I’m Going to Be on Leverage!

03.12.2012 | 7:24 am

Some of you may be familiar with Paul Guyot, who did a really great job guest-posting on my blog while I was in France last year.

As you may or may not know, Paul is, in addition to being a kick-butt guest blogger and short story writer (check out this short story and this short story collection, as well as his story in Ride), is a producer and writer for Leverage.


Paul just recently sent me this email:

Hey, Buddy!

How goes it these days?

Seeing as how you’re such a fan of LEVERAGE — the show I wrote for that’s on Sunday nights on TNT – I thought it might be fun if you came out to Portland, Oregon where we shoot the show, and did a little cameo. I could create a small walk-on role for you, perhaps as a Portland bike messenger?

You could see the production, meet the actors, dine on some craft service, visit Portland, and generally enjoy yourself for a day or so.

Since you give so much to others, and rarely think about yourself, I thought it might be nice to give you your own little moment in the sun! Or rain, seeing as how we shoot in Portland.

No need to thank me, as this is something I very much want to do.

Your friend,
Paul Guyot

As you might expect, I am intrigued by this opportunity. As you might also expect, however, I have some questions and suggestions, which I am pleased to now present in the form of…what else?…an open letter.

An Open Letter to Paul Guyot (and everyone else at Leverage)

Dear Paul,

Thanks very much for your generous offer to include me in an episode of Leverage. As you no doubt expect, I am more than inclined to accept. That said, I’ve spent a few minutes thinking about this opportunity, and would now like to run a few questions and ideas by you.

Questions and Concerns

This will be the first time I’ve been on television since ninth grade, Paul. And so I’ve got a few general questions and niggling concerns I hope you can clear up.

  • photo.JPGHair : I don’t know if you’ve noticed in any of the pictures I’ve put on my blog, but my hair is beginning to thin. Or, more specifically, the hair on the top of my head is starting to thin (the hair on my back seems to be picking up the slack, however). And by “starting to thin,” I of course mean that I have an adorable little peninsula of hair on the top of an otherwise bare forehead zone. The attached photo should demonstrate the state of my hair (or lack thereof) quite well, as well as the somewhat alarming fact that my forehead looks like it belongs to a Sharpei. So my question is, will you provide me with a hairpiece for the show? Or should I buy one myself? Or should I grow a combover just as fast as I can?
  • Beard : Since you are filming in Portland, I am growing a Portland-ish beard with all possible haste. You will be glad to know, I think, that I grow a thick, lush beard, at approximately twice the rate of most men. Believe me when I say that in the below photo I have been growing this beard less than a week.
    I am nevertheless concerned about the state of this beard for two reasons. First, it’s becoming evident that my beard is going grey. Do you have people who can de-grey-ify it? Second, can they take care of trimming it into a less pedestrian shape? I am capable of only the most pedestrian beardscaping techniques.
  • Weight : I have heard before that the camera adds ten pounds. Could you do me a favor and have a disclaimer at the beginning of the show, when it airs, saying that due to unforeseen technical issues, in my case it added 35 pounds?
  • Diction : I have a slight diction problem, Paul. Specifically, that I am a mushmouth. My “d’s” come out as “j’s.” My “p’s” come out as “b’s.” My “k’s” come out as “g’s.” The only vowel I ever pronouce is the schwa. I recently stopped using fricatives altogether. Will this be a problem? Perhaps you could have me overdubbed, or sub-titled? Or have me hold up cards? Or, right after I say something, have the actor I say it to repeat it back, as if to make sure they remember what I just said (but in actuality to help viewers understand me). Or perhaps you should just have me overdubbed. In which case, I would like to have James Earl Jones be the guy who overdubs me. I think that would be believable.
  • Breath : I have terrible breath. I’m sorry. You may just want to give the actors I’m interacting with a heads-up on this fact. You may also want to keep the room well-ventilated, and perhaps have a scented candle burning nearby.
  • Face asymmetry : Could you give your FX guys a heads-up that the left side of my face functions only at about 70%, and they may want to do some CGI work on my face afterward?
  • Appearance Trademark : You may want to have your legal guys check and make sure that Stanley Tucci hasn’t already trademarked the way I look. So you don’t get sued and stuff.

Plot Suggestions

This is, of course, your show and I would never want to presume to tell you how to write a story. That said, I have a few ideas for how you might want to work me into the plot. I think your viewers would enjoy any or all of these.

Idea 1 — Have the episode be about a midpack endurance cyclist : I think people would really be interested in endurance mountain bike racing, if only they knew more about it. How about if the whole episode centers around me training for the Breck Epic, culminating in lots of action sequences – with dramatic and exciting music in the background – of me racing and finishing midpack in the race.

At some point in the training montage (because, obviously, there would need to be a training montage), I could take a fall, in slow motion (you’ll need to get a 5′7″ stocky stuntman for this part). As you go to commercial, there would be concern about whether I will be able to even participate in the race at all. (Don’t worry, though, in the next scene it becomes apparent that I want to continue on, in spite of the obvious pain, because that’s what midpack endurance cyclists do.)

I could have a dramatic, powerful monologue about how, for me, it’s not about finishing first. It’s about confronting my limitations and then busting through them. I would make my eyes look fierce and my voice steely, dramatically quiet, and less-mushy than usual for this speech.

Maybe the regular actors could be my support crew during the race or something, so they don’t feel left out.

Idea 2. Have the episode be about a beloved cycling celebrity blogger : Did you know that there are 20 million blogs in the US, alone? Obviously, blogging is white-hot, and yet there are no TV shows I am aware of tapping into this massive demographic.

I can imagine an episode where all the regular characters discover a blog written by a really interesting middle-aged guy who likes bikes. Before long, they’re all totally addicted to the blog (it’s my blog by the way), and are ignoring the job they’re supposed to be doing right then.

The blog helps them keep their sanity, because the job they need to do (stealing a maguffin back from someone who shouldn’t have the maguffin in the first place) is impossibly difficult.

And then, in an awesome plot twist, by reading the blog they figure out the missing piece to the job that’s had them stumped. High fives ensue! They execute the job flawlessly, and leave a comment on the person’s blog thanking him for saving the day.

Then, in a surprise twist, the blogger rings their doorbell just as they post the comment. “How did you get here so fast?” they ask.

“Oh, I have my ways,” I reply, with a sly wink. The regular actors look at each other, shrug, and the show ends with a giant group hug.

Idea 3. Have the episode be about a guy who really likes Mexican food: What if there were a guy (played by me) who really really liked Mexican food, but – because he loves Mexican food and therefore notices these kinds of things – discovers that all the good Mexican food restaurants in the area are starting to put more and more refried beans in their burritos, cheapening the product without reducing their prices.

The Leverage gang discovers this is true, and finds out that it’s because the Mafia has bought all the Mexican restaurants in the area, using blackmail or threats or something. And now they’re money laundering and making exorbitant profits on their burritos, both at the same time.

Doubly criminal!

So they start their own taco stand, making really great burritos, probably with fantastic guacomole (I can help with that). The client (me) spreads the word and soon it’s the most popular taco stand in the area.

When the Mafia tries to buy the taco stand using threats and blackmail and stuff, the Leverage gang demands a bunch of money because they’re the last decent taco stand in Portland. Then they disappear, give all the money to the original Mexican restaurants, and I teach them all how to make really good guacamole so they can regain their clientele.

And the Mafia can’t do anything about it because they spent all their money on that super-expensive taco stand or something.

I’ll let you figure out the plot niceties.

I think you’ll agree these are all really good ideas, and I won’t blame you if you want to use all of them (I’ll of course expect to get fair compensation).

I look forward to finding which of these you like best, and am excited to be a part of the show!

Kind Regards,


The Fat Cyclist

PS: You know what would be cool? If I became a recurring character in the show.


  1. Comment by Cheapie | 03.12.2012 | 8:54 am

    Just tell Parker and Hardison to get on with it already!

  2. Comment by KM | 03.12.2012 | 8:55 am

    I just think you should be happy if they’ll give you a hair piece. I think your hair piece should beFabio-esque, that would look awesome. Stanley Tucci with flowing locks, that’s got Emmy written all over it. As for plot re-writes, I just don’t see all those suggestions working out, except maybe the taco stand one, that sounds believable. Congrats Fatty! Just give us a heads up when the episode will aire and I’ll set the DVR.

  3. Comment by Professor Orange | 03.12.2012 | 8:55 am

    I’ll tune in for your episode! Now how can we make this into a weight loss challenge for all of us? Maybe we could play the rest of the midpack endurance cyclists.

  4. Comment by Demonic1 | 03.12.2012 | 9:16 am

    How about if it’s Eliot’s taco stand- who totally looks like he loves guacomole BTW- your old high school “buddy”: he secretly stuffed you in a locker every day. But you come out of retirement as an endurance cyclist/ BMX trick rider and take out all the bad guys using your Danny Macaskill type moves. I believe a tailwhip to the head would be an example of an effective move.
    Then Nate asks you to take over Eliot’s position as “hitter” to get your place as permanent cast member.
    What do ya think?

  5. Comment by NYCCarlos | 03.12.2012 | 9:17 am

    PLEASE get this man a toupee. I will donate $75 to Paul Guyot’s Livestrong page if fatty wears a toupee on the show.

  6. Comment by Jeff Bike | 03.12.2012 | 9:19 am

    OMG! You will now be a T.V. Star! That is just one more thing to add to your list of accomplishments. You must truly be the most interesting man in the world.

  7. Comment by cece | 03.12.2012 | 9:27 am

    All I can say is YOU are a riot! My first giggle of the day…thank you!

  8. Comment by Brian in VA | 03.12.2012 | 9:31 am

    You’ll be wearing a helmet so don’t worry about the hairlessness. Sounds like fun!

  9. Comment by Bee | 03.12.2012 | 9:45 am

    Ooooo!!! Ooooo!!! If you come to Oregon, do you want to go RIDING in Oregon? There’s plenty of us in Oregon who just love bikes and riding. Even though I’m slow as mud, nursing a hip problem at the moment, and totally in love with sandwiches. (See what I did there? Worked in a sympathy-worthy excuse for my slowness while slyly asserting that anyone who rides with me gets snacks.)

    Ride on a Friday or Saturday. Oregon has awesome roads.

  10. Comment by Mike C | 03.12.2012 | 9:57 am

    That one hit my funny bone. I’m not sure what the guy in the stall next to me thought when I started giggling uncontrollably.

  11. Comment by AKChick55 | 03.12.2012 | 10:01 am

    Hahahahaha! I love it!! I so hope this happens!!! Also, you should do a bike tweet-up like Lance does and see how much trouble you can get into with the Portland Police because of all the Fatty’s disrupting traffic. :) I so hope this happens. I can’t wait to see the episode. Also, I am a longtime fan of Eliot aka Chritian Kane from his Angel days. He’s also rather easy on the eyes. I think they are going to have to write a different role for you than bike messenger cause you might upstage Christian with your manly quads. Actually, if you’re worried about diction or the camera adding 35 lbs, just have the camera focus on your quads. :)

    Also, can’t help it: GO CHRIS HORNER!!! :) (that’s for Wife#1)

  12. Comment by centurion | 03.12.2012 | 10:27 am

    Do they do murder mysteries on this show? You’d be a good corpse.

  13. Comment by Arizona Guy | 03.12.2012 | 10:29 am

    Dude -

    you are writing plot lines and leave out the love scenes? I know you are a married guy – but this is art, so you like totally get a pass.

    As another balding middle aged guy, I am quite certain that young women become uncontrollably excited when we roll by in Lycra. You need to explore this unrequited love…

  14. Comment by Rob W | 03.12.2012 | 10:36 am

    You forgot to ask him if he would promise to take you to VooDoo donuts

  15. Comment by Erik Stoneham | 03.12.2012 | 10:37 am

    nice opportunity. Live it up and enjoy !

  16. Comment by Brian in VA | 03.12.2012 | 10:40 am

    On the “camera adds 10 pounds” thing, it’s important to remember that there will be multiple cameras trained on you at any one time. If there are 3, that’s where you get the 30 extra pounds you were talking about. (Happens to me all the time.) You can just mention to all of your fans, through Twitter and this blog, how many cameras were being used and we’ll totally defend you to the rest of the world.

  17. Comment by Kukui | 03.12.2012 | 10:50 am

    Totally cool! I love Leverage! Way to be awesome, Fatty! =)

  18. Comment by Rod | 03.12.2012 | 10:54 am

    As far as the weight issue, please note that shows like this typically would use 4-5 cameras and those add ten pounds EACH! So, you’re covered.

    As for the hair, if you will be a Portland bike messenger, you will likely be wearing a bowler or a tassled knit hat with a fake mohawk. Again, covered.

  19. Comment by dvhansen | 03.12.2012 | 11:04 am

    i think all of the plot themes need to be combined into one great episode – imagine the possibilities!

  20. Comment by KanyonKris | 03.12.2012 | 11:05 am

    I’m sure Paul is not regretting inviting you onto the show, what with all your excellent suggestions.

    Reading the About section of the Leverage website I came across this: “…where a single wrong step could send them plunging into an almost certain death.” I hope dug doesn’t read this.

  21. Comment by Lazlo | 03.12.2012 | 11:25 am

    “You’ll be wearing a helmet so don’t worry about the hairlessness. Sounds like fun!”

    Not if his cameo is as a bike messenger.

  22. Comment by MattC | 03.12.2012 | 11:27 am

    Uhm, Paul…I don’t really care what you do in the episode w/ Fatty (sorry Elden)…but if there is ANY WAY POSSIBLE, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get Parker (Beth Riesgraf) into lycra…I know I’m a married man and all…but Holy GUACAMOLE! (you can always LOOK at the menu, as long as you eat at home!)

    And speaking of Guac…mmmmmmmm! (and cupcakes!)

  23. Comment by MattC | 03.12.2012 | 11:31 am

    Oh…and that last comment must be some IMPOSTER MattC…the REAL MattC would NEVER EVER say something like that in a public place where his wife could potentially see it. STOP USING MY NAME whoever you are, you EvilDOER! (there IS another guy on facebook with my EXACT same name…it MUST be him!)

  24. Comment by MattC | 03.12.2012 | 11:42 am

    OH, and Paul….while I’m adding in my OWN TRUE comment, I think Fatty should wear a bike helmet with a nice long blond Mullet dangling out in whatever scene(s) you put him in. Who knows…it might result in a recurring role!

    You’re welcome Fatty!

    The REAL MattC!

  25. Comment by ScottR | 03.12.2012 | 11:55 am

    Portland – where young people go to retire.

    Awesome, love the idea of spotting Fatty in a future episode.

  26. Comment by Skippy | 03.12.2012 | 11:55 am

    Paul was suggesting you as a bike messenger , so i suggest you read ” Georgethecyclist.blogspot “!
    George as a former Bike messenger will be able to give you all the clues you will need , to behave like a star ! Of course , you could get George involved on the show , by Paul using him as the teacher of a “ rookie” , who has taken up “ Bike Messengering “ ! That could lead to you both discussing your blogs as you dash around Portland meeting a variety of novel challenges !

    Another scenario that you may wish to propose to Paul is that you are racing Levi L. , and you have to put him in a headlock for some reason . Perhaps Levi’s dog could chase you as you try to make delivery to his home ?

    Looking forward to next year’s TV Awards ceremony when you carry off the prize for best New Supporting Actor or Cameo Role Model !

  27. Comment by Miles Archer | 03.12.2012 | 11:57 am

    You should insist that Kaos also be in that episode.

    MattC. I watch Leverage with my daughter. Parker in lycra would be a very bad idea indeed.

  28. Comment by Kerry | 03.12.2012 | 12:21 pm

    While I’m a big fan of yours and have been following for years, I *heart* Timothy Hutton and I am now going to adopt you as my 2nd degree to Timothy Hutton. So you must accept this opportunity!

  29. Comment by Dan in Sac | 03.12.2012 | 12:22 pm

    Go full beard and bad toupe. I’d join NYCCarlos in chipping in to Puals Livestrong page to see Fatty in a really bad messenger toupe.

  30. Comment by MattC | 03.12.2012 | 12:30 pm

    @ Miles…yes, it would be a Bad Idea. A VERY BAD idea…OH how VERY VERY BAD!


  31. Comment by iRide | 03.12.2012 | 12:52 pm

    Clothes, hair style, bike, accessories – everything you need to know about riding in Portland is here:


  32. Comment by Dave M | 03.12.2012 | 12:57 pm

    Maybe they’ll write you in a bar and your line can be

    “These pretzels are making me thirsty”

    you know or something like that. As long as Eliot doesn’t punch you in the throat, you’re golden!

  33. Comment by Bacongal | 03.12.2012 | 1:25 pm

    OOOhhhh I live (near)in Portland, well I work in Portland, I live in God’s country where I ride. Nevermind the rain, it doesn’t ruin the rides! You will love it. Ride to the Lucky lab brew pub on Hawthorne…it’s a can’t miss for those looking for the funky beard wearing vibe!

  34. Comment by Haven-KT | 03.12.2012 | 2:21 pm

    Bee, Bacongal and I could totally hook you up on some great roads around the Portland area. Not today, though, it’s blowin’ something FIERCE out there! :)

    Can’t wait to see you on Leverage! Boyfriend and I love to watch, if only to pick out the locales– sometimes the intriguing stories get in the way of that, though.

    Maybe your story arc could include the food carts and Saturday Market– you could chase the bad guy through Saturday Market and catch him at the food carts, and then the gang eats yummy food. But not the bad guy, that’s part of his punishment.

  35. Comment by Rob M | 03.12.2012 | 2:33 pm

    You will fit right in with the script if they name the episode “The adventure of the balding, overweight, blogger cyclist who has trouble with fricatives.”

    I hope you have to ride a recumbent.

  36. Comment by ClydeinKS | 03.12.2012 | 2:48 pm

    I’m with @Dave M and can see you placed in a bar scene. I’ve thought about a line that will be longer to increase your camera time and bring an educational aspect to your scene. How about bringing this one back:

    “Well ya see, it’s like this. A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Excessive intake of alcohol, as we know, kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. That’s why you always feel smarter after a few beers.”

    Jeff D

  37. Comment by roan | 03.12.2012 | 2:56 pm

    AH ! I’ll second Rob M.
    They will need to put him on a recumbent with his fricative problem. Helium tank would be neat too.

  38. Comment by George | 03.12.2012 | 3:30 pm

    Fatty, just don’t let them set up a scene where you jump over a shark on a fixie with a leather helmet.

  39. Comment by Jeff | 03.12.2012 | 3:34 pm


    The way to look skinny on TV is to have me next to you. Being 6′3″ and 250 will make you look very svelte. And I live close to where they shoot Leverage, so I can get there on a bike in a jiffy.

  40. Comment by Clydesteve | 03.12.2012 | 6:36 pm

    Fatty – Give me a call when you come out. There is a great taco shack behind PSU i can take you to. We can ride, too.

  41. Comment by Nancy P | 03.12.2012 | 6:45 pm

    How about the mid-pack endurance cyclist who owns a Mexican restaurant and makes the world’s most amazing guacamole? That way we get the slow-mo action scenes AND get to see you make guac. Yeah, that’s my vote. You can send me some of the guacamole if you need to rehearse the scene where you make it.

  42. Comment by Andrew | 03.12.2012 | 7:01 pm

    Whats Leverage?

    We don’t get that here in Australia!!

  43. Comment by Wife#1 | 03.12.2012 | 10:24 pm

    I’ll add $100 to Paul’s fundraising if Fatty wears that blonde mullet MattC suggested on the show! Sublime, that would be perfection.

    In fact it’s so damn funny I think your wife would forgive you in the event your imposter is actually an imaginary friend.

    And @AKChick – thank you! GO Horner, GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  44. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 03.12.2012 | 10:41 pm

    Hands Down. BEST BLOG POST OF THE YEAR!!!!!

    Wife#1 is laughing in one room and I in the other. Both don’t know a thing about ‘fricatives’.

    Comments are outstanding, clearly everyone had a GREAT weekend.

    I’m in $75.00 for the ‘bad toupee’ iRide’s link to the youtube video says it all for the beard and earplugs. Have makeup set you up, you can wear them back to Utah and then let us know how they went over. also Tattoo’s, all bike messenger’s hav tat’s, and not those ball point pen prison tats.

    @MattC….there are no words….

    VooDoo donuts deserves a Fatty blog post all it’s own;

    They also have some suggestions on dress style:


  45. Comment by Jenni | 03.13.2012 | 8:56 am

    I’d like to volunteer to be Fatty’s personal assistant on this all-expense paid trip to PDX.

  46. Comment by AliKat | 03.13.2012 | 2:40 pm

    As a huge Leverage fan, I’m looking forward to your future appearance. Maybe you get can Eliot to teach you to fight while on the bike which of course would be required before the end of the episode. Sophie could help you grift the bike to start with and Parker could teach you to pickpocket while doing a race or something. Hardison could definately set you up with some sweet techno-gadgets to pull off a win by smoking the competition.

  47. Comment by Bruce E | 03.15.2012 | 10:12 am

    Fatty, I think a pink mohawk hairpiece would be most excellent. You a playing a Portland bike courier after all.


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