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All stars rotate around Polaris

Home planet for the obscure and irrelevant

Squirt: instant sangria!
Squirt: instant sangria!

For whatever reason, I receive a steady trickle of bizarrely ordinary inquiries. I suspect people fire them off for no other reason than that they can. How can something be “bizarrely ordinary,” you ask? Aren’t “bizarre” and “ordinary” opposites, such that “bizarrely ordinary” would be an oxymoron? To which quibbling I reply, context is everything. “Ask a Hipster” is the home planet for the obscure and irrelevant. The ordinary seems out of place here. Regardless, the ingenious hipster mind lends itself to solving garden variety quandaries, so I shall answer these out-of-place musings.

Dear Hipster:

Why does ice smell funny and can it be prevented?

— Anthony

I am aware of many apocryphal explanations for freezer stench, none of them definitive. No matter how much you clean, that stank will return harder than acid-washed jeans every 15 years. It’s probably alchemical in origin and not explainable by science. Easily rid yourself of nasty freezer smell (and taste) by rinsing your ice cubes in water before you put them in your gin & tonic.

Dear Hipster:

Is it unhealthy to drink two-day old wine that’s gone a little sour?

— Katie

Not if you mix it 50/50 with Squirt! You’ll thank me later. Really any cheap or day-old wine is much better this way, and you get to tell your friends, “this is really popular in Europe,” which makes you sound cool and cultured. No downsides here.

Dear Hipster:

Why does my shower always get a white, powdery film on the shower doors? What IS that stuff and why does it not wash off?

— Alexis

The remnants of hard water are easily erased with white vinegar. Come to think of it, almost everything in your house is best cleaned with white vinegar instead of the toxic crap they’ll sell you at the store. Large chemical companies have been telling you for years you need increasingly powerful household cleaning reagents, but you almost never do.

Dear Hipster:

Is there an actual right way to make a Martini?

— Jesse

Yes. Rinse plenty of ice (I told you all this would come in handy) and put it in a shaker. Add four parts excellent gin; one part dry vermouth; and one part sweet white vermouth. Shake the living daylights out of it. Serve up with three olives.

Dear Hipster:

How do you find North?

— Definitely Not a Boy Scout

Easy. Get yourself a digital camera that can take long exposure photographs and/or time lapses. Practice by making ironic compositions, like a long exposure of the regulars at your favorite bar who sit there for hours without moving while other patrons come and go as blurs, or a time lapse of your cat napping its way across the floor to follow a patch of sunlight. Have a few drinks. Show your friends the photos. Loudly proclaim your mastery of photography. Now you are ready.

Take a time lapse or long exposure of the night sky. All the stars will rotate around Polaris (the North Star), which shows you exactly where North was last night. If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere because you happen to live there, or you want to be difficult, then I don’t know, but there’s probably an app or something you can use.

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Squirt: instant sangria!
Squirt: instant sangria!

For whatever reason, I receive a steady trickle of bizarrely ordinary inquiries. I suspect people fire them off for no other reason than that they can. How can something be “bizarrely ordinary,” you ask? Aren’t “bizarre” and “ordinary” opposites, such that “bizarrely ordinary” would be an oxymoron? To which quibbling I reply, context is everything. “Ask a Hipster” is the home planet for the obscure and irrelevant. The ordinary seems out of place here. Regardless, the ingenious hipster mind lends itself to solving garden variety quandaries, so I shall answer these out-of-place musings.

Dear Hipster:

Why does ice smell funny and can it be prevented?

— Anthony

I am aware of many apocryphal explanations for freezer stench, none of them definitive. No matter how much you clean, that stank will return harder than acid-washed jeans every 15 years. It’s probably alchemical in origin and not explainable by science. Easily rid yourself of nasty freezer smell (and taste) by rinsing your ice cubes in water before you put them in your gin & tonic.

Dear Hipster:

Is it unhealthy to drink two-day old wine that’s gone a little sour?

— Katie

Not if you mix it 50/50 with Squirt! You’ll thank me later. Really any cheap or day-old wine is much better this way, and you get to tell your friends, “this is really popular in Europe,” which makes you sound cool and cultured. No downsides here.

Dear Hipster:

Why does my shower always get a white, powdery film on the shower doors? What IS that stuff and why does it not wash off?

— Alexis

The remnants of hard water are easily erased with white vinegar. Come to think of it, almost everything in your house is best cleaned with white vinegar instead of the toxic crap they’ll sell you at the store. Large chemical companies have been telling you for years you need increasingly powerful household cleaning reagents, but you almost never do.

Dear Hipster:

Is there an actual right way to make a Martini?

— Jesse

Yes. Rinse plenty of ice (I told you all this would come in handy) and put it in a shaker. Add four parts excellent gin; one part dry vermouth; and one part sweet white vermouth. Shake the living daylights out of it. Serve up with three olives.

Dear Hipster:

How do you find North?

— Definitely Not a Boy Scout

Easy. Get yourself a digital camera that can take long exposure photographs and/or time lapses. Practice by making ironic compositions, like a long exposure of the regulars at your favorite bar who sit there for hours without moving while other patrons come and go as blurs, or a time lapse of your cat napping its way across the floor to follow a patch of sunlight. Have a few drinks. Show your friends the photos. Loudly proclaim your mastery of photography. Now you are ready.

Take a time lapse or long exposure of the night sky. All the stars will rotate around Polaris (the North Star), which shows you exactly where North was last night. If you’re in the Southern Hemisphere because you happen to live there, or you want to be difficult, then I don’t know, but there’s probably an app or something you can use.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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