Curtis Duggan: Welcome to another episode of Remotely Serious. This is a bit of a time travel episode. I actually recorded this episode with our guest, Damon Dominique, back in January of 2023, and we didn't actually launch the podcast until now. You're probably hearing this in you could be hearing this anytime in the future, but we're launching this in June, July of 2023.
So we make reference to Damon's book. You are a Global Citizen, which was published in January of 2023, but we. Talk about it like it's imminently being published. I just wanted to let you know that's 'cause it is a time travel episode. We are publishing this a little while after it was recorded. So with that little administrative note, let's jump in.
Curtis Duggan: Alright everybody, this is Remotely Serious. The Wayviator podcast coming to you from wayviator.com. It's 2023. It's the first morning of the year for me. January 2nd. Doesn't count. That was the holiday. Because we had New Year's on the Sunday. But we got a great guest today and we'll jump right into it.
Damon Dominique is with me this morning. It's my morning, Damon. Where are you calling from? Is it morning for you?
Damon Dominique: No, it is nighttime here. I'm in Paris. It's,
Curtis Duggan: oh, we're straddling time zones. It's actually quite apropo of the concepts we're talking about. I've been, at, this is one of the early episodes, so I might as well introduce it a little bit before we jump right into our guest.
We're tackling things that are important to digital nomads, remote workers, and really just anyone that's interested in the future of travel, the future of work, the future of how we live. I. And so it's a great for us to have a Damon Dominique who's releasing a new book. And maybe we'll start there.
So I don't like to do, there's this movie Walk Hard where the joke is they say it's like this parody of musical biopics, and they say Dewey Cox needs to talk about his entire life before he goes on stage. And it's just parroting, that first 10 minutes of the podcast where you go through a biography.
I like to get to that, but I also like to jump right in. So I'm just gonna ask you. It looks like you're going to my favorite bookstore and probably a lot of people's favorite bookstore in New York this month. The Strand to talk about you are a global citizen. So maybe we'll start there when you show up at the Strand and you can confirm if that's actually true.
What are you gonna talk about? What's the session gonna look like and what's the book about? First off, I'll probably
Damon Dominique: cry because that is such a cool thing. Like I'm right there with you. The strand is, it is the moment, it is the bookstore to be at. So it's quite an honor to just be there in itself.
I feel like I got my start in New York. I went to school there and I started traveling there on a dime. Like I was taking the. Every Chinatown bus to Baltimore just to go see what was in Baltimore. I took a train up to Montreal. I was just doing it. I was a global citizen from the start. Despite being from Indiana, the trenches of the Midwest
Curtis Duggan: what brought you to New York in the first place?
Damon Dominique: What brought me to New York in the first place? I just, I wanted to. I wanted to be in a big city. It didn't matter which big city, I just needed to be in one. So New York was the place to go. I wanted to study French and Spanish, and so I, I went to New York to study French and Spanish. I.
Curtis Duggan: Yeah, I lived in New York actually from 2017 to 2020, actually until March, 2020.
So there's a bit of a story there, but I won't tell that story right now. But March, 2020 was an interesting time in New York. You're heading to the strand. You're walking you're know. Traversing Familiar Pathways, taking the Q train down to, the near the Regal Theater.
That's by the Strand down in Union Square. And you're coming up, you're, you probably got a few copies of you are a Global Citizen. So what's the book about and what kind of people do you think will be in attendance to hear you talk about it? It says the subtitle is guided journal for the culturally curious ly curious.
Yeah, so the culturally curious will be in attendance. This. In a few weeks at the Strand. I hope so.
Damon Dominique: Gosh, you're good at this. I'm surprised you haven't done this
Curtis Duggan: podcast earlier. This is a, we're doing a batch. This is se season one, who cares about seasons? We'll just keep doing it every week.
But yeah you're one of the first. So I'm, I like, love the feedback.
Damon Dominique: I'm honored. This is gonna be so successful. Good job. Yes. I'm hoping the culturally curious will be in attendance. We sold out, which is I just can't believe that sold out. This is a book about. Not only becoming a global citizen, but realizing that before any other label, we all are global citizens, period.
So I've traveled, I'm 31 at this point. I've traveled a lot of the world and I feel like the part that's missing is that people are traveling in their, they think what they think they're doing is discovering a new place, a new country, a new culture. But what they're actually doing is discovering. A part of themselves, like they're discovering themselves by way of another culture.
So yes, you may be visiting Paris, but you're also visiting the parts of yourself that are getting pissed off when the waiter is not like coming to your table, you're realizing that, oh they don't have peanut butter everywhere. You're really learning more about yourself as well. And I think those are.
That's also part of why we travel. So basically blah, blah, blah. I wanted to make a book. I wanted to make a book that I would've wanted to have as I was venturing out in the world by myself. So it's primarily a guided journal that anyone could take and get to know themselves as they're visiting the world, or, you could do it in your armchair if you want.
You don't have to travel to do this book.
Curtis Duggan: I love it. And this is why I love coming at the biography out of chronological order. So you've got a, we've we're here in the present, you've got this book, you're a global citizen, and you, we've established you, you've made the classic move from the Midwest to, to New York.
But I imagine it's, was there another, would you consider that the global citizen awakening or was there a another moment where it was like, I was in New York, I was working at X job and I decided. It was time to check out Kanon in Thailand, or the classic thing people did, 10 or 10 years ago or whenever this was, what was your global citizen moment that started you off on the cultural, the culturally curious journey?
Damon Dominique: First off, I would say there were a few baby. Culturally curious moments. One was moving to New York. I started backpacking when I was in my early twenties. Those were just like the baby moments. I was getting my feet wet in the world. I honestly think the moment that really made it all click for me was that I wanted to, after the Midwest, after New York, after la I was like, all right, I'm done with the states.
I just need to get out of this place. So I'm, I moved to Paris. And Paris was a place I had studied abroad before and I loved it. And I had fallen in love with a guy here and we dated for six years. And then I decided to finally move here five years ago and I realized I, I wanted to move to France 'cause I thought they were doing everything correct.
I wanted to be French, I wanted to be European. And then after being here for five years, I realized, oh, okay. There are just as many parts about this culture that I actually, that I love and that I hate as well. So instead of. Thinking that I have to choose one culture in particular, the American culture or the French culture or whatever the culture is, like I don't have to make a choice at all.
I can be all of them. I can be none of them. In fact, I think it's really interesting that we actually all have to be a part of a country. Like I want the option to be stateless. I want, I wanna be a complete free being, but the way the system has it now we have to belong to a country and we have to belong to one culture.
So I would say the. I don't know. The moment that made it all click for me was moving abroad and realizing that it wasn't gonna solve all the things that were happening in my mind.
Curtis Duggan: I definitely think that there's this there is this matrix we live in to use the analogy from the movie about, what society is.
And I think just like the combining the matrix and inception, there's almost levels of it. And it sounds like you've gone through one of the levels, which is or several of the levels. But this first one, or the second one was, I, America has some flaws or some things that I don't.
Particularly like about it or would just like to explore to see what else is out there. I've gone to Paris, a French speaking yet still Western capitalist democracy, et cetera, et cetera. And at first, it's quite different. I'm sure like, you go in and the how you have lunch is different that you learn French, right?
And you do all these kinds of things, but then you realize, of course, like many people that. Just like someone who lived in Australia and goes to London, or who lives in Vancouver and goes to New York you're still within a certain global West. And then, for many people that leads to other travels, to Southeast Asia, to Africa, to Asia, to the rest of the world.
So it, it sounds like there's a couple things going on, which is. One, cult learning about different cultures, and then you're saying, how it reflects back on you and how you learn about a piece of yourself, but also like a growing awareness about the state and being stateless.
And I certainly am now encountering more of the movement towards the future of with crypto. I don't even wanna really get into crypto, but, with new forms of governance with. New thinkers that there might be something that, it's in the last three or 400 years since we replaced all the kings and queens with democracies, there hasn't been that much change in how we do states and nations.
And there might be, something there on the horizon. So across culture, travel, travel tips thinking about politics and political philosophy what is the focus of you are a global citizen which parts of the beast do you break off and share with people in your book?
Damon Dominique: wow. I think you're right on the spot. Here's the thing, I'm living in France. I like forget English. It right on the spot. On the dollar, right on the honey. Like
Curtis Duggan: right on the money. Yeah, right on the money. There we go. Euro exact them. All
Damon Dominique: right on the money with that. First off, I love the Matrix.
It's the movie that got me into philosophy and just deeper ways of thinking of about reality and existence. I love, I just love that stuff. I tried taking that and putting it in my book and, as user-friendly English as possible. My book is broken down into, geez, something like 15 to 18 chapters.
I forget what actually made it in the final cut, but it's broken down. I basically broke down. Existence as it is. So each chapter tackles a part of the human existence. We have education, we have politics, we have taboos and morals, we have sexuality. Really all the aspects of the human experience. And I first open each chapter up with a chapter anecdote about a travel experience I've had and why it relates to that specific respective chapter.
But then I go deeper into questions that I'm, that might get you thinking about that. That, I don't know, chapter.
Curtis Duggan: Do you have a sense, like with all of these sections that you've mentioned in your book, including, norms morals, kind of culture all that kind of stuff, do you have a did in creating this, did you get a sense of I.
Your whether it's idealized or proposed kind of view of the world or the new traveler, let's say in the year 2030 is there a future you can envision where some of the things holding us back, quote unquote, are removed? And are you optimistic or pessimistic about this? Because, and I can just share a quick anecdote.
I'm loosely involved in following along actually getting more involved with a certain cohort of people with a. An organization called Pluma that imagines the future of a network state or a sort of a state for remote workers or digital nomads or just, people who are thinking in new ways.
And so there's all kinds of things like, how do you have a new state? If you don't have an army, how do you protect it? What about a central bank? All that kind of stuff. So I'm just curious if you're optimistic, ultimately, if you're optimistic or pessimistic about kind of the future We want. Coming to fruition in a timeframe that's like within our lives?
Damon Dominique: Oh yeah. I think, no, I'm very optimistic. I think with the increasing technologies and advancements that we are moving towards a future that we can all be excited about, I think it's easy to look at these things like AI and get afraid of them. It's just because we haven't learned too much about them yet.
Also, I. This is not my sector at all technology. I have barely, I'm, I've been a YouTuber for eight years and I still barely know how to use any of this stuff. But I would say just with the internet in general, we're able to all speak to each other. In fact, I think in my internet, I have a chapter on the internet and media, and I say the internet.
Is the closest thing to a global citizen that we have already in existence. Like we are all able to access it. It is stateless for the most part, and we can all connect over ideas and I. Kind of form our own communities within this virtual digital space which is not something that we can do in our reality, in our real life.
Because in our real life, if I wanna go work in, I don't know, Bangladesh, I have to have a visa to go do that. Or if I wanna marry somebody from Ireland and I wanna live in Ireland, I have to get a visa to do that. So the, I'm just over this idea, and I think most people are, a lot of people are getting.
Increasingly, more and more people are getting frustrated with the idea that we are not as free as we maybe once thought we were. And we're able to learn about other places in the world via the internet and watching people's YouTube videos and, oh, maybe I, my life would be better if I go live over in that part of the world.
I think a lot pe a lot of people are just getting more and more frustrated with the systems that we have today. Crypto being one of them. We're people are moving towards crypto instead of having their money tied to one currency. I, for one, I'm just very vocal about, I don't like that literal papers get in the way of me living my true human life.
If I wanna fall in love with somebody halfway across the world, I should be able to do so without any bureaucratic mess that comes along with it. That's so like anti-human. Like I, so I feel like I'm, yeah, one of the positive, I'm very optimistic for the future. I think we're gonna tear down a lot of these systems that don't really make much sense anymore.
Curtis Duggan: Yeah, me too. One of the, I was talking to someone, one of the ways I looked at it was this is in a very narrow context of all of the broad examples you're giving, but in a narrow context, if there's some investor in. Mumbai and there's an investor in London, another one sitting in New York and another one sitting in Canada and there's some company in France and they would say, Hey, we all wanna invest.
We all wanna put $10 million in this company. We're, rich Wall Street type people, Silicon Valley people, London finance people. They could just wire the money, do some docs, and all of a sudden their capital crosses borders. And there's a little bit of pa, there is some paperwork, but.
They can do it in a week. If it's like some, company that's new and they want to invest all around the world, that happens all the time. But if a worker, a programmer, a graphic designer, any kind of worker wants to say, I would like to work in another country in, instead of taking, a million dollars in capital, I'd like to take myself somewhere.
It's been much harder and, impossible in some cases. And I'm not, advocating any kind of opening up the Pandora's PS of evaluating capitalism versus socialism versus communism. I'm just making the point that like money can move so easily and it has been able to do that for a long time and with.
Digital nomad visas with remote work visas. There's the first inklings and with other things, with crypto as a way of moving money, there's the first inklings of some more freedoms to break the monopoly of violence that states have on enforcing people moving like that where, man, it's easy for money to move, but you wanna move your family.
It's illegal unless you have a visa and nations have the right. To do what they want with their borders. But many of them are saying we shouldn't have this hostile approach. We should say, if you make a certain amount of money, you got health insurance. Come on in.
And that's the philosophy of the first wave of very imperfect visas that are coming out that are more welcoming to people that are nomads or remote workers. And I'm sure there's so much more to do there. But there's a competition now. A bit on my soapbox, but I just wanted to share that perspective.
Damon Dominique: All of this would've happened earlier, had the internet existed. I think this is something that came about because we all are able to communicate. We are able to communicate. Right now we're communicating literally across time zones and borders, which was not something we were able to do. So like the sharing of knowledge, world knowledge is the reason why all these things are happening.
So I think it's honestly only a matter of time. Give it 20 years, I think we're gonna see. I don't wanna say the crumbling of certain parts of society, but I think the general public is starting to see through a lot of these structures that really just don't make sense for many people anymore.
Primarily digital nomads or remote workers. I think it's all gonna start changing very quickly. It already
Curtis Duggan: is. Yeah. It already definitely already is. The 2020s are gonna see the most most change in this area since, I don't know, the French or revolution or something. Maybe there's other times when it would, there was a lot of movement on this front, but it really feels like a new century.
Maybe just talking a little bit about the YouTuber, the creator aspect of this whole journey for you, was it in France that you started? Your first year as a YouTuber, or was it somewhere else? No.
Damon Dominique: No. So I feel like I've lived in many generations of YouTube. I started, first of, I was just making videos for fun back in 2012 when being a YouTuber was not a job.
It was something to be made fun of. And then I've been full-time since 2015, so we're going on, yeah, like eight, nine years now. I've definitely seen how the whole industry has changed. I've seen how people now take it more seriously. I see how little kids want to be a YouTuber instead of wanting to be, a doctor for better or worse.
I've definitely seen the shift of just everyone's attitudes towards social
Curtis Duggan: media in general. How was the journey through, I'm sure you were talking about things that were, 20 15, 16, 17 seems like even though many of us saw it as like things were really going in terms of global citizen thinking, digital nomad thinking, various types of thinking.
It was still pretty early days. How did you, how did your journey as a YouTuber evolve? Through this kind of the 2010s there and then the covid years, year, years. And then now did you have three distinct eras where it was a certain way, prem March, 2020, and then you had to shift things and you had to shift things again?
Or what was that journey like through the events of the first part of this decade?
Damon Dominique: Yeah. I would say number one is, Relying on any algorithm is just a recipe for disaster. So building an audience that feels loyal to you and your personality and your story is number one. Because yeah, trying to just favor the algorithm is never gonna work out in your favor.
So back in the day, it used to just be you people who traveled. Let me think about this. How did, how do we used to do it back in the day? It's been so long. It's been eight years. I feel like there's been a lot of errors. The first era was you just post three times a week and if as long as you were the one posting, you would gain an audience.
Then we had hit Covid and everyone was at home and everyone got more used to being on social media. Everyone became an influencer. So now that strategy of just posting when you won, I don't feel like that works anymore 'cause everyone. Posts everything. It used to just be that there were people who made a YouTube channel, made an Instagram, and they were the influencers and everyone watched them.
Now I feel like everybody's watching everyone. And now post c o v I feel like we're moving more and I'm not a fan of this by the way. We're moving from long form entertainment to more short form, which is, TikTok, YouTube shorts, Instagram reels. I haven't really figured it out. Something I gotta figure out soon, but I don't know what the future's gonna hold when people ask me, where do you see yourself in the next few years?
It's we didn't even know that Netflix would be this huge, like 10 years ago. We didn't know that TikTok and be real would be a thing now. So it's hard to even predict. I. That was like 10
Curtis Duggan: answers and yeah I'm getting old. I'm, and I'm old school in some sense where I, like when I'm, when a mo, when I'm at the, when I'm at the cinema and I'm looking at a movie and there's one unbroken take for six minutes that hovers over a character or follow follows Ray Liotta into the bar in Goodfellas and it's, five minutes and they don't even cut.
That's oh. That as a chef's kiss to cinema. So I feel I am. Guilty of being a little bit outta touch with cuts every two seconds. And the reels and thes, they're super popular, they're very compelling. But it's against my. My it's going against some sort of thing in my brain about how cinema works, and I know that tos aren't cinema, but I also don't want to, I'm not trying to put them down or anything.
It is its own medium in itself. This ability to add subtitles, cut quickly, cut to visuals and all that kind of stuff. It's it own art form. And so I'm, I am curious, I, I do this podcast, got a blog and I'm in the content marketing world, in a sense maybe a slightly different generation.
But I have, I've made toss before I haven't been a TikTok or on camera. So I see it as something that's, it seems to be going that direction, like really short content do. But then, here we are sitting on a podcast, and I know I won't name them all, but I know at least.
10 podcasts, some that I listen to where, they sit and talk. It doesn't even really seem like it's heavily edited and the final product is two and a half hours. We're not gonna go two and a half hours, don't worry, I'll let you go. There seems to be this dichotomy between oh yeah, every day while I work, I throw on this three hour podcast with my favorite sports broadcast or whatever it is.
Meanwhile there's oh, try and tell everything you can in four seconds. So I know this is a little bit off topic on your book, but just as a creator, where do you. Where do you see it going in a couple years? Do you have a sense of like where you need to get to to match the market or to just do your own thing as an artist regardless of what the kids want, or demanding?
Yeah, I guess this is, I.
Damon Dominique: I feel like now I have my answer figured out from that question a few minutes ago. I feel like before you used to be able to just focus on one thing. I could focus on making one YouTube video and then I could enjoy the rest of my trip. I'm a travel vlogger primarily, so I could just make one YouTube video and that was it.
Now it's okay, you made the travel video, but did you take the picture for Instagram? Did you do the Instagram story? Did you take a TikTok? Did you do it? Oh my God, it's become 10 jobs in one.
Curtis Duggan: And how are you seeing get. If you don't do it, how do you know you're getting penalized for not doing it?
What? What's the sort of thing bubbling to the surface of oh, I missed doing that. Is it just follower accounts don't go up as quickly or
Damon Dominique: subscribes? Yeah. There are a million theories with this. I don't think anyone actually knows, and I think anyone who's ever been an influencer had any sort of following.
You just know that. It works in waves. Like you have a season where you are the shit, and then you have a season where your views are a little low, and then they'll go back up and then they'll go back down. It's like the stock market, it's so volatile. Now the word on the street again, nobody really knows, but they say if you're not posting short form content, then you like the algorithm will not push your other videos again.
I'm sure that. It's true for many people. I'm sure it's also not true for others. La la. I know from personal experience that I prefer long form just like you. I'd much rather listen to a podcast. I'd much rather make a storytime video. I like the art of storytelling. I'm not like a chop, chop kind of guy.
And so it's hard for me to make short form content. I, it's, I don't really like watching it. So this question of do I prioritize what like the younger generations seem to want or do I prioritize what I actually wanna watch? And I think I'm moving towards what I wanna watch. I don't know why we always tend to prioritize what the younger generations want to watch when the rest of us are still alive too, and the rest of us are still watching content.
So I think in the past few years, I've also moved in that direction I don't wanna make Teen friendly con, family friendly content. I'm not a family friendly kind of guy. I wanna make videos about me at the rave this past weekend. I wanna make a video of me drinking red wine and getting drunk with my friends.
That's more realistic. That's what I'm actually doing. So that, that's what I'm gonna keep doing until the algorithm wipes me off the platform.
Curtis Duggan: Yeah, the algorithms do tend, do, tend to flatten out the the gonzo journalism, if I can call it that, but just like the real, I, maybe journalism is, even though is the wrong word, but exactly what you're saying, the real edgy, slice of life that isn't necessarily.
All the titles are ss e o, friendly, all of the even, the, even the most like, insane YouTubers. What's the top, like Mr. Beast, the top one. It's still yeah. It's family friendly. You're gonna a parent can let their nine year old watch it. It's crazy, but it's not actually, getting into certain things that, like when you read a great.
Memoir from someone's time in New York in the nineties or in Thailand and they really get into all of it. Love, sex, eat, pray, love, everything. That's when you know that's when I really get into something. And, I've loved reading full length book memoirs and I. Your current book is not your first foray.
Speaking of mediums that are, long and, very fulfilling as opposed to short and choppy, full length books are one of my favorites there too, in addition to podcasts and movies. But it seems like you have a, you've got a history of language learning and almost like cultural training in a sense, if I can call it that.
Has the process for writing this current book been different than your learn French, learn Spanish learn to date in French. Books of the of Times past. Yeah. So I would
Damon Dominique: say number one, I'm a visual person, so writing a book is not necessarily a visual craft, like it's more of a pen and paper kind of deal, or you and Microsoft Word.
Just peeling over each last paragraph, it's it. It was probably one of the hardest things I've done, whereas making a video or making social media content or what you're referring to, I have courses, I have a Spanish course and a French course, and those are visual. I'm right here in front of my, in front of my camera, in my apartment, teaching you these languages.
Just like as if you were here on my couch. I'm your language tutor. And so yeah, I've always. I've always thrived more in video. I like the visual arts. I'm a design dude. I love making a, I love setting up a scene, really. So really writing. You are setting up a scene, but it's in a d it's a different part of your brain.
It's with words. And, geez. After learning all these languages, I trip over English all the time. Like I have 10 languages going through my brain at every time, and. It has definitely helped my other languages, but it's hurt my English in
Curtis Duggan: ways. Yeah I was in Costa Rica. This I should not this year because it's now 2023, but in 2022 I was in Costa Rica and just the shift to speaking English even.
And then there was a situation where I just had to speak French. And it's just, saying Ola and the various things I just couldn't help but speak the very basic words in Spanish when I wasn't supposed to. Is there anywhere you're in France. Is there. A laundry list or not, that's probably the wrong term, but an itinerary of places you're going in 2023 or are you home-based France, t b d, still planning.
Obviously there's this, there's a book tour that's gonna take you down, down the eastern seaboard in, in, in the u s a, it looks like with some stops, and New York and Boston and other places. But any, anywhere else in the near future that's on the list. Oh
Damon Dominique: my gosh, this list of mine, it's never ending.
Step number one in my, just my life motto, I guess my life number one. Rule in my life is you always have your next trip planned before you come home. So I was just in, I was in Mexico City, I was in Miami, and I knew I was coming to Paris. But before I got to Paris, I already knew I was going to New York.
When I go to New York, I already know I'm going to London after this. So right now we're in the process. I'm planning about two months out. My list is extremely long. Like the places that excite me most are the places that everybody. It tells me not to go. Dubai people seem to really hate Dubai. I would love to go there.
North Korea, very oppressive government would love to go check it out. 'cause I guess the thing is I'm less interested in what these governments are doing. I'm more interested in the people. I don't believe that the government represents the people's best wishes from a top level. So I. My list is E It's huge.
Like I should even show you my notion. I have a huge page in notion. But next year I plan on, or this year I plan on getting to Antarctica. I want to go to Ireland. I want to go to, I need to hit more countries in Africa. Literally, we could just finish the whole podcast by me just listing off every country in the world.
Curtis Duggan: wanna go everywhere. Does choosing some of these places does it's. It's app, not appropriateness, that's the wrong word, but is it's matching up the destination with how well it could be a vlog video. Is that a big factor? The only factor, not a factor. Like I go where I want. YouTube, you just deal with it.
I just go where I want personally. Or do you factor in oh, Antarctica. I know I could do a certain thing there that would get clicks. I'm not saying that you're, you know you're a hound for clicks, you gotta strategize. You gotta you gotta figure out what to do with your channel.
And does that factor into this list?
Damon Dominique: It definitely factors in. But I'm more on the side of YouTube where I wanna do the quirky and eccentric things. For example, one of the videos I wanna make in the next few months is I'm gonna go to Wales in near England, and I want to visit, it's the longest.
The city with the longest name in the world. And this city has become like world famous for having the longest title of the longest city title. And that's their like, claim to fame. And they've been in every art, every press about their city's name. So that's more where I go. It's more just because I'm curious about the world in that aspect.
It's less about. Let me go make the same old Eiffel Tower video in Paris. I'm sure people can capture the Eiffel Tower with, they actually know how to use technology. They could probably capture the Eiffel Tower in a better photo than I could. So the angle that I always take is what's the story I could tell?
Or what else? What else? When you, maybe when you do a 180 from the Eiffel Tower, what else is in the shot? I think that's what's more interesting to me. That's what's more interesting to me, like these things that other people aren't really capturing. So like for example, I want to go to Antarctica, but in order to get to Antarctica, you have to apparently pass through the Drake passage, which if you go on TikTok, you'll see these like extremely frightening waves, like humongous waves.
And that's one of my biggest fears being out in open water. So I'm almost. I don't know. I'm on this let me just have all these crazy human experiences. That's the side of YouTube I'm on. Of course I'm like blessed and grateful that I have this freedom, this schedule that I have where I can pretty much do what I want and just film it.
And so I'm like, damn, I have this opportunity. Let me go do some crazy things.
Curtis Duggan: Yeah. Maybe I'll just switch gears to something a little bit more nerdy as we think about this. I'm thinking about Antarctica and I'm even thinking like Ant Antarctica is at the bottom of the sea.
There must be multiple ways to get to it. Like, why do you have to go through I'm gonna, I'm gonna research that, look up, look this up. 'cause I've never heard of that particular passage. So that's a new fact for me. When you're doing these things, like whether it's Antarctica or maybe something closer to home like in Wales What's your, what is, what's your gear are you traveling alone?
Are, do you have a backpack full of, as a YouTube, not just a global citizen who's traveling, but as a YouTuber who's traveling how do you manage that? Does it all fit in one backpack or is it a bit of a production to get what you need? Where you need it to make your videos?
Damon Dominique: Oh, yeah. I'm very low maintenance in that aspect. I try to keep my equipment as light and as minimal as possible. I always joke like it's a miracle that I'm still on YouTube today because I barely know how to use my equipment. It's just, I'm not that interested in equipment. I have my one camera, I have my one mic, and boom, that's it.
And then I go and I do my thing. I feel like the more equipment I have, the more it holds me down. I. The more, it takes me longer to set up the shot, which then makes me think that, oh yeah, I'm filming a video, which then makes it less real. So I feel like the more equipment you have, the more it gets in the way.
Of course. That's just what I tell myself. 'cause I also just don't wanna learn about it. I'm more interested. Another thing. But yeah, I would say I have a camera. I have a mic. Just recently I bought some lights, portable lights that I can take with me anywhere. But yeah, I just work with whatever I have.
I turn on a few lights in the Airbnb and the hostel and I go with it.
Curtis Duggan: Cool. We'll just chat a bit like about the particulars of how people can get your book, but right before we do that one last. Question is if you could tell yourself something, tell yourself eight years ago something that you've learned that would've made it easier or was a, is a good piece of advice starting the journey.
Is there anything you've learned about travel, about gear, about making videos, about what videos work, what ones don't that you would tell yourself, like one piece of advice to, for that person starting the journey that would make it different or better or whatever? Looking back, I.
Damon Dominique: I, I'm actually very pleased with how my journey has turned out, so it's hard for me to be like, oh, I would've told myself this.
'cause I really like where I am. But I think I would say something like, I don't wanna say be different. That's such a trite, trite thing to say. It's more do something different. Mediocrity is boring. Like just keep staying on your. Stop trying to do what everyone else is doing. Do what you're doing, do what you want to do it, do what you would want to watch.
I think that's what's gonna be more interesting not only for people to watch, but for you to watch. 'cause part of being a YouTuber is not only keeping your audience entertained, but keeping yourself entertained. Like this past year, to be honest, it was a rough year for me. 'cause I. I was like uninterested in doing social media.
And that's a mountain that I think anybody has to climb any career. It's after, working in the same career for so long, you're like, all right, is this it? Is this what I'm doing for the rest of my life? So that was last year. And then of course I started writing out that list of, okay, Drake Passage, Antarctica, like this Long City name in Wales.
Then I was like, okay, no, I've only seen such a small part of this world. Let me keep on keeping on doing my thing. Stay in your lane, I think is what I, maybe that's what I would say to myself. Stay in your lane. Stop trying to drive everybody else's car. Stay in your dinky old car over here. Do drive,
Curtis Duggan: drive your own car.
Yeah, it's great. I've seen that play out in so many different, I. Digital industries in the last few years with I, ICOs, NFTs, other things, coins, YouTube, TikTok, people, flooding to whatever the thing of the moment is for this month. And and the people like you that I. Continue to plug away and grow doing, being you, I think will have success in the next 10 years as fads come and go.
But authentic creators, authentic YouTubers, authentic people went out in the end over time. Speaking of time, it looks like it's couple weeks. I've got I got Barnes and noble.com up here. It says, Your book's available for pre-order January 17th is the release date. Do I have that right?
And in general, where should people follow you and look whether they wanna learn French or Spanish, or they're culturally curious about being a global citizen, where should they find you and your published work? Yes,
Damon Dominique: dude, you are amazing at this by the way. You need keep on doing this. Aw. Aw shucks.
Thanks. No, for real. There's all these transitions, so well done. I would say, okay, so my name's Damon Dominique. You can find me on every social platform. Damon, Dominique website, Damon, Dominique. I have French courses, Spanish courses. I got the TV show pile and I got the book. It's, I call it my spiderweb, and we all have our own spiderweb.
It's just kinda like all the things that you've done that represent who you are today and all the things you want to do. That, that's your spiderweb. So this is my spiderweb. Thank you for having me on this podcast. It's this, these webs are growing on the internet, on the
Curtis Duggan: innerwebs. Yeah, no, thanks for joining.
And special shout out to your team who is very professional at getting this done on really quick, short notice while I was on my holiday weekend. So really appreciate that and the communication there. So all around, it's been a pleasure. I think we'll call it there, Damon Dominique will put.
Information that I'll follow up on and get into the show notes and you can follow it follow Damon from there.