Where Did that "Young People Go to Retire" Joke Come From, Anyway?


William Burroughs said this about San Francisco long before Fred Armisan stole it.
"before Fred Armisan stole it."

Hello, this post is an interview with the guy who heard the joke and then decided to use the joke on Portlandia. His name is David Cress.
"For instance, how does a city with such a low mean per-capita income support so may high-end restaurants and coffee shops and dog walkers? Who the hell can afford to live in all those condos?"

Well, if you're only counting the money actually made in Portland by working Portlanders, of course you're going to come up short. If you could find a way to count all the money handed out to the hip, young transplants of Portland by their out-of-state parents, then perhaps you'd be able to explain that income gap.

ROM, Cress seems to state that he heard something similar from Oswalt but that an unnamed writer who didn't hear Oswalt's set came up with it. In other words, we still don't have an answer to the question. How will I sleep tonight?
Or rather we *do* have an answer. As the first commenter stated, Burroughs said it about San Francisco, probably during the hippie days. I'm pretty sure the Portlandia writer was aware of the Burroughs quote.
I'm looking forward tobreading about the origins of some of my favorite knock-knock jokes
Did he just openly admit that the most popular piece of his television show was ripped off from a stand-up act?

I didn't think my opinion of Portlandia could get any lower.
The "ambition bomb" joke was completely different than the "where young people go to retire" joke.

I also love how furious this joke's repetition makes Sarah.

Embrace it, Sarah - we all know from both personal experience (and from your article!) there are an above-average amount of people here who are happily, intentionally underemployed. That's partially why the line has such staying power.
If we could find a way to count on Snagglepuss' import strategy for the long term, we'd have the strongest economy possible:

"count all the money handed out to the hip, young transplants of Portland by their out-of-state parents..."

We don't even have to offer anything in return (unless you count 1-hr-long waits at Pine State Biscuit).
The "joke" may be old by now, but it's stuck around because the phrase is kind of clever.

And it's unique, as opposed to the dumb and ripped-off "keep Portland weird."
Agree with CC, although I don't know that the pecentage of said individuals is all that high