Nolita Dirtbag is Googling NBA Stats and Silver Butt Plugs
New York City’s downtown scene—anything below 14th street, really—has been romanticized for decades. Madonna, Basquiat, and the founder of this very publication (Andy Warhol) are all forbearers of what we now know as Downtown culture. Today though, thanks to the the internet, reality shows based on quasi-famous Lower East Side celebutants, and the infamous, self-referencing “Dimes Square” crowd, Downtown culture has become a running joke and a wellspring of memes. Enter Alex Hartman, the mind behind the Instagram account @nolitadirtbag, where the 26-year-old pokes fun at the pieties of New York City scenesters, from the hot and trendy eateries they frequent to fads like soap cycling. For this week’s “Search History,” we slid into Hartman’s DMs to talk all things Nolita and find out what makes a “dirtbag.”
INTERVIEW: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
DIRTBAG: I have lemon water, turn on the daily, doom scroll for 5 mins, and then stretch.
INTERVIEW: What was your AIM screen name?
DIRTBAG: My AIM username was alexathelete (with 3 e’s) but my xbox gamertag was Annus123❤️
INTERVIEW: What were your last three Google searches?
DIRTBAG: Last three google searches were all for work so “sterling silver butt plug,” “guy pissing on red sox shirt animation,” and “logo from severance lumon.”
INTERVIEW: What’s your online stalking platform of choice?
DIRTBAG: LinkedIn. you can run but u can’t hide on the linky.
INTERVIEW: What is your LinkedIn bio?
DIRTBAG: “Get your money up not your funny up.” FOUNDER/CEO/CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD @ DIRTBAG INDUSTRIES (my new “agency” launching soon). Shameless self-prom at the end there.
INTERVIEW: What’s a Nolita dirtbag?
DIRTBAG: It means a lot of diff things, I feel like, but an AI would spit out some dude in paint-splattered double knee Carhartts, Salomon’s/white samba’s, and like a mohair cardigan.
INTERVIEW: Which @nolitadirtbag post got the most love?
DIRTBAG: I think the screenshot of a text abt the mf’ers desperate to tell ppl they were “pulling up” to Art Basel, #WHOISINMIAMITHISWEEK
INTERVIEW: Which one got the most hate?
DIRTBAG: I remember I made one about how every single brand was using Chloe Cherry as talent and ppl thought I was shitting on her, which I wasn’t, she’s epic. It was just an observation that every Y2K adjacent/it girl brand was thirsty AF for a piece of her.
INTERVIEW: Who is the @nolitadirtbag of the week?
DIRTBAG: Hmmmm I would have to go with Yeat. He should run for president.
INTERVIEW: What’s the most dirtbag shoe right now? The least?
DIRTBAG: The real answer is a white samba I guess? But I also wanna say Gats are another funny one that ppl think are slightly more esoteric.
INTERVIEW: What shoes are you wearing?
DIRTBAG: Purple Asics are another Lol and also these nice vintage J crew shoes that just fell apart.
INTERVIEW: Gaslight, gatekeep, or girlboss?
DIRTBAG: Girlboss for sure 💅 we need more Bard/Vassar graduates in the city.
INTERVIEW: What are you gatekeeping in Nolita?
DIRTBAG: I think most people go to this anyway but I love the smoothie shop right below Kenmare on Mulberry.
INTERVIEW: Describe your private browsing persona in three words.
DIRTBAG: Really interesting. A lot of NBA stats. a lot of weird descriptive words followed by “stock photo,” and then ppl I’m trying to stalk virtually on LinkedIn.
INTERVIEW: What does your TikTok FYP look like?
DIRTBAG: My FYP is awesome. It’s primarily WorldOftshirts. The king of new york dude. I’m in a deep rabbit hole on him rn. It’s a lot of corny “day in the life,” grindset, brand-building stuff too cause I hate watch tf out of that stuff too. And liver king—great to see he’s finally off the juice. They know me too well. 21… can u do something for me.
INTERVIEW: What’s a website everyone should know about?
DIRTBAG: Hmm I love Notion. Gotta project manage things 👌
INTERVIEW: How many unread text messages do you have?
DIRTBAG: I have 323 unread texts.
INTERVIEW: Strangest DM you’ve ever received?
DIRTBAG: I had someone threaten me from a burner acct and say “we already got the hit, watch your back” and that “downtown culture is not a joke” 😂 Like, ok bro.
INTERVIEW: hottest DM you’ve ever received from a dirtbag?
DIRTBAG: No hot DMs really. I’ve def gotten asked out a handful of times by DM goblins in the past year and a half since starting the account.
INTERVIEW: What is the most dirtbag core trend of the moment?
DIRTBAG: Upcycled knit scarfs/hand warmers, charm necklaces, hunting orange, Pop-ups (in general), twisted teas, trying to learn how to skateboard at 27.
INTERVIEW: Read receipts: on or off?
DIRTBAG: Read receipt on people are scary and calculated. Off, of course
INTERVIEW: Choose one: money or clout.
DIRTBAG: Money. the “coolest” thing u can do is run a profitable business and be debt free 🤙
INTERVIEW: Print or digital?
DIRTBAG: High gloss print that looks digital
INTERVIEW: What’s your password?
DIRTBAG: My password is secret 🤐 It has to do with Lil Yachty though.