Last year, Fred (who owns a record store downtown) had a yard sale. We were excited because, as you may have guessed, we are huge record collectors and were looking forward to raiding his collection.
We arrived at his place, which basically consisted of a huge studio-type room filled with various cameras, instruments, recording equipment, posters, records, magazines and other hipster "vintage" things. Thomas and I delved in, each taking down a box and going through it, pulling out selections for the other person to accept or veto later. We got some great 45's at Fred's sale, including some Depeche Mode and some Housemartins I never thought I'd see. After we were done sorting 45s and 33s, my work was done and I wandered around while Thomas sorted the 78s as they are his passion and I couldn't really care less about them.
I wasn't bored; there was a lot to see and look at...we found an original Evil Dead poster for our friend Bryan's collection...I was wandering around when Fred approached me and told me that if I was bored, he thought he had some old women's magazines somewhere that I could look at.
Um, what? Rarely, if ever before, have I been so offended. But if I'm honest, the total reason that I was so upset about it is that what he said just confirms something I've known about myself all along. I am just tragically unhip. It doesn't matter what music I listen to, or what I collect. It doesn't matter where I hang out or what my degree is in. There's something about me that just never quite fits in.
Partly, I think the problem is that I don't fit into any "type" of person. I am not a hippie, I'm not indie, I'm not a fashionista. I like to think I'm not a geek. I'm not artsy, I'm not beautiful, I'm smart but not exceptionally so. Whenever I think of polls or Neilson ratings, I think, those people should be asking me the questions, because I'm so...average. I know just enough.
Also, I think the problem stems from being raised (and I'm not questioning this at all, I'm just saying that it's so) not to think it was necessary to own to designer clothing. I grew up without cable (and thus without MTV, which, while a cliche, was totally a huge delivery system for pop culture in my generation) and so there are references that are lost on me. Things that other people consider needs or just a part of life, are things that I don't have now and will probably never have. Again, I'm neither knocking or promoting these things. I just don't know about them.
I'm sure that if I really wanted to, I could pretend to be a type of person. (And I always wonder about this: is everyone pretending?) But to me, to dress like a type of person feels like a costume. I want it desperately--I want people to look at me and know something beyond the fact that I clearly buy my clothes at Target--but to put on certain things feels like an affectation.
I love these glasses. But I totally can't wear them. Who does this chick think she is?
I'm never going to be able to drink in some of the downtown "hotspots"--they give me the willies. I'd rather buy my CDs online than have to deal with walking into a record store. When I eat at Nikki's, I don't order sushi. I don't even know where Bella Festa (sp?) is. Help!
I like to pretend that I don't care about my negative hip-ness factor, but I obviously do, since the whole Fred-women's magazine-incident still makes me cry, and since I compulsively try on my glasses to see if somehow this shirt or this haircut will make them look...normal.