Actually, I don't think Renee is that afraid of me.
When I first started out here in Montreal, I felt as if I looked like cousin It or something. Everyone would look at me, some even staring at me all class, but people were afraid to start up conversations.
“How could that be, Lauren? You are the vision of all that is good in the world!”
I know, right? I soon figured out it was because I’m, apparently, very unapproachable. How did I come to such a conclusion? Well, in one of my classes, we were assigned to groups. No one in the groups would talk to me, however I was in a group full of idiots, so I felt the need to put in my two cents.
“Listen,” I would say, “we’re going about this all wrong.”
When people stopped their conversations and listened to me as if I had just rang the Pavlovian-response bell, I knew something was up. Later that day, someone from the group said they really appreciated my input, and that they were ‘very intimidated’ by me before.
I still didn’t understand why people were so afraid to talk to me, so I started taking my critical thinking to the next level. I sat in class and analyzed myself. I sit in class, MacBook Pro in front of me, with my Grado SR60s on. Now, my Grado’s have this really great feature, which essentially cancels out any sound which could hurt my hearing. So when my music is playing, everyone around me gets a taste, even if I’m listening at low volumes. The possibility of anyone in my classes knowing who I was listening to were so slim to none that I blocked all conversational possibilities.
Next came to my posture. I pretty much sit like a guy; legs apart and outstretched, showing off my skinnies and overly-disheveled sweatshop-free, vegan high tops. I slouch into my chair, in a very relaxed manner, mind you, and I sport a look of general indifference. Unless of course, we start talking politics, human rights violations, or the environment, then I sit more forward, and nod in a way that says “I’m part of this discussion, even though I’m not saying anything, because I want to give the beginners a shot.”
My choice of reading material could have also been deterring. I read Bitch when it came to magazines, and I’m currently working on a book about gender in modern political theory, which just happens to come with a holier-than-thou cover, and a Toronto Women’s Bookstore bookmark.
Clothing wise, I’m always in some kind of skinny jeans, with high tops, and cycling cap of sorts. Topwear varies day to day, from organic hoodies, to politically incorrect vintage tees, to organic plaid, to all things American Apparel. Plus my messenger bag is always with me, and everyone knows which bike I ride.
“Hey, aren’t you the girl with that really sweet red & white fixie?”
“Why yes, yes I am.”
The only people brave enough to talk to me are other hipster-looking people, or complete idiots. There are a lot of complete idiots. I applaud those who talk to me, and I enjoy the non-verbal communication which goes on between myself and the other, older, hipsters. The mutual up-down has become a regular thing for myself and a group of other social-elitists. I’m hoping to run into them at a bar, and I will invite them back to my holier-than-thou looking apartment for some Stella and Death From Above.
Speaking of my apartment, yesterday I was surveying my surroundings, and I thought to myself “damn, I’m cool.” Usually I wouldn’t say such a thing, but Xan and I got into a conversation about how she wanted to start long boarding, cycling regularly, dj-ing, and get a better handle on photography. I realized that I had all those things. Well, I’m not a very good dj because I buy indie records, and no one wants to scratch their Elliott Smith’s.
I also have a “party fridge”, I say this because at one point, I had so much beer in my fridge, placed right above the crisper, that there is a huge crack in the plastic, due to the sheer weight of beer.
In conclusion, don’t be deterred just because I waft cultural superiority, I’m really not trying to. I’m just “in style” these days. In a couple months I’ll be a has been.
Oh, and this is just a quick tip to anyone who wants to stay ahead of the curve. I will even bold it for you. Half cabs are the new high tops. So buy some now. I think I’m going to start giving social-elitist fashion advice. “Social-elitist” is the new, more politically correct way to say “hipster”, just so you know.
[ First posted: 23/10/08 ]