Three Hipstermen (from Paradise Circus Live)

FIRST HIPSTERMAN (Craig):

That was, literally, a lovely flat white?

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN (JB):

..and those artisan chipotle fish tacos were really quite something too.

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN (JH):

Best I’ve had since I went to visit my more successful friends down in Islington.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Who’d have thought, eh, that three years ago, we’d all be sitting here, in Birmingham, in a crowd-funded pop-up streetfood bazaar, watching a circus skills workshop, eating a fine selection of ethically-sourced Italian meats served on a piece of slate, eh?

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

Oh, back in those dark, dark days you would’ve been lucky to find brown bread here.

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN:

Big brand supermarket brown bread at that.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Without pumpkin seeds on top

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

and it would have come pre-sliced, by a machine. With a visible sell-by date.

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN:

You know, when I first moved here, my hand-cut rustic potatoes came served to me on a plate, right there next to my 21-day-aged organic Argentinian steak. Back then, we’d never even heard of entirely superfluous mini frying baskets.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Hand-cut rustic potatoes? They were plain and simple chips when I first moved here. Not even french fries. Just chips!

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

And Moroccan side salads were just something you read about in the Guardian Weekend section, after you’d marvelled at how good the latest Tim Dowling piece was.

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN:

But you know, we were happy in those days, even though we were culturally starved by a then un-burgeoning food, drink and arts scene here in B-town.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Because of the then pre-burgeoned food, drink and arts scene here in B-town. My boss at the social enterprise tech start-up used to say to me, “Jonty, Vegan Waffles from solar-powered caravans don’t buy you happiness”.

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

He was right.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Yes. He was.  

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN:

I was happier then. We used to drink cocktails in this big chain bar on Broad Street, and they came in normal glasses, not reclaimed vintage jam jars.

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Cocktails! You were lucky to drink cocktails! We used to drink beer. Not craft beer, mind you, but normal, common-as-muck imported continental lager brewed according to the ancient law of the Reinheitsgebot in a brewery that famously grew its own hops. We didn’t have freemium wow Brum emails to tell us what was going on. We had to rely on hyperlocal blogging. And the best bar snacks you could get at the time were marinated olives.

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

Olives? You were lucky to have olives! We had to make do with thrice-roasted artisanal chilli nuts that came served in an ironic bowl.

 

THIRD HISPTERMAN:

Oh, we used to dream of ironic bowls! That would been like a funded trip to Austin, Texas for no particular reason to us. We used to have to grind our own fair-trade coffee using a machine we built ourselves from unicycle parts. Ironic bowls! Pft.

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

Well, when I say ‘ironic bowls’ but they were really just bits of deliberately mis-matched china picked up at an amazing little canalside vintage market by the bar staff, who then pimped-out them out by gluing on pictures of David Hasselhof from an original 1980s Knight Rider annual  

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Pah! There were no vintage markets on regenerated canalsides when I first moved here. We had to make do with what we could pick up at the occasional freecycle swap-meets that happened before unwelcome cinema screenings in traditional working class pubs.

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

Did these freecycle meets-cum-unwelcome cinema screenings happen monthly and then gradually peter out once everyone involved got bored?

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Yes.

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN

You were lucky. When we moved here and successfully crowd-funded our first series of sonic art installations, we had to apply for Arts Council funding to build a specially-designed social media portal to promote it, because the local media and community were just not ready to engage with our vision.

 

THIRD HIPSTERMAN:

Luxury! We, of course, had it tough. When we’d brick-funded our guerilla bicycle repair shop and Vietnamese noodle bar, we had to divert all the profits from our Vegan Crunk Night to buy the drone camera we needed to shoot our own promotional video. And even then, to grow the Bak Choi and Rape Seed Oil we needed to stock in the restaurant-stroke-workshop, we had store our own shit in reconditioned Russian Army ambulance, for 6 whole months, just to make enough organic compost for our community allotment, because you just couldn’t buy that stuff in Stirchley, not for love nor money.  

 

FIRST HIPSTERMAN:

Right. When I first moved here, the 4 people that used to come to my monthly Krautrock Yoga retreat in The Kingstanding Arms thought that streetfood was a soggy pork cob you got from a van in the BullRing. I had to disband the all-male Roller Derby cheerleading troupe I was mentoring in order to focus all my efforts on a digital engagement project about funding routes for pop-up streetfood start-ups. And even then, I only managed to keep my own lactose-intolerant-friendly cupcake delivery business afloat by making and selling an album, on recycled coloured 78rpm flexi-disc vinyl, of ironic Southern Hip Hop, which was inspired by a dream I had about Telly Savalas hi-jacking an 11 bus in protest against the council rejecting my proposal for 300 subsidised rickshaw taxis being the only vehicles allowed inside the inner ring road.   

 

SECOND HIPSTERMAN:

And you try and tell the HSBC and Deutsche bank people relocating here today that and they won’t believe you.

 

ALL:

They won’t!

By Craig Hamilton

Craig is a pop music geek, musician/songwriter, and proud dad. He lectures in Music Industries @bcumedia, does digital stuff for Static Caravan Records, and runs @rocknrolltedium – which is literally not worth a tumblr.

Craig is a pop music geek, musician/songwriter, and proud dad. He lectures in Music Industries @bcumedia, does digital stuff for Static Caravan Records, and runs @rocknrolltedium – which is literally not worth a tumblr.

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