My Brush with Fame!
CNN used some of my footage on the day (June 12 2013) after the Black Forest fire broke out. I happened to be in the right place at the right time, it's no more than that, but I executed my simple tasks and got the job done.
It's kind of random what happened. I had no idea there was a fire at all, but in the early evening I impulsively went out to get something I really didn't absolutely need to get and had only an average chance of success (the trip actually was a success) - and glanced to my left while going over a nearby hill and saw this mushroom cloud to the north. I was like, "Dude, they blew up Denver." I turned on the radio news and they mentioned Black Forest, but no details whatsoever - whether something had blown up, whether there was a forest fire, whatever. Obviously, given the smoke, something big was burning.
After my errand, I gathered up my gear and found a few vantage points nearby and pieced together what was going on. It was chaos, with roads closed and traffic jams. No doubt, if I were plugged in to the news and alerted, I would have gotten much better footage - but then, so would the pros, and CNN wouldn't have needed my shaky footage. In case you are wondering, no, they do not pay you for this kind of thing, you only get the satisfaction of knowing you did something useful that day, at least according to CNN.