How a Boston comedian and duck boat tour guide has ended up on the news dozens of times

How a Boston comedian and duck boat tour guide has ended up on the news dozens of times

It is no accident, O’Brien claimed (in but a further interview) — at minimum not normally.

He just has a knack for speaking in soundbites that in shape neatly into news broadcasts. And, he said, for from time to time getting “in the ideal location at the suitable time.”

A movie montage of his quite a few appearances, which he recently posted online, is a testament to that assert.

In 2019, when Tom Brady built headlines for trying to trademark the phrase “Tom Fantastic,” O’Brien sidled up to a area news crew to share his just take on how fantastic he imagined the then-Patriots quarterback was.

He’s “amazing at almost everything he does,” O’Brien explained to a reporter in the course of an job interview downtown, evaluating Brady to pop star Justin Timberlake. “I’m confident the man’s an incredible singer.”

When Prince William and Kate Middleton came to Boston very last calendar year, he gave an interview to a news crew outside of Town Hall, in which officials held a welcoming ceremony.

“My woman pal stated we had to occur see the prince and princess and invite them out for beverages later on,” O’Brien instructed a news station. “But we didn’t get that near.”

And that is not all: From Celtics playoffs game titles and NFL drafts, to area fires and Kyrie Irving T-shirts, he’s weighed in on them all.

O’Brien, who always presents his true name and maintains he’s not trying to hoodwink reporters, stated he’s not ashamed to admit why he does it.

“I appreciate consideration,” he advised the World. “I’m an outgoing particular person. And I imply, would I enjoy to go viral and get 15 minutes of fame? Of training course I would.”

It is in fact not hard to conclusion up on the news in Boston, he said. He life in the North Conclude and spends a great deal of time close to TD Backyard garden, possibly trying to catch the prepare at North Station or finding up groceries at the Star Current market nearby.

That element of city, he’s discovered, is usually teeming with Tv reporters hoping to speak with Bostonians about the playoffs, or the most recent MBTA fiasco.

He’s usually joyful to oblige.

“They’re just generally there. It’s not like I’m seeking it out. I just form of wander about Boston and there they are. So I request, ‘Do you need to have a guy-on-the-street?’” he reported.

Occasionally, if he sees a reporter interviewing an individual, he’ll stand nearby and wait his turn.

But other occasions, the information arrives to him.

In 2019, a vacant making subsequent door to his North Finish apartment collapsed. Television crews swarmed the space, and he regaled them with information and facts about the “boom!” he’d listened to when it fell in.

4 decades later on, on the exact same block, a unique building’s roof caved in. When once again, he observed himself providing reporters a initial-man or woman account of what he observed and listened to.

“A mad coincidence,” he explained. (He showed his driver’s license to the Globe — he seriously does reside there.)

Past 12 months, when the Celtics confronted the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, O’Brien was giving a duck boat tour when he spotted Steve Kerr, Golden State’s head coach, standing on the sidewalk in Back Bay. O’Brien seized the minute, and playfully heckled Kerr about the microphone. Tv set information stations noticed a video clip clip of the conversation, and lined up to job interview him — once more.

“That was the largest issue that I’ve at any time carried out,” he claimed. “Like, that was in the countrywide news.”

He has the suitable abilities for these types of a mission. He’s a stand-up comedian, right after all, and what’s a soundbite for the information if not a punchline?

He also studied broadcast media in school and labored for various several years as a producer at sports radio stations in Boston, Orlando, and Buffalo — so he understands the business enterprise.

Remaining a die-challenging Boston sporting activities enthusiast who just about always wears his house teams’ apparel also looks to assistance strengthen his possibilities of being highlighted on the information, and presents off the “crazy fan” vitality that viewers normally crave.

And when he insists he’s by no means lied to a reporter to get on Tv set, O’Brien, who grew up in Western Mass., admits he will lean into the vintage Boston accent for the digicam.

It’s an outstanding report, said Tim Caputo, a former Tv reporter with NBC and WHDH.

Following observing O’Brien’s sizzle reel, Caputo mentioned he regarded and remembered interviewing him after about the Patriots.

In his 20 several years on the position, Caputo simply cannot recall anyone doing male-on-the-road interviews far more than a couple occasions.

Still, he gave O’Brien credit for remaining the precise variety of interviewee anchors typically look for: Experienced, funny, and eager to chat.

“He will come out incredibly hot every time with some great usually takes,” Caputo stated. “It’s like [ESPN analyst] Stephen A Smith. It would make fantastic Tv.”

Of class, O’Brien has his limitations. He claimed he will not weigh in on tragic news, like when a Tv reporter approached him in the vicinity of the scene of a construction accident in which a lady was critically hurt quite a few years back. For when, he declined to remark.

“I’m not heading be on the information speaking about an individual finding damage or dying or a thing. Which is morbid. But if it’s a little something stupid, yeah,” he said. “The Bruins? The Patriots? Some thing about Tom Brady copyrighting ‘Tom Marvelous.’ I’ll explain to you my ideas on it.”

His mates just cannot believe that he’s been ready to pull off so numerous appearances without having any one noticing. Some have jokingly accused him of sabotaging the North Finish solitary-handedly, currently being a “crisis actor,” or becoming Boston’s individual model of Forrest Gump, normally finding himself where by the information is occurring.

But in scenario anyone may possibly imagine if not, O’Brien said he does not have an agenda, and that this is all just a harmless hobby.

“It’s not malicious,” O’Brien stated. “I’m not hoping to make pleasurable of journalism or the media or something like that. It’s just me performing it mainly because I consider it is funny.”

Spencer Buell can be arrived at at [email protected]. Stick to him on Twitter @SpencerBuell.