Dave Gorman & Danny Wallace
Interviewed By: Gringo

These two British men have a story to tell. They have just written a book (titled Are You Dave Gorman?) chronicling their quest to travel the world and find 54 people called...Dave Gorman. The tequila-induced challenge has also been turned into a successful television series and stage show. I asked the duo for an interview, and thankfully they agreed. And if you're wondering, Dave's on the right in the picture above, and Danny is therefore somewhat obviously on the left. Glad we sorted that out.

Gringo: For those who haven't seen your show or read your book, who are you?

Dave: Well, according to at least one journalist, I'm the world's only documentary comedian. But according to me, I'm Dave Gorman, I live in the East End of London and I somehow manage to make a living by writing and performing.

Danny: I'm a journalist and producer, who writes about, and makes programmes of, a rather silly nature. I also live in the East End, and have at least one scar to prove it.

Gringo: And can you explain for these people why you decided to travel the world trying to meet 54 people called Dave Gorman?

Dave: Because my flat mate Danny didn't believe me that there were that many. He challenged me to find a Dave Gorman (DG) for every card in the deck. He's a very pedantic man so he insisted on counting the jokers as well.

Danny: Technically, you can't actually be "very" pedantic as you either are or are not a pedant. But yes, I am pedantic, and yes, that's one of the reasons we ended up travelling the world on our ridiculous journey

Gringo: From start to end, how long did the search take and how expensive did it become?

Dave: It lasted around 6 months and the expense is something I prefer not to contemplate. It wasn't undertaken in order to create a book or anything like that. The fact that it did become that after the event has rescued me from financial oblivion. I'm the luckiest nearly bankrupt man alive.

Danny: Luckily, money was no object to me on the quest -- mainly because I didn't have to pay for it. I don't think I could have stood the trauma of putting everything on my credit card and just shutting my eyes, like Dave did. At one point I walked into the kitchen to find Dave shoving letters from his bank manager and credit card company into the cutlery drawer - like that would somehow make the debt go away!

Gringo: Which of the DG meetings do you consider particularly memorable?

Dave: All of them. Sometimes it wasn't to do with the DG, it was to do with the circumstances. So getting caught in a 100mph tornado (with DG 16) was pretty memorable and it wouldn't really matter which DG it was with. Actually, I met that DG again last Saturday because I'm in New York. He remembered it as well.

Danny: Meeting the Dave Gorman in Norway was a rather memorable trip. Not only were we incredibly surprised to have found one there, but in the celebrations that followed we ended up losing our shoes. We've still no actual proof of what happened to them that night, but what with beer being so expensive over there, we assume we must have sold them for booze...

Gringo: Do you still keep in touch with any of the Daves?

Dave: I met DG 6 and DG 16 last Saturday. A few days ago I caught up with DG 5. I stay in e-mail contact with a few of them and if my work takes me to their part of the world some of them get in touch. It's always a pleasure.

Danny: Whenever I'm in Edinburgh I seem to bump into the David Gorman Formerly Known As David Heffron -- in cafes, in shoeshops, everywhere. It's particularly worrying, as he lives in Glasgow. Perhaps I have the first Dave Gorman stalker (apart from my flatmate, who seems to have made a career out of stalking his namesakes...)

Gringo: What were the best and worst things about travelling the world in search of Dave Gor-men?

Dave: The credit card bills were getting quite frightening. I decided to put them in the cutlery drawer after a while. That made them go away for a bit. The best bits were the surprises - the moments when they started to reveal themselves. I look back on the dinner with Israeli DG very fondly. We have nothing in common except our name - he's 90, Jewish and English is his second language, so there's very little common ground - and yet we got on so well and I laughed for hours in his company.

Danny: The best thing was the free soap in dodgy hotels. The worst thing was the fearful telling-offs that I would get from my girlfriend, Hanne, who really wasn't best pleased with the fact that I kept disappearing and neglecting my boyfriend-duties in order to run around the world chasing new Dave Gormans. Or Gormen, as you quite rightly put it.

Gringo: You convinced five people to change their names by deed poll to Dave Gorman. Have any of them changed back since?

Dave: I don't think so.

Danny: Nope, they seem happy enough with their new monikers.

Gringo: What have you been up to since concluding the bet?

Dave: We wrote the book obviously. I've toured a show called Better World around the UK and I've toured a stage show about the search for Dave Gormans to Australia. I'm currently doing that show off-Broadway in New York. I got to do a comedian's special edition of The Weakest Link which was...an experience.

Danny: I've been travelling the world making a comedy travel show for Radio 4, produced a few shows, written for some magazines and newspapers and written for shows like The Sunday Format. So keeping busy, really.

Gringo: What's next? The book mentions the promise of a quest to find 54 Danny Wallaces...

Dave: Dan's welcome to try and find them if he wants, but I'm not coming with him. I know he can do it, so I'm not making any stupid bets that he can't.

Danny: We're going to start a new project in January, which should be a lot of fun. This time we know we're setting out to create something, as opposed to just doing something for the drunken hell of it, so it'll be interesting to see what happens...

Gringo: Do you still drink tequila? If so, do you think that's wise?

Dave: No. It is an evil drink and is best avoided.

Danny: I had some tequila last night, as it was my birthday yesterday, and now, in the cruel light of day, I can promise you that I will not be touching it again. As always, it seemed such a good idea at the time...

Many thanks to Dave Gorman nd Danny Wallace for taking the time to answer these questions. Now go and visit Dave's website at www.davegorman.com and Danny's at www.dannywallace.com.

After that, go and buy their book about their adventures, Are You Dave Gorman? and learn a bit more.

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