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[Blog] I Am The One And Only - Betting Tips That Stand Out in a Crowd
Written by SE1blue on Thursday, 24th Nov 2011 21:26

It’s a regular argument amongst my mates and I as to which celebrities we all look like. Apparently, I am lucky enough to attend weddings and birthdays with Bradley Cooper, James May, John Goodman, Nicholas Cage, Martin Freeman and Gary Lineker’s nose. However, these are all way better than the first doppelgänger suggestion I ever received.

I was 18 years old and had signed-up with an extras acting agency in Ealing hoping to make some pocket money whilst at university. I didn’t have a portfolio of photos with me for my appointment as it was all a bit last minute and desperate – something to do with Mr Papadondros needing the rent I had spent on cider and Doritos two weeks after it was due.

I had considered buying a disposable camera and getting one of my mates to take some snaps of me stroking my chin, looking deep in thought or leaning against a brick wall staring off into the distance beneath a steaming restaurant extractor. But those were the days when Boots took a week to develop your film and I needed cash fast.

Keen to impress, I had arrived at the agency’s offices 15 minutes early. However, there was a note on the door stating ‘Gone for milk, back soon’. So, I had ample time for my best sweater to absorb the smell of the Chinese fish and chip shop below their offices and to plant a large Converse trainer into one of the countless dog turds decorating the pavement.

Glenda and her crazy hair came back with milk about half an hour later and I followed her inside. Once upstairs, and sat on opposite sides of a desk, she asked me a few questions about the kind of television work I wanted, in between opening junk mail and trying to win on the scratchcards she had bought from the newsagents.

I gave her a brief history of my previous acting roles. I gave a great account of my performance as Bananaman in my primary school Christmas nativity (we were allowed to choose our own roles once the main characters had gone) and built-up my part as one of Ali Baba’s 40 thieves – but she seemed uninterested.

“Have you ever considered being an Ian Beale look-a-like?” she asked, lighting a cigarette.

“But he’s ugly”. I laughed. Glenda didn’t.

Instead she held up her eyebrows like it was the best idea since pizza delivery. I thought about saying it again but a whole awkward minute of silence hadn’t been filled since the first time I said it and I could hear Mr Papadondros’ voice in my ear.

I have been told I am doppelgänger for several people during my life but Ian Beale has to be the most depressing. The best likeness suggested was River Phoenix (before he died), but I’ve also been told I resemble John Major, Mr Bean and more recently, Vincent Tabak, and I reckon his look-a-like gets even less work than Eastenders favourite chippy.

In the end, I turned down the chance of being Britain's Ugliest Soap Twin and received just one job as part of a rock concert crowd in a TV advert filmed in the Royal Albert Hall. I got to spend eight hours sitting around twiddling my thumbs, 10 minutes cheering like an idiot, £25 cash in my hand and a tuna sandwich. That was the beginning and end of my acting career.

About five years after that though I was a victim of another case of mistaken identity in slightly less amusing circumstances.

During a day at the Mildenhall Airshow with some of my mates I was getting nicely bloated with beer and donuts when my name was read out over the tannoy.

“Could Mr David Cobb please come to the police headquarters.”

In these situations your mind immediately thinks of a family emergency, or about the time you left a North American country with a large amount of debt and had your best mate return all the correspondence from the bank with the message ‘Deceased’ on the front of the envelope. OK, maybe you don’t think of the latter but I was all kinds of stupid in my 20s, and I didn’t think I would ever go back.

A friend of mine came with me and waited outside as I entered the mobile police cabin.

“Hi, I’m David Cobb.”
“Ah, could you take a seat please.”
It was bad news.
“Mr Cobb, we would like you to ring Norwich hospital.”
My mother had just started going to the School of Art in Norwich. It was bad news.

The policeman rang and put me through to a nurse.
“Mr Cobb?”
“Yes” I was shaking.
“I’m afraid it’s about your mother.”
I was crying. It was my mother.
“She died this morning at 10.45am.”
My world fell apart.
“How did it happen?” I managed to ask.
“In her sleep.”
It didn’t make any sense.
“In her sleep?” I sobbed.
“How?” Tears rolled down my cheeks.
“How did she die in her sleep?”
“Well, she was 92 and she was having her morning nap.”
“But my mother is 61.” I laughed and a bubble of snot burst from my nostril.
“Your mother is 61? Your mother is Georgina Cobb?”
“No, my mother is Maureen Cobb!”

Twenty minutes later, I had rung my mum, who was very much alive, and I’d had a strong cup of coffee. I was feeling a little bit better about my situation, not totally, but my mum was alive and there was still an F16 that was yet to loop the loop.

I got myself together, washed my face and walked out of the police mobile and into the sunshine. On the way home the car journey home was filled with talk of what could have happened if I had gone to the hospital to see my mother for the very last time and the one question I would have had to ask the hospital staff.

“She’s so wrinkled and small. How long was it before she was found in the bath?”

Here are this week's predictions.

Draw Doubles
Bolton v Everton
Blackpool v Birmingham

Peterborough v Middlesbrough
Portsmouth v Leicester

Swansea v Aston Villa
Charlton v Huddersfield

West Ham

Correct Score Prediction
Ipswich 4 Reading 1

Please report offensive, libellous or inappropriate posts by using the links provided.

sonian_blue added 22:18 - Nov 24
Excellent as ever SE1.
Lets hope your prediction is correct, at least the result anyway, we need the three points.
Keep up th good work

Garv added 22:39 - Nov 24

Normandyblue added 12:22 - Nov 25
I raise your Ian Beale by one Chesney Hawkes.
Have since had the mole removed to avoid a repeat occurence.
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