Ironic Philadelphians Should Pay “Hipster Tax”
This weekend marks the end of one of Philadelphia’s most bold social experiments, a seminal moment in local history that ranks with the signing of the Constitution, the first union of processed cheese and steak strips on a roll, and the birth of Kevin Bacon. The E-Lane along the 1400 block of JFK Boulevard is an American first: the only stretch of sidewalk designated exclusively for morons who enjoy walking while looking down to text or play Angry Birds. What began as an April Fool’s gag by everyone’s favorite comedian-in-chief, Michael Nutter, has been hailed as a “trailblazing breakthrough” (by his office).
Some local TV stations even reported on the E-Lanes as a serious news event. So let’s not stop here. Philadelphia could lead the charge against societal ills, cultural ignorance, and general stupidity. Mayor Nutter, feel free to employ the following revolutionary innovations. All I ask for is a cameo in your next video. And some city swag, like t-shirts and keychains. And a salary, with full bennies and a pension.
“Seniors Only” Lane
Frustrated by that silver-haired lady pulling out of the Acme and cruising at half the speed limit? That AARP-card carrier who comes to nearly complete stop before making a turn? The grandparents frozen by indecision at a four-way intersection? Now that anyone over the age of 65 is restricted to driving in these designated old-folks lanes, you can dial back the blood pressure meds and enjoy life at full speed.
“Drunks Only” Sections
More frustrating than Philadelphia’s lack of championships is the inability to enjoy a sporting event without some drunk from [fill in the neighborhood here] getting rowdy, vomiting, or engaging in male bonding that leads to uncomfortable hugs after a score. Now, both tailgate boozers and full-blown alcoholics will have a place to discuss urinating in bathroom sinks and use “bro” as either a term of endearment or a threat. Ticketholders in the designated “Coors Light Party Pit” will need to blow at least a .15 to gain entry. Please drink responsibly!
It’s an epidemic that’s most notable at concerts where an abundance of white people who think they have rhythm gather (think Jay-Z, Prince, and the entire crowd at a Dave Matthews gig). There’s a breakdown during which the band drops out, leaving just the drummer to keep time. That’s when it happens—the White Folks Clap. It may start out on the beat, but you can bet that by the time the singer jumps back in with a “How are you feelin’ tonight Phil-a-del-fee-yaaaa?,” it will sound like a roomful of sugar-crazed three-year-olds who are happy and they know it. Metronomes will be available for rent at the box office for all Caucasians who plan to clap along. The musicians thank you in advance for your cooperation.
The Girls/Guys Night Out Chamber
Ever been to a nice restaurant and had your dining experience ruined by a pack of savages who seem to be eating out for the first time in a place that doesn’t have a drive-thru option? There’s the 40-something moms from the ‘burbs who haven’t had more than one glass of chardonnay in a sitting since before their old men got snipped. Or the paunchy college buddies who reek of cigars and brag about their frat-house exploits, loudly. Or the posse of newly-21-year-old guys in khakis and girls in Jersey Shore dresses who bring a case of Natural Light to your favorite BYO. Now, thanks to a new city ordinance, each restaurant will be required to build a soundproof room for any party over six that exhibits the above behaviors. Servers covering these rooms will receive hazard pay. Management reserves the right to cut off oxygen in the case of tips below 15 percent or any inquiries about whether the chef can “hold all the French-sounding crap” off an entrée.
The Hipster Tax
The following will be subject to a $200 charge: guys wearing skinny jeans; ironic t-shirts; handlebar mustaches; pretentious music talk similar but not limited to “I was into Bon Iver before anyone knew them but I’m so over it”; drinking shitty beer from cans when there are obviously better choices on the menu; wearing glasses that are way to big for your dumb face and/or don’t actually improve your vision; tattoos of something stupid like a toothbrush in some stupid location like your shin; wearing knit hats in the summer; saying the word “fixie”; expressions of generational ennui.