In 2006, Congolese immigrant Guy Goma showed up at the BBC for a job interview. Waiting in the lounge, a producer appeared asking if he was “Guy”. “Yes, I am Guy”, Guy said, presumably.
He was the escorted into a studio and placed in front of a camera for an interview segment live on the air. The producer had meant to retrieve technology expert Guy Kewney, who was supposed to be in the same waiting room, and by mistake now placed the noticeably confused Mr. Goma in the interview chair.
Before Guy figured out what was going on, it was too late, the cameras were running and TV host Karen Bowerman was asking him questions about a landmark Apple Corps. vs. Apple Computers case. (Turns out an Apple a day doesn’t keep lawyers away.)
Watch Goma get immediately flustered to be on the air only to respond to Bowerman’s questions with an admirable effort, despite having no idea what he’s talking about. He talks in heavily French-accented English, and you can perhaps tell from his mentioning of “cyber cafes” that Goma was not fully versed in the topic. Still, you have to admire the man for not wanting to ruin the segment he was mistakenly placed in and for gamely trying to answer the questions to the best of his ability.
Later, once he had finished the on-air interview, Goma had his actual job interview 10 minutes later. He failed to get the job, unfortunately. He did however, gain the moniker “Wrong Guy” out of it all.
Goma’s “go with the flow” attitude caught the world’s attention, and he was invited on as guest on a number of television shows to talk about his experiences.
A week after the BBC appearance, he was invited to Channel 4 News where the presenter jokingly introduced him as a Venezuelan doctor/lawyer. I don’t have video of that interview, but hopefully Guy didn’t give out bad legal advice on account of him not being an attorney. Although, I wouldn’t put it past him to convincingly appear as a legal expert given his experience.
What do we learn from this? Always say yes and go with the flow, and maybe you too will be mistaken for a Guy and made slightly famous.