Rick Steves - Ugly American Again!

Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 11:56 AM
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We saw Samantha Brown filming an episode of "Passport to (name your city)" on the streets of the old quarter in Hanoi. She was cooking grilled meats over a tiny hibachi, and was very pleasant to us.

I was mortified that I couldn't remember her name at the time, came to me an hour or so later....
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:02 PM
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Love him or,hate him I wish I had started up a company like his when I was young. what a nice life.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:13 PM
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Love him or,hate him I wish I had started up a company like his when I was young. what a nice life.>

Yes indeed a lot of Rick hatred is kind of envy it seems - but his personality rubs many, including moi, the wrong way - like Rick's way is the only way - 'it's stupid to go to Oxford Cambridge is much more fun' (Paraphrase from NPR show).
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:17 PM
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I always dread a favourite restaurant hitting the pages of Lonely Planet or The Rough Guide.

Restaurants just immediately turn into a honey pot, attracting the smug set who look as if they "know" : until they plonk their copy of this years travel manual on the dining table.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:32 PM
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<i>Here is America's travel history in a nutshell:

World War I
The Titanic
World War II</i>

I <b>knew</b> we had invented the time machine!
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:35 PM
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<Love him or,hate him I wish I had started up a company like his when I was young. what a nice life.>
So, so true, yipper! I felt utterly betrayed by my high school guidance counselors when I learned there was such a thing as a consulting winemaker.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:36 PM
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So, so true, yipper! I felt utterly betrayed by my high school guidance counselors when I learned there was such a thing as a consulting winemaker.
________
Apparently that did not stop you from drinking.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:39 PM
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No, thankfully. I found my way to the alcohol, if only as an enthusiast.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:50 PM
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I must admit Samantha Brown stays in places that are a bit above my budget but I usually can afford Rick Steves' recommendations. I find him helpful for beginning research and then moving on elsewhere (mostly here!)

I didn't hear the show on NPR but don't like to hear that he was so pushy and demanding.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:53 PM
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I live in a tourist area and I love when the food tours come into the stores where I am shopping. OOOOH, what is that local specimen buying. And you can always tell when a place is included in some guide, because there wasn't a line yesterday.

But they bring billions into the local economy and for that I am grateful. I know some will not believe this, but I stop tourists on the street when they look lost and try to help them. About 10% are frightened, the others are thankful.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:22 PM
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PalenQ wrote
>> Samantha Brown has written guidebooks that once at least were popular - think cooking and restaurants was its forte.<<

The Brown you are thinking about is Karen Brown
http://www.karenbrown.com/

Samantha Brown never read a book, let alone written one.
Perky she is:
https://www.google.com/search?q=sama...w=1114&bih=564
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:22 PM
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I forgot to mention that I was on a plane with Rick Steves once from San Francisco. He didn't seem approachable, unlike his affable personality on the PBS show. Not that I tried to approach him, but his demeanor was quite standoffish.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 02:28 PM
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I am not Rick Steves fan, but I can understand wanting to be left alone, especially on a plane where you can't escape.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 02:51 PM
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For once in a blue moon during an eclipse I agree with IMDonehere! for one thing if a celebrity does open up it may result in many seeking to chat, autographs, etc. I consider flying a person thing not a public engagement.

curious Pintxos - was it in first or business class or steerage?
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 02:57 PM
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Dickie_Gr - - was this what you were referring to - - and did you enjoy the Watneys Red Barrel?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yz2LaJOVAiA
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 03:11 PM
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There is such a thing as a working persona (or public, as in actors, etc.) and personal. Some people are fine in front of a camera or on stage, but rather shy in person. If he was heading to Europe to do a shoot, he probably had a lot on his mind.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:34 PM
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<<There is such a thing as a working persona (or public, as in actors, etc.) and personal. >>

Very true. They go on when the camera is on (or the audience is there).

My impression of Steves watching him interact with others is that he's pretty detached.
Given that wherever he goes he is recognized I can understand his having strong boundaries, but I suspect it preceded his fame. Just a hunch; don't know the man.

Friends who have never toured Europe, though, just went on one of his tours and enjoyed it very much. He had gone on the preceding tour with his girlfriend, doing, as he says, the one tour a year to see how the tours are going.

And yes, Karen Brown is the other travel writer "Brown."
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:35 PM
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PS I have Rudy Maxa, Samantha Brown, and Rick Steves videos; enjoy the first two quite a bit though they are by no means budget.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:39 PM
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>And because followers follow. He is the Robert Parker of travel, and I do not mean that as a compliment.

Very apt comparison, NewbE. Both have had a negative impact on their respective industries. The one & only time I watched RS on TV, I thought that he was pretty much a dork. It is hard to believe that he is a travel Messiah. And Parker? His belief in big wines has pushed many review-driven vintners away from finesse - which is a true shame for us all.

Ian
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Old Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:41 PM
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Seriously - did you people LISTEN to the show?????

He says that he "helps people sort through all the superlatives and tells them, if you've got limited time, do this and not that. Normally people (guidebooks) are just raving about everything, but that doesn't really help you". He gives, as an example, why he advises people to 'not go to Oxford'. He points out that Americans (his main readership) has the shortest vacations in the developed world, and if you have only a short vacation, and you are in England and you have time for only one day trip from London, then he likes Cambridge better than Oxford. He's not trashing Oxford, he's just giving his opinion. He NEVER claims that his books or shows are complete guides. He's giving people his suggestions.

And since he does NOT include absolutely everywhere, raving that absolutely everything is just fabulous, he does have to pick and choose which places he includes. So if wants to drop Vicenza why shouldn't he. At least he knows how to spell it. And that it's not the same place as Venezia. Which he clearly says in the program. Which people would know if they actually listened to the program.
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