Interesting what you come across reading the New York Times online. Take for example this article: Can a City This Self-Serious Take a Joke?
Apparently there is a “national fascination” with Portland, Oregon! Who knew?
Outsiders and media critics have glowed over everything from its restaurants to its ambitious transit system of streetcars and light rail. Yet with “Portlandia,” the flattery has given way to mockery, however gently executed, of this liberal city’s deliberate differentness.
That mockery led to a new comedy TV series which we think we would enjoy.
The first episode of “Portlandia,” a new television show that pokes at this Northwest confection’s urban preciousness, includes a scene in which a couple at a restaurant interrogates a waitress about the quality of the life lived by a chicken they hope to order. The couple soon learns that the bird was raised locally on sheep’s milk, soy and hazelnuts, and that it had a name, Colin.
We can see the humour. In Portland, considered one of the greenest, most environmentally friendly cities in America, localness is next to godliness. The cyclists are aggressive and the store clerks at the feminist book store exhibit “rude righteousness”.The creator of the series is what they would call here a CFA but he has local connections.
Mr. Armisen is not from Portland, but his co-star Carrie Brownstein was a leader of a popular band that was based for a while in Portland, Sleater-Kinney. (Ms. Rowland enjoyed noting that it was a “seminal female rock band.”)
!!! Almost drenched my keyboard at that line.
It seems the locales used in the series are real, including The
Guilt Gilt Club where little Colin was on the menu. According to the article the city residents are taking it all in good part.
“I love this show because this is how real born Portlanders look at all of you that moved here since 1998,” one person wrote in a comments forum on The Oregonian Web site. … It’s got to be a little elitist, you know,” said Tony Robinson, working as the doorman. “That’s part of the Portland thing, too.”
At least the elites can laugh at themselves and the underclass can laugh
at with them.
Hmmm That’s given us an idea.
BTW We note that Portland, a city of 580,000+, is governed by a commission consisting of a mayor, four councillors and an auditor!
LATER – Meet the residents of Portlandia