If you’ve ever wanted to fling yourself right into the stereotype of an old-timey, train-hoppin’ hobo, get yourself posthaste to Williamsburg. You knew this was going to be about Williamsburg.

The New York Times style section, a reliable harbinger of the apocalypse, profiled some dudes named Josiah and Dusty today, who live in what used to be hipster Brooklyn and is now just fucking obnoxious new money Brooklyn, and who make what they call “locally-grown, naturally-fallen, artisanal bindle bags.” These are sticks with rags on the end of them.

That monocle joke is a reference to the most infamous Styles piece ever, the one last March that claimed the one-lens look was making a comeback. It’s not, and neither are hobo bundles. Sorry, “bindles:” these brilliantly shady Josiah and Dusty motherfuckers are selling ones that cost between $99 and $350.

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Luckily, as the Styles piece eventually gets around to mentioning, this is also a joke, thank God:

The Bindle Brothers are in fact the creation of Kemp Baldwin, a 33-year-old comedy writer and director. He cast two local performers, Ben Kronberg and Matt Klinman, to play the roles of Josiah and Dusty. He also created the video, a spoof on the reverent clips made by Fast Company, and a functional website that is equipped to take credit card numbers from anyone gullible enough to make a purchase.

As satirical characters, the Bindle Brothers take aim at several targets: rural-chic hipster fashion; heritage brands that sell high-priced proletariat workwear; the artisanal trend embodied by the Mast Brothers and other Brooklyn-based makers; and the wide-eyed, can’t-fail optimism of startup culture.

Mr. Baldwin, who lives in Williamsburg, said that by marketing bindles to urbanites he is poking fun at a culture he himself is part of. “I’m two steps away from buying one,” he said, adding that elements of the actors’ hobo costumes are “straight from my closet.”

This is maybe a half-step away from an actual Williamsburg product, but we do have to very reluctantly applaud them, because that shit actually worked on at least one and a half people:

A tech entrepreneur named Jonathan Swerdlin, who said he had financial backing from Mark Cuban (and who was once the subject of an actual Fast Company video) gamely bought a little pink bindle for one of his interns, bargaining the price down from $80 to $1.

He was followed soon after by a chef from Canarsie, who paid $20 for a full-size bindle with purple fabric that reminded him, he said, of a Ralph Lauren scarf. He could be seen later walking around Williamsburg with the bindle balanced on his shoulder.

The names of everyone who actually buys one of these with a straight face should be circulated as a warning to their future employers and romantic partners.


Contact the author at anna.merlan@jezebel.com.
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