The Hipster Speaks: A Castigation
We ruined everything. From music to cinema to clothes, certainly none of which were already ruined long before we were even born. We are the be-coiffed (and bald—looking at you, MOBY) bandwagon jumpers (on or off? Doesn’t matter) whose all-judging eyes run themselves over your awful CD collections, your tacky DVD collection, your kind of racist girlfriend and will never sleep soundly in our beds because the very definition of your self, your whole, needs to be vastly and irrevocably altered but you dummies will only keep getting worse. We will leave you rightfully questioning your shallow taste, your fake authenticity, your stupid opinions and now we’ve locked our crosshairs on football. Wretched, disgusting football.
There should be blood.
Football hipsters are not a relatively new phenomenon—really, sports fans have always by and large displayed many of the trademark personality traits and behavioral patterns of hipsters. And since profiling us by type is pretty wack, I’m just gonna riff for a while. Be cool.
We’re everywhere. We’re on Twunter, on the fitba blergs, we’re the people upon whom you project your deep-seated insecurity. We correctly identify you as an intrusive newcomer to a community of band fans and instead of owning up and doing your homework you go home and throw away the second album (major label debut), waiting until their third (massive hit) to use your knowledge of the early days to impress the girls at the arena tours, sighing with relief when you don’t see us. That $100 ticket was so worth it.
You suspect we watch a great deal more football than you and it makes you uncomfortable about your own knowledge. You seek to undermine our opinions, like yours are any more insightful or informed. You try to shut us down, but on our terms, only making yourself look more and more like an entry level one of us, obsessing over authenticity of support, thoroughness of research, and depth of wisdom.
You fail to understand the idea of pet teams, of seeing a team play and liking them for how they do it, wishing them well and hoping they succeed without compromising what drew you to them in the first place. You get frightened and confused by casual dating.
Lucky for us, we don’t. We prance from European club to European club and buy the replica shirt of whoever we like at that moment. They’re usually in vogue because, well, we usually have good taste.
The criteria are such:
- Probably not a Big Boy, as there’s little novelty value there and those teams usually boringly crush everyone in their path. Give us a likeable underdog with youth and personality, please.
- Probably possess one or two youngish players who are good and fun to watch.
- Must have a nice shirt that looks good. Looking good with skinny jeans a major plus to those who wear skinny jeans (I’m a boot cut man, myself).
Napoli, Athletic Club (de Bilbao) and Borussia Dortmund are among the current hipster teams of choice, but expect us to jump ship on Napoli if they start to play in that dully efficient style so common among Europe’s elite, aka stop being fun. God help us if they win the thing that way. To make things worse, a bunch of assholes would start going crazy about them and, oddly, attacking people who’ve been into them for years as trend-hopping, our support just not worth the noise anymore. Kings of Leon got more successful as they got worse, and unlike Napoli they were never very good to start with.
There’s always another great band playing the local cess-pit, and they deserve love too.
Anyway, Messi, he’s pretty good yeah? Everyone seems to think so. So wait, is asking if Messi is the greatest ever after scoring five in a Champions League elimination round against German heavyweights more hipster-y than when he scores three against Osasuna in La Liga? Seems to me like it’s way less alt to bring it up when the mainstream media’s yapping about it, but then what do I know, I’m just some hipster…
Truth be told all the fuss about us hipsters makes methinks the lady doth project too much, if the wind is southerly nahmean? After all, why are hipsters thought to be obsessed with points? And just how are all these supposed non-hipsters such experts on the hipster point values of things? Life is a library of wonderful mysteries.
By the definition of many, most sports fans would qualify as hipsters. A problem fans encounter a lot in sports is the bandwagon phenomenon. The age-old adage goes that “true fans” stick by their club through the good and the bad. People don’t like glory vultures, least of all those who did the legwork through the swamps. A fan’s emotional identification with a team is often complicated and can get messy (lol, Messi). Leave the poor dears alone.
Much misunderstanding comes from the fact that being seen as a fan is a massive part of just being a fan. Sports fandom is a communal activity. Much of the joy of being a fan comes from being with your fellow fans: watching games, celebrating victories, ruing defeats, hoping and wishing and yelling and singing with your friends and everyone else in the stadium, or bar, or living room, or chat room. If you’re not seen as a fan, you’re not treated as a fan by other fans. You’re not welcomed as a part of the fan community. It’s about people, and it always has been. It’s just society. Duh.
Surely though, if you’re going to support anything, support the game and your fellow fans without pissing on other people and preaching to them about “the right way” (your way) to be a football supporter. Don’t be a hypocritical, self-righteous buffoon. Come on.
Who hips the hipsters? Andy Pacheco-Fores does, on Twitter and elsewhere.
Image courtesy of Well Offside.