Maybe it's the time of year. Maybe it's the weather? But people are extra cranky this week about fixie bikes and craft brews invading their cities. There's a definite anti-hipster vibe in the air, and it's global, from Portland, to Los Angeles, to London, to Iceland. What's Ruining Our Cities? HIPSTERS.
Portland's got a problem that not many other cities have: Too many college-educated workers. Drawn by the high quality of life, these smart young people flock to town, but then are dismayed to find there are not enough work opportunities for them. Yet the city is affordable enough (for now) that they can accept minimal employment and stick around—which drags down the city's overall productivity and makes everyone poorer. In today's New York Times, economic reporter Claire Cain Miller argues that the city has achieved something truly notable: After plenty of jokes about it, Portland has actually become a "retirement community" for the young. [New York Times]
In a frighteningly grumpy column, Will Self sounds off against the "talentless hipster," who sees himself as an artist while contributing nothing to the greater culture (see above). And thanks to the internet and its ability to spread these filthy ideals, you've able to find this scourge in every city on the planet. But in the end, he decides, it's actually his own generation (Boomers) that are to blame for showing us younger kids this kind of behavior was permissible: "We're the pierced and tattooed, shorts-wearing, skunk-smoking, OxyContin-popping, neurotic dickheads who've presided over the commoditisation of the counterculture... we're the idiots who scrumped the golden apples from the Tree of Jobs until our bellies swelled and we jetted slurry from our dickhead arseholes—slurry we claimed was "cultural criticism." [ The Guardian]
Last we left this tiny mountain enclave, it was on the brink of a hostile takeover by Bud Light, which wanted to use the picturesque town as the backdrop for citywide beer commercial. Well, the city negotiated for twice the amount offered by Bud (smart!) and then let InBev's branding team quite literally paint the town blue. Finally, a report about what went down, including: All the beer taps in the city being replaced with Bud Light, Vanilla Ice doling out vanilla ice cream from a Vanilla Ice Cream Truck, an absolutely real beer-delivering drone, and so many marijuana busts at the airport that hundreds of people missed their flights. [ Thrillist]