An anatomy of an SF hipster

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Hipster, no hipster? Let the biker shaman in drag decide.
PHOTO BY NARK MAGAZINE

Borderlands performance artist extraordinaire, Guillermo Gomez Peña of La Pocha Nostra collective is a long-time Mission District resident. Below, his choice poetics about the misnomer that the term "SF hipster" has become. Read our 2010 interview with the man here

If you had no problems finding a great loft or old Victorian house in the Mission because, let’s face it, daddy advanced you a full year’s rent…

If you paid cash for that slick low-rider car or bike from a Vato Loco but have no idea what the paintings and symbols mean…

If you are under 35, weigh less than 60 pounds and only shave or take a bath every three days and still think you look cool…

If you cruise around with a designer baby carriage without ever noticing the homeless man pushing a supermarket cart in front of you…

If you managed to purchase a dive bar with family money and turned it overnight into a hipster café or a storefront gallery for “art school” art…

If you happen to frequent parties, bars, and art events where only people “like (you)” go…

If you pay more than $50 for every vintage pair of pants or period dress you buy and your black jeans look like you stole them from a skinny 12 year old…

If you got all your tattoos during your first year in the city…

If you only talk to “people of color” when they are gorgeous and thin…

If you frequently refer to people as “people of color”

If you don’t say ‘thank you’ when a Mexican opens the door for you when entering your building or a restaurant because you don’t even notice him…

If you rarely make eye contact with people who are different from you and you still haven’t realized there are Latinos from at least 15 different countries in the Mission…

If you spend hours at a cafe connected to your iPad, iPod, iPhone or portable mini-computer but pretend you are somewhere else…

If you plan your daily cultural, social, and sexual life strictly with your brand-new iPhone…

If art is something you just do on the weekends like a recreational designer drug…

If you introduce yourself as “an artist” because you have the latest, most expensive software to compose music, Photoshop images, and edit films…

If you look “intellectual” but never read actual books…

If you spend more time on your Facebook page counting your virtual “friends” than conversing with real humans about important ideas…

If the cocktails you drink cost more than $8 and the lattes more than $5…or if you consider paying more that $5 for a coffee pretty reasonable...

If you like to order your margaritas “con Patron” in Spanish and your carne asada burritos "without meat”…

If it’s all about style, aloofness, and being in the right place with the right crowd…and your claim to fame is to know the DJ or the bartender…

If you can “talk the talk” but cannot “walk the walk” and it doesn’t really matter to you…

If you cannot take political or emotional intensity beyond the Colbert Report

If you cannot differentiate between “Al Jazeera” and “Al-Qa'ida,” Moammar Kadafy from Carlos Santana, or between the 70s and the 80s…

If you are planning to give up “Bohemia” as soon as you get a good job in corporate America…

Yes, undoubtedly, you are a member of a unique 21st century white tribe of posers and slackers wrongly named “los SF hipsters.”

Can I be your anthropologist? Would you talk to me for more than 15 minutes as field research? I promise I will treat you with dignity. You choose the bar. I will be the guy who looks like a biker shaman in drag. I’ll pay for the drinks.

(Special thanks to Emma Tramposch and Andrea Dooley for pulling out their monocles and helping me sharpen this text)