The weirdness is mostly cultivated; the town motto is "Keep Austin Weird".Ive met a lot of people from Austin all over the world, they are the nicest people, but also extraordinarily weird.. What is the phenomenon with people from Austin.?
Beyond that, Austin was hippie mecca back in the 60s and 70s; a lot of people here are probably either burnt-out hippies or the offspring of burnt-out hippies, who were exposed to god-knows-what in utero.
Lately, though, I don't meet too many native Austinites. Simply by staying put, I've become a rarity: a mid-30s Austinite who was actually born here.
The metro-area population has more than doubled during my lifetime. There are a lot of people who have moved here from other places, and it's changed the tone quite a bit.
South Central Austin is still very "pure Austin"- and rather snobby about it; North Austin might be any large southern industrial tract. It's quite generic.
And a lot of people live in satellite or bedroom communities outside the city limits but commute in for work; there wasn't much of that going on 20 or 30 years ago.
I think Austin- like everyone and everything- is a legend in its own mind and glamorizes the bygone "glory days"- whether that be the 60s, the 70s, or even the 80s, when we had such a good punk scene here.
But nobody ever recognizes the "glory days" as such when they're actually living in them.
In the end, it's just like any other city; maybe a little pricey-er than most. You get a job, get an apartment, and maybe when you're around 30 you get married, buy a house, move out to the 'burbs and commute in.
A lot of the purported "weirdness" is just a ploy to sell overpriced teeshirts to tourists who come to see the bats.
Or maybe a ploy to get out-of-state students to come pay outrageously high tuition to attend UT.
This is, at the heart of it, in many ways still just an oversized university town.