“Stay thirsty, my friends.”
For most of our generation (or really anyone, who are we kidding?), simply uttering those four words immediately brings to mind two things: Dos Equis beer and The Most Interesting Man in the World, played by actor Jonathan Goldsmith.
It may not be a shock to some who are familiar with Goldsmith’s oeuvre before this campaign, but in addition to 10years playing the role of the Most Interesting Man in the World (from 2006 to 2016, when he was blasted into space), Goldsmith actually could be the true Most Interesting Man in the World.
“A lot of me was in that character,” he tells The Manual, calling his own life an “exciting and diversified” one.
Spend 10 minutes talking to him and you can tell that “exciting and diversified” is putting it mildly. Another way to put it? He literally is the most interesting man in the world.
Why? He’s traveled the world over, he’s saved “a couple lives,” he drove a garbage truck, he’s survived hurricanes, he’s summited mountains, and he was the personal guest of Barack Freaking Obama at Camp David and the White House.
Barack. Obama. Most of us would feel like we won the year if we got a like or an RT from our former President. This guy got to hang out with him.
All of these experiences are on top of his 350 roles on film and television, most of which came before the campaign that shot Goldsmith to international superstardom (and, let’s be real, how most of us most likely know him from.)
In those roles, Goldsmith acted alongside just about anyone who was anyone ever. In The Shootist, for example, he played one of the bad guys that is dispatched by the Duke. The scene between the two involved Goldsmith’s character being shot by Wayne, which translated to Goldsmith being shot in the forehead with blood capsule from just off camera. To get the scene right, they had to redo the scene seven times.
“The coup-de grace went on all afternoon with him shooting me in the forehead,” Goldsmith says of the scene. “By the end of the day, I had a massive headache.”
After, the director asked him how much he was making.
“I told him and the next day he doubled it and said, ‘If it’s any consolation, anybody the Duke shoots becomes a star,” Goldsmith says, pausing. “Forty years later he was right.”
If you need more proof of just how damn interesting he is, Goldsmith collected this story and so many more in a memoir, Stay Interesting: I Don’t Always Tells Stories About My Life, but When I Do They’re True and Amazing, which is available now.
“The book is about survival and perseverance … and how to conquer the difficulties imposed upon you,” he says, alluding to the forty or so years that he was known more for being a good journeyman actor than anything.
But then, Goldsmith auditioned for the role of the Most Interesting Man in the World, and it’s safe to say everything changed. Over the next 10 years, he became world-famous. His face showed up on cardboard cutouts in bars and liquor stores far and wide. His character’s accent was impersonated by everybody who ever popped open a Dos Equis. He made it. And then, as all good things do, it came to an end, as we said, by being blasted into space.
That could’ve been the end, but it wasn’t. Not for Goldsmith.
While in space, he jokes, he found a wonderful product among the stars. That product was Astral Tequila. (Think of how many people would be volunteering to be shot into space if they knew they’d find tequila.)
Before pairing up with Astral, Goldsmith says, he wouldn’t have considered himself much of a tequila drinker. Scotch — particularly the peaty ones like Laphroaig or Lagavulin — sure, but not really tequila.
“I do enjoy the spirit world in general, though — I love good food and good booze and good wine,” he adds.
It was Astral, though, that made him fall in love with tequila. Not just the juice, which is delicious, but the story behind it as well.
“It’s not just a commercial enterprise. They have a sense of stewardship and responsibility to the Earth, which is something that’s very important to me,” says Goldsmith, who is known for his love of the environment and activism for it.
Some of Astral’s environmental campaigns include the reforestation of agave — when they take a plant out, they plant a new one — and donating money to environmental causes. The fact that Astral is an organic tequila is also a positive for Goldsmith.
“I try to eat organically as often as I can, now I have the opportunity to drink organically, too.”
And speaking of drinking, how does he consume his Astral?
“Neat,” he says. “Maybe with one rock.”
So, while Jonathan Goldsmith may not be extolling people to stay thirsty anymore, it’s clear from him new endeavor that he can now tell you when something calls for (Astral) tequila.