A couple of weeks ago I found myself on the homepage of the BBC News NI website, after I tweeted the leader of the Social Democratic and Labour Party in Northern Ireland. This is my third time going viral, and each time is no less exciting (and mental). The first was after I wrote a letter to Nestle. The second was for a guide on how to make your own wedding invites. But this one escalated so quickly that it made my head spin.
On the 22nd Feb 2017 I was sent a picture of the leader of the Social Democratic and Labour Party in Northern Ireland, Colum Eastwood. He was running an election campaign for a seat in the NI Assembly and all over the TV in the UK, which is where my friend Luke spotted him and sent me this…
When I showed this to my wife, she asked where the picture was taken as she’d just assumed it was me. From this angle, we look almost identical. So I had a little fun with the web camera and tweeted him some pictures, asking if he needs a body double:
— James Barnard (@barnarddotco) February 22, 2017
When Colum himself retweeted it, a journalist at BBC Radio Ulster got in touch, and then that evening this article appeared on the BBC News NI homepage, as well as getting a mention on the radio.
Then everyone in Northern Ireland had a little fit…
…and now I’ve got a new buddy! Honestly, the whole thing was a bit silly. But it was a lot of fun meeting Colum, if not a little weird. We were genuinely laughing our asses off, and his campaign team took a short video, which again made it on to the BBC website. I posted the whole thing to image site Imgur, and it made the front page, getting around 150,000 views in a day. Check it out here: http://imgur.com/gallery/ofQbC
BBC News: NI Assembly election: ‘Newsnight’ and Eastwood double
BBC News: SDLP leader Colum Eastwood meets doppelganger in London
Belfast Live: Could this Colum Eastwood doppelganger be the best lookalike ever?
Irish News: Spot the difference: Colum Eastwood has a doppelgänger
Derry Now: Seeing double! SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood contacted by English doppelgänger
Imgur: My doppelgänger in Northern Irish politics