I Didn’t Know I Was A Hipster

Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20’s and 30’s that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter.

-Urban Dictionary

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Up until a couple of days ago I thought hipsters were starving artist with black plastic framed glasses, who lived on coffee in trendy neighborhoods. Technically a hipster can be all those things, but I certainly didn’t think that I was a part of this group. Until, I was telling a friend that I felt like a hipster in my new glasses when I drank coffee. To which she replied “Darling, you are a hipster.”

Am I?

According to the Urban Dictionary definition I suppose I am. I’m in my 20’s, I do value independent thinking, counter-culture, I love art, indie rock, creativity, and I certainly fancy a bit of witty banter. But I’ve always loved the obscure things even before the term “hipster” was created. It just seems that in my journey I’ve found that “mainstream” culture and music lacked the sincerity I was looking for.

I am slightly different though to even the usual hipster, my counter-culture is Jesus culture.

“Mainstream” culture says that the important things in life is to have the best. The newest this, the upgraded this, the luxuries of life. And not to say that having nice things is bad, but what is bad is that we put those things as first in our hearts and minds. Jesus culture teaches the opposite of this.

We all come to the end of our lives as naked and empty-handed as on the day we were born. We can’t take our riches with us. And this, too, is a very serious problem. People leave this world no better off than when they came. All their hard work is for nothing—like working for the wind. 

Ecclesiastes 5:15-16 NLT

“Mainstream” culture also teaches us to put ourselves before others. No one cares about anyone because it’s all about us, what we want, what we need. It’s so accepted in our culture that it has become entertainment. We all gather around the TV or social media to watch people “throw shade” at one another. Where is the understanding? Where is the patience? I am not perfect in this respect, I get frustrated and impatient sometimes, but when I see outright disrespect and hateful behavior it grieves me.

Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

Ephesians 4:32 NASB

I clearly went off on a tangent there but I think I got my point across. In the Jesus culture, independent of mainstream thinking, I found the sincerity I wanted. I found that my life could be more than just about me. Hipsters want to do things differently and so do I, God’s way of doing things.

So is there such a thing as “Christian hipster”? There probably is, as the good book says “There is nothing new under the sun.”

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Girl, Alternative

Picture it, a high school classroom in 2007, there’s a girl sitting near the back of the class ear buds in her ears and nose deep in a book. Now picture another girl sitting next to the first girl reaching over and pulling out one of her ear buds.

“What are you listening to?” she asks. The ear bud is not even completely in her hear before she pulls it away. With a very shocked and confused look on her face she stares at the girl.

“What is that?” she she says.

She wasn’t expecting the heavy guitar riffs she’d heard coming out the ear bud.

The girl snatches her ear bud back and says.”A rock band I like.”

She continues to stare with that surprised look.  

You might wonder why was she looking at the girl with such surprise? Well the girl listening to the music was black and so was the other girl. Some of you might say so what she’s black and she listens to rock music? Well I’m hear to tell you that blacks listening to rock isn’t really a common thing. I still hear things like “That’s white people music.” or “Do you think your white?” Just because a majority of rock music are white artists doesn’t mean I shouldn’t listen to it. And that doesn’t make it a “white music”music is universal, it’s for everybody. I love all kinds of music, and I do mean all kinds. From country to techno and everything in between. Growing up it seemed I never fit into the box of the typical black female. I wasn’t listening to the music they were listening too, going to see the movies they were seeing, or even dressing like they were. While they were out partying I was in the house watching old black and white movies on TCM. I shared that story to say that society is always going to try to put you into a box. Okay you’re a black female of a certain age that means you should like hip hop and acrylic nails. Or you’re a white male from the south you should be interested in country music and hunting. But we are more than the stereotypes that the world pushes on us. I will never be what the world expects me to be, and I’m okay with that. It took me awhile to get to there, but I can really say I love being me.

Just for fun here is the actual song I was listening to when that girl pulled that ear bud from my ear.