I am not a fan, generally, of reality TV shows. There is too little reality in most and too much of celebrity based on infamous acting out rather than behaviors that are actually worthy of note.
What I do find myself watching, and watching with the intensity of the predator, is the dreamers. Those that have determined to change something, using their blood, sweat and tears to change the course of their lives.
Two programs that capture the efforts of such people have caught my attention:
Gold Rush, on Discovery Channel:
Six men from Washington go all in to mine for gold in Alaska. Most have lost their jobs or sold businesses off because of the crap economy. So they take their destiny in their own hands and, dreaming, pour their effort into making it in the gold fields of Alaska.
The show follows their efforts, many of which are far less than perfect. Fighting through, regardless of low returns and constant setbacks, they continue to try and carve out their own piece of the American dream.
Knights of Mayhem on National Geographic Channel:
A guy has a dream of going big with his professional Heavy Armor Jousting Troupe. He’s a flawed, angry sort who’s drive and dream is of the sort that is hard for many to understand. Yet he is possessed of sufficient charisma to draw others in his wake. They all risk life and limb to compete in a deadly sport for little return. There is a high cost of entry and equally high likelihood of injury.
The resonant theme between these shows is that dreaming of a lofty goal is one thing. To then pursue it regardless of cost is one of the defining characteristics of my image of the type of man who changes the world.
I am not that kind of man. I can, and do admire it, however.