Vice Media is considered by many to be the media outlet of the future. What started as a small magazine has blossomed into a billion dollar multimedia empire.
Vice has been attracting audiences for years with it’s raw, gritty, on the ground style reporting. They often focus on stories dealing with drugs and generally depraved underworlds – but also do some very valuable reporting in places like North Korea and the Middle East.
The founder of Vice, Suroosh Alvi, has a really interesting back story.
— Suroosh Alvi (@SurooshAlvi) November 17, 2016
His family is from Pakistan, and he says he was considered the “black sheep” of the bunch because he has a B.A. while everyone else has multiple degrees.
A serious heroin addiction caused his life to spiral out of control, eventually hitting rock bottom. After several bouts with rehab, he was so undesirable to employers he couldn’t even get a job volunteering.
With hope all but gone, only a miracle could save him. And that’s exactly what he got.
In a recent podcast on NPR, he describes how he’d been vigorously attending rehab hoping to finally get clean. Then, one day, a “random dude” he did not know approached him after the meeting.
“Do you have a sponsor?” he asked.
“Well, I’ll be your sponsor.”
The man continued with his unsolicited pitch.
“What are you doing? Are you working?”
“No. I tried to volunteer at a place, and they wouldn’t let me.”
Then, random dude really floored Alvi with his next question, which came sheer out of left field because the two did not know each other at all.
“Have you ever thought about writing?” the man asked. The answer was yes – but Alvi was stunned. Not only had he had never met this man, but virtually no one knew of Alvi’s desire to become a writer.
The man said he knew someone working at a small magazine. The next day he took him there, vouched on his behalf and his career was off and running.
The meeting was so unbelievable, Alvi said it stopped him in his tracks and got him thinking.
“It opened up a whole conversation. Do I believe in God? Do I believe in a higher power? This was a proof of existence moment for me in my life. Something greater than me put me there, in this place, where this guy just walked up to me and chose to talk to me. And he happened to know a place that was looking for a guy.”
“He was like this heaven sent angel who just was like, put in my path.”
The details of the encounter begin at the 7:15 mark in the interview.