Silly Emails

DOver the course of a year, my staff answers thousands and thousands of emails. Our goal this year is to have our one-on-one travel consulting time morph into using our great travel consultants to manage and contribute to our online travel forums. As we review the emails dealt with in the last year, we find that many are routine, many are forgettable… and many are worth a chuckle.  Here are a few actual, unedited emails my staff has fielded in the last year:

  1. Travel Show in Long Beach: I Loved the presentation today but it wasn’t necessary to continue to advertise the book sales — you had me at “hello”!  PS. I’m your age and single :-)
  2. Please, Rick Steves, get your hand out of your pocket in your TV programs! You look like an absolute dork!
  3. Why doesn’t Rick do episodes with dogs and cats that live in different countries? He could do episodes of how other countries have a love for cats and dogs. It may sound silly or boring, but some people such as I would love to see episodes like this. Someday I hope to go to Ireland and wish to know if the Irish love cats and/or dogs. Rick can do episodes of what type of cat and/or dog is most popular in countries.
  4. Has rick steves ever thought about doing a travel show for adults?
  5. What does Rick pack when it comes to “that” time of the month? Rick is a lovely young lady and must have dealt with a period or two overseas. Does Rick meet hot men in Europe and have sex with them?
  6. Where is the best place to find open leg flights? How does one request this info?
  7. Is the guidebook page binder for use on an e-book?
  8. Rick is a ham and that is not a compliment. I do not buy his tapes and edit them on TV to get him off camera. He is in almost every scene. It may satisfy his ego but it annoys the viewers. Do his cameramen get paid by the number of times they photo him? I’ am so tired of seeing him: Coming, going, head out a window, sampling (cheapo), drinking, eating, checking in, checking out, lounging on bed, driving, looking as if he doesn’t know he’s on camera, etc, etc, etc. Rick: introduce yourself and get OFF camera. Ya ain’t dat attractive ! Save your self for home movies, don’t bore the public. Less of you may entice me to buy your films.
  9. Will my Kentucky flag be honered? Even in Doblin?
  10. 10. I know full well that Mr. Steves tries to be positive about travel, but the rail strike between Paris and Milan in mid-June disrupted our trip. You buy first class, check, double check, and triple check to confirm hours before scheduled departure and then they pull their merde. I swear on the souls of my grandchildren that I will never visit France or Italy again.
  11. My husband really wants the “Back Door Productions” T-shirt, but I don’t believe you make these? Please consider it; it would make his day as a little Christmas gift.
  12. Three of my women friends and I retired this year, and we’d like to take a celebration trip for 2-3 weeks. One friend won’t fly and one gets seasick. We’re all well traveled, but want something different and special. Any suggestions?
  13. I loved your article on Iceland in Sunday’s Tribune….My question — not being weird, but in a totally respectful way: how were the women, looks-wise, in Iceland? One hears the urban myth that they are these blonde goddesses & men from London go to the bars in Iceland for their bachelor parties, like we go to Vegas for ours. What are you honest & non- re printable thoughts on the subject?
  14. I am planning a trip to Tuscany in late March/early April. I would love traveling barefoot as much as possible and into as many places as possible (trains, museums, restaurants). What is your “barefoot-friendly” experience there? My wife is NOT a barefooter and is sensitive to people’s reactions. Thank you!
  15. This is a serious question. My wife and I are nudists and, like everyone, RS fans. Watch the show every few nights. We want to make some RS-style videos of nude travel destinations around the world and have the finances to do it. Money don’t make you Rick Steves, though, and we were wondering if you’d care to offer any advice on doing such a project. We plan to start with a one hour show on the Caribbean, then Italy/France/Med and so forth. Our humble little project will not compete with your fine program and we would hope that your example would help us produce a good body (pun) of work as well. So, any comments or suggestions? Thanks! Keep on keeping on, friends.
  16. Please consult a fashion/ dress professional. Rick u look a mess traveling or not fix ur look. The clothes u wear at least wear something that fits and looks nice. The wrinkled baggy granola look is gone. U r on TV people look at u please b kind to our eyes. Ur not fat buy smaller sized clothing if nothing else but remember belt shoes should match a little. Dress black belt with what u choose to wear…no.

Rick Steves Drinking Game

RS09Spring_598Yes, I know I have favorite words, verbal tics, and trademark clichés that those who read or watch lots of my work find popping up over and over. These quirks give my travels maximum fun per mile, minute, and dollar while carbonating my ability to create experiences that are vivid and evocative.

Some of my fans shared this drinking game, which can bring even more joy to those watching my travel shows (watch full episodes for free on my website). The rules are easy.

Drink whenever I say these words:
1. Beautiful/Beauty
2. Modern
3. First
4. Ancient (avoid the Italy and Greece episodes if you don’t want to get alcohol poisoning)
5. Favorite
6. Evoke/Evocative (drink twice if used correctly: to bring a memory, feeling, or image, into the mind)
7. Excite/Exciting
8. Local

Drink anytime I drink.

And drink anytime I butcher the pronunciation of a non-English word.

Would you add any others?

Stay safe, drink responsibly, and “Keep on Travelin!”

A New Website in 39 Seconds

Thanks for all your kind and supportive comments about our new website. I’m glad it seems to be a hit. For my staff and me, it is one more powerful way in which we can share our travel content and experience to help our traveling customers enjoy the very best trips possible. This fun little video clip hints at the massive amount of work that went on over the last year as our heroic Web team reassessed, redesigned, and then migrated thousands of files from our old website (RIP) to our new one. Long live the new ricksteves.com. And three cheers for our Web team: Kate, Andrew, Gretchen, Lisa, and Rich (among many others in supporting roles). Now, we all hope you can be comfortable letting your travel dreams blossom in this webby garden of travel savvy. Happy travels!

If you can’t see the video below, watch it on YouTube.

The New Ricksteves.com: Travel Forums

forums-screenThe redesigned Ricksteves.com has my name on it — but it’s yours, too. Our lively Travel Forum community is buzzing with questions and answers. Whether it’s advice on a rail connection or a chance to praise your favorite café, you are among friends. Go introduce yourself today. In the meantime, I’d love some feedback on how practical and welcoming our forums are. Thanks.

The New Ricksteves.com: Streaming Radio

radio-screenMy new website lets you stream any of my radio shows on demand. No more messing with iTunes (unless you want to). And the sound quality is out of this world. What will tickle your ears this week? It’s cheese, Louise. Or, if you’re not hungry for cheese, click into the archive and find a topic from any show in the last year that better fits your travel dreams. While you’re enjoying this audio fun, let me know if you have any tips on how to make the site easier to navigate.