Oh Sh*t! It looks like the Lakers logo!

“Oh shit! it looks like the Lakers logo.” A single exclamation frase , as random as it sounds, lead to a great conversation full on insights between three Californians and a Berliner living the California dream. As part of the Californication TestLab in Berlin, one of the prompts was to collect data from interviewing Berliners. It sounds simple: approach Berliners, ask question, and document the answers. But once on the filed, It is a different story. Approaching a random person and ask him or she questions about a state that is in a distant country the also is in a distant continent is not quite the easiest thing. The strategy became waiting to be immerse in that precise moment when a simple ice breaker would lead us to our goal. “I love your store”, “I miss my dog in California”, and “ Nice Dodgers hat”  were some of the frases that served as connecting points. Some work ,and some just did not break the ice. We managed to get nice and interesting people to share about their points of view about California and Berlin. But it was not until I was about to shout my burlesque critique about a logo on the window of an upcoming german waffle shop that had being over inspired by the Los Angeles Lakers identity. “Oh shit! it looks like the Lakers logo” I said. Right before I had the chance to continue, a man replied “ Yes ! you see it.” His name is Kiarrash. He is Berlin entrepreneur who has been heavily inspired by the golden state. In a nostalgic moment remembering VHS and the beginnings of internet, he told us abouthis trip to California when he was fourteen years old. Seating on a stool inside of his half way done waffle restaurant , he talked about the inspiration he took from California’s breakfast. He made us picture a succulent waffle, eegs, and bacon plate.  The idea this innovative food business , at least in Berlin, became materialized due to the risk taking possibilities in the city. We found very fascinating the fact that Kiarrash told us that he decided to start his waffle shop only because he knew the space was available. That was shockingly amazing. In California it might take years to plan a start up. He is living the California dream here in Berlin. I would say that this entrepreneur way of viewing things allowed him to share great things about a place so far away from him as it was his own. He talked about Sunset Boulevard , Palos Verdes , and Hollywood as if he left a part of him back there in Cali. I believe it was a good idea calling out his logo. That gave us the opportunity to connect with this interesting person. plagiarism or inspiration? I do not know but Oh shit! it looks like the Lakers logo.  

Jorge Castillo