Kaid Benfield is the director of the Sustainable Communities and Smart Growth program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, co-founder of the LEED for Neighborhood Development rating system, and co-founder of Smart Growth America.
Portlandia sends up our quest for ever-smaller digs.
I’ve often written about the cottage lifestyle, featuring small homes usually set around a common. It makes a ton of sense for some parts of today’s downsizing market. Carried to an extreme, “tiny houses” provide minimal space for people who don’t need or want much, in exchange for ridiculously low prices that enable owners to maintain a low-budget lifestyle or spend their dough on something else.
The video below is a wicked send-up of the movement by the Portlandia crew, which continually caricatures and skewers the oh-so-sensitive and -sustainable lifestyle in and around Portland Oregon, with a wicked combination of gentle affection and stinging satire. Like so many creative comedies on cable TV these days (Lisa Kudrow’s The Comeback and Web Therapy; Laura Dern’s Enlightenment; Larry Davis’s Curb Your Enthusiasm), Portlandia makes you laugh and cringe at the same time. It’s a sketch-based series in which every sketch stars the same two actors, Saturday Night Live cast member Fred Armisen and lead guitarist/singer for Wild Flag, Carrie Brownstein. It is shown on the Independent Film Channel (IFC).
This post originally appeared on the NRDC's Switchboard blog, an Atlantic partner site.