November 10, 2010

Knight In Shining Plaid: A Guide To Finding Hipster Love At Cornell

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Cornell people, I implore you, stop being so god-damn normal.  This might sound strange to some of the Cornell community, but not every romance seeker is looking for your typical frat guy or sorority girl.  It might just be that there are one or two damsels dispersed around Cornell who don’t want the traditional polo sporting, Red Hot Chili Pepper listening, lacrosse playing companion.  There is an equal possibility that there exists a comparable scattering of young males who are not hopelessly traversing the cold, dark streets of Collegetown for another Juicy wearing, Ke$ha minion, pathologically addicted to Collegeacb and her Blackberry.  Instead, there might be a few around campus who are looking for individuals who may not exclusively listen to Billboard 100 music, may wear the occasional v-neck, scarf and fedora ensemble and may act as deviant to the norm as they possibly can.    I’m not saying these maverick seekers of love exist; again I’m just opening up the possibility.  And just in case these aberrant students are more than myth, I’ve compiled a succinct guide to finding your next skinny jean and cardigan donned romance.

The first task is knowing where to look.  Now, you might be able to find your special, alternative styled partner at a frat party or at Wegmans (even hipsters need to drink and/or eat), but to make things easier its best to look at places where your guy or gal would frequent that others would not.  One of the best-kept secrets on campus is Green Dragon, a quaint, little café tucked neatly into the basement of Sibley Hall.  This Village-invoking hangout has excellent coffee, communal seating conducive to speaking to someone new and always houses a plethora of architecture students who tend to stray from the beaten path (you lovable nonconformist bastards).  It’s also a good idea to hang out at nontraditional housing options on and around campus; these hideouts are full of students looking for something a little different.  If you still can’t find your next romance try wandering around the halls of Risley where not having your scarf perfectly match your v-neck t-shirt is presumably answered with intense mocking.

Now that you have found your very own hipster, it is time to take him/her out on a date and woo his/her pants off (which is incredibly hard considering their tightness).  The traditional dinner and a movie is not going to cut it though, as your date is looking for something different.  To start off, you want to go somewhere that is relaxed, fun and is conducive to conversation.  Laugh at my predictability as much as you desire, but the least intimidating place to start off an alternative date in Ithaca has to be Urban Outfitters, Evolution or Trader K’s.  Not only will you be able to show off your sense of style, but these shops allow you to get to know your new partner without all the awkwardness.  I’m not going to lie and pretend this idea wasn’t conceived as an excuse to go shopping, but your date doesn’t have to know that.

Now that you have broken the ice and hopefully thrown down a couple obscure pop culture references, its time for dinner.  If this was just any ordinary date, going with the swing of things and taking your partner to Kyushu would be expected.  But its not, so its time for you to step up your game a little bit.  You need a romantic but relaxed place to bond over your shared hatred of Coldplay. To do so, there’s no better place to do so than at Maxie’s Supper Club.  This Cajun eatery is dimly lit and classy, but is full of energy and provides some great jazz background music for your collective swooning.  Plus, they have a nice wine selection that’s just the perfect level of pretentiousness so you can show off your avant-garde nature by ordering something a tad unusual like seared catfish. The fact that you just spent $80 on a meal for two won’t hit so hard if your date is cooing about your cosmopolitan tastes and your extensive wine knowledge (unless you have taken Wines this means pretending that you have half a clue about the bottle of Malbec you just ordered).

By this time your date will be so overcome by your unconventional charm he or she will broach plans to peruse used record shops in Williamsburg over break.  Now its time for the knockout punch, the Fatality if you will (I miss Mortal Kombat so much).  Take your date somewhere fun but different; Ithaca’s Museum of the Earth with its dinosaur exhibit is always a crowd pleaser.  Everyone knows that hipsters love dinosaurs.  If museums aren’t your style, then how about an intimate concert at Castaways with its frequent hosting of new indie groups.  Just try to resist the urge to tell your date how much better the band was before they resorted to stadium rock to please the masses.

After all this gallivanting, your date will be more tired than the playlist at a frat party.  Invite your partner up to your room for an organic tea night-capper in biodegradable mugs and get ready for the magic to happen.  Hopefully these tips will prove better on your dating escapades than Damone’s from Fast Times at Ridgemont High.  Although he was right about side one of Led Zeppelin IV, that album is the romantic equivalent of crack.

Original Author: Noah Plaue