In the May 7 Reader, in the final paragraph of the first answer, you say, “...hipsters can be flexible with their morals.” Then, “...by paradoxically holding on to choice antiquated values that provide a counterpoint to the endless crush of living in the 21st Century.” I was wondering what this really meant. Do hipsters have morals? I also want to know if the Hipster can be asked a direct question, not one of these hipster questions.
— Captain Broom, via voicemail
Firstly, I am available to answer any and all questions. It just so happens that people’s collective curiosity about hipsterkind dominates my inbox. People don’t understand hipsters, so I am often called upon to unravel the mysteries of my people. But, the hipster perspective can be invaluable to all manner of queries, so ask me anything.
To clarify my earlier statement, some might find it paradoxical that hipsters can be so flexible in their morality and at the same time earn a reputation as more-or-less socially conscious individuals who make decisions based on oddly strict morals.
Here’s an example more concrete than “anti-corporatism”: why try to preserve collections of music on vinyl, yet also pay for Spotify, Pandora One, and stuff from iTunes?
Because forcing every choice to reflect an abstract moral code would leave one standing in place as the world sweeps by, while acting as if nothing matters all but guarantees getting lost in the storm of modern life.
If you want to hear all the great new music in the world, you can’t refuse the means of communication on purely political grounds. But those old records remind us, paradoxically, that more isn’t always better. Being flexible in matters like this is necessary for anyone who wants to live in society, and in some ways hipsters are especially well-suited.