Hear Ye to Stay: Town-Criering
As hipsters well know, teh social mediaz are the dominant way to get messages out these days. Well, before the facebooks and the twitterverse and the google+ and instagrams and the tumblrs how did people feed their narcissistic needs? You got it, by Town Criering. Originally officers of the court, tasked with making legal announcements to the mostly illiterate townsfolk, the town crier was an essential part of daily life. Also called a “bellman” (do not make the mistake of EVER asking a crier to haul your bags to your room, nothing hurts more than getting clocked with a brass handbell.) Town criers strode up and down the streets of the town announcing all manner of news, advertisements, market days and such.
In the German town of Goslar, the crier informed the citizens to refrain from using the local river as a bathroom on days when the brewery was collecting water for the local beer.
First and foremost, a good town crier needs a bell. Of course no ordinary bell will do, walking around tinkling some anemic peace chimes or yoga harmony jingles will only undermine the importance of what you’re criering. You need a solid bell of note and nothing says PAY ATTENTION like a Schulmerich. They claim to be “the world’s largest and oldest existing manufacturer of handbells in the United States.” This is a perfectly ironic and confusing, and all we know is that, swinging that bright brass monster in the crisp dawn light, you’ll be the envy of all your hand-bell choir hipster friends. Next, the always important attire. A Tricorne hat (which we are emphatically stating will be THE next hipster hat), knickers and possible Ben Franklin glasses, holy hell this is epic hipster gold in the making! Why didn’t we think of this before!?
Once you’re all rigged up, the next thing is to get out there and do it! If you live in close proximity to other hipsters, we suggest the ol’ crack-o-dawn strategy. After a late night of drinking endless craft ciders and listening to high decibel circuit bent experimental electronica, nothing says “hi how are ya” like standing in the courtyard of the old button factory (now hipster condos) and stoutly ringing a huge hand bell reading hashtags from twitter and facebook. The classic town crier call starts with “OYEZ, OYEZ!” Then launch into a 37 minute regurgitation of everyone’s most self-obsessed postings from the night before. Use the most olde-englishy type accent you can muster.
“MISTER THEO SAYS ON YE OLDE TWIITER ..”
“..OUCH, MY HEAD DOTH HURT AS A SPLIT MELLON DROPPED ON THE WARF! OMG HASHTAG TIED-ONE_ON! HASHTAG THEOPROBLEMZ!”
Remember, you have big shoes to fill, modern town criers hold the Guinness world records for the loudest humans, reaching 114 decibels so step it up! You’ll have lots of new admirers and after a week of doing this, maybe … just maybe they’ll all start to think twice before posting needless dribble.