27 12 2011

This is the 52nd week I have done “Thoughts From Last Week,” so this should be my one-year anniversary of this CAPSLove installment. But it’s not, as I haven’t kept up with it for 52 consecutive weeks. Instead, this can just act as a faux anniversary. Rather, this is the final TFLW of the 2011 year. It’s been swell y’all. Here goes nothing…


Reasons (pertaining to technology) as to why I could be classified as a Hipster:

  • my TV screen is the same size/smaller than my laptop screen (roughly 15-17″?)
  • not only do I own a VCR, but I use it regularly
  • I also regularly use a portable CD player as a means to listen to music.
  • I recently brought to my apartment, my record player and extensive record collection. While other people are getting iPhones and iPads for the holidays, I’m looking into trying to get my antiquated technology to work.

I’m seeing The Muppet Movie and (so far) I’m the oldest non-parent person in the theatre. Now that takes talent.

I think it’s funny that Christians are celebrating the birthday of a Jew. Because that’s what Christmas is really all about, no?

Why can’t you really say, “Happy Christmas,” but saying “Merry Christmas” is the way to go? Why can Christmas only be merry and not happy? Is ‘happy’ not good enough?

I read the first three chapters of, Uncle Tom’s Cabin and I was surprised how I couldn’t put the book down. I’ve never read the book before, but I feel like if I were to read it in public, I’d have to get a book jacket or something since the book is so controversial.

Best New Years movie ever: The Hudsucker Proxy.

You know, for kids!



Being a Hipster or Just Shy?

13 12 2011

Today I came to a new conclusion: I think that Hipsters are misunderstood. Sure, sometimes they may seem to play off disinterest as a mode for looking cool in their own misunderstood way, but other times maybe they’re actually really interested, but too shy to do anything about it. At least that’s the idea that I’m going with now.

Dude. Click on this picture.

For a while, I’ve been faux-labeled as a Hipster, and lately I’ve been considering what exactly being a Hipster means. One of the key characteristics of the Hipster is their feigned interest in many things. Hipsters however are not expected to be completely thoughtless, they just go about their carelessness in a very non-chalant way. But I’m starting to think that this carelessness is a coping method for those like myself who simply are shy. Take this true story example that happened to me today. It begins with the following conversation I had with my dad:

Dad: What’s happening today?

Me: Well there’s this holiday party for my whole building at work. I’m wearing yellow and brown today. -I didn’t want to wear red or green for the party [to make it look like I was active in the celebration of Christmas at work]. It stinks because there’s a Caps game today and I wanted to wear red for that.

Dad: Are you going to the party?

Me: I don’t know.

Dad: I guess I don’t understand. If you’re going to put so much thought into what you’re wearing, I’d assume that means you were going to attend.

Me: I mean, I’ll probably just go to get out of working for a bit, but… whatever.

Upon reflection of this conversation, I realized that I pretty much came off sounding like a total Hipster. While I did care a lot about what I was going to wear; about going to the party; and how not to fit in with the crowd; I was somehow still claiming irony by saying that I wasn’t even sure I was going to attend the event. Why would I go to all that trouble for nothing, you ask? Well for one, it’s because I’m shy. I’m so shy that I won’t go to something where I don’t fit in or where I won’t know anyone. I didn’t want to promise that I would go to the optional party, due to my overwhelming shyness.

So what ended up happening, you wonder? I ended up waiting until literally the last minute to actually go to the party. None of my co-workers were announcing that they were going to the party (like they have in the past) so I didn’t have a “buddy” to latch onto to go with. I decided I would make myself go for the last 15 minutes of the party. Surely, there wouldn’t be an overwhelming number of people there and I could just relax as I peeked in and out. Finally, a co-worker says she is going to party and I leap at the opportunity to go accompanied. (I am so ridiculously shy, it’s silly.) By the time we got there, the party was over and people were cleaning up.

So what did I learn from all this? First, that being this shy is pretty ridiculous. Second, that just because someone acts disinterested and abnormally lo-key about something that they are typically excited about; doesn’t mean that they aren’t genuinely attracted to it. It could be that they just need a little push. Whether a Hipster or just shy, sometimes all you need is a little neutral encouragement to do what you want.

Ryan Malone Is A Hipster

17 05 2011

Today I am writing on the topic of facial hair. This time it’s not restricted to the playoff beard that hockey players have been sporting lately, but rather, the not so often seen playoff mustache. But it’s a certain type of mustache which I’m focusing on today. Once more, I’m covering the Hipsters and their unique facial hair of choice. While I’ve written about both Hipsters and facial hair in the past, I have never combined these two subjects until now. So, we cover The Hipster Mustache.

I wasn’t sure this unique style was still in fashion (Hipster fashion can go out of style as fast and mysterious as it came into the world) until I saw a recent photo of Tampa Bay LIghtning’s Ryan Malone and his playoff look:

If his modern-day Victorian ‘stache plus plethora of tattoos isn’t Hipster, I don’t know what is. He actually looks quite dapper in this picture, and if it weren’t for my strong disliking of the hockey team he plays for, I’d be curious to see how this Hipster mustache will look further into the playoffs.

Why is a Victorian-looking mustache Hipster? Well, for one, it’s all about the unexpected, or rather, in a related idea, the irony. The Victorian era is in the past, so to bring it back now is unusual. Case in point: Hipster fashion usually centers around The Three U’s: If something is Unexpected, Unusual, and Unique, then chances are, Hipsters will find it cool and approve of it.

Want more proof that Ryan Malone here, might be hiding his Hipster-status from the public? Well, below are some pictures of other such Hipsters sporting the once-again popular Victorian-era mustache:

The PBR is a dead give away.

The hat, the glasses, the mustache-wannabe. How very Hipster!

Oh gosh, this is so disturbing, yet only a Hipster would come up with this idea!

As you can see from just these few examples, the Ryan Malone is indeed sporting quite the Hipster Mustache. Let’s check once again if it meets The Three U’s. Is his facial hair of choice unexpected? You bet. That’s why I’m blogging about it. No ordinary hockey player would sport such a look. Is Ryan Malone’s mustache unusual? Well, for a Hipster, not necessarily, but it is for a hockey player, which is how we know him. And is the facial hair unique? It sure is. As you can see, he’s got both the Victorian mustache going in addition to some sideburns + chin stubble. It’s like he doesn’t know where he fits in: Hockey vs. Hipster? Ryan Malone will take both, thank you much.

Yet Another Hipster Music Post

15 03 2011

For my upcoming birthday, my two brothers gave me an amazing present. In a joint present, they burned me three CD’s of a band I have recently really been getting into. Since my brother went to a rather hip college, one of his roommates was really into this band and for some reason my brother became in possession of the music. The band I’m referring to has actually been mentioned a few other times on here, but nonetheless, it’s Animal Collective.

For my birthday, I received the albums, Feels, Sung Tongs, and Here Comes The Indian. (Which means that in addition to the album, Stawberry Jam, I do not have the much sought after, Merriwether Post Pavilion.) My favorite album that I recently got has definitely been, Feels, since the songs are more lyrical and less “noise-sounding” as they are on the album, Here Comes The Indian. Perhaps it could just be the songs’ prime placement at the top of the album, but the first two songs happen to be my new favorite songs:

The buildup to excitement in this song, “Did You See The Words” is very similar to the song I have discussed before, “Brothersport.” I guess this is a musical technique I am fond of. Plus, I really think Animal Collective really excels in this form of grabbing the listener’s attention. The other song I especially like on the same album is:

This track, “Grass” is also typical of Animal Collective (and why I can’t really play it in my office for my co-workers to hear), because it incorporates “musical screaming” which seems to be a trademark sound of the group. This song’s experimental melody reminds me of something you might hear from a trippy band from the 1960s.

All in all, I am a pretty satisfied customer. Animal Collective might just be my  new favorite band. I know they’re such a hipster group, but at least I’m ok with that whole scene. Plus, the band is locally from Maryland. I love supporting local musicians, so they are good in my book.

A New Meme In Town

10 02 2011

Forgive me if you’ve seen this one before, but it’s news to me. There’s a new meme in town and I just can’t get enough of it. Thanks to my good pal, “PJ,” who posted this to the ever-glorious, Facebook, I can now spend my wasting moments at work scrolling through the pages of this fantastic website new to my never-ending internet stream of knowledge. Said website can be seen here and I highly encourage everyone to repeatedly check it out. The tumblr was originally created by this person’s site whose first tumblr is also entertaining.

The basic principle behind this tumblr is that it is an angsty-looking image of Ariel, taken from Disney’s movie, The Little Mermaid. (This movie happens to be one of my all-time favorite movies, so I was drawn in from the start.) Since being a Hipster is all the rage these days, the curator added a pair of Hipster-looking glasses onto Ariel to give her that too-cool-for-school look. The idea is to then create your own meme with your own text on top of the image, much like would be done for a LOLCAT meme. The trick to crafting the perfect Ariel meme is to come up with text that cleverly combines the movie with the Hipster culture. Below are some of my favorites:

A typography joke! How great!

Probably referring to Vanessa's (Ursula's human form) likeness to Katy Perry.

As with the growing popularity of memes, there is always room for more, so guests are invited to create your own Hipster Little Mermaid Meme. Mine is below, and frankly, I am surprised someone hasn’t made this joke already. Anyways, I hope you all go take a look and have fun creating your own meme. The possibilities are endless!

Costume Ideas

28 09 2010

Today’s post is about Halloween. Halloween is my favorite holiday ever. I know a lot of you out there are asking why I am writing about Halloween when it isn’t even October yet. That is a fair point to make… if you don’t know what fun is.

As some of you might remember, I have been planning my Halloween costume since before last Halloween. But I realize that many of you don’t put as much thought into your costume. While there are the ever-clever, last minute (aka: lame) costume ideas, I thought I could be of some service to those of you who would like to have an actual, pretty great costume this Halloween 2010. Even though I already had an idea for this year (and even a back-up idea or two), that sure doesn’t mean I am not still interested in other fabulous costume ideas. So below are a few of the better and more entertaining websites I have seen recently to help you choose a costume for yourself.

The first website might not actually be of much help to you unless you are a dog. If you own a dog, this site could also be useful for the upcoming holiday. Otherwise, if you are like me and like dogs (and Hipsters) then the site, Hipster Puppies is for you…

If you are not a dog or a Hipster, then the next site may be more relevant to you. I was originally directed to this site through this awesome costume idea. (As a Graphic Designer, I am all for turning logos into costumes, and especially if they are from an awesome movie such as that one.) Anyways, the website, WTF Costumes is a great site for costumes both complicated and simple, and for both genders. This website introduced a new concept in costumery to me: apparently you can turn any costume into a Zombie version of it. Take these examples:

If you insist on not putting any or much thought into your costume, but are sick of going as the same thing every year, the Costume Idea Zone might be right for you. This site encourages you to use what you already own and not to go out and spend all of your money on a one-time outfit. (Words of wisdom, I say!) While this site doesn’t have much in terms of pictures or a catchy layout, I do have to give it props for this super current and pretty funny costume idea:

Katy Perry and Elmo:
Wear shoulder-length curly brown hair, false eyelashes, red lipstick and a summer dress that shows a little cleavage. Carry a stuffed Elmo doll. Or, for a couple, he can wear an Elmo costume.

The original inspiration

If you’re a big Lady Gaga fan and didn’t get a chance to dress as her last Halloween (or you want to out-do your Gaga costume from last year) there is a website for you too. To dress as the woman who prides herself on being one-of-a-kind, ironically, her costumes are being mass produced just for you! At Clever Costume’s website, they have a whole category devoted to Lady Gaga. (Sorry, there is no meat dress there.)

Some of Gaga's more "tame" outfits

Well, I think those are enough costume ideas to get your mind churning. Hopefully this post will be helpful to you. Who knows? Maybe this will be the year you will be inspired to come up with a new and awesome costume. Let’s only hope so.

Slowly Becoming Hipster

9 03 2010

Hey guys. I have some news which you might find unfortunate. I think I am becoming a Hipster. It was just a few weeks ago that my cousin told me of a Hipster band called Yeasayer. In an effort to remain as “square” as possible, I declined to look into the group. I hadn’t heard of them, and wasn’t interested in doing so. No thanks, Hipster culture. You won’t suck me in, too. Well, little did I know that it may as well have been inevitable. What, with my already borderline Hipster taste in music and fascination with select pieces of Hipster fashion, I was unaware of my future in the Hipster movement.

What was the tip off? Today I listened to the latest hit single from Yeasayer. The website, Pitchfork very accurately describes the video:

“…A guy with a morphing alien face walks into a severely made-up hipster party, where Yeasayer are playing on lit-up instruments and everyone else looks like they’re trying out for a Lady Gaga video.”

It may have been their mesmerizing and superbly bizarre video which sucked me into the tune. I recommend checking out the video here. I admit that I have been listening to that song on repeat for the past hour or so. Have I even heard anything else by Yeasayer yet? No…I’m trying to avoid succumbing to being Hipster as long as I can. Maybe it isn’t that bad of a thing to be a Hipster?