Anacortes used to be a nice town.
It used to be the kind of place where you could raise a family. Anacortes had everything: good values, churches, fresh air, a safe oil refinery. People cared. Especially the people who ran the oil refinery.
In Anacortes, there were real jobs where real American men could earn money to live a good life. On the weekend, they could do good old American things like hunting, boating, and rooting for the Seahawks. Old Norwegian women sold antiques. Naval Station Whidbey jets flew over town all the time.
Then the hipsters came.
The hipsters didn’t come all at once. It wasn’t a wave. It was the tides, which came in slowly, like the totally-not-polluted tide flats next to the refinery. One hour, you were walking along in the mud. The next, you were drowning in record stores. It didn’t make sense.
It all started with those protesters during the Iraq War. On the corner by the 7-Eleven downtown, people started protesting our troops. God-fearing, troop-supporting Anacortes people started to counter protest. But it was too late. Hipsters and liberals were invading.
It’s gotten bad. There are record stores everywhere. There are places where bearded men with glasses and suspenders drink kinds of beer I’ve never heard of. Forget Anacortes Brewery—it’s Anacortes hooey. What happened to Bud Light?
I think Bud Light went away when the hipsters in Anacortes named one of their bands after Mt. Erie. They probably made the Fidalgo Drive-In lose their A&W franchise, too. After all, millennial hipsters are killing off all kinds of things, like Costco and bar soap.
Maybe that’s why Anacortes doesn’t have a Costco yet. You still have to drive to Burlington to go to Costco. It’s the hipsters’ fault.
And the tattoos. Don’t get me started on the tattoos—I can get started on the tattoos all by myself. Anacortes used to have people with tattoos. It’s true. There were fishermen and sailors who earned it. And Earl. But we don’t talk about Earl.
Now, the hipsters walk around with tattoos. It’s embarrassing. I bet they haven’t thought about what those tattoos will look like when they’re 70. But by that time, Anacortes as we know it will be long gone.