Friday, February 23, 2007
South Africa's sexiest man?
I feel a little weird starring at the slick naked torso of my interviewee. He has a perfect six pack and more definition than the Oxford Dictionary. Thank goodness this is research, I'm thinking as I click and paste the Web site address showing off his impressive physique and circulate it to my colleagues.
I'm heading off to interview Gareth Tjasink, who's been voted South Africa's Sexiest Man by the readers of Cosmo. This is the most tabloid story I've ever filed for CNN, but it's tabloid with a twist. South Africa's Sexiest Man also happens to be a full-time doctor, as well as a part-time model and actor.
Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto is huge, in fact it's the largest hospital in the Southern Hemisphere. Despite the sprawling layout of the buildings, the crew had no trouble spotting our doctor. Dr. Gareth strode through the grounds with the early morning Soweto sunshine glinting in his hair. The man named the sexiest in South Africa shook my hand and we set up to do the shoot.
Having seen my guest wearing not many clothes on the Internet I wasn't quite sure what to expect in the flesh. I was surprised, there was no hint of ego or arrogance. The doctor is smart, passionate about practising medicine and determined to have a serious career as a surgeon. I'm still not sure how "serious" you can be about your day job if you appear on "Survivor South Africa" and model for calendars and ad campaigns. Yet somehow Dr. Gareth manages to do both and uses his celebrity as a platform to nag South Africans about chronic health issues like HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and diabetes.
No doubt you're dying to see a picture of the good doctor, so you can judge for yourself if he deserves all the attention he's getting. You can google Gareth Tjasink like I did, or watch my full report on the day I met South Africa's Sexiest Man.
From Femi Oke, CNN, Johannesburg, South Africa
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