Almost Famous

IMG_0166

Note: I wrote this while contemplating another recent “could have been” moment (alluded to here), one with far more pressing and significant consequences to my life right now. I still don’t quite know what to make of the events below, but it remains one of the most interesting, if random, opportunities to cross my path. 

Couchsurfing has taken me many places. One place I never thought it would take me is to the small screen, hosting my own TV show. It still hasn’t, to be fair, but it nearly did. Instead, couchsurfing brought me to one of the strangest and most interesting “could have been” moments of my life.

Three years ago, mere months before beginning my master’s program in Finland I received the following e-mail with the subject line “TV Show Host Opportunity”:

Hi Zach,

I came across your blog in my research for a new travel show I am currently developing at [company name withheld]. I was wondering if you have ever been approached by a production company regarding hosting a travel show and if you might be interested in hearing more about what we’re working on.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Wait, what? I was 100% convinced it was a scam of some kind. I checked the e-mail address. It appeared to be a real one. I looked up the TV production company. They were real. With real offices. In New York. I looked up the woman who sent it. She was real, with a real profile on LinkedIn.

So I wrote back.

It turned out they were thinking about doing a travel show based around the sharing economy, namely around AirBnB, but also Couchsurfing. (I would argue it is wholly unfair to lump the two together in the same category, but I digress). We arranged a Skype meeting to discuss it further. It went well. Very well. And after that she requested a few short videos that could be edited together for a pitch presentation. I even went as far as signing a non-compete agreement. (You know, so I didn’t go off and host another TV show!)

Then a few weeks passed by, and I never heard another word about it. I guess the idea was scrapped before going further. Or they went with someone else. Or both.

Although I was captivated by the possibilities of hosting a travel show, it was tempered by other conflicting considerations.

On the level of personal development, I was not sure how this would affect my studies. My master’s program was due to begin, and I had already waited long enough to continue my education. Could I possibly continue as a TV host and a student? Moreover, how would this affect my relationship? What if the show is successful? Would it change me?

There was also the matter of my feelings–then as in now–toward AirBnB. Although we use it from time to time while traveling, there are real and negative consequences for local communities because of AirBnB, including gentrification and increased local rents. It is one thing to occasionally use the site. It is another altogether to actively promote it, week in and week out on TV.

On the other hand, I could have used this as an opportunity to bring up those various issues, as well as others that are close to my heart, including the environmental and climate change concerns that I was preparing to study.

In the end, I was already beginning my studies when it became clear that I would never hear from this TV production company again. I wasn’t devastated, but it continues to be an intriguing, unfulfilled possibility that my brain likes to return to from time to time.

What would have happened over the last three years if the show had gone on? Honestly, it’s easy to see ways in which my life would be better, but equally ways in which it wouldn’t have been.

This American myth that fame and fortune are the end all and be all is especially prescient in light of Anthony Bourdain’s suicide. Here is a deeply fascinating, introspective, and brilliant man who had one of the most successful careers as a TV travel host. And yet, it is fair to ask whether he would have been more happy as “just” another New York chef? Surely it was exciting traveling on someone else’s dime (the ultimate goal of any travel enthusiast!), but that fame came with a profound cost.

I would be lying if I said I didn’t want my blog to be noticed. I write to reach other people. To share stories. To share ideas. To share perspectives.

Being “discovered,” even if it came to nothing, was at the very least a flattering experience. Whether sending out a CV or posting a blog, I get so little feedback about my work. It’s hard to think of better feedback than being contacted out of the blue and offered a chance to interview (audition?) for a job.

It was a brush with fame. A glimpse into the unknown. Exciting and terrifying. And it remains a good memory, even though nothing came out of it.

71 comments for “Almost Famous

  1. February 2, 2021 at 01:20

    I have explained the answer about that in the previous comments Ceciley Rriocard Ridgley

  2. February 2, 2021 at 01:30

    Touche. Outstanding arguments. Keep up the amazing effort.| Kimberlee Anatollo Menard

  3. February 2, 2021 at 02:35

    Hey there, thanks for your feedback! Do go and have a listen and tell us what you think. Kris Brockie Limann

  4. February 2, 2021 at 05:24

    I was curious if you ever thought of changing the layout of your blog? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having one or two images. Maybe you could space it out better?| Rhonda Townie Tynan

  5. mp3
    February 8, 2021 at 08:20

    Hello, this weekend is pleasant designed for me, as this point in time i am reading this great educational paragraph here at my residence. Nessi Stanley Gwendolen

  6. mp3
    February 9, 2021 at 02:17

    I just like the valuable info you provide to your articles. Niki Nealon Hitchcock

  7. February 9, 2021 at 04:04

    Appreciating the dedication you put into your website and in depth information you provide. Darb Garreth Meehan

  8. February 9, 2021 at 05:23

    I love reading through an article that can make people think. Also, many thanks for permitting me to comment! Krystle Frasier Tiertza

  9. mp3
    February 9, 2021 at 06:51

    I have read so many articles about the blogger lovers however this paragraph is in fact a nice paragraph, keep it up. Gui Hobard Foote

  10. February 10, 2021 at 04:55

    You have a very good layout for your blog i want it to use on my web page too Janna Gail Cesar

  11. February 11, 2021 at 21:32

    Hello. This post was really motivating, particularly because I was looking for thoughts on this issue last Wednesday. Bethina Wadsworth Kinna

  12. February 11, 2021 at 23:04

    Great beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend your site, how could i subscribe for a blog site? The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered bright clear idea Farra Creighton Yam

  13. February 11, 2021 at 23:32

    Thankfulness to my father who stated to me regarding this web site, this blog is really amazing. Ines Isador Metcalf

  14. February 12, 2021 at 09:24

    Merely wanna say that this is handy , Thanks for taking your time to write this. Christal Rabi Hatcher

  15. February 13, 2021 at 07:52

    I visited several blogs except the audio quality for audio songs current at this website is in fact marvelous.| Rozanna Huey Tiffanle

  16. February 13, 2021 at 09:15

    Why people still make use of to read news papers when in this technological globe the whole thing is presented on web? Alaine Jesse Baillieu

  17. February 13, 2021 at 10:07

    Thank you for the Zeppelin quote, I just sang along. My brother was a huge Zeppelin fan and forced me to listen to it when I wanted to listen to George Michael but now I am glad for my Zeppelin love and knowledge. That same brother also told me he was no longer going to buy my friends and I Bartle and James as wine coolers were not economical. Beer was an acquired taste and we were going to learn to acquire it god dammit! Guinna Kennith Sanjay

  18. February 13, 2021 at 11:13

    We are a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Ellissa Nicolais Kus

  19. February 13, 2021 at 11:59

    A wonderful serenity has taken possession of my entire soul, like these sweet mornings of spring which I enjoy with my whole heart. I am alone, and feel the charm of existence in this spot Sallee Thayne Clarke

  20. February 13, 2021 at 13:09

    Hi there. I discovered your website by way of Google even as looking for a similar subject, your site got here up. It seems to be great. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks to visit then. Frankie Tobie Lyndy

  21. February 13, 2021 at 13:43

    I just could not go away your website before suggesting that I extremely enjoyed the usual information an individual provide for your visitors? Is gonna be back continuously to check out new posts. Shanna Fleming Maloy

  22. February 13, 2021 at 15:00

    Duis arcu tortor, suscipit eget, imperdiet nec, imperdiet iaculis, ipsum. Mollie Dell Maribeth

  23. February 13, 2021 at 16:40

    Otunba great job doing for your followers, l will suggest 2 things, 1. Allow you followers for a free posting on their blog or website to boot traffic without you confiscate them for doing that. 2. comply them put it on a youtube channel because there are some clips we may miss from either of your broadcast channel then we get it from youtube. Cinnamon Moses Nita

  24. February 13, 2021 at 17:54

    Thank you Ahmed for writing this. I have learned the process because of your article. Keep them coming please Jonell Elihu Allyce

  25. February 13, 2021 at 20:01

    Thanks for sharing excellent information. Your web site is so cool. I am impressed by the info that you have on this web site. It reveals how nicely you perceive this subject. Bookmarked this website page, will come back for more articles. Tamera Wilmer Iny

  26. February 13, 2021 at 21:04

    Hello There. I found your weblog the use of msn. This is a very smartly written article. Serena Dennison Dole Sydelle Todd Ashlen

  27. February 13, 2021 at 23:47

    Hi, I would like to subscribe for this website to get most up-to-date updates, therefore where can i do it please assist. Phyllys Darrick Lenwood

  28. February 14, 2021 at 03:27

    I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again as exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase. probduo.se/map15.php rimpels onder ogen verminderen Nanice Launce Helse

  29. February 14, 2021 at 07:08

    I think this is one of the most vital information for me. Kary Esme Arabelle

  30. February 14, 2021 at 08:50

    Looks great! We will be trying it out this weekend Leontine Dugald Richardo

  31. February 14, 2021 at 10:12

    Very nice post. I certainly love this site. Continue the good work! Eleanore Kendall Nenney

  32. February 14, 2021 at 11:31

    Thank you for this lovely introduction to Sydney and Cape Breton. I hope to spend five days on the island, next summer/fall, whilst exploring Atlantic Canada. Cherry Gabe Otti

  33. February 14, 2021 at 11:52

    I do enjoy the manner in which you have framed this particular matter and it really does offer us some fodder for thought. On the other hand, because of just what I have seen, I basically hope as the actual comments stack on that people continue to be on point and not start on a soap box regarding some other news du jour. Still, thank you for this fantastic point and whilst I do not concur with the idea in totality, I respect your point of view. Joelynn Nevins Fabriane

  34. February 14, 2021 at 13:24

    Dreams can come true. Reach for the stars, my girl! Talia Osbert Jone

  35. February 14, 2021 at 15:47

    You need to be a part of a contest for one of the best blogs on the internet. I am going to highly recommend this web site! Myrtice Caldwell Harvison

  36. February 15, 2021 at 00:27

    Hello there, I do believe your site could be having web browser compatibility issues. When I take a look at your website in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in IE, it has some overlapping issues. I just wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Besides that, fantastic blog! Flor Alisander Thor

  37. February 15, 2021 at 02:46

    ChewiGems or similar chew toys for antsy children from whatever cause. Check the website and then see all the other brands and variety of shapes, sizes and densities. Raeann Cheston Leblanc

  38. February 15, 2021 at 04:02

    hello, thank for your reviews. I own a CR 10 s pro and.. I wonder if there will be a dual extruder upgrade. thanks for the content of your blog! Monika Winston Ermeena

  39. February 15, 2021 at 07:08

    Piece of writing writing is also a fun, if you be familiar with then you can write otherwise it is difficult to write. Cathi Heriberto Rorry

  40. February 15, 2021 at 08:15

    Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular article! It is the little changes that make the most significant changes. Thanks a lot for sharing! Frankie Tobie Lyndy

  41. February 15, 2021 at 09:19

    There is definately a great deal to find out about this topic. I like all the points you made. Gill Kristopher Dunham

  42. February 15, 2021 at 10:32

    Is the temp correct? Been in there for 35 mins at 350 and it looks like it has barely cooked. Nerta Sigismondo Lally

  43. February 15, 2021 at 11:59

    Connemara turned out to be everything I had dreamed of, and much more. Nydia Robbert Odrick

  44. February 15, 2021 at 13:56

    A wonderful serenity has taken possession of my entire soul, like these sweet mornings of spring which I enjoy with my whole heart. I am alone, and feel the charm of existence in this spot Ginny Harland Urissa

  45. February 15, 2021 at 14:44

    Hey there! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog. Magda Kerby Godiva

  46. February 15, 2021 at 15:23

    I am genuinely grateful to the holder of this web site who has shared this impressive piece of writing at here.| Nicolette Koenraad Jara

  47. February 15, 2021 at 16:10

    I got what you intend,saved to my bookmarks, very nice website. Norma Rutledge Hathcock Almeta Inger Herrle

  48. February 15, 2021 at 21:31

    I am sure this paragraph has touched all the internet viewers, its really really good piece of writing on building up new blog. Shelba Roosevelt Dearr

  49. February 16, 2021 at 11:37

    Super-Duper site! I am loving it!! Will be back later to read some more. I am bookmarking your feeds also. Deonne Parry Crispen

  50. February 16, 2021 at 23:57

    Ok this was way better than I expected. Very flavorful and filling. I added about 2 Tbsp of nutritional yeast. Otherwise followed the recipe to the T. I loved it! Thanks for another delicious and healthy recipe! Junie Harbert Ketti

  51. February 17, 2021 at 00:31

    Hi there. I found your blog by way of Google whilst looking for a comparable matter, your website came up. It appears great. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks to visit then. Samaria Giselbert Engle

  52. February 17, 2021 at 01:16

    Typi non habent claritatem insitam; est usus legentis in iis qui facit eorum claritatem. Rhody Knox Tucky

  53. February 17, 2021 at 01:35

    So undoubtedly according to methodology, supplements and sleeves prefer not widen the penis. After all, he said, the penis fifmi.vulst.nu consists of paired corpora cavernosa and a self-governing corpus spongiosum, the hugeness of which are obstinate genetically. Seriously surgical enhancement fails. In spleen of that, there is anecdote pocket-sized positiveness fifmi.vulst.nu dangled to give up our eyes finished the root unvaried Italian study. When tested, the attrition method of penis enhancement, the authors say, did substantiate discernible in growth. Cornie Gabriele Lucilla

  54. February 17, 2021 at 01:45

    Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular article! It is the little changes that will make the greatest changes. Thanks a lot for sharing! Olwen Morgan Potts

  55. February 17, 2021 at 01:51

    Thank you for this piece, it is very useful to me! Way easier to understand than other bloggers out there. Gusella Vassili Wentworth

  56. February 17, 2021 at 02:28

    If you would like to obtain a good deal from this paragraph then you have to apply such techniques to your won web site. Candie Andreas Forsyth Jobyna Felizio Heman

  57. February 17, 2021 at 03:08

    Hey there. I found your site by way of Google whilst searching for a similar matter, your site got here up. It seems good. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks to come back then. Nerissa Ennis Preiser

  58. February 17, 2021 at 06:31

    always a large fan of linking to bloggers that I really like but dont get a lot of link adore from Mariquilla Darb Kehoe

  59. February 17, 2021 at 07:27

    We are a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community. Myrtice Emmery Rakia

  60. February 17, 2021 at 08:25

    You need to take part in a contest for one of the most useful sites online. I most certainly will highly recommend this website! Jourdan Carlyle Chaves

  61. February 17, 2021 at 09:22

    I am impressed with this website, very I am a fan. Shandie Hazlett Solly

  62. February 17, 2021 at 10:49

    Everything is very open with a clear description of the challenges. It was really informative. Your website is very helpful. Many thanks for sharing! Korella Tanny Kunkle

  63. February 17, 2021 at 12:10

    Ik verdien het zelf.ik ben single en hou van thee en hou van Bunzlaucastle! Isabella Murdoch Carey

  64. February 17, 2021 at 15:22

    Economies are in dire straits, but I can count on this! Brandais Weider Philemol

  65. March 1, 2021 at 13:22

    Hello, constantly i used to check webpage posts here early in the dawn, since i like to find out more and more. Larissa Paten Agueda

  66. DouglasTrove
    March 11, 2021 at 05:11

    “Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon on a daily basis. It will always be exciting to read articles from other writers and use something from their websites.”
    נערות ליווי בתל אביב

  67. Emerycrask
    March 13, 2021 at 05:17

    “After I originally commented I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on each time a comment is added I receive four emails with the exact same comment. Is there a means you can remove me from that service? Thanks!”
    נערות ליווי בראשון לציון

  68. Emerycrask
    March 13, 2021 at 17:16

    “After I initially commented I appear to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the exact same comment. Perhaps there is a way you are able to remove me from that service? Cheers!”
    נערות ליווי בהרצליה

  69. April 7, 2021 at 06:43

    The road seemed to stretch on endlessly before us, but Alexis assured me that our journey was near an end. We’d turn before long into thick woods and travel through narrow, winding roads until we reached her family’s cabin. I had no choice but to trust her as GPS had given out nearly 20 minutes ago.

    “There’s good wifi and okay reception at the cabin,” she’d told me, “but you can’t get there unless you know the way.”
    https://jaklenjoss688533.jimdofree.com/
    So here I was, driving alone in the middle of god knows where with a girl who was my student just a couple of weeks ago. Her and her four best friends had been together from first grade all the way through high school and now they had graduated with very different futures ahead of them. They had decided to kick off “the best summer ever” with a week long stay at Alexis’s family cabin. Alexis and I were heading up before everyone else, the four other girls and four guys.

  70. scielty
    April 10, 2021 at 12:05

    http://gcialisk.com/ – generic cialis from india

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *