(RNS) God made hipsters in his image, too.
That’s part of the thinking behind a “Hipster Nativity” set being peddled by a group of friends who came up with the idea over a few beers, no doubt handcrafted ones. In it, Joseph sports a lumberjack beard and a man bun while he uses his iPhone to selfie the special moment when the Segway-riding wise men present baby Jesus amazon.com boxes.
A cow bearing a “100% organic” seal and a sheep in a handknit sweater breathe on the baby under the manger’s solar-powered roof.
Mary — in traditional sky blue — flashes a peace sign with one hand as she holds a Starbucks cup aloft in the other.
The 10-piece set, made entirely of plastic — sorry, “handpainted polyresin” — retails for a mere $130.
Hipster Nativity has, to say the least, been controversial.
“We have quickly found out that this product is very polarizing,” Casey Wright, a co-founder of Modern Nativity, the single-product company behind the idea, told CNBC. “It’s usually, ‘This is hilarious, I need one,’ or ‘This is sacrilegious, I hope you burn in hell,’ and almost nothing in between those two extremes.
“Amazingly,” he added, “a lot of people seem very concerned about the proper definition of a millennial and a hipster, too. We get comments like, ‘Segways aren’t hipster. They’re technically early-stage millennial with a tinge of East Coast liberal.'”
Irreverent holiday items are having a moment, perhaps a reaction to the “war on Christmas” propagated by conservative media. There are anti-Christmas cards and anti-Christmas ornaments.
Jordana Starr, a Massachusetts-based graphic designer, has sold about 300 handmade “Flying Spaghetti Monster” ornaments for a more reasonable $20 featuring a clay sculpture of the googly-eyed ball of pasta adopted by Pastafarians — a group of atheists with tongues firmly planted in their cheeky cheeks.
“A tree isn’t inherently religious,” Starr said. “We have fun with ours.”