Like so many travel moments that lead to great stories, it all started with a cocktail. Or four.
“You need to do that podcast!” she insisted. Krislyn’s enthusiasm might have been driven in part by the static flashmob of empty glasses on the bar in front of us. But she had been working in travel marketing for most of her career and she was right. We had to do the “Inappropriate Traveler” podcast.
Why? Because no one else had.
The power of travel—to transform people, to change lives, to make us view the world from a different angle—tends to take on the magical, mythical properties of an unseen force that can guide our decisions, be our moral compass, steer our lives.
In short, a religion.
But the deep, almost spiritual bond that travel enthusiasts have (especially those who publish content around it) often keeps us from being casual, carefree, humorous, or irreverent with the “holy” topic. It might be blasphemy, but, well, sometimes travel sucks. Sometimes it’s ugly, fun and naughty. We know travel can be a hot mess on a runaway train, a series of bad decisions about bad bars in bad towns with really bad local booze, that leads to the best night of your life.
And that’s where the “Inappropriate Traveler” podcast comes in.
The new bi-weekly podcast at InappropriateTraveler.com, which launched in June, focuses on that messy, fun, naughty side of travel, specifically through the stories, experiences and observations of guests and co-hosts who know that, often, some of the highlights of a trip aren’t appropriate. As the host, my job is to find the topics that aren’t being covered elsewhere, from hookups and hangovers on the road, to strategies for carrying sex toys in your carry-on through TSA.
Oddly, while there is a broad spectrum of topics, tones and approaches within the wider world of podcasting, the great majority of travel-related podcasts tend to be, well, very reverent. And earnest. Sincere, sober, thought-provoking, and, um, nice. Yet one more hour-long segment on why Paris is lovely and magical, and how nice the experience was? Ugh. Nice. Yawn.
It’s almost as if most travel podcasters live in mortal fear that a listener will be shocked, titillated, angered, or amused. On “Inappropriate Traveler,” those are the goals. (That and to have a great time drinking with interesting people in wonderful places while we record their stories.)
And so far, the stories have met the goals. Ernest White II, known as “Fly Brother,” talks about what he was willing to do for money to get out of Cuba; air-travel guru Chris McGinnis drops a bomb about why you should never drink coffee on a plane (or get into a public hot tub); writer Jill K. Robinson confesses to sabotaging an obnoxious couple’s tequila tour by playing “evil bartender”; radio/TV host Joel Riddell explains what happens when you leave your butt prints on birthplace of Jesus; and veteran travel pro Rich Grant offers his arguments for why Disney’s new Star Wars lands are better than the Pyramids of Egypt and the Great Wall of China. Yeah, really.
Future guests include globetrotter Gary Arndt of the Everything, Everywhere travel blog; and veteran blogger Pam Mandel of NerdsEyeView.com (both were recorded in hotel rooms where there were more people than robes). And if at any point the discussion gets too appropriate, one of the rotating team of co-hosts, including co-founder Krislyn Hashimoto, takes us back to the edge where we belong.
Krislyn was right: It is time. Podcast listeners looking for something different in a travel show can find the “Inappropriate Traveler” on iTunes’s podcast store (hit “Subscribe”), on Spotify or at InappropriateTraveler.com. Slap on some headphones, turn on the episode, sit back, and have a cocktail.