young, recently settled urban middle class adults and older teenagers. Usage of the term reappeared in the 1990s and persists to the present. The subculture is associated with independent music, a varied non-mainstream fashion sensibility, and alternative lifestyles. Interests in media would include independent film, magazines such as Vice and Clash, and websites like Pitchfork Media.” ETC and I looked at each other. “Oh” we gasped,”That’s all?” With a sensation of disappointment, we started to walk away. Abruptly, I turned back toward the genius to ask one more thing. “Wikipedia, why is the term “hipster” used as a derogatory categorization?” I yelped. “It’s the same as any other classification, young and handsome Tony Shaddock.” he replied,”The term was created by some idiot that couldn’t understand certain aspects of people’s behavior, lifestyle, appearance or interests. Much like when people use such terms as nigger, faggot and retard, just not as severely degrading. Sometimes it’s easier for simple-minded people to label anyone different from them into a ridiculous generalization. In the case of hipster, it’s usually folks who think they are “in the know” about everything regarding counter-culture modus vivendi but somehow, at the same time, believe that they don’t fall into that synonymous stereotype. It’s actually so stupid and contradicting that I don’t feel like wasting any more of my time discussing it with you and your stunning and brilliant partner, ETC.” Feeling rather annoying, we turned and walked away, both yelling back a simultaneous “Thank you, Wikipedia!!” before finally losing sight of the old stump of knowledge.
IV. THE JOURNEY HOME
On our homeward bound travels, ETC and I discussed what we had learned from our experience that day. “Remember how as children we would refer to our more pretentious peers as “posers” and sometimes the older chaps would do the same to us?” I queried my friend. “Indeed I do, Anthony. Indeed I do.” he smirked. “Well, isn’t that the same type of simple-minded taunting that was so imprudently sighted on us today? Only reversed in the sense that nowadays it’s apparently wrong to care about the art, culture and lifestyle we’ve always enjoyed, whereas formerly we’d be the ones mocking those who don’t get it but thought that they actually did?” I suggested. “Exactly, ol’ chum. But, you needn’t worry of such silliness. We were but witless lads then. Now, as grown adventurers, we are beyond lowering ourselves to such squalid levels of convention. Besides, we’re too busy guzzling hootch and filming excrement to be troubling ourselves with such youthful name-calling.” he assured me. “Even with Gingers?” I pried. “Have you forgotten, brother? I AM part Ginger!” he exclaimed. “Oh…yeah”, I shamefully replied “I forgot. Sorry.” There was a brief moment of awkward laconism. ETC slowly drew out his hand. I thought for a moment that he would maybe slap me. “My hipsta?” he invited. Cautiously, I moved my paw toward his. “MY hipsta!” I proudly exclaimed as our phalanges met in a humiliating, white-boy version of dap. We kept our hands tightly fastened and continued on, merrily skipping together all the way home.
That evening, upon my return, I happened upon a message from the Almosttiffany while trifling through my daily correspondence. It offered a back-handed apology for its insulting behavior, which to me seemed “too little, too late”. I had nothing good to say to or about the hellish being. I now saw it for what it was: a holier-than-thou half-wit with nothing better to do than attack innocent citizens of the social networking cyberworld that we all inhabit, in some vain attempt to either entertain itself or make itself feel better regarding its own mundane and pointless existence. This fact alone made me feel more confident and complete in my own routine permanence. I spent the remainder of the evening indulging in hard drink and pondering whether or not enough time had passed since Tolkien bit the dust. Would it be “hipster cool” for me to cheaply rip off his creations for the sake of a poorly-written article on a website dedicated to poop, barf and dicks??
V. A CONCLUSION
Eventually, the Almosttiffany embarked on that vocation to the great and wonderful land of San Diego. From what I gather, it never attained the position of royalty that it so confidently boasted of. Storytellers say it couldn’t even handle a mindless sandwich-slinging position at the big-city, corporate hoagie-house and soon grew to regret its decision to migrate west. Eventually, they tell, the sailor reclaimed the precious golden band that he’d placed on the calloused finger of the creature, thus exiling it back to our parochial locale. I have not endured the vexation of sighting the beast since it’s return nor do I wish to. I do, however, hope that eventually the creature took something positive or insightful away from our quarrelsome encounter, as ETC and myself did. Ah, who am I kidding? I hope that pious hag gets ringworm.