Hipsterism

The idea here is to provide a working definition of my nemesis, the hipster.  But first some fun:  the other day, Dave Polak somehow got me to dress up as an ironist, ironically.  It's self-referential enough to make my head spin. 

Dave had been accused on Twitter of being a hipster, which he isn't, but he went with it and held a Hipster Funeral Party at the Happy Dog in Ohio City.  Apparently at least one person was convinced he was dead.  The party was a good time.  Dave set up Hipster Bingo cards so everyone was scanning the bar crowd for facial hair, trucker hats, and classic videogame T-shirts.  Happy Dog is one of my after-work stops where I'll get food before moving on to an evening event, and I've never been disappointed there.  I ate and drank there from 5:30 to 10:30, listened to two live bands, and somehow my bill was still under $40.
Why would Dave deny being a hipster, and why would we go to a bar to make fun of them?  Because hipsters make people miserable.  They're one of my touchstones for toxic habits.  I realize that not everybody gets the scope of the label, though, so here I'll try to explain what I mean.
The hipster archetype is Jack Black's character in High Fidelity.  He played a record store clerk who openly mocked his customers.  Staggeringly judgemental, he would happily tell someone that their favorite band sucks--and exactly why and how they suck--not caring that it hurts them and makes them hate him.  Music hipsters claim to be music fans but the truth is that they only like a few albums by a few artists and hate everything else.  Nothing is ever good enough for them.

Hipsterism extends far beyond music.  The syndrome's main components are (1) professing to have tastes too elevated to enjoy the things most people like; and (2) open disrespect for anyone who lacks (1).  This manifests itself as an irony-drenched existence.  The webcomic Cat And Girl once made the point that hipster fashion uses the tropes of 1970s males - trucker hats, PBR beer, ringneck tees, etc.  Originally, all this was authentic, but when recycled by hipsters, it becomes jeeringly ironic.  They'll make fun of any authenticity.  

Another manifestation is that hipsters overwhelmingly define themselves negatively.  When stating an opinion, it's usually "I dislike X" rather than "I like Y".  At its root, this is a fear of standing in favor of something, of having to defend something.  It's weakness.  This is why I've said that when Cleveland natives trash-talk their own town and expect nothing good to come of it, it's toxic hipster bullshit.

Being a hipster means you're never disappointed, because your expectations are rock bottom.  But you're joyless, and a buzzkill to everyone around you.

These, then, are people to avoid.  Instead, lead by example.  Be authentic, ingenuous, sincere.  Seek joy and encourage others to do the same.  Never mind the bollocks!