Montauk Still Searching for Hyperbole Strong Enough to Convey Severity of Its Hipster Outbreak

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Photo: Sylvana Rega/Getty Images

In 2012, Montauk residents told the New York Times that a summer invasion of hipsters — an inaccurate umbrella term for what they see as inanimate, if loud, objects acting as Ubers for red Solo cups, despair, and public urination that are kept sequestered in Manhattan the rest of the year — was culturally fracking their town. Those quoted in the story hoped that the passage of time would cure the town’s problem. Local legislator Jay Schneiderman said, “Whether you’re wearing a fedora or a baseball cap or waders, the new crowd will get a little bit older, and they’ll start to have children. They can’t drink like this all of the time.”

Three years and countless additional trend stories later, the importation of the dreaded 20-somethings has not abated. They have not grown up, and there are more than ever.

At an East Hampton Town Board meeting on Tuesday, hundreds of residents considered ways to contain the outbreak for four hours — shutting bars earlier, banning booze on the beach, getting rid of nightclubs in residential areas, etc. The town also appears to be trying out another method to incur sympathy — A/B testing hyperbolic statements that make it look like Montauk is in the middle of an Alfred Hitchcock film. “They are an invasive species — and we need pest control!” one person at the meeting said, according to the New York Post. A full-page ad in the East Hampton Star earlier this month noted that “Out of town taxis race through the night with little regard for safety, and drunken revelers make the post-midnight scene look like a page out of Apocalypse Now.” Another letter to the editor in the paper ended“The summer of 2015 has begun. This town’s in trouble.”

Meanwhile, the East Hampton Star’s police blotter, once singled out by Gawker for its “ephemeral, bizarre, and truly poetic criminal encounters,” has continued to report on the uptick in summer citations and incidents in the same mostly staid and bemused tone. As recent police logs show, peaceful locals don’t need to resort to exaggeration. The incidents that annoy them are dramatic enough on their own — even when they involve local residents and wildlife.

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An officer stopped a little after midnight on June 21 on Toilsome Lane when she saw a young woman sitting on the curb, talking loudly on a cellphone. The woman, 22, from Manhattan, said she had been staying with her “best friend” on Borden Lane when the two got into a heated argument. The woman said she did not know how to get back to Manhattan. The officer took her to the railroad station, in time to catch the westbound 1:24 a.m. train.

Police were sent to a Dayton Lane residence last Thursday morning, where they found a man quite intoxicated. Police said he wanted the officers’ advice on purchasing a gun on the Internet because his neighbor was saying mean things to him, such as telling him he should be “exterminated.” Police told him it was a “terrible idea,” and that he would not be able to buy a gun on the Internet. The man told police the feud with his neighbor had begun with some words being exchanged at church.

A local man who was charged early Sunday morning with drunken driving is said to have told the East Hampton Town police officer who arrested him that “I only had six drinks tonight.”

A Buell Lane woman called police June 17 after finding a mallard swimming in her pool. Police paid a visit and reported that the duck “flew away on its own.”

Police were sent to a Dayton Lane residence last Thursday morning, where they found a man quite intoxicated. Police said he wanted the officers’ advice on purchasing a gun on the Internet because his neighbor was saying mean things to him, such as telling him he should be “exterminated.” Police told him it was a “terrible idea,” and that he would not be able to buy a gun on the Internet. The man told police the feud with his neighbor had begun with some words being exchanged at church.

A local man who was charged early Sunday morning with drunken driving is said to have told the East Hampton Town police officer who arrested him that “I only had six drinks tonight.”

A Buell Lane woman called police June 17 after finding a mallard swimming in her pool. Police paid a visit and reported that the duck “flew away on its own.”