For as long as I can remember, I’ve reminded people of other people. I looked like ‘Gerry,’ or ‘David’ or any of a number of anonymous doppelgangers.
Since I didn’t know the folks to whom I was being compared, it never really bothered me. Maybe I DID look like ‘Gerry,’ or ‘David.’ But without a face to connect to the name, the comparisons quickly fell away.
In the past few years, however, I’ve been likened to less random folks and more contemporary figures, and it’s become increasingly difficult to shake the comparisons.
Here are a few of the more annoying:
Ashford (of Ashford and Simpson). The wife and I were shopping recently, and a women remarked (quite loudly) “Oh my god! Y’all look just like Ashford and Simpson!”
What is it about me that reminds you of Ashford? My Jheri curl or the colored contacts I’m wearing? Perhaps it’s the copious amount of make-up!
My wife immediately knew my inner rage, and tried to deflect tactfully, “Oh I think Ashford is soooo handsome.” To which the she responded, ‘Ain’t he though?”
“Thank you.” I replied obliquely. Heifer!
The absolute BEST (best=worst) is Wyclef Jean. The first time I heard it, I was like “C’mon! I really do not look like dude.”
I was in a parking garage in NYC, rocking a Triple 5 Sould military style shirt with a Haiti patch. The Caribbean attendant who was getting my car asked (quite genuinely), “Are you Wyclef?” No. “Why you wearing Haiti then?” What? I’m Wyclef because I’m rocking a Haiti patch? C’mon!
But I’ve heard it sooooooo many times, that I’m starting to wonder…Nah! Cats are just blind.
Now this is not to say that there haven’t been flattering comparisons that leave the Kid blushing.
Take Leon, for example. I’ve been mistaken for Leon so often that when I actually met him, I felt like an imposter! I was seriously sizing dude up, trying to figure out what it was about me that had people thinking I was him.
Another celebrity I’ve been compared to is AJ Calloway (I guess from back in the day when he was still rocking the dreadlocks). I was at Eden Gourmet in South Orange recently, and ran into AJ, shopping with his mom and a friend. We shot the breeze and bid each other adieu.
As my son and I continued to shop, a few clerks were chirping behind us, “You know A.J. from 106 & Park?” “Yeah, over there!” Mistakenly thinking they were seeking to confirm that I had been speaking to AJ, I turned only to realize that they were talking about me!
I quickly disabused them of the notion that I was the former BET VJ, and that the REAL AJ had walked out a few minutes earlier. I reminded them that AJ no longer rocks the dreds, but understood their confusion.
I don’t know why it gets under my skin being compared to other people.
At the end of the day, I guess I’ve just got one of those faces.
Who do I remind YOU of?