Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Life After People

Life After People: What a pointless series.

OK, the original show was interesting. But a series?!? Gimme a break. It's the same freaking thing week after week: First vegetation overtakes a newly depopulated city and then all the man-made shit falls apart. Meanwhile, domesticated pets end up trapped in their dead owners' homes, with only toilet water to keep them alive for a couple months. (Apparently pets and wild animals are immune to everything that might instantly wipe out the entire human race, like nuclear war.)

What do you think will happen on next week's episode? I can't wait to find out!

I have an idea for a new series: Life Before Life After People. They could call it Aimless or something. Each week it would focus on some guy's unorthodox travels to various populated cities. Unlike Life After People, it would be about the people who still live in these cities and towns. It would be about the people who take our host traveler to these populated cities and it would be about all the interesting things that just happen when some dude decides to pack up his life in a 90-liter backpack so he can wander all over one of the largest land masses on the planet.

Unlike all the mega-stupid reality shows, it wouldn't require any manufactured premises or unknown actors hamming it up for the camera while trying to get their big break. It would not require any expensive special effects or time-consuming (and expensive) research. Unlike Bill Kurtis's productions and most of the news magazine shows, it wouldn't be five minutes of content stretched out to an hour of programming, because there would be no need for time-wasting filler material.

It's very cheap and it's very entertaining, and it's in an era with a million channels of nothing good to watch. Additionally, it's the history series of the future because right now is a very important time in human history. We don't know much about what everyday life was like for people in previous crucial historical eras. Everything we know came from people who either held power or were literate. (Yes, I am illiterate.)

You heard it here first.

Aimless Video Evidence

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Hey NBC,

I'm sick of waiting to hear from you. In fact, this silence is starting to piss me off because I know I'm your guy and I know you know I'm your guy. I am the only person out here who does (or can do) what you're looking for. So how about contacting me again so I can share my knowledge with you and help you make this thing happen.

It's tramping season. Let's get this show on the road.

Until NBC invites me to be involved with their doc series project, I have no allegiance to them. So if there are any other networks or production companies that want to capitalize on NBC's refusal to communicate with their most valuable player, I'm all ears.

Aimless Video Evidence

Monday, April 27, 2009

I love GloZell

I never told you GloZell stopped attending the Tonight Show (after over two years of perfect attendance). Yeah, I found out the day after Election Day (November 5, 2008), when I returned to Burbank. Armed with two tickets for that night's show, I walked up to the line at about noon or 1:00, expecting to surprise GloZell, but she wasn't there. Max (the crazy guy) was there, though.

When I approached Max to find out why GloZell wasn't in her normal position at the front of the line, he became all cryptic. He acted like something big had gone down, but he wouldn't just tell me what happened. Instead of cooperating with me, he told me to read her blog. He also said something about the Screen Actors Guild, which made me wonder if maybe she got a big Hollywood break or something. But when I stumbled upon the Burbank library, I found out otherwise.

Digging through GloZell's blog, not even knowing what I was looking for, I eventually found out she had been 86ed from the Tonight Show in mid/late September, only a few days after I disappeared. Apparently one of her blog posts really weirded Jay Leno out (or weirded out someone at NBC). I don't know why; the girl is harmless. But then I don't know why NBC still hasn't gotten back to me about this doc series thing. I mean, something like Aimless would be very inexpensive to produce, and it would be 100 times more entertaining than most of the idiotic crap on TV these days.

I can't figure out why GloZell is not famous, or at least on her way to becoming famous. She is personable, funny, witty, camera-friendly, fearless, and so many other things. (Tons of other videos on her YouTube profile.)

Here are GloZell's blog posts from the days she and I hung out at the Tonight Show:
Tuesday, September 16
Wednesday, September 17
Thursday, September 18
Friday, September 19 - This one is the best. (Read patiently or scroll down.) I like Wednesday's post, too. Just check out all of them.

Aimless Video Evidence

Friday, April 24, 2009

This is a real resume

On 3/7/09, at about 3:00 pm EST, I sent this resume to NBC, along with a link to GloZell's video, the WCMH interview video, and links to 4 "headshot" pics on the Aimless blog.

Headshot #1
Headshot #2
Headshot #3
Headshot #4

I sincerely appreciate your feedback. Now on to the resume.

Ryan M. Powell
1111 Road to Nowhere
Somewhere, Ohio 43XXX
614-XXX-XXXX (Home)
614-738-3867 (Cell)

To collaborate with NBC Universal Peacock Productions in an effort to provide a candid view into the world of hitchhiking by allowing their cameras to follow me as I explore that world and its inhabitants. Also to act as a liaison, opening the door for Peacock’s producers to enter secretive hitchhiking subcultures.

Between April 22, 2007 and December 19, 2008, I spent 388 days on the road, hitchhiking, walking, and trainhopping my way around 38 of the 50 states. I have ridden with 25 or 30 truckers and hundreds of “four-wheelers,” covering at least 35,000 miles on wheels, while walking another 2,700 miles. I have also slept in homeless camps and I once caught a ride with a well-known actress. Having deprived myself of all creature comforts to entertain and educate people, I will gladly do it again, given the right circumstances.

Due to my clean and presentable appearance, in conjunction with my outgoing personality and “street cred,” I attract characters from all levels of society. Wherever I go, people sense that I am both a storyteller and a story finder. It is nearly impossible to find these people by looking for them, but they flock to me and invite me into their worlds. I am your ticket to finding the characters you seek.

Additionally, YouTube viewers rate my road videos extremely high. Of the 13 videos I’ve uploaded to YouTube, only one receives fewer than 4.5 stars (out of a possible 5 stars). These high ratings suggest very clearly that viewers consider me a compelling character.

Aimless: The Adventures of an American Vagabond
The United States of America
May 29, 2006 to present

Job Titles: Hitchhiker, Trainhopper, Traveler, Host, Camera Operator, Photographer, Interviewer, Director, Producer, Editor, Graphic Designer, Web Designer, Panhandler, Blogger, Author, Asshole, Angel, Eccentric.

Responsibilities: Don’t get killed and try not to go completely insane.

Achievements: I did all that stuff and survived. I have created something out of nothing, yet I am nowhere near finished. I am currently writing a book about my travels (32,000 words so far), and I may eventually use my 100 hours of video footage to make a documentary.

University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Secondary Education
Teaching Fields: Social Science and Earth Science
Earned a Grant-in-Aid

Columbus State Community College
General Studies
Dean’s List

  • I am personable enough to fit into everyone’s world, from that of homeless junkies to the nouveau riche.

  • I get rides with interesting characters.

  • I am funny and often witty.

  • I know how to survive via the unsolicited kindness of strangers.

  • I remain sober and drug-free, even when the tramping world kicks my butt.
Aimless Video Evidence

Monday, April 20, 2009


I don't know what to think about the fact that I still haven't heard anything from Peacock (NBC). I've sent a couple e-mails to the person who contacted me--one a couple weeks ago and another a couple weeks before that--asking if she's heard anything from the New York office. She responded to each of my messages, assuring me that she'll let me know what's up as soon as she knows anything.

I don't even know her position in the company. I don't know if she is an intern or a producer or what. But I do know she called me immediately after seeing the Aimless web site. (Visitor logs and IP address make it very clear.) In her voice mail message, she also sounded somewhat excited, as if she'd just experienced a profound Eureka! moment. I get the feeling she knows something but just isn't allowed to tell me anything. So I guess I still have good reason to feel optimistic about this thing.

The more I think about it, the more I realize I am the only person remotely qualified to do this job, especially if their vision resembles my Aimless vision. I'm not necessarily the most interesting or the most camera-friendly "host." I don't have the most pleasant voice, nor am I as witty as some TV hosts. But this job requires a lot more than just a pretty face and a nice voice. It does require a certain degree of proficiency in each of those areas, but most of all it requires balls. It requires street smarts and fearlessness. It requires personability and the capacity to comfortably mingle with individuals from every social strata, from homeless junkies to high society. It requires living in extreme poverty, with no privacy, no time off for your brain to process thoughts, and no comfort whatsoever for months. It requires staying off drugs and alcohol, which is a very uncommon trait among the people who lead that kind of life. It requires skills and personality traits that I've already demonstrated like no one else, and that's just the beginning. So in essence, I am the producers' ticket into secretive hitchhiking subcultures. I am their guide. I am their guy.

This uncertainty is really starting to wear on me, though, especially because I've been dealing with a very annoying illness for several weeks. And even though I think I'm almost over it, I'm starting to worry that I may be developing a neurological disorder. Consequently, this opportunity becomes more meaningful to me every day.

I really want this to happen. It's not even about money or prospective fame. I see it as an opportunity for me to teach people things no one else can teach them. I've paid my dues, having already suffered permanent physical damage to my body, and I just want it to mean something. I've worked so hard, both physically and mentally, to try to invent a unique and original entertainment genre, and I really hope I am on the verge of realizing the most unlikely success. I need this.

Other than a handful of people, I don't know who reads this blog. I know there are some regular lurkers out there, but I don't know who you are. You probably all think I'm a major prick; I know I often come off that way, particularly when I'm on the road losing my mind (which is inevitable, by the way). But I'm actually a pretty good guy, and I hope I have some support out there.

Within a few days I'll probably post the resume I sent to Peacock. It's very unique and interesting. I may alter the date of that post to make it show up below this one, so keep an eye out.

Aimless Video Evidence

Learn something for once

Since apparently no one can figure this out on their own, even with ten years to think about it, here's how you prevent things like Columbine and 9/11 from happening:


Stop fucking with people you perceive as weaker than you. Stop allowing others to fuck with people they perceive as weaker than themselves. Stop deluding yourself into believing your superstitions are truer than other people's superstitions because they are all bullshit.

Instead, treat people how you wish to be treated. Treat EVERYONE how you wish to be treated.

Don't do it because I told you to do it. Don't do it because some book of fairy tales told you to do it. Do it because you are smart enough to figure out on your own that people don't like to be fucked with. When you fuck with people for long enough, they eventually fight back, killing you and themselves, as well as anyone else who happens to be in their way.

And then we wonder why it happened.

Aimless Video Evidence