Tuesday, 21 June 2011

And the Lord spaketh unto the tribe of Hipsters...

Wheresoever Couriers shall deliver Artwork, and wheresoever skinny lattes shall be sipped, there shalt Thou find Fixies.

This week's Wprost contains an article about Polish hipsters, Dyskretne promieniowanie lansem (soooooo 2008, and behind a sad little paywall) covering all aspects of hipster life, fashion, music, etc. Trendiest places? PKP Powiśle and Plan B. Trendiest form of transport? Bicycle. Not just any bicycle - as well as the amsterdamka (Dutch gas-pipe roadsters, with lady's frame)... najmodniejsze w tym sezonie ostre koło - rower bez przerzutek i hamulców (OK, może być ewentualnie przedni hamulec) - "most fashionable this season - a fixed-wheel bike ['fixie'] - a bike without gears or brakes (OK, maybe front brakes)"

This season??? My dear Aleksandra Krzyżaniak-Gumowska! How out-of-touch you are! The fixie has been a hipster accoutrement since the late '90s, bicycle couriers being at the forefront of popularising this type.

Above: Trying too hard. White tyres? Matching saddle and grips? Minimalist front brake cable? Le Vélo de Merci? Pretentious? Moi?

Ah! This is it - purity. A real track frame (rear-facing drop-outs), rear aero-rim with matching chainwheel, Criterion geometry, Brooks leather saddle - I doubt if this is a hipster's bike. The owner knows what's going on.

Hmmm. Again, trying too hard. No front brake. No helmet. On your head be it (literally). The white-black-red scheme - isn't it just a bit too - factory?

Australian Honda Jazz advert, featuring hipsters and fixies
Hipster Hitler never invaded Switzerland
My own fixie here, here and here

This time last year:
Exit polls can get it wrong

This time two years ago:
In search of good Polish beer

This time three years ago:
In the Solstice garden


student SGH said...


Good to find out such a subculture exists at all. I've probably grown out of keeping up with all new fashions, rages, etc.

Not a surprise to learn that journalists are out of touch as well - typisch...

Paddy said...

Here's a very witty and slightly rude take on this subculture. This makes me laugh as I lived in Shoreditch, where most of this video is set and whose fashion styles most of the Polish hipster seem to take their cue, for two years.


Unknown said...

Funny to read it, noticeable you are correct and sadly these bikes are dangerous. Yet as I'm living downtown and mostly driving by car (sadly) from A to B I see the past year more and more bike roads pop up. A good thing when not having a decent brake (-;. Yet as I'm from The Netherlands and its kind of hard to a find a "normal" amsterdamka around in Warsaw. Starting to think of importing one instead.

P.s. nice and interesting blog!