Peaked: Stuff

These unwanted toys want you to stop your stuff addiction
These unwanted toys from a trash island floating in the North Pole want you to stop your stuff addiction … and kill Santa.

While it’s been happening for a while, people are starting to finally feel the hurt from the sheer amount of stuff we’ve created. The definition of the word itself is worth noting.

Stuff (noun)  – the material of which anything is made.

Given in that context, stuff has this building-block-of-the-cosmos ring to it. I like to think stuff is some kind of base element which can be reformed to make anything. When to need to refer to anything, you can use the word stuff. “Hey get your stuff out of my house!” or “I have the stuff, do you have the money?” Now, unless you believe in creatio ex nihilo, stuff is a perquisite for existence. According to Carl Sagan, “we are star stuff” which is a noble way to look at it and we’re currently up to our armpits with all our star stuff.

Sure, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch and laws banning plastic bags for single item purchases are important examples of too much stuff but HWTNXT is all about making the obscure relevant so here are other ways to look at the stuff-splosion.

The rapid rise of self storage – According to the Self Storage Association,”Some 65% of all self storage renters have a garage but still rent a unit; 47% have an attic in their home; and 33% have a basement.” Many people just walk away, leaving their stuff to star in “reality” television.

On average, English kids own 238 toys but only play with 12 daily. That’s 5%! Now we know the secret truth about the origin of the heartbreaking and dysfunctional “Island of misfit toys” from the classic Rankin/Bass Rudolf television show. BTW, I’m the jelly shooting squirt gun!

How2HAWT: So what to do about this? Well, thankfully the Swedish have a good idea, it’s kind of an anti-Ikea idea,  Start repairing stuff.  In his misguided 1932 stuff-ifesto “Ending the Depression through Planned Obsolescence“, Bernard London advocates for making stuff cheaply to save ourselves. It lead to a institutionalization of disposability and the tragic death of the fix-it-men. Case in point, my Fisher / Paykel dual drawer dishwasher. I have steadfastly refused to allow this thing to give into it’s makers idiocy of design and potentially despicable intentional failures. I’m proud to claim that I’ve repaired or replaced every internal component of this Kiwi beast. I have accepted the greasy mantle of fix-it-man and I will not allow my dishwasher to be a testimony to the discardable.

 So DO YOUR PART! Grab those tools, set up a workbench, toss that lamp up on it and start fixing it. Thats HAWT!

Rearing Up: Centauring It!

Serene and volatile, You too can Centaur this.
Serene and volatile, You too can Centaur this.

Perviously HWTNXT:HipsterTrends has advocated for animal proxies to become the standard bearers for the “nxt-of-times.” But, now, charging forward through the pillowy myths of time, comes the perfect totemic symbol for today, the Centaur! At once brash and barbarian, then pivoting to be wise and sensitive, the centaur is the perfect anthropomorphized icon for our troubled times. Think of being a centaur like having a super brash and “transbeast” way to respond to any challenge in life. Half human half horse, all business! Probably why the epicenter of interest is the Ukraine.

Not just the uncouth partiers of Percy Jackson, centaurs have come to represent the internal clash between our base instincts and cultured sensibilities, fertile stomping ground for a cutting edge hawtster like you. With the recent discovery of a habitable Earth like planet around Proxima Centauri, our nearest stellar neighbor only 4 light years away, the time of the the centaur has arrived.

How-to Hawt: When Bobertta (your ineffectual human manageress) decides it’s time for a punitive “performance review”, don’t cower under your cubicle tangled in ethernet and mouse cables in sweaty heaving, NO! Stand immediately forcefully shoving your throne ( ill fitting and inanely named task chair from Sweden ) back – allowing it to roll into Seth’s cubie across the way with authority. Then, reaching spread eagled with fingers out, take a chest exploding deep breath, stomp a nubby toe-boxed keens loafer down, SNORT and exclaim, “By the daughters of the Lapithae, it is time!” With a hearty whinny-laugh, do your best Churchill Downs pre-race clopping down the hallway to her office. Glance about as if you are returning from a battle. As centaurs always have one raised eyebrow, change them frequently during the review. Centaurs luxuriate in their chest hair, even female Centaurs, so don’t hold back, a medical grade comb can accentuate this. A true centaur would remember that this is their performance review, not the manager’s, so own it and know you’re HAWT!

On Point: Unicycle Archery

HWTNXT has been watching (and doing) archery for quite a while. With the popularity of Hunger Games, archery is now “Science Fashion” hawt . Now is the perfect time to trend blend it with the another hawt pursuit, and of course we choose the unicycle.

As evidenced by the video, we’re not alone. Mounted archery was a defining characteristic of the Eurasian nomads in antiquity and the “dandy horse” a fixture of poncy European aristocrats, this makes for a perfect one two punch for the modern Hawtster.

According to data provided by USA Archery, the sport’s governing body in the U.S., total membership in the association has jumped 262% from 2011 to 2014

How2Hawt: To honor the past, and take this into the future, we suggest the following.

First, spend a lot of money with Eryk Jadaszewski of polishhussarsupplyplus.com. When the HWTNXT office powerball pool hits, we’re buying this guy out and wearing this shit ALL THE FRIGGAN TIME. Must haves for unicycle archery are the Hussar Wing Sets and Bow and Arrow Cases.  We cannot stress enough how important Eryk’s work is to the future of re-enacting medieval Lithuania. This man must be supported in anything he does.

Dont ask, just do it!
Dont ask, just do it!

This focus on Polish Hussar mounted archery is not meant to diminish the rich tradition of Yabusame. But the religious component of modern Japanese mounted archery must be respected. We find winged Hussars to be somehow more “street.” The one homage we can pay however is the use of the Shinto phrase “In-Yo-In-Yo”, which translates to “darkness and light”, when an arrow is let fly.

So, as you roll up on the fire dance collective’s Equinox party practice, and proceed to empty your Hussar quiver into the side of their wooden supply cart full of accelerant and beads, gently balancing on one wheel while deeply intoning Japanese, you’ll gain fear, respect and admiration. Because you’ve just freaked out the freaky, and that’s HAWT.

Dark Side for the WIN?

Ren from Ren and Stimpy
Ren Höek
renSW
Kylo Ren

This one is from the could-a-told-ya-so-why-do-a-study-about-it department. Leave it to some Germans (actually Swiss psychological researchers studying Germans in some kind of unholy self fulfilling Teutonic kopf-spiel) to determine that in fact, narcissistic psychopathic Machiavellians are more “successful” at work. Go figure.

narcissism was positively related to salary, Machiavellianism was positively related to leadership position and career satisfaction, and psychopathy was negatively related to all analyzed outcomes.

The “Dark Triad” isn’t just a Hong Kong gang from a Jackie Chan movie, it’s in each of us. These insidious malevolences have been found to equate to the western sense of “success”, especially in Germany. Could this explain the VW emissions debacle?

Sie werden nehmen wertvollen Leitersprosse Platz für meinen Fuß !

So this all begs the question, how best to survive/thrive in the face of this darkness? We really can’t call this a “trend” in that jerks have always risen to the top of the corporate cesspool, but it’s still worth a teenser bit of exploration. To heighten the irony, let’s extract this from the glass and formica of the corporate world and inject some Sith into a bucolic bastion of nicey nicey, the next board meeting of your scavenged bicycle co-operative. Imagine the twisted countenances around the table at the bike cave when you show up, late of course, dressed in black and distorting your voice through a toilet paper tube covered in black duct tape. As a side note, HawtNext cannot stress enough the importance of having a large supply of cardboard tubes! Every dark sider has a distorted voice. Next, stand ominously at the head of the table and glare at the velocipedian neo-hippies. “I tire (sick humor is a sure sign of psychoapthy) of your inaction and timidity” you deeply intone with clenched fist in front of you. “The time for action is NOW!” What the action is, is unimportant, the importance is that you’ve made them feel feckless and ineffectual. “You!” pointing at the unicycle representative. “I admire your purity, align with me and we will control the streets!” Yes, your transition is complete, you are sowing discord and disarray playing factions against each other. Because the unicyclist is also a mime, he wont say anything when you pretend to air-squeeze his throat for hesitating to do your bidding, he may even pretend to wince because mimes like to play along. Now turn on the heel of your black keen sandals and leap on your bike (try not to get your cloak caught in the single fixed gear) and ride off cackling “I’ll get you and your little dog too!” None of this will of course work because the Freewheeler Co-op is an Anarcho-syndicalist collective and being a jerk at work relies on a hierarchical power structure.

By the way, if you are dealing with someone who is part of the Dark Triad (especially if it’s yourself), try some honesty and humility, a sure fire remedy for a case of the meanies.

Kill the Messenger: Revisionism v. Previsionism

Obligatory Photoshopping
Obligatory Photoshopping

At first, we thought this funny post would be about casting your favorite actor in your favorite movie … even if they were never in it originally. So, not that I’m a fan of The Sound of Music or Marylyn Manson, but the potential of having him replace Julie Andrews cavorting around the Alps wearing a drapery might somehow make SOM one of my new favorite films of all time, almost beating out Plan 9 from Outer Space.  Well, now it can be done! Then, as I watched the video, I became super disturbed. Especially when they had George Bush’s words coming from Hillary Clinton’s mouth which, frankly, looks and sounds less absurd than we had thought it might. The revisionist implications flooded me like a wall of ripe sewage. Umm … recasting movies … no problem .. fun! I can see this becoming a HAWT new PS4 thing to do at parties. The contest becomes to pick a movie and then pic non-sequitur actors .. all fun .. ironic .. Wizard of Oz: The Next Generation with Data as Tin Man …

A truly hipster evening! But then I began to think how this could be used to change the past, or even the present. BTW, as a result of this post I came up with what I thought was a new word. 

“Previsionism.” The process of changing facts before they exist was actually coined by Edwardo Crum, on the 25th of October, 2012 whilst he was minding his own business sipping some coffee.

Anyway, all I know that using this technology to mess with heads and wallets and facts has McLuhanian (<—hell, two new words (kind of) in one post!?! This must be HAWT) implications, and that makes it HAWT NEXT.

 

We should make money off of hipsters!!!

PicoBrew’s newest product, Pico, makes brewing beer at home so easy that anyone—even someone who has never brewed before—can create and enjoy amazing craft beer at home.

Well.  Shit.  Over two years ago we alerted you that micro-brewing was way too big and way too mainstream and literally told you to get into picobrewing.  Well one of you bastards did it and now you’re rich and we’re still not rich.  $1.5 million dollars on kickstarter!!!1  *stab*  Just look at that stupid thing. Propped up neatly on a granite countertop next to a spice-rack and an array of vinaigrette and e.v.o.o.  Well, isn’t that adorable?!  *more stabbing*picocrap

For just $2000ish it could be yours!  No need to buy a 6.5 gallon bucket and brew like a normal person.

*heavy sigh*

The only way to regroup here is think about what the legions of hipsters crave and actually make money off it next time.  Beewax beard wax?  Dammit.  Already a thing!

Right AGAIN!

We pegged this one back in May of 2013 with our insightful expose on Scything your Lawn. As you can see from the google trends report in the article, lawn scything has since flat-lined.  Good, and also easily predictable.  Why cut plants?  Murderers.  It’s better to craft a sustainable pollinator habitat or a permicultural edible landscape.  Duh.

Virtual Surreality

Nothing is hipper than the Victorians, right?
Your great grandmother was a into VR before you.

VR is HAWT! With viewers like Google Cardboard and Oculus Rift covering both ends of the income spectrum, it looks like virtual reality has sliced its way out of the geetk-tech gestalt and into the main stream. Basically, it uses binocular vision and your phone to give you a new perspective (actually two new perspectives) on the world around you. This is magnifying-lens-on-an-ant HAWT right now. Given that it’s just re-purposing an ancient (meaning pre-television) technology called stereoscopy, and that it has a hand held form factor, this absolutely satisfies the conditions of the Gilderman Hypothesis and therefore hip. As a mater of fact, it’s pegging the trend-o-tron right now, interestingly with Finland in the lead for regional search interest. We cannot yet determine if this means that Finland is a hipster hawtbed or that the Finnish are so depressed in “real life” that they are obsessed with virtual life. Both could be true.

Anyway, when a trend is peaking, it’s OVER! So what’s HAWT NEXT? Well after we’ve explored virtually all of reality, the only thing left is surreality. Don’t worry,  this can be achieved easily. Seeing as binocular vision is about bending light, VSR (yes, Virtual SurRealism ) is a perfect next logical step.

Surreality is when Artists painted unnerving, illogical scenes with photographic precision, created strange creatures from everyday objects and developed painting techniques that allowed the unconscious to express itself” –The 20th-Century art book. (Reprinted. ed.). London: Phaidon Press. ISBN 0714835420.

As with all good hipster-tech, this is based on some gadget which causes the user to become more and more isolated from others, leading an insular life in the name of hyper-connectivity and “social engagment.”

So here’s what you have to do.

Get as much odd bits of cardboard and a hot glue gun as you can. Toilet paper and paper towel tubes are a must! Now, with all the cubist verve you can muster, put together a whack ass pair of goggles. Tin foil, lenses from old glasses (the bigger, the better) all at odd angles will complete this infernal contraption. Make sure to create some way to strap it to your head so you can wear it later as you barge in to the tea house and stand in the middle of the room, hopefully interrupting a planning meet-up for Kale fest, and begin to gather images for your surrealist photo sphere. For added retro panache, use a bit of flash powder left over from when you were learning parlor magic as a hobby and have an assistant flash each time you “expose” a frame. That’s about 24 times so they’ll love this and get ready for some awesome facial expressions in your high tech futurist art master piece. Toss in some mutterings like “…mmm, melty…” or “Zang Tumb Tuuum!” to put the icing on the cake as you stuble around the room bumping into things trying to walk wearing your Virtual Surreality headset.

Honey Boo Boo & Deepak Chopra = HAWT

tumblr_mpzsx0nkdx1qkfspko1_500Nothing makes us HAWTER than a bunch of academics doing an in-depth study of stupid people.

Some eggheads from the University of Waterloo used the New Age Bullshit Generator to see just WTF idiots are thinking … or not thinking … or whatever.  

They basically thought the tweets were just as profound as the randomly generated sentences, so they were equally bad at seeing the B.S. in both.’

 Then, of course, the Washington Post does a story about it. The staff at Hawtnext is entirely gung-ho about contributing to the meta-nature of this examination. We often use the Click-o-tron to make ourselves feel superior.

Interestingly, these people have actually stumbled on some ancient esoteric knowledge. What’s REALLY HAWT here is that the stupid people are masters of Zen Koans without even trying. Zen Koans are solution-less riddles used to reveal to zen students the ways of meaninglessness … or whatever.  But, much like in quantum physics, once an experiment has been observed, it doesn’t exist. So thanks Mr. Scientists for destroying the zen of these innocent stupid people. Of note, is that funding for this study was provided by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

Frozen HOT: Ice Cave Exploration

Look. we usually don’t get excited about a lot of things because acting unimpressed and bored by everything anyone else does is standard hipster protocol. But this … THIS … is a must-do. Get in your Suberu wagon; gather up Ike, Matilda and Theo, and drive down the south shore of Lake Superior to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore!!!

icehip1

Just to give you an idea of the scale here and just how immersed you will be in hip, here’s a shot from the parking lot that you will walk 2 miles to get to. Just 2 miles across a frozen lake in -40 windchill to go! YES! Note the red rectangle above is zoomed in below. So. Much. Hip.

icehip2

The group below is just a small sample of the legions of hip you will encounter. Note the strong fashion choices of skinny jeans and 1980’s bold color choices.

Oops, looks like leather skinny jeans guy from the shot above forgot his scarf. We know from Lenny Kravitz to never forget your scarf. Always adept at improvisation, he is using his wool coat at a wearable habitat. Nice move.

icehip5

Be sure to pull your iPhone from the depths of your free-cycled hemp handbag and get some close up shots of all the pretty icicles and caves!

icehip4

BEHOLD … THE KING HIPSTER OF THE MIDWEST REGION. Bow to your sensei! Yes, this guy is actually out in the freezing cold and he … he … he’s oil painting!! I don’t know if this can be topped as far as hip goes. At least we all have something to aspire to. What is he painting, I wonder?

icehip11

This is what he’s painting, and yeah, it’s amazing.

icehip7

Just one more look at our majesty. Note that he has some sort of vintage gloves that look like they were fashioned for sled dog racing on a sling. Damn, he’s amazing. What kind of boots are those. Nobody knows. Wow.

icehip8

As always, don’t forget your rescue dog and make sure he’s got his coat. Check out the two normals on the right. Snowmobile jackets? Seriously? Ugh. Unless they are wearing them to be ironic? *shrugs*

icehip9

These two were running on the way out. Maybe they literally had to, to survive. Considering yoga pants are the only defense from the frozen elements, I suppose this is expected. Adhoc survival runs will always be hip, so they are okay in my book.

icehip10

Well, that about does it for our tour. I hope you enjoyed it. In the event that you somehow can’t make it out to the caves this winter you can always kayak or better yet paddle board out to them in the spring if the lake ever thaws.