Aight, so yeah. New Yorkers are pretty partial to their own way of doing things. Call us stubborn. Call us headstrong. Call us whatever makes you feel the way you want to feel, just don't call us Jersey.
So what if we're comfortable with pushing up against people in crowded subway cars, getting in shouting matches for no reason, or just barely making it across the street ahead of the speeding, honking yellow cab cursing us and our mothers in whatever language they like? So what?
Whatever. Welcome to New York.
We're also into our own brand of comedy. Seinfeld. Louie C.K. (yes, we'll lay claim to a D.C. transplant; dude's hilarious). The dude who tries to jump from platform to platform on the subway but fails miserably. The Brooklyn Nets. SNL. All of this, quintessential New York City humor.
But if you love it, let it go. Take Fred Armisen. He was the underrated heart and soul of SNL for 11 years before leaving to give us arguably the best sketch comedy on television, Portlandia. We loved him, and we let him go. What we didn't expect was that he would somehow make us want to leave too.
Starring alongside Carrie Brownstein, Portlandia is a quirky, sketch comedy show on IFC that basically centers around everything that has to do with Portland, Oregon. If you're unfamiliar with Portland or the show Portlandia, it's f*cking hysterical. Think of hipster-filled Brooklyn, then add more trees.
Throw in Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein as a dozen different characters, a few cameos from hilarious and underrated talents like Jeff Goldblum, Kyle MacLachlan, Jack White, No Doubt, Roseanne Barr, Patton Oswalt, Johnny Marr, Jim Gaffigan-- basically everybody ever, and you get comedy gold.
While that image of a lovely spring day of Williamsburg transplants sunbathing in Prospect Park might not be the most enviable thing you can think of, it does make us long for somewhere faraway and beautiful that's not so dauntingly unfamiliar.
In fact, there are some moments in Portlandia that make us really want to get away to Portland. Yo, actually... you should go to Portland. For free. It's on us.
We’ve teamed up with Headlines & Heroes, Kaufmann Mercantile, Travel Curator, Wine Awesomeness, and Aha Life to send you and a friend or beau to Portland. If you win, you’ll get airfare for two, two nights at The Ace Hotel, and you’ll be treated to dinner and drinks at Ava Gene’s.
You also get a beautiful, free tour of the absolutely stunning Multnomah Falls, and a $500 gift card. All of this comes to a value of $3,700, but instead of dropping all that money on that vacation, let us treat you.
Your chances of winning are as good as anyone else's, but you're running out of time. Enter this giveaway here by Monday, March 7th, and you could win this free trip to Portland. For now though, read on to find out what hilarity of Portlandia makes us wish we were there. Right. Now.
1. In touch with the 90s
We love a place that embraces nostalgia, especially one that has a longing for the 90s, you know, the time we most vividly remember...
Okays, so this ain't that. But hey, we do genuinely love a place deeply in touch with their sense of history, even if it's obscure sh*t that nobody else on Earth knows anything about.
Sure, we've got a handful of spots where you can enjoy almost every aspect of nature in its fullness. Then again, we also have a wildly toxic body of water surrounding the island of Manhattan, and far more sinister spots of splash elsewhere (lookin' at you, Gowanus).
The lesson here, no matter where you go, is to get in touch with nature by bringing only the essentials... that, and having a safe word for when anything goes wrong.
3. Bicycle valets
We know better than most that driving in this city is a pain in the ass, parking is even worse, and all of the other things needed to keep up with a car in NYC is just. Too. Much.
But where are our bike valets? Where is our mountain of bicycles stacked a mile high in a random alleyway? Nowhere. It's in Portland. That's where you gotta go.
4. Proper coffee shop etiquette
This is one of the most relatable NYC dilemmas of our day. Strictly speaking, our baristas are dangerously undervalued. They serve us the fuel we need to get through our day.
How have we not yet mustered the courage and decency to treat them with the unconditional love and respect they truly deserve?!,
5. Sense of community
Too often do we forget that our dearest and most treasured friends exist not only on our online social networks, but our offline ones. You know, IRL.
Portland hasn't forgotten this. Portlanders do all that they can, sometimes taking the most extreme measures imaginable, just to get in touch with their own community. IRL. It's so refreshing-- so refreshing, in fact, that you should go there. Right. Now.
We see dogs walking and being walked in packs and packs every single day. How often, though, do we see a poor animal chained outside on its lonesome?
Rarely. Then again, would we have the courage to speak up for that poor animal's loneliness? The people of Portland do.
We talk about our diverse, health-conscious food choices in NYC, but how many are there really? We also talk about health and wellness a bit, too. But can we pinpoint and diagnose any direct correlation to our own eating habits and their unknowable consequences?
No. We don't know what street cart pretzels, hot dogs, and roasted nuts do to our bodies. There's no scientific explanation for pizza and what it can or can't do. In Portland? To put it bluntly, they know exactly what beets do to your poop.
8. Artisan movie theatre food
We pride ourselves on grand culinary innovations. Rainbow bagels. Anything Dominique Ansel puts his name on. Pizza slices with mini-pizza slices on top. Too often do we forget the little guy in the unlikeliest of places: movie theatre food.
Not in Portland. They've mastered culinary confections of every shape and size for every single dining experience. Why wouldn't you want artisan movie theatre food? You want it. We know you do. So get to Portland. On our dime. Right here.[Feature Image Courtesy The Daily Beast]