Submitted Date 02/22/2019

You know those hippies who arrive at a music festival looking like they’ve been there all weekend? The ones with the dreaded hair, fowl stench, and Grateful Dead attire? This, my friend, is what people in the EDM/jam band scene call a wook.

I know what you’re thinking. How does one become a wook? The process of becoming a wook is a lot more detailed than you might assume. This transformation doesn’t just happen overnight.

You must start by being born into an upper middle class family. Make sure it’s somewhere in the suburbs. Somewhere like Glen Ellyn, Naperville, or Elmhurst for all of you other Illinois natives. Lead a normal suburban life growing up. One where you have an iPhone with a 630 area code that your parents pay for. One where you get everything on your Christmas list, but when you look out to the bleachers at your softball game, dad is nowhere to be found because he’s working late again.

Once you’re in high school, somewhere around junior year, get introduced to the rave scene by a new friend that you make there. Go to a rave with them. Something small and cheap and held in some grimy underage club like Medusa’s or Zero Gravity (RIP).

Wear neon because that’s what you see everyone wearing when you Google “what to wear to a rave”. Discover PLUR. Make it your new religion. And when your friend hands you a little pink pill at the rave, take it. Roll.

Receive colorful beaded bracelets from girls in flower crowns and light up pacifiers. Continue going to these shows regularly for the next year, moving up from low budget raves to actual shows held at actual venues. Start seeing artists like Excision and Zeds Dead and Bassnectar. Meet a guy at one of these shows. He’ll be wearing a tie-dye shirt and have an unkempt beard. He’ll say things like lit and fam, but you’ll find it charming. The two of you will begin dating and eventually, he’ll take you to your first camping festival.

He’ll give you a tiny piece of paper that’s colorful and square-shaped. Take it. Eat it. Trip.

A dubstep artist you like will be playing, but you’ll go with him to see Umphrey’s McGee instead. The next show you go to will also be a jam band and so will all the others. Pick up hooping. Buy a pair of harem pants. Start going barefoot more often.

At this point, you should begin to realize how woke you are and decide to drop out of high school a few short months before you were supposed to graduate. Move in with your boyfriend. Learn how to wire wrap and begin making and selling jewelry online. Stop eating meat. Start using patchouli. Money will be tight, but whatever you do, do not get a real job. Who needs health insurance when you have the healing powers of crystals, right?

Continue going to music festivals and concerts. Don’t let being broke stop you. Sneak in if you have to. No need to bring any camping gear. Just borrow everything.

Bum a cigarette from one person. Borrow an extra sleeping bag from another. Trade one of the Grateful Dead hat pins you have for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. And if worse comes to worse and no one’s feeling generous, then just take whatever you need from their campsite when they aren’t there.

You will, however, save a lot of money when you stop wearing deodorant, a necessary staple of being a wook. You don’t like all the harsh chemicals that are in it, so you’d rather go all natural. This is also the point in time in which you stop shaving. Legs, pits, down there, everywhere. You might be wondering what your boyfriend will think when you begin to smell and prickle with hair. Don’t worry. He’s a wook too, remember? Oddly enough, he’ll like you better this way.

Now that you’ve made it this far, the rest is simple. Just rinse and repeat. Not literally though. Showering is only a twice a week thing now.

Keep on making those wire wraps and going to festivals. If you and your boyfriend can’t afford that apartment anymore (it’s bound to happen eventually), then hitchhike to Colorado where you can find a friend’s couch to crash on. It’s survival of the littest out there, so stay woke, stay broke, and perhaps most importantly, borrow everything.


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  • Rick Doble 5 years, 4 months ago

    Thought you might like this Urban Dictionary definition: WOOK: noun or adjective. a dirty, hairy, stinky, mal-nourished, dishonest creature that often travels in packs, with possibly and unfortunately, mangy, multi-colored dogs on hand-made all natural, organic hemp leashes, or alone wandering aimlessly around a concert (usually "hippie music") parking lot with a few seemingly more important than the music goals; find as many mind altering substances and cram them into their bodies as fast and furiously as possible, get into the show somehow, don't lose the dog this time, and if by chance they come across unattended property such as a cooler, chair, backpack, or a beverage, it will then become their own. by Sweaty Ray May 27, 2005

    • Alexis Bowe 5 years, 3 months ago

      Haha that's great thank you

  • Tomas Chough 5 years, 3 months ago

    Lol this is so funny! I've met many similar people in the music scene and traveling around South America as well. Don't think I'll be trying to be a wook any time soon.. Great article Alexis!

    • Alexis Bowe 5 years, 3 months ago

      Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed it!

  • Miranda Fotia 5 years, 3 months ago

    Learn how to wire wrap and begin making and selling jewelry online. Stop eating meat. Start using patchouli.
    OMG this is hilarious! I have seen many wooks in my lifetime, I just never knew what to call them. Great piece! Thanks for sharing!

    • Alexis Bowe 5 years, 2 months ago

      I'm glad you enjoyed it!! :)