A few years ago, I appeared in a couple of TV promo spots for ATV (Asia TV), one of the main TV channels in Hong Kong.

The first promo (2005) was to promote a Korean TV drama called I am Gum Sam Suen. It seems that many people in Hong Kong saw this promo since I had my one line (“I am Gum Sam Suen!”, though spoken in Cantonese) quoted back to me quite a lot while the spot was on TV (My 15 minutes, I guess). My mother-in-law’s building doorman has referred to me as “Gum Sam Suen” ever since. To him, I AM Gum Sam Suen!

I guess ATV was impressed enough with my “amazing” Cantonese skills to offer me another part. This time, the promo was to advertise the FIFA World Cup final match in 2006. I was dressed as a referee and had to explain the rules to two giant statues of football players.

I had a lot of lines to learn, the heat on the pavement was unbearable, as it was summer and sunny, and they gave me the dorkiest hairstyle for the shoot. The director said I looked “very smart”. If by that he meant “dorky”, he was correct. All in all, the last shot of the day, and the promo, eased any pain...

That was the last thing I did for ATV. I guess they haven’t had much need for a dorky, I mean... “very smart” looking white guy who speaks poor Cantonese. On the other hand, the World Cup is on again soon. Fingers crossed!

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