Hipsters in FinanceIB
Moderator Note (Andy): Best of WSO - this post originally went up April 2012 and we thought it deserved to go back on the homepage for those who may have never seen it.
Fellow monkeys, I have a confession to make:
I am a hipster who wants to be an investment banker.
As I have lurked through these very boards, I've noticed that the hipster investment banker is a mythical creature that few of you have ever seen, or even spoken of. Some have argued that a few of WSO's most active members tend toward the obscure, but to call them hipsters would be a mode of extremeness that even the most trollish members of our community might not tolerate.
I am not, however, a full-blown hipster. I enjoy early-90s hip hop, the indie music scene in general, neo-noir movies, and intellectual conversations that always run in circles and never amount to much of anything. If available, I'll always choose an independent coffee shop instead of a Starbucks, not because I am a coffee snob (I don't even drink it often), but because the atmosphere is more appealing to me. I am infinitely more attracted to hipster girls than I am to sorority girls, and I wouldn't even utter "finance girls" in the same breath. I wear jeans that fit normally, casual dress shoes (think oxfords), and a non-plaid button down routinely, so I suppose that is another point of difference.
I'm a huge social liberal, but the classic hipster and I diverge on all issues economic, for good reasons (they're just wrong in the absolute sense). I'm not an Occupier, and I'm not a supporter of what liberal economic policies have become. I am also not here to start a political debate, so I'll leave that aspect of this post here.
Are there people like me out there in the finance world? If I had to pick my crowd, I'd much rather hang around a bunch of people who drink PBR and talk about random, sometimes geeky, shit than around your prototypical "models and bottles" investment bankers. Is this social lifestyle sustainable in IB (not a trick question, I know social lives go out the window anyway), or will the other folks just ostracize me as soon as they pin me as a closet hipster?
"An intellectual is a man who takes more words than necessary to tell more than he knows."
- Dwight D. Eisenhower