Friday, March 24, 2006

How I Accidentally Came To Be A Hippie/Beatnick/Hipster/Straight Edger


Most people think that I am consciously aware of my image and that I put it together in a very clever and devious way, but the truth is that almost of all of it is a combination of accident, convience and happen stance. I mentioned four labels above that have a tendency to overlap, but I think each deserves its own category.

Yes! I have dreadlocks I never planned on this happening, (and it is not some sort of tribute to Bob Marley) but it turns out swimming in the ocean and not combing your hair and hardly using conditioner will eventually create dreadlocks. In my case it was one massive dreadlock which looked really funny if you looked at the back of my head. Then one day because it was difficult to sleep with that big knot behind my head; it was cut up into three different dreadlocks and afterwards there was no turning back. Then; there is the matter of the beard that I often display. This is because I hate shaving; (not because I think it makes me look wise or hippie shiek for that matter) though if any attractive woman (who plans on sleeping with me) or anybody who is skilled at shaving is welcomed to shave me. I prefer electric shavers and don't always have access to them. Even my diet, (mostly vegan & organic) a fairly hippie thing is based on the simple fact that I merely stopped desiring to eat dairy and meat. I was also staying near a cheap Indian vegeterian buffet in NYC which made this a smooth transition for a big eater and many of the people I stayed with had a similar diet. I never did research on being mostly vegan & organic it just works for me, plus truthfully I am lactose intolerant and dairy was doing a number on my stomach and 2 bouts of food posioning in less then a 12 month period sealed the deal.

Now; the matter of me being a beatnick. I just don't want a job. I truly don't desire to have a job because I don't desire to have any stuff. And even though I don't buy any stuff people always give me free stuff all the time. I travel so frequently; partly as to not wear out my welcome, but mainly because I love adventure and I have met friends all over the country who I want to visit. With all the friends that I have made over the years I only make it to a fraction of the places that I am invited to visit; despite the many people that I do visit. I only read On The Road because about a hundred people I met along the way insisted that I read it. They said I was living a real beat existence, but for a very long time I had no idea of what a Beat was until someone informed me that I was indeed a beatnick and a hippie. I hang out coffee shops on occassion as well because they are warm and very beneficial on cold rainy days.

The hipster thing happened because I hung out in lower eastside, east village and Williamsburg for too long a period of time and ended up making friends with artists who had acrylic paints and we began to paint my clothes. This is now becoming a trend in more places around the country, but my first "major" introduction to it was when I took my pants off at a party in Williamsburg in Early May of 2005 and 5 artists went to town on them. This in conjunction with the rooftop parties, first warm weather party and a few other underground parties along the way. The fact that nobody could miss me on the L train with my large signs didn't hurt either. I was also walking up to 30 miles a day in Manhattan with my signs. All of this made me a Hipster. If half of all Hipsters can identify you; even if they don't like you or respect you; then you my friend are a hipster. I was in Williamsburg alot because my friends lived there and thats where the couches were for me to sleep on (not because I dug the image, but truthfully the image and mystic of the place started to grow on me). As a professional couch surfer I go where there are couches to surf.

Straight Edger
The final one of these is the fact that I am straight edge. For a long time people used to list a number of substances to me; and asked me if I used them and my anwser was no. They would then tell me I was "straight edge". I had never heard this term nor strived to be straight edge it was a combination of convience and accident once again. So instead of having people ask me all those questions anytime the topic came up I told them I was straight edge. Telling people that I did not do drugs never quite did the trick because they would still think that I would drink wine and smoke weed (Technically, I do sometimes consume Soy Mocha ice cream, but even that is rare these days). But to ensure that people understood; I would qualify that I was straight edge. I never liked the taste of alchool and I would rather be dancing (with free hands) then drinking I never smoked a cigarette because I loathe the way they smelled. Furthermore, I never thought I had a chance of fitting in, so I never even tried things due to peer pressure. I never smoked pot because I had never smoked a cigarette and the idea of smoking was a foreign idea to me. Plus everybody thought I was high or drunk to begin with (people would actually pester me for drugs or the whereabouts of drugs) and some people even thought I was holding out making them slightly annoyed or aggravated with me. Furthermore, there was never a religious, moral, or parental reason why I did not drink or use drugs. In fact my mother proclaimed that "I was dork" after she learned that I had graduated highschool without having smoked weed once. (she was hoping to have a bonding moment with me where I tell her I smoked weed and she tells me that she is cool with it and tells her stories involving smoking pot, unfortunately her straight edge son ruined this moment.). In regards to any other substances only excasty held some intrigue, but that was because Biggie told me X makes the sex spectacular. Only problem was that I was getting very much sex. At this point in time I am already too far gone and appearantly it gives me some weird "credibility". And credibility is what enables infilitration of the Edcuation (Yes I spelled it wrong accidentally but it seemed fitting) system.

So for anyone that did not know before, now you do. This is how I have come to be a Hippie/Beatnick/Hipster/Straight Edger. Yet despite the terms I use I still see myself as the somewhat preppy kid (with a tinge of flash) that I was in highschool and college. When people yell "You God Dammed Hippie" I still initally think they must be yelling at someone else. Yes, I know there is still the issue the whole "Jesus" thing which will have to be resolved for another day; and yes, that too is a story consisting of a bizarre combination of accident, convience, and happen stance. I did not choose intentionally to be a Hippie/Beatnick/Hipster/Straight Edger I just happen to be one.


Reverend Steve said...

It has been an interesting adventure watching you blossom, dude. Remember, you were once as J-Crew as I am... more, perhaps. (I think James inspired you more than you may think.)

Btw, I hope you never have to work a job. While I actually do like my job, it has made be lazy and complacent. I have decided to cease being complacent immediately...

Te'DeVan said...

I sometimes forget that guy used to be my best friend because he dropped of the face of the planet for a while. He certainly did have a big influence on me. He taught me to dream bigger and pursue love of any lady with reckless abandon even if you were wrong. Better to be wrong then sitting on the bench. I still hope greatly that he wakes up one day and becomes that amazing kid that was living on my couch in Ann Arbor.

And yes it is true I was more J crew then you. Heck James is more J crew then me though he dresses more like an expensive hipster. If you speak to him tell him I still believe in him and that he has inspired me alot to do what I am doing.

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