Area Teens Enjoy Subculture, Say Experts

The fallout (boy) from last night’s FOX 11 special! report! on Emo Scene Kids was pretty good when I posted the video of the news story on Buzznet:

http://www.buzznet.com/web/popculture/videos/5720819/

In which the kids, as usual, are amused by the grownups.

It reminds me of the post Columbine “news” coverage where the reporters were dispatched to find out that the Goth Kids in Dark Coats were feared psychotic loser stabby-people, and found to their consternation that the other kids just thought Goths were “okay like everyone else, just got their own way of dressing and stuff.”

The shocking outcome of this story is that the latest teen subculture looks funny and listens to loud music and isn’t quite sure what defines it.

Someone get Bill Bennett on the horn. We have a KULTUR-KRISIS in the making!!!!!!

But what about the Kottonmouth Kings?

I get the best anon comments. Today’s reader mail:

ok ICP N juggalo$ iN geNeral r the oNly ppl with ballz enough 2 $ay wat they have 2 $ay. N they aiNt a baNd! N if they r $o bad theN they wouldNt have made $o much fukiN mmoNey N they got famou$ from lo$erz like u who bad mouth them $o go ahead keep talkiN yo $hit cuz thatz wat makez them famou$. but u $hould really li$teN to their mu$ic b4 u talk $hit ok. thanx MMFCL haha

From this post: http://substitute.livejournal.com/446376.html?style=mine

Where we sat at lunch

What were the cliques at your high school or equivalent (ages 14 to 18)?

Clarification: This isn’t a request for your particular affiliation or lack thereof; there’s loads of quizzes and “memes” where you can relive that for good or for ill. I’m fishing for descriptions of the social groups from your teen years as you observed them, whether from the inside or the outside. It’s a survey of environments: what were the groups you saw? If you weren’t at anything like a school with social groups then, none of this really matters.

I went to an almost entirely white public school in a Southern California beach resort town from 1979 to 1983. Think Fast Times at Ridgemont High. So, mine were, in roughly hierarchical order:

Preppy/”Sosh” (rich pretty kids or those who could pass for rich, anyway): pink and green clothing, lots of chinos and khaki, cashmere sweater knotted around the neck, penny loafers.

Jock/Cheerleader (sports and beauty competition winners in the classic American vein)

Surfer (specific to my locale; not quite the same as jock: they were too obsessive about surfing to participate in much of anything else or deal with the hierarchy at all)

“Band-O”: marching band members as obsessive social phenomenon

Theater club: actors singers dancers and technical theater types and wannabees

Pop Music Lifestyle Subculture: at the time this meant rockabilly revival kids, metalheads, and some of the new wave stuff.

Mods and Punks: this was the early 1980s, so a Mod Ska/The Jam flavored revival was going on, and punk was a seriously transgressive style that set you apart. the two groups were pretty interchangeable because they were scarier than the other pop music identities. The mods were always high on black beauties and the punks burned things and put safety pins in their noses.

Academic/geek/nerd. You know the drill. The straight A’s crowd plus anyone who liked computers or Dungeons & Dragons and science fiction.

Stoner

Total outsider of some kind (doomed).

I’m interested for a few reasons. Subculture identities are multiplying, for one thing, and most of the pop music-related ones that have appeared in the last 20 years became permanent options on a kind of menu. And high school has a huge presence in American life. Some people spend their whole lives rebelling against the slights they got in their teens. Others don’t ever move beyond the subculture they found then. If you know what clique an American middle-class person claimed at age 16, you know a lot about them right away.

Neotenized homogeneous privilege results in frenetic subculture self-identification. Also retards.

I thank burntcurtis for the phrase “White Identity” to describe Orange County’s many fucked-up subcultures: goth, skinhead, mod, swing kid, straightedge, rockabilly greaser, emo, “punk,” neo-hippie, club kid, etc. Until he pointed it out I hadn’t seen our collection of permanent teenage culture victims as a consequence of overwhelming whiteness, but it sure makes sense.

I was reminded of that this morning when it was brought to my attention that a skinhead had figured out how to work a computer.

Um. Portland. Guys? What the…

pft

I knew you had a hipster problem and a hippie problem, but this whole post-ironic Partridge Family droogies thing is extreme. It sounds more like one of onda_dog‘s pranks than a news story.

Major points to the cop for dissing these guys and their tiresome attention-whoring: “There’s nothing special about these people. Their behavior is typical of thousands of people in Portland that we have to deal with every day. They’re run-of-the-mill goof balls.” Oh SNAP.

The shooter, a member of the Dumbass-American Community…

Sometimes the kids and their subcultures should be ignored. I mean, you know, your kid is gonna be a goth or something, it happens, they’re all angsty, and then they get their AA and learn drywall or something and just start drinking like you.

Or then there’s the other times, when the neo-nazi gaybashing satanic evil clown rap/metal stupidocrat ultraviolence culture they’re immersed in turns out to be for real.