It always happens the same way. I’m minding my business when, suddenly, a shout: “Look! It’s Tim Roth!!!”
No. For once and for all, no. I am not Tim Roth. I am Senator Mitch McConnell.
I guess Tim Roth and I share a passing resemblance. People say we look alike. But it’s starting to get old. Every day it’s, “I loved you in Reservoir Dogs!” or, “Boy did you deserve that Best Supporting Actor nomination for Rob Roy!” or, “Dude, you’re the British Guy in Pulp Fiction! Honey Bunny Guy!” I’m not. I’m United States Senate Minority Leader Guy. I’m Relentlessly Filibuster Executive and Judicial Appointments Guy.
Even as someone who isn’t Tim Roth’s uncanny doppelgänger, you can imagine how annoying this gets. It’s not mining coal for non-union wages like so many freedom-loving, God-fearing, bootstrap-pulling Kentuckians, of course. But it’s hard. Almost as hard as staring into the mirror before yet another humiliating Obamacare repeal vote and seeing the face of Tim Roth staring back at you.
Just this morning I was at my desk doing what I love: using obscure Senate procedures to thwart the will of the majority. Then some jerkwad kid ruined it by asking me what the gorilla suit felt like in Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes. Naturally, I hurled her into the photorealistic mural of Tim Roth I had painted after we lost our majority. Then I held an enormous magnifying glass up to my face, pointing out the faint scarring along my jawline, scalp, and eye sockets. You know, the kind of scarring the top plastic surgeon in Dixie might leave after re-shaping one’s face to mimic another face. “Does the real Tim Roth have scars!?!” I screamed. And then she sees. Oh yes, she sees that Tim Roth is not me.
It’s not all bad. It can be a comfort to have one’s life so inextricably linked to another’s. Like in a marriage, or with a parent or child. Or, in my case, by being a perfect facsimile of the star of Lie to Me and Hollywood’s finest thespian, Tim Roth. Call it what you will: peas in a pod, identical twins separated at birth, clones… The bottom line is that Tim Roth and I share a face, and probably a soul.
Some people don’t believe me when I say I’m not Tim Roth. I can’t blame them. Not just because I’m indistinguishable from him physically and spiritually. But because living in the skin of another man is exactly the sort of character research Tim Roth would do to prepare for a role. Maybe he’s starring in an upcoming political tragicomedy by the Coen Brothers or something? After all, Tim Roth would be perfect as a self-loathing power broker. One so overwhelmed by his own cynicism that he’s forgotten why he became a public servant, what his core beliefs actually are, and even his own identity…
But no. I’m Senator Mitch McConnell. I am not the man who delivered a truly historic performance as Abomination in The Incredible Hulk. I am not Tim Roth.
Scott Eckert is a comedian, writer, and actor in New York. He has a website, a baby, and nothing but admiration for Tim Roth.
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