At the risk of breaking the internet under the weight of trolling, Occupy Williamsburg now exists. Its first meeting occurred last night at Union Pool, a bar that has a wading pool and a permanent taco truck in its backyard. The Atlantic Wire's Adam Clark Estes reports,
To find the activists, you had to walk through the main bar, past the DJ booth, elbow past the locals in skinny jeans nodding to the beat, through a campfire ringed by more locals probably smoking Parliaments, and then into a cavernous music hall that looked all Christmas-y trimmed with pine garlands and a few strings of lights. Indie rock-themed movies have been filmed in this room, the archetypical Brooklyn bar, and Williamsburg's Occupiers reveled in the cliché. "People think of this as the iconic hipster nexus, but one of the cool things of Occupy Wall Street is repurposing places for political purposes like this," said Corey, who started the general assembly 45 minutes late and asked that we didn't use his last name. Welcoming the hipsters, the ex-hipsters and everybody else, he declared, "I think hipsterdom is dead. I think Occupy marks the end of it."
I can't even bring myself to make jokes about this. The Williamsburg occupiers come across as unnervingly earnest, even as they engage in the requisite "I used to like your favorite band, before it sold out" banter, but repurposed for real estate:
The biggest problem, everybody seemed to agree, was gentrification... Those present who had actually lived there for a while took every opportunity to remind the crowd of this fact. Williamsburg was not always the land of trendy bars and leather-chaired restaurants; it used to be a real dump. One attendee remembered a time when you could buy a four-story brick townhouse for $1 if you agreed to invest $15,000 in fixing it up.
Meanwhile The New York Observer, a weekly newspaper dedicated to chronicling the foibles of the rich, frets about "spoiled rich kids whining about their over-privileged lives" and accuses Vice of having a hand in Occupy Williamsburg.
Meanwhile-meanwhile, my brain just melted and slid out my ear. If you need me, I'll be bashing my forehead against a set of truck nuts until the feelings of self-referential wryness and confused self-hate pass, and we return to discussing the working poor or whatever. [Atlantic Wire, Observer, image via Adam Clark Estes/Atlantic Wire]