by Tony Santiago
Actor Jim O'Heir can be seen on NBC’s ‘Parks and Recreation’ as Jerry Gergich (later to be called Larry, Garry and Terry Gergich). He is a damn fine actor, a Hell of a guy and in this conversation you’ll learn about his mustache capabilities, animal fighting powers and where to get a good Taco. Here is our talk:
Tony Santiago: How do you start your day, Jim?
Jim O'Heir: It depends on whether I’m working or not. If I’m working I’ve gotten a call time the night before and get up with the alarm. If not…then it’s heaven. I wake up whenever the hell I want to. I’m a night hawk so sleeping until 10 or 11 is not out of the question. lol
Tony: Do you have a favorite song or band you listen to when you feel down or are super drunk?
Jim: I’m an easy listening type of guy. When I’ve had a few to drink I love classics from REO Speedwagon (Time For Me To Fly a personal favorite). When feeling down (or happy) you will be very disappointed to know that I listen to Barry Manilow, Air Supply and Michael Buble. :)
Tony: Let it be known the difficulty of Easy Listening doesn’t stop Jim O'Heir. So here is a double whammy question for you, my friend: What is your favorite movie and what was the first concert you went to?
Jim: Lots of favorite movies. Hovering around the top of my list is The Godfather. Just a classic. I’ve seen it a hundred times. My first concert was Neil Young…when he started using the mouth thing. Very disappointed. I was hoping for his classic stuff.
Tony: Are you good at giving gifts at Christmas?
Jim: I’m very good at giving Christmas gifts but hate getting them. For most of the people I buy for I know enough to get them something they’ve been wanting or need. Not to sound like an idiot but the old saying … tis better to give than to receive … is something I very much believe.
Tony: Agreed. Which brings us to my next 2 questions. How many dates should 2 people go on before having sex? Also, when is it okay to ask for butt stuff?
Jim: As far as sex goes it’s ultimately up to the woman. I think times have changed and women are willing to admit they like it as much as men do. They don’t need to wait until their wedding night. That being said…I know most people think the 3rd date is the magic one but it really does depend on the individuals. As far as asking for butt sex? Right after you meet the person. Why wait? lol
Tony: You told me once that your favorite superhero is Superman whose hero work is often stolen by Bizarro. Who, in Hollywood, might I ask, would you say is your Bizarro?
Jim: I have no idea what the hell you’re talking about. :)
Tony: Fair enough. You win this round, Jim. Your character on Parks & Rec has gone by the names Garry, Larry, Terry and originally Jerry. Which name do you feel closest to?
Jim: It started with Jerry and it’s definitely my favorite. I’ve become attached to all of them but Jerry just sounds right.
Tony: Is there anything you cook really well? I am told my Enchiladas kick ass.
Jim: I’m a pretty bad cook…but…at the holidays I can make an excellent Sweet Potato Casserole. It’s incredibly easy..even when I screw it up it comes out tasting great.
Tony: I feel very fortunate that you are a fan of my Facebook page 'People Eating Tacos’ where I drew you eating a Taco while Superman watched jealously. My fans are gonna wanna know, what is the best Taco you’ve ever had? (I always capitalize Taco out of respect for the perfect food)
Jim: Taco is certainly a perfect food. No argument there. I’ve had too many Taco’s over my lifetime to count but can say that for the past seven seasons on Parks and Recreation they will treat us to special foods during the week. The place would always go crazy for Tito’s Taco’s. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!!!
Tony: I see you are capitalizing Taco now, too. I commend thee and welcome you to this club of two. Soon we shall recruit others and our numbers will become legion. Your costar Nick Offerman has a pretty famous mustache. On a scale of one to ten, how is your mustache if you let it grow?
Jim: I would give my mustache a 6. It doesn’t come in as thick as Nicks or cover as much area. It’s also great as fuck these days. :)
Tony: I know you recently wrapped shooting on Parks & Rec, so naturally I have to ask you, how long do you think it takes to shoot down a space ship if you have a small handheld laser gun and are standing directly below the ship?
Jim: Of course. That’s the natural follow up question to Parks wrapping. LOL I’ve done it and the answer is 1 minute 18 seconds.
Tony: Your Parks & Rec costar Chris Pratt is Starlord in Guardians of the Galaxy, and you appeared on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Would you ever consider going to space and if so, what books would you bring?
Jim: I would love to go into space…especially with Chris Pratt (who I just received a text from as I’m typing this). As far as books go…probably Little House On The Prairie.
Tony: Much to my dismay, this coming season on Parks and Rec is the last of the show. Hypothetically, are you more likely to yell the phrase “Spoiler Alert” before telling an interviewer like myself how the show ends or are you more likely to yell it when you notice something in the fridge is about to go bad? Because I gotta tell you, nobody warns me at my house and it has made my life a living Hell.
Jim: Spoiler Alert has become the new catch phrase…I hear it every day in all types of context. I am more likely to tell it to an interviewer. I like watching my family drink spoiled milk. It’s never not funny. :)
Tony: Your performance on the show has been lauded by both critics and fans alike and you have worked with just about every big name out there. You have turned in consistently top notch work on one of the best comedies on television. Is the crowning achievement of your life the time I drew you eating a Taco?
Jim: I can’t believe you just asked me this question. I was just being interviewed by 60 Minutes for a piece they’re doing on Human Icon’s and I mentioned to them that being drawn while eating a Taco was akin to the Pulitzer Prize that I’m most likely going to receive next year for my work on Parks. Actually, not akin…BETTER!!!!! So yes, my crowning achievement.
Tony: I had a feeling. That said, if the entire cast of Parks and Rec got in a cage match battle royale who would be the last person standing?
Jim: Retta. She’d kick all our asses.
Tony: Finally, this question is one I used to ask everyone when I was 3. Would you rather get killed by a tiger or a shark? Well, let me rephrase that because it is kind of a 2 parter. A) Which do you think you’d stand a better chance against if my question allows you the opportunity to fight back with your bare hands? And then for the second part, B) please also answer assuming you are gonna die either way, on whether you would rather be killed by a tiger or a shark and why?
Jim: Great question. As someone who has faced both of these dilemma’s and survived I can tell you that I would much rather be eaten by a shark. It would be much quicker. I can battle a tiger longer but I think as I’m punching, kicking and shitting myself that he’ll be chomping off my extremeties. A shark will take me down with one bite…shit and all.
Tony: Now that we are best friends for life, do you have any questions for me? Or is it all about you, Jim? How dare you.
Jim: If you know anything about me…it is ALL ABOUT ME!!!! GO FUCK YOURSELF!!!!! :)
Tony: That stings, Jim. Stings like a damned bee.
Catch Jim on the final season of 'Parks And Recreation’ on January 13th, 2015. Catch my weird and hopefully humorous jokes & artwork at 'BansheeMilk’ on Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter. You can also see 'People Eating Tacos’ where I draw and/or paint famous folks and characters eating Tacos. Or just check out www.michaelanthonysantiago.com