Truth is, I am the only person to almost die while getting featured on the lifestyle pornography blog, Rich Kids of Instagram.
Also unlike my #rkoi rivals, I have no trust fund. I am just a moderately successful and incredibly lucky entrepreneur. My penchant for living a life worth sharing has turned me into an Instagram addict. The first thing I do when I open my eyes in the morning is check my iPhone, searching for a nice little bundle of likes, and hearts, and comments, and whatever else fuels my addiction these days.
On August 10th 2013, I was involved in a high speed roll over accident on the famed Autobahn outside of Berlin, Germany on the way to my “new” friend’s party at his country house. The back tire popped at 100mph + speeds which sent us into a 360° slide across the freeway towards the earth wall on the right side of the freeway. We hit the wall, rolled over twice, and landed right side up against the embankment. While watching the wall approach I knew I was going to die. I braced for it. I was disappointed it was over. I felt I had more to do in life. As we rolled I saw glass, luggage, tires, and metal flying everywhere. I heard painful screams and otherworldly sounds. When we landed, I looked around, asked if everyone was okay. The driver and passengers’ heads were still in airbags. The passengers in the back seat with me looked banged up but I could see no serious physical injuries. I got out of the car by kicking my door open. I looked at my limbs, felt my head and face. I searched for blood. None. Thank God.
I looked for my passport, wallet, and phone which were scattered amongst the wreckage on the road. As it turns out, there were no serious injuries to anyone in the car. My laptop (with 2 months of edits to my book War & Porn) was destroyed, and my luggage looked like it fell from space into complete obliteration. You can find the 15 second video of the carnage on my Instagram profile. The next day, I went on to the party where we raced Ferraris, met new(er) friends, and partied our faces off.
I got lots of heart warming comments and message because of the post about my accident. The whole experience changed my life in a huge way, but we can save that for another story anothertime. . .
So here it is, I was invited to this new German friend’s country house because my Instagram game is strong. So strong, in fact, that this new friend thought I would be a great addition to an elbow rubbing party with some of the most elite folks in Germany and the surrounding countries.
How did this new friend become so sure that I was the perfect person to have at his exclusive party?
Over the years, my Instagram profile has developed into snapshots of the life I want people to see. The pictures of me hobnobbing with the rich and famous probably helped.
Do I always eat at the best restaurants in the world?
Do I always hang out with super models?
Am I always so inspired?
Sometimes. . .
Actually, I lead a pretty boring life… The trick is, the photos I elected to share and the perception I was able to craft opened up doors I would have never found before Instagram. My Instagram has become the social proof my new friends need to induce radical inclusion.
On August 11th, I posted a picture alongside a brand new yellow 456 Ferrari wearing my iconic flower suit in front of my friend’s fancy Germany country house. Later that week I would make it on to the site Rich Kids Of Instagram. Bring on the followers…
Like most 28 year old single males, I am looking for my soulmate. I have had trouble dating in the past due to immaturity, lack of resources, insecurity… all that stuff. But that has changed. Because of… you guessed it – Instagram.
And, I keep meeting her on Instagram.
She would have been way out of my league if I met her in real life and started to chat her up. She even told me so. She is a supermodel from the Eastern Europe. Now she lives in LA. She is 4 inches taller than me and 5 years older. She likes food and adventure – at least that is what I learnt from her Instagram profile. I was at the SoHo House in Hollywood or Gjelina in Venice or somewhere like that. I started following her because of her clever photo of her feet, I think. Or maybe I found her profile browsing a hashtag like #artbasel2012 or #burningman2012 or something like that.
Anyway, I found her and followed her.
Then, I liked and commented on a few of her photos that aligned with my general photographic themes; food, travel, art. Those are the best kinds of photos to like and comment on without coming across as creepy. Last thing you want to do is like a bunch of #selfies of a complete stranger. #creeper
Wherever I was, I took a picture, added my location, and posted a photo. It was all part of my plan. I picked a location that I thought might be the place to meet someone I’d be interested in. (It is important to make sure you share official location to get the most possible candidates). Then, I clicked on then location tag in my photo and voila, I had a list of prospects for true romance.
A few likes and comments, a couple hundred visual, timely, and consistent photos later and, Boom! I was on her radar. She followed me back. She started liking my photos. She was convinced my life was awesome. And then it happened. She wrote her phone number on one of my photos from over a year ago asking me to text her. I did and the next thing you know we spent 11 days together driving from LA to SF and back, staying in an abandoned warehouse, working on a vineyard, and spending a romantic weekend at the Post Ranch Inn. You can see this all for yourself on my Instagram profile. And I guess that is how my dating life will work from now on.
Try it for yourself:
- Go to a place you think you’ll find your soulmate – for me this is not a bar or club. Try the farmer’s market, or the library, or a gallery, or a vegan restaurant, or whatever floats your boat . . ,
- Take a picture and upload it, including location,
- Browse through other people that have checked into that location,
- Learn about them through their photos,
- Make a connection after you watch their lives for a few weeks.
See, the thing I don’t like about Tinder and other dating apps is that they are too explicit. You end up going on there and feeling really dirty. You are stuck expressing yourself through silly questionnaires or profile descriptions each platform uses to define you. That is some bullshit. That isn’t even close to real. But its the best thing we’ve had until Instagram.
I have learned pictures on Instagram can give you an understanding where a person has been and what they like to do, but it is nearly impossible for pictures to tell you who a person wants to become. I am still searching for my soulmate – the person that shares my vision for what our future will hold. Anyway, good luck on Instagram, and in life.