And the tally of
cool shit just keeps on rising. Linda is pitching a
radio piece for NPR about me being the World's first
Video Blogger... however she's blowing my mind so much
with the angle she's taking that it's literally
changing my entire view of everything:
made it before you even got to LA. Uploading a
certain video, labeling it Entry #1 and the
subsequent videos to follow cemented your place in
I made it before
I got to LA. That... that concept is making my
head spin like you can't imagine. In fact, just read
Truman Show 2.0
aspiring actor Adam Kontras set out in a trailer
from Ohio to Los Angeles with his wife Jessica and
tranquilized cat named J-Dog. He had plans to make
it big! Little did the Greek crooner know then, but
he had already secured his place in history before
his rickety trailer had even reached
started on January 2nd, 2000. Adam lugged a hefty
desktop computer and monitor into his Springfield,
Missouri hotel room. Determined to document his
journey, he spent 10 minutes uploading a 150k
compressed video onto a web-based journal entry.
It's of Adam smuggling their drooling cat onto an
elevator and into their hotel room. The video isn't
brilliant. It's grainy and is just shy of 15
audio from first video blog
But, it was
this very video blog that would later earn Adam the
accolade: Worlds First Video Blogger. Since
then, he has kept the updates going in whats
now easily the longest running video blog in
history. Its called The Journey
and it reads like Greek Drama, capturing
Adams highs and lows- all in intimate video
vignettes. He's zoomed in on his breakdowns as he
sacrifices auditions to slave away at multiple 9-5
gigs, captured the highs of falling in love, the
jitters of pregnancy scares, the pangs of deceit,
and the tragic loss of his most beloved pet dog.
From his big-time offer to host a CBS late-night
talk show (which later fell through), to two
marriages followed by two heartbreaking divorces
--- nothing in his life is beyond the camera and
video clips and self-written songs to choose
in his intro to The Journey: "I'm telling the story
of trying to make it in LA and you actually see it
unfold. I'm honest to a fault and try desperately
to chronicle how I feel no matter how stupid,
arrogant, scared, lazy, insincere or pathetic it
makes me look. My purpose is not to make people
like me, it's to make people know me." He adds, he
hopes to show how the process of trying to make it
changes a person.
that the process of updating The
Journey website itself is what has most
changed Adam. There was some point in this whole
effort where The Journey sort of became
the journey. In other words, Adam would set himself
out on crazy adventures just for the sake of having
something cool to video blog about.
nearing The Journey's Ten year birthday and Adam
still hasnt made it big in Los
Angeles....but, he's come pretty damn close on
multiple occasions. As he hits the ten year mark,
Adam has decided that he needs to do something
big... like, really big. Thats why this June
he is heading out on a real journey to sub-Saharan
Africa. Not wise for an olive-skinned Greek
pretty-boy who has a sordid love affair with hungry
mosquitoes. But, hes determined. I will be
joining him on this trek and can both document that
voyage on tape and have him reflect on The
Journey along to way.
heard the trite phrase: the journey is the
destination. In this case, it absolutely rings true
for Adam. Part of me believes that his thousands of
fans secretly relish in his video-posts and his
non-stop struggles.... if only because it is
amazing to see how he continues to fall, yet
continues to get up again. He has become for so
many this lovable anti-hero who refuses to give up
on his dream -- even after nearly a decade of
personal and professional failures.
questions to explore:
fame mean to Adam? How far will he go for the
Journey? How has "The Journey" and the journey
changed his definition of success? Does HE want it
is the true definition of a fan in this age of
internet intimacy? Artists and politicians are now
attempting to draw people into their
pseudo-intimate lives by getting twitter accounts
(even Sarah Palin now). This is after they have
established fame. But, what about in Adam's case
where he has already established this intimacy and
has an internet encyclopedia of his deepest fears
and happiest moments?
funny, she was asking me some questions
about the site and brought up how often I
cry in it. And I stopped her with "woah,
woah, woah - I've cried like 3 times in 10
years on this site...don't exagerrate"...
and then she proceeds to send me that
treatment and of course, I record it...
and I freaking cry.
It's just incredibly overwhelming to me
that this many years later... people get
it. I cannot express how insane people
thought I was when I was doing this
at the start. How dismissive and isolating
it felt and how I seemed to be the only
one who saw the project on a bigger level.
I kept it up through everything...
and to see it get recognition after a
decade? Recognition that only could have
happened because I kept doing it?
Even cooler? In
her scheming to find more stories for us to cover in
Africa the old addage of "...the journey not the
destination..." smacked her in the face and it looks
like she found one. Knowing her tenacity, you will
absolutely hear this piece on NPR in July.
express how appreciative I am... but that's what tears
PS - you know, I
use the "words can't express" line all the freaking
time... just after I wrote hundreds of words of
appreciation within that same entry. That's stupid.
Words can't express how stupid that is.