Put a Bird On It

I love the show “Portlandia” on IFC. From the first time I saw “The Dream of the 90’s” I was hooked and I’ve loved watching the angry bike courier (“It’s over!”), the sexually frustrated couple (“Cacoa”) and the Reggae mayor on his exercise ball.

One of the best sketches from Portlandia is “Put a Bird on It”. I love the tongue in cheek slight of the hipster, fair trade, crafter market culture. I’ve been to enough hipster craft fairs to know that birds are hip and that they really are plastered in everything from teapots to condoms, sweaters to mocassins.

I didn’t realized that not everyone was as ardent a fan of Portlandia as I am until I was caught in a dinner party faux pas by loudly exclaiming “Put a Bird On It” when saw my cousin’s new purse donning several silhouetted birds in a complementary hue. She gave me a puzzled look. Knowing that I was calling her out a bit but not really understanding the cultural reference that motivated my sarcasm created a very awkward 60 second standoff.

Here’s a great article from Salon that’ll fill in anyone not versed in Portlandia slang…and it’s ironic struggle to play satirist in a culture of cynics. Read on cousin…read on cousin (“Did you read??? Did you read??)

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