Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Lucky Seven


I know that as a native Portlander I am supposed to like to talk to people about Portlandia, hipsters, and "green living". I am supposed to embrace all of these things as a part of my cultural heritage, especially Portlandia, the only thing that people from other parts of the country find capable of validating our little, insignificant, Pacific Northwest existence. But to be honest, Portlandia really irritates me. For a while I dismissed this as my own lack of sense of humor, an inability to laugh at myself. But try as I might I still just felt like I was being ripped off, like everything that was unique and special about my life was being stolen and used by former Sleater Kinney band members to make money. It couldn't be true. I was surely just jealous of other hipsters making good. Until.

Until one day someone sent me a clip from the show about the Lucky Seven punk flop house. A place that actually existed, that was cool, and filled with music and people and noise and dirt and parties. So who cares if it's in a Portlandia sketch? Most of the things in Portlandia are based in reality, why should I care about the Lucky Seven sketch? Why would someone go out of their way to send it to me? Because what they lifted out of my life was not just the Lucky Seven, they lifted my sister and her boyfriend, Kathleen and Lars. Kathleen and Lars were the real thing, real musicians and artists that really hung out at the Lucky and really lived in houses like the one from the sketch. And there they are, the only named people in the sketch, Kathleen and Lars. What are the chances?  

So no, it's not paranoia or pretension, it's just really hard to like something so clearly based off of, and then redirected back at you. And, my sister is way cooler than that Portlandia, do her some justice next time.

To watch the clip:


  1. I too live in Portland and after watching that episode wanted to know about the Lucky Seven. With the shows Popularity it is now a topic of conversation where ever I travel so I figured I should know what people were referring too. I don't know if Portland is so unique that it is the only city that such a show could be based on, however the exaggeration in some sketches feels like it takes away from some of the truly awesome elements of the city. Now I see visit Portland ads in many of the hipster areas of other cities and wonder if the show is further adding to the perceived irregularities of the city to foster tourism. When, in many ways those oddities of the city make it fun and progressive and other people are just jealous, even if some of the things are over blown. Good post.

  2. the lucky seven house was in olympia tho