Confessions of an Aging Hipster

Now that I’m 40 and a parent, and I have had too much time alone on the road lately to think about such things, I have come to the realization that I am the oxymoron known as an aging hipster.  Because, if you are 40, can you really be hip?

As for my hipsterhood, I’ll have to explain so you can get an accurate picture of me.  I was never the popular girl or the party girl, but I do know in the past I’ve fancied myself hip in the sense portrayed in the hilarious blog “Stuff White People Like.”  I’ve got super-short spiky red (dyed of course, not natural) hair, wear chunky black-rimmed glasses, and my weekend wardrobe is a t-shirt (often a v.v. cool Yo Gabba Gabba! concert shirt), cardigan, and black Chucks.  Yep– total hipster uniform.  Love hipster music, too– the only Sirius XM station I listen to is The Spectrum, the total hipster hangout.  I carry a loud Vera Bradley quilted bag as a briefcase, because you know, a regular leather one would look too much like I’m bending to the man.  So, yep, I’d fit right in in hipster hangouts like Seattle or Asheville, NC.

Now I don’t have any illusions that I’m unique or anything like that.  I may be iconoclastic compared to my coworkers in the legal profession, but let’s fact it– I’m just conforming to another set of societal norms.  It’s just that these fit me.  Different personas fit different people, and this has always worked for me.  It was just a side benefit that it was deemed “hip.”  😉

The realization came to me last week.  Like I said, I had too much time on the road, which is lethal for me.  I engage in way too much navel-gazing when driving through open spaces.  And it hit me.  Can a 40 year old ever be hip?  Do I have to change my persona away from the hipster?  Do I look pathetic with my cropped spiky hair?  It is pitiful that my favorite band is Mumford and Sons, and should I just listen to the 80s station?  Do I need to make myself more, for lack of a better description, middle aged?

The good thing is about the drive time is it gave me some time to sort all this out.  What I’ve concluded is that I’ve not aged out of hipsterhood– hipsterhood has aged out of being hip.  This really is who I am.  I’m comfy, and though I know I am a laughable stereotype I haven’t chosen this to conform to the hipster masses.  But what hit me is that when 20- and 30-somethings are looking to be hip, though, they aren’t emulating what I and my generation chose.   They have found and will find another way to be hip.  So, what 40-something hipsters are doing really isn’t hip anymore anyway.

I don’t know what is hip nowadays anyway (true to my age), but maybe I’m ok.  Maybe my aging hipsterhood is appropriate after all.  It just shows me for what I am– a 40-year old just being myself.  Just like the entire population of Asheville, NC.

And to leave you with a nugget of 40-something hipsterhood, here’s my current hipster song fave, a cover of Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Boxer” by Jerry Douglas and Mumford and Sons:


About mad momma moogacat

I am a 40-year old mother, wife, lawyer and pop culture fiend who is looking for some beauty and meaning in life. I write about parenting, adoption, mental health, work-life balance, and pop culture. Hope you enjoy!
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4 Responses to Confessions of an Aging Hipster

  1. be who you are! that’s all you can do. 🙂 there’s nothing wrong with “hipster” things if those are the things you like. truthfully, everyone only makes fun of hipsters who are obnoxious, and act snobby about ridiculous things and act like they discovered fucking everything. you sound like a fun person. and you feel like you have to be more middle-aged? come on now.

    • Ariel– Thanks so much for commenting! You are right– the obnoxious hipsters are those overly-ironic ones who think they are so much better than everyone and are making fun of anyone and everyone they see. And you are right that I need to get over worrying about the “need” to be middle-aged now that I’m 40. What is middle aged anyway? Apparently it’s me, just as I am right now. 🙂

  2. Cat Naski says:

    I love this. Love your style love the song. 🙂 I too can relate. 🙂

  3. Who cares what people think anyways. If you like it, so be it. Most of the good indie bands are in their 30’s and 40’s. They still do what they like. Hipsters will like what they do.

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