Sting of Death


February 23, 2013 by NowhereButPop

by Andrew Doscas

In a rather short span of time, the hipster culture has somehow managed to seep through into other trends and styles.  Where once the NBA was dominated by hip-hop rejects and chain laden, baggy jeans wearing hooligans like Allen Iverson, and a young Carmelo Anthony, now the stars are wearing lens-less glasses, bowties, and skinny jeans.  Even in everyday life, jocks, frat-bros, gangstas and prepsters have in some small way subscribed to the hipster sense of irony, which is the most defining feature of this fad.

Hipsters all over are known for trying (sometimes too hard) to be ironic.  This is never made more obvious than through their chosen image of the Charlotte Hornets.  Over the past four years, people from all across different styles and fads can agree upon one thing: it’s become cool to wear paraphernalia of defunct professional sports teams.  Whether it be the Charlotte Hornets, the Vancouver Grizzlies, or the Hartford Whalers, it’s still imbued with an irony identical to that of hipsters; it’s not borne from sincerity or a real sense of irony.

How do I know that?  Well going as far back as junior high school a little less than ten years ago (!) I knew a kid who had a Charlotte Hornets jersey, and he would wear it to school, much to his own ridicule, because he thought it would be funny to wear a jersey from a team that didn’t exist anymore.  Since this was before the dawn of the hipsters, I can safely say that this kid I knew didn’t wear a Charlotte jersey to fit in, or to be a part of a trend.  He did it because he understood the irony and wanted to make a joke out of it  Where once kids would get made fun of, now there is a shared culture, an inside joke almost between wearers of defunct sports teams clothing.[1]

Hipsters don’t wear Hornets jerseys; come to think of it I’ve never seen a hipster wear any sort of sports gear.  It’s the fringe kids who do; the ones who aren’t hipsters but want to be a part of that new, universal irony that is personified by the Charlotte Hornets.  After all if we wear sports jerseys or caps to represent who we root for, what’s more ironic than supporting a new that is no longer in existence?

It’s for that reason that I believe that if the Bobcats change their name to the Hornets, it will mark the beginning of the end of the hipster trend.  They’ll lose the fringe kids, and it’ll go back to being a kind of counterculture found only in the deepest recesses of Brooklyn and Portland.  If it’s no longer ironic, it’s no longer cool, and if it’s no longer cool, it’s no longer worth doing.  They’ll lose the mascot, that inside joke that lets people know that they are a part of something bigger.  But, if the hipsters lose the Charlotte Hornets, they’ll always have the Montreal Expos.

[1] The moral of the story being how even the very ways in which we see the world can become stylized to the point of a fashion statement.  That or the fact that very notion of irony is well beyond a bunch of 13 year olds.


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