SXSW Survival Gear

You’re in Austin.

You’re about to see an ass load of indie bands perform out of every nook and cranny of this city.
It’s 95 degrees, then it suddenly hails, then it goes back to 95 degrees with a humidity index of 99%.
You spot a boy who wears a smaller jean size than you and you are determined to make out with him by the end of the night.
It’s late, you’re drunk off of Lone Stars because you only had seven breakfast tacos about twelve hours ago, and you have blisters lining the bottom of your feet.
These are questions and scenarios that will arise this week during SXSW.
Don’t be unprepared!
Follow my survival guide list below and you’re sure to have a worth-while and healthy SXSW experience.
1.) The Fanny Pack– Fuck purses. Who said these ever went out of style? WHO? TELL ME! I recommend the American Apparel shiny denim fanny pack in royal blue because it’s awe-inspiring. Look at it. LOOK AT IT! Pretty.
2.) A Pair of Tom’s Shoes– Never mind. These hipster staples are like having a thin layer of burlap separating you from the ground. I can’t believe they’re donated to a child every time a pair is sold. The next generation is going to grow up all jacked with arthritis.
(*this statement is in jest…Tom’s is a great company that does a lot of wonderful things)

3.) Cheap Brightly Colored Wayfarers– Because in a way we’re all still stuck in 2004, aren’t we?
4.) Cardigan– Texas weather is known to be a fickle one, so make sure to carry around a cardigan with you for night or when it spontaneously rains though the precipitation level is 0%. Also, throwing on a cardigan over any shitty ol’ outfit, will suddenly make you look more intelligent than you actually are.

5.) Clean Underwear– ‘Cause Lord only knows what you’re going to do with your current pair of underwear.

6.) Scrunchies– Ladies, you make fun of them, but you know you secretly love them. Who is going to hold back your hair when you’re puking up all that free Hornito’s in the Beauty Bar toliet? Not that DJ with the florescent bike cap. He’s been eyeing the girl with the non-prescription horn-rimmed glasses that are over-taking her face all night. You always have a friend in the scrunchie. 

7.) Fake Mustache– Because you don’t want to feel left out in this city.

8.) Business Cards– Business cards legitimize you. Even if you have nothing to sell. 

9.) Granola Bars– The nice thing about Austin is that we’re not a bunch of assholes that bump up the price of everything while you’re visiting. However, your eating times might be off and in order to not get wasted by 4PM, it’s worth carrying some snacks around with you (Dear Lord. I sound like my mother).
10.) Water- Blah blah blah boring
11.) $1’s– For when you wander off alone to the strip club near the airport during a drunken blackout. Right, Marcos?
12.) Air Mattress– Often enough couches are better than air mattresses. Most of the time you wake on the hard wood floor, the mattress having deflated like that of your hard-on after popping way too many Adderall. However, the couch might already be taken by the time you get there, so make sure you come prepared. 
13.) Chapstick– Because by the end of the night, your mouth is going to look like that of a crusty crack addict.
14.) Condoms

15.) Diana Camera– To commemorate the night you get shit-faced with Bill Murray or corner David Byrne up against a wall and explain to him how you two were always meant to be together…in lo-fi.

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  • Reply bard March 16, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    I think you forgot the explanation for the condoms.

  • Reply stefanie March 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    my toms are actually one of the most comfortable pairs of shoes that i own. i wore them on a travel day to san francisco, then walked ALL over the city when we got there and my feet didn't hurt at all at the end of the day. i was actually surprised by how comfortable they were.

  • Reply Juliette March 16, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Too bad I don't live in Austin so I could put these tips to good use.


  • Reply Apryl March 16, 2010 at 6:33 pm

    This sounds like the premise for a Hunter S. Thompson movie…

  • Reply Liz March 16, 2010 at 6:46 pm

    I wish I lived in Austin and could go to SXSW. It would give me an excuse to buy a metallic fanny pack.

  • Reply Wendybob March 16, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    I love Lonestar.

  • Reply Christine Macdonald March 16, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    Check. πŸ˜‰

  • Reply IT March 16, 2010 at 6:50 pm

    #13 – or Carmex

    #14 – mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise and relish

  • Reply I'm Jane March 16, 2010 at 6:57 pm

    One should never need an excuse to get a shiny blue metallic fanny pack.

  • Reply Kate March 16, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    I sure did just giggle a bit! πŸ™‚

    Kate x

  • Reply Brady March 16, 2010 at 7:46 pm

    Bill Murray & Condoms are to close together.I am uncomfortable.

  • Reply loganwhy March 16, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    I actually won a mini Diana camera via twitter yesterday… hooray!

  • Reply Courtney March 16, 2010 at 8:09 pm


    you'll see they don't just give away toms to children. they give weather and climate-appropriate shoes that last.

  • Reply Gary March 16, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    Gosh i kinda love ya after reading this. g.

  • Reply Sean March 16, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    I wish I had seen the note about air mattresses last year before I woke up on painted concrete floors with thin blankets stolen from american airlines. Though SXSW is so much fun, it didn't matter much.

  • Reply Linds March 16, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    lo-fi… LOL

    also according to your comments section it's really not nice to make fun of TOMS πŸ™‚

  • Reply subcomandante quito March 16, 2010 at 10:22 pm

    "11.) $1's- For when you wander off alone to the strip club near the airport during a drunken blackout. Right, Marcos?"
    though quite flattered, i suggested $1's for tipping all those hard-working bartenders & wait staff.
    DON'T BE CHEAP! keep these working class hipsters employed, or else…

  • Reply Mel March 17, 2010 at 12:17 am

    A couple of things..

    1.) Hells yeah!
    4.) I sure hope you're right about the cardigan making me look more intelligent, because I don one of these babies every day in the hope it will make up for the depth my personality is sadly lacking.
    6.) I'm not sure about the scrunchie, but can one really wear non-prescription glasses, because it's been suggested that I grab myself a pair, but I wasn't sure if that would make me too much of a poseur. Help me, Hipster!
    8.) I'm all over that baby!

  • Reply T!nK March 17, 2010 at 1:52 am

    ugh. i want to be in austin soo bad πŸ™‚

  • Reply Katy March 17, 2010 at 6:27 am

    love sxsw. this list seems about right. i'll keep it in mind for when i leave my flat tomorrow morning (;

  • Reply Ash March 17, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    hahaha love this.

  • Reply Charlene March 19, 2010 at 3:57 am

    thanks for the TOMS shoutout/shoutdown? πŸ™‚

  • Reply zachary March 30, 2010 at 5:55 am

    hi, just discovered your blog:)
    What about the fedora?

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