Don't leave the house until you have grown in some scruff (ladies, this doesn't apply to you, but make sure to tell your man).
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Clearly Anthony Bourdain was a big nerd in high school. Be aware that these brainy types make some of the most successful Reverse Snobs when they mature. Typically they have the right balance of smarts and bitterness needed to fully understand the role.
If you too are a nerd with the determination to become so cool that you can eventually snub the snob, emulate this man starting today.
Things that make him a good Reverse Snob role model:
- Knows just as much about food and cooking as any elite chef, yet still scarfs street vendor hot dogs.
- Enjoys beer.
- More likely to be seen eating a seal off the kitchen floor of an Inuit family's house in Quebec than a five course dinner at a Michelin rated restaurant in Paris.
- Jerky camera movements/documentary style.
- Eats foie gras in mass quantities.
- Ignores popular fashion (i.e. still wears an earring).
- Yet doesn't wear Crocs.
- Witty writer.
You bike everywhere you possibly can. But sometimes you have to drive, like when you need to make a run to the home brewery store for more hops.
You have some choices. Generally, steer clear of new cars. Any car that gets incredible mileage is fair game, as long as it's not considered a luxury car.
Small Asian cars can be good, but be careful with pimping them. Unless you're wealthy and buying an inexpensive Asian car is a statement enough for you (and you know who you are, friends), decking your car out with too much stuff can be a problem.
Your best bet is a really old Land Cruiser or similar utility vehicle. Keep everything original. Rust is like a battle wound. Cracks in the leather seats make it look vintage. If you own one you appear outdoorsy, stylish and so sustainable it's not even funny. This is the ultimate Reverse Snob car. It's not cheap on gas, but you barely ever drive anyway. There was a time that finding a diesel utility vehicle was the way to go, but diesel prices have skyrocketed. Keep that in mind for when they go back down.
Other tips for the perfect Reverse Snob:
- It is essential that you name your beater something that makes a statement. Spanish names like Pepe and Jose are always funny. Or try names of supporting characters from movies like Uncle Rico or Michael Bolton.
- If you decide to add a bumper sticker, please stick to one. And remember, this sticker is the essence of you, so choose wisely.
- The Prius is not for you.
This post is clearly just touching on a few points of a very complicated subject. Stay tuned for more information on cars for the Reverse Snob.
Smoking is cool.
This doesn't mean you have to stop eating sprouted grains and fair trade coffee, so don't worry.
Friday, November 14, 2008
There are many opinions on the proper fashion for biking.
Here's something to keep in mind. As a Reverse Snob, you're not overly consumptive. There's no need to go out and invest in a new wardrobe in order to look relevant on your bike. You can easily get the look by going through your current closet and restyling items you already have.
There are three important elements to a stylish biking outfit: statement buttons, pants and a messenger bag made by a small company.
Buttons are the new bumper sticker.
You don’t have to remember to put them on every time you go biking if you just affix them to your messenger bag. Don’t go overboard. We’re not talking Office Space flair here. Just pick three. One should be Obama-related. The other two should be irreverent. Double points if you have an irreverent Obama button like this one.
Growing teenagers are in luck. All those pairs you're too tall for? They are perfect for a do-it-yourself project. And what if you're not a teenager? This is a great use for those bootcut jeans you're not wearing anymore.
Simply cut off the bottoms and turn them into capris. Alternatively, roll one or both cuffs. It's so easy, yet it screams "I'm a Reverse Snob" like no other fashion statement.
LA trendsetters seem to be latching on to this trend so it won't be long before you need to abort. Tight-fitting jeans will stay relevant for several seasons to come, so they’re always a safe bet.
If you’re planning on spending any money, this is where it should go. Choose something huge, yet understated. Simply designed and waterproof. Always go with a lesser-known brand. The brand is important for when other bike riders see you. They will judge you first on your bike and then on your bag. Do your research.
Biking is new.
Biking is about the most stylish thing you can do. If you bike, no one will question your political preferences. If you bike, you’re sophisticated. You obviously care about the environment. I can’t say this enough: you’re about as in as it gets.
Don’t just assume you can pick up a shiny new Huffy and be part of this phenomenon though. As with any reverse snobery topic, there are rules to follow.
If you’re riding a bike with gears, what’s wrong with you? Life was much better before gears came along. The look of a bike is more important than the function anyway.
Don’t be seen on the road with a factory bike. I repeat: DON’T BE SEEN ON THE ROAD WITH A BIKE THAT HASN’T BEEN TWEAKED. Bikes are made for dismantling. It is absolutely essential that you, at the very least, get new tires and handlebars. If you aspire to be especially cool, try some exciting colors that really stand out on the road. Thin tires are non-negotiable.
A true Reverse Snob will find an old beater road bike, like a '78 Schwinn like the one above, and take it to his local shop to be converted to a fixed gear setup (if you go this route, make sure your Schwinn is from Japan and not one of those imposters from China).
Let's touch on brake use. What do you need those for? Take them off. They really mess with the lines of your bike. Learn how to ride a bike the real way or don’t crowd the road.
Lastly, don't slack on learning how to do a track stand. Even if you're not the kind of douche that would show off like that in public, you need to be good at them in order to make fun of the people that actually do them. Practice at your parents' place in the 'burbs where people still think it's cool.
Stay tuned for: Bike fashion.