Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hipster Convention

Last weekend Bobby and I went to a Cupcake Cookoff. It was donation based and held in my favorite bookstore downtown- it's all volunteer run, sells second hand books, and has a coffee shop. It has an eco-focus, and promotes biking, sustainable living, local news/politics, and local artists/authors. Plus, all the entrants in the cookoff were local non-profits, so the donations went right back into our local community. It was probably the highest scoring entertainment event one could attend based on every single local advocate/green consumer/conscious citizen parameter. We were also sure that any space with that many cupcakes per square inch was also most assuredly bound to have a very concentrated percentage of hipsters. So, we started referring to it, jokingly, as the "Hipster Convention". When we showed up, we both just started laughing and shaking our heads. It was literally as though it was a costume party, and the theme was "dress like an uber hipster- no, really, like, totally over the top". The place was packed, and we were probably two out of five people not wearing vintage from head to toe, sporting super skinny jeans, feathers, clove cigarettes tucked behind our ears, horrendous dresses piled in layers over loud tights, ironic mullets, and epic handlebar mustaches, wax gleaming slickly in the light. Oh, and I can't forget- lots and lots of no-medical-necessity glasses- "nerd glasses". Kittens, I want to assure you all right here and now that we weren't making fun of these people, we were just making fun of how absurd it all was. I mean, we're in a local, independent, volunteer run bookstore/coffee shop, at a Cupcake Cookoff, and virtually every. single. person. was sporting the most stereotypical examples of the ironic/self conscious/over the top hipster was like a stereotype inside a stereotype sold at Anthropologie wrapped in thrift store gift paper. I dunno, maybe it was just funny to us because it almost felt as though the universe had heard our references to a Hipster Convention, and then triple upped us when it came to the reality of it all. And don't get me wrong, I have my share of thrift store dresses and ugly tights...but I digress. Now that I've set the scene via words, here are some pictures- washed out, flash using pictures, I will warn you, because unfortunately it was quite dim in that small, packed space.

Downtown was all Christmas'd out with twinkle lights in the branches and wrapped around the trees.

Bulletin board in the bookstore when you first enter- I love the way they spell out community.

After we paid our donation we were given hand stamps of tools- the event was put on by a group called "Hammer-Time Co-op" so it was only fitting.

They gave us tickets to write our votes on, and detailed, colorfully written instructions on how to vote. This was when we were scoping out the place and just laughing at how absurd life can be sometimes.

And then we were off! This was the first cupcake of the night. At this point, we had not idea that there were TWENTY PLUS booths awaiting us. We each had 1/4 of this one, and it was delicious.

Truth be told, this was one awesome as well. In fact, I didn't have one bad cupcake that night. This one was one of my favorites.

This nice young gentleman- and I have to say, everyone was *so nice*- was with a group that gives books to prisoners. Here he is modeling his wares- vegan chocolate cupcakes with chocolate ganache.

This was my favorite booth. It's from the local sewing shop "Mama Said Sew". Awww, cute, right?

These were from another local coffee shop- please note requisite hipster vintage hootie owl. At this point, we were sampling our 5th cupcake. Most had been broken into halves and fourths, but even so we had both eaten a little over two complete cupcakes all told. We then looked to our left and saw that he line continued all the way to the stairs. There was also a bottleneck forming, so there was no more picture taking at booths. We tried to be more judicious in our sampling, but we still ended up with at least 4 quarter sized pieces of cupcakes each. We decided to head up to the loft area to take tiny bites of each piece so we didn't get sick.

Bike love continues in the decor flanking the staircase.

I love how they use Scrabble pieces to denote the different sections (and ouch, that garish flash is taunting me).

Here's the view from the top, which gives you a good idea of the crowd and the line of cupcakes we went through.

I was only able to taste two more tiny, tiny pieces before I folded. My sugar limit had been reached, exceeded, and then left behind many bites before. We both decided to vote and head out for dinner.

We headed to our favorite sushi place. They make the most amazingly complex vegetable rolls. So many places wrap rice around a piece of cucumber and expect vegetarians to grovel in gratitude. This place has about 10 different veggie rolls, and they're all great (and cheap!)

Here's my favorite- Buddha's feast. On the inside you have cucumber, avocado, tempura sweet potato, and carrot. It's all wrapped in a thin slice of lightly fried tofu, then topped with lemony guacamole and black sesame seeds. A perfect balance to cut through all the sugar we had.

This is me, as I was saying "I feel insane from all this sugar. I have a sugar coma. I think it's serious".


  1. Remind me when I move to Colorado to hook up with you guys. You always seem to have so much fun!

  2. For sure! We'll show ya around the place :)

  3. Haha sushi after all those cupcakes! I love the header picture by the way!

  4. I know, right? We weren't playing around that night. And thanks, I wasn't sure if it looked weird or not :)

  5. I want a cupcake so bad right now. And some of that sushi. It looks amazing. You are so right about the general un-impressiveness of vegetarian sushi, but that looks really good.

  6. Looking back at the cherry margarita cupcakes make me want one too- I wish they had provided recipe cards there as well, I would have been all. over. it.

  7. How amazing is this!!! I want to do one of these.

    It sounds like you ate more than just the vegan cupcakes? Or did the hipsters make lots of those? (P.S. I wish you had done some stalkerazzi photos of the outfits there for us to view!)

  8. Most were vegan, but we definitely ate more than the vegan ones. Lately Bobby and I have been trying to work out a balance between vegan/vegetarian. I'd say we're eating about 90% vegan. I was over the moon to find out that his co-workers raise their own chickens- and treat them like pets- so we get our eggs from them now. They scratch and play in the dirt, get loved on by 4 kids, and in return we get all natural, local, organic eggs from happy chickens for $3 a dozen. Other than that though, we still don't purchase milk/dairy, with the occasional exception of the Red Hill Farms goat yogurt/cheese- the place where they don't slaughter the nannies once they're past milking age, but let them live out their days on the farm. I've found that a good balance for me is mostly vegan, with eggs for breakfast a few times a week. I could live without the cheese completely though, because I've noticed a *huge* improvement in my skin since giving up dairy. When it comes to social gatherings, we pretty much both just go vegetarian- such as during this last Thanksgiving. If someone goes out of their way to make a meat-free dish, I'm not going to waste it, or grill them about whether or not it has butter.

    And I totally tried to get pictures of the hipster-iffic fashion but things were moving so fast I couldn't, and it was so packed that it would have been obvious. But trust me, it was pretty ridiculous :)