d e t a i l s

  THE PRETENDER  
 
I hear two things a lot. "Don't I know you" and "You know who you look like?" Respective answers being "Absolutely not" and "I have an idea." It seems I just have one of those malleable faces that contorts to people's recollections. So the question stands, is being a highly recognizable non-person a boon or blessing? Well, yes and no. Yes because I get associated with all sorts of kooky people which is fun in that "Hey, look at me" kind of way. And, no because you, or more applicably I, don't necessarily get affiliated with the most desirable personalities.

Now it's not like people think I'm some distant relation to Adolf Hitler or Pauly Shore, but I will on occasion find myself looking into the mirror days after such an encounter muttering to myself about how someone could make such a ludicrous connection. Regardless, this phenomenon is about three sightings short of an X-File so I've decided to begin tracking these instances in that over the years I have forgotten many of the one and/or two-time affiliations and wish, in hindsight, I had a comprehensive listing of the troop of people who look like me.

Also, please don't get the impression that I only get likened to celebrities. There are a lot of cousins in Ohio, people from the office and grocery store baggers I look like as well. I've asked other people if this happens to them and most report to the contrary. So I don't know if I'm simply sporting some chameleon like countenance which has yet to be scientifically documented or if I'm just that vanilla of a guy. Whatever the case, it's a freakshow out there and I invite you to acquaint yourself with the people, who according to other people, I most look like in order of opinion.


 
  MISTAKEN IDENTITY  
 
 





Casey Kasem
Claim to Fame: the voice of American Top 40
Age of Occurance: all through college and occasionally still today
Accuracy Meter: if votes equals truth, then i'm casey's love child
Mitigating Circumstance: i wear a lot of suits from the sixties

There was about a 3 year stretch in my life where I heard this every 30-60 days. While I don't greatly sound like the seasoned top 40 man, I don't greatly look like him either, but I think that when you mix enough of each it sparks some sort of pavlovian synapse in many people. And, no I won't say "keep your feet on the ground and head in the sky" so you might as well table that for some other schmuck.



 




  Frankie Avalon
Claim to Fame: 1965's Beach Blanket Bingo
Age of Occurance: early college
Accuracy Meter: just behind Casey in the occurance meter which validates it to some degree.
Mitigating Circumstance: dark haired, skinny, olive-complected guy...guilty as charged.

Frankie is the runner up and was typically cited in more casual settings. While I'd kinda like this one to beat out Casey, it never quite made it. The most unfortunate thing to come out of this relation was all of the truly bad Beach Blanket Bingo jokes. There's not as much material there as you may think Annette.



 
 




  Butch Patrick
Claim to Fame: Eddie Munster of The Munsters
Age of Occurance: mid-college
Accuracy Meter: i'd vote for zero percent
Mitigating Circumstance: people are stupid

This one cut. It's one thing to look like Frankie or even Casey, but Eddie Munster was an absolute show-stopper to any scene I may have been playing. We in the business call it a death blow. It was this occasional revelation that made me shudder whenever I heard, "Hey, has anyone ever told you you look like…" I knew Eddie was always a decent contender and heard it enough to worry, but not enough to have ever crafted a graceful exit from the observation. It's hard to retort over the cackles of twenty plus people.



 
 




  Pete Sampras
Claim to Fame: don't waste my time
Age of Occurance: from his rise in power to date
Accuracy Meter: this confusion has never been raised on a tennis court
Mitigating Circumstance: neither of us could ever feather our hair

Truth be told, my grandmother makes this claim more than anyone else, but I have had an additional person or three make the assessment as well. If I'm in a foul mood, I have been known to say "Who's he?" While I'm sure this is more fun for me than the recipient, I still can't hold the words down.



 
 




  Robert Romanus
Claim to Fame: Mike Damone of Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Age of Occurance: high school
Accuracy Meter: happened enough for me to remember it happened
Mitigating Circumstance: i was in high school, had a lazy voice and was fairly cynical

Oh, you know it's a proud day in the life of a young man when someone says, "You know, you're the spittin' image of that guy in Fast Times, yeah, the ticket scalper who stole his friend's chick, yeah, Damone. Hey Steve, come and look at this guy, doesn't he look just like Damone from Fast Times?" For the uninitiated, Damone would be the guy in Fast Times that everyone hated. The ultra-bad news here is that this connection is more of a voice/personality connection than physical. Given Mike Damone's rep in Fast Times this is one of the less flattering associations I've been blessed with.



 
 




  Adrian Pasdar
Claim to Fame: Declan Dunn in Mysterious Ways
Age of Occurance: 04.30.2001
Accuracy Meter: i wish
Mitigating Circumstance: i think the person who made this comment is blind in one eye

It's these obscure connections people make that crack me up. Given the above cast, I'd think the person would nab one of them out of the air, but it's nice to mix it up every now and then.



 
 




  Bret Boone
Claim to Fame: Seattle Mariners second baseman
Age of Occurance: 07.31.2001
Accuracy Meter: i guess eddie munster wasn't so bad after all
Mitigating Circumstance: at least he gets to wear a hat for a living

If you grafted sarah michelle gellar's nose onto my face or my face on sarah michelle gellar's nose, this guy's own mother wouldn't be able to tell us apart. And, in the event you think that ole Bret here doesn't look so much like me, you can take your pick of the other three guys in the original photo that was sent to me because in poor lighting I think I could pass for any of them. And, yes even the guy with all of the tawny muscles.



 
 




  Boat Guy
Claim to Fame: reliable peruvian boat guy
Age of Occurance: 11.25.2001
Accuracy Meter: neither kodak or bookguy can tell a lie
Mitigating Circumstance: the last time i was in a boat, my wife almost drowned

This correlation is flattering only in the sense that I, in more ways than I care to share, am quite envious of this fellow. In the photo sent to me, he looks as though he enjoys what he does and if that is truly the case, then we are brethren at philosophy in the least.



 
 




  Antonio Sabato Jr.
Claim to Fame: ungodly beautiful guy
Age of Occurance: 08.08.2003
Accuracy Meter: now this is what i'm talking about!!!!
Mitigating Circumstance: unfortunately it's not what everyone else is talking about.

Two things to know about the guy who fostered this comparison. 1. he is my biggest fan 2. i think we have met but this leads me to believe that we are nothing more than penpals. because if this was true, i don't think i'd be holed up in my study talking to you all. i'd be out living the life i only pretend to be living from the safe and dark confines of my computer room.

but, if you'd like to see me in my full beauty go here, because it's quite the thing.



 
 




  Kal Penn
Claim to Fame: kumar of harold & kumar
Age of Occurance: 08.01.2004
Accuracy Meter: hmmm. i seem to be drifting into a new demographic.
Mitigating Circumstance: i don't know if it helps me or hurts me that this guy, i'm guessing, is under the influence throughout this film.

this may also explain why many think little man alex is adopted.

and, even more alarming this is yet another situation where i think i could pass for either of them.



 
 




  Gilbert Godfrey
Claim to Fame: alleged comic
Age of Occurance: 09.07.2005
Accuracy Meter: if you turn the lights out and squint hard, perhaps you have a case.
Mitigating Circumstance: if anyone said the resemblance was personality-based (instead of physical) i would require great quantities of therapy.

when 'my friend' made a special call to bring this likeness to my attention, he could barely get it out, he was laughing so hard. he thought he was forwarding the most damning yet of the 'who i'm looking like' catalog. after enduring his fit of self-adulation, i spoke two simple words to him ... eddie munster. some respect please.



 
 




  Mike Lupica
Claim to Fame: writer/sports guy
Age of Occurance: 09.25.2006
Accuracy Meter: i seem to have turned some sort of geriatric corner
Mitigating Circumstance: the guy who said this squints a lot.

so. instead of looking like frankie avalon or antonio sabato jr, these days i look more like a 50 year old accountant. i mean i knew my kids were taking a toll on me, physically, but we're talking about a 30-year delta in just the last five years. should this continue, in a few more years people are going to start mistaking me for this guy.



 
 




  Johnny Weissmuller
Claim to Fame: long-standing tarzan and five time gold-medaling olympic swimmer
Age of Occurance: my early forties (2011)
Accuracy Meter: he and i seem to share a common stout-bodied ancestory
Mitigating Circumstance: the guy who said this is an older gentleman, which i reckon is apparent by him citing 40's movie stars

first my wonky hair prevents me from getting lice. and now my stout frame reminds someone of a person paid to not wear clothes for a living. all that biking, swimming, and kegel exercises finally pay off. admittedly, our most glaring commonality seems to be a mostly hairless body. also, i think it noteworthy to say this comment was made to me at a swimming pool.



 
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