Punk, perhaps the least effective movement in popular culture yet recorded, came and went very quickly, indeed, it only ever popped up in small pockets nationally. Goths, bless ’em, had a music scene which, politely, never got in the way of anything else and didn’t speak – always a positive trait. Hipsters – no music scene; no agenda; no politics; no history. So why does the scene seem to have lasted longer than most?
I can sort of ‘get’ the beard thing – a young bloke who has doubtless been picked on for his entire life, suddenly feels manly by having a hairy face. Worn like a mask, it allows the hipster to take on a personality not his own…though personality might be pushing it. Very few people of note have sculptured their facial hair post-war: Wilf Lunn…that’s about it. It seems an odd way of demonstrating your individuality, to have your face looking like everyone elses. Of, course, the hipster look is based on irony – “I’m wearing glasses even though I don’t need them”; “I’m wearing my hair in a bun” – preposterous.
It’s when their habits impact on my own life that I start to object far more strongly. Don’t fuck about with coffee. Coffee is a sacred thing, one of nature’s greatest achievements. Don’t dilute it with shitloads of milk; or fuck about with the milk; or put syrup in it. Bastards. The same with food – no-one has any business with an avocado at the best of times, let alone smashing it or drinking out of it; a bottle of water that tastes like cucumber can put you back a couple of quid. It’s perverse. However, perhaps there’s light at the end of the tunnel – divine light.
Can any movement recover from the involvement of religion? A network of over 400 churches worldwide, named C3 Global (the C stands for Christ) are populated by a predominantly 20-30 year-old congregation, listening intently to the Christian rock band replacing the knackered pipe organ and the service led by a giddy youth in jeans. The places of worship are often more like hostels than churches, all comfy sofas and table football, you could feasibly wander around and struggle to spot a single crucifix. The blood of Christ on offer is rosé and the church collection is taken not by proffering some coppers out of the pocket but on your phone via the Pushpay app.
Just browsing the website for the C3 centre local to me, and it’s populated by pastel-skinned perma-grinning goons, with text proclaiming “reaching and shaping” and “a place to belong” – it’s all a bit Waco. My descriptions could do the introductions page no justice, so please dig in. The important thing is that, with appropriate irony, it might well be Jesus that saves us after all. Hipster churches – it surely can’t get any worse?