Random Travel Moment #6: Meeting the Exorcist Asst. Director in Amman, #Jordan #ttot #humor

Exorcist Assistant Director

The Assistant Director of the Exorcist? In Amman, Jordan? Pretty random and yeah, just a bit bizarre.

What the heck would…um…possess someone to claim that identity? And why did he choose to speak to me and my 12-year-old Circassian-Jordanian friend Shamel? And was he really who he said he was?

Read on to find out…

Man claiming to be the Assistant Director of the Exorcist

Where/Why: A Stationery Store in a Suburb of Amman

I was shopping for a small notebook and an English-Arabic dictionary in a small shop not far from my friend Souzan’s house in Amman. I was with her 12-year-old son, Shamel, a very intelligent and mature young man, who’s now a teenager.

What–Appearance of a Mysterious Man with Pointy Eyebrows

He seemed to appear out of nowhere. The man with pointy eyebrows and intense eyes, that is. I almost didn’t notice him because I was busy obsessing about which mini notebook to buy. He’d been sitting on a chair chatting with the store owner.

Exorcist Director in Amman?

“Do you know who I am?” he asked. His accent seemed British and sort of posh, but not necessarily 100% natural. He could be anyone, I figured. A monk. A taxi driver. The devil even…

“No, I have no idea. Shamel—do you know?”

“No, I don’t. Who are you?”

“I’m Mohammad. I was the assistant director of The Exorcist.”

“Huh??” I asked. “What?”

“I was the assistant director of The Exorcist,” he repeated.

He sounded educated, looked sophisticated and for a moment, I thought he might be telling the truth, as odd as it seemed. What would…um…possess someone to say something so outlandish?

But then again, he might have been a pathological liar who believes his own BS.

“That’s the movie about the kid who’s taken over by the Devil, right?” Shamel said, excited. “One of the most popular movies ever, right?”

“Actually, it’s a film that was shot in Iraq,” the odd but well-dressed man said.

The store owner, meanwhile, stayed up at the register, doing his job and smiling from time to time. He seemed rather normal. Interestingly, he didn’t acknowledge what the man in the chair was saying.

Store owner in Amman

How We Reacted: Puzzled and Curious

Shamel and I looked at each other, wondering what was up. The man sounded like he was educated at Oxford University and could have been someone famous—or someone completely psychotic, depending on which sign the moon happened to be in. But he gave such an odd answer, I wondered what his deal was.

“What did you think of The 9th Configuration?” I asked, figuring that he would know. It’s one of the three films in an unofficial Exorcist trilogy.

“The what?”

He then rambled on and on about how difficult Arabic is to learn.

And Then? A Quick Disappearance

Shamel interrogated him in Arabic about his role as director and the movie. Their chat lasted a few minutes. Then Shamel rejoined me by the dictionaries.

We laughed about it and then, when we turned around, he was gone. The chair was empty.

Perhaps he’d seen his reflection and gotten scared?

Later on: McDonald’s and Google

“Let’s Google this guy later,” Shamel said.


And we did. And sure enough, he was nowhere to be found. Of course, we laughed about it and to this day, we still remember and chuckle about the mysterious pointy eye-browed man.

Me and Shamel at McDonald's in Amman

Perhaps he was more of the inspiration for the film versus the direction of it?

Your Thoughts/Reactions?

I have a knack for meeting celebrity lookalikes and wannabes, but this was my first time meeting someone pretending to be a director. I tend to get into some crazy situations and this ranked right up there.

How about you? Ever meet any oddballs like this while traveling or in your hometown?

What do you think about this man? Can you see why we almost believed him? :)

Can’t Get Enough?

Here are more ‘random travel moments‘ from ChickyBus.

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25 Responses to Random Travel Moment #6: Meeting the Exorcist Asst. Director in Amman, #Jordan #ttot #humor
  1. Maria
    January 15, 2013 | 2:11 pm

    Wow! Why that film of all the films out there? Glad he didn’t select The Shining – think that would have been more creepy.

    I met a guy in the grocer claiming to be Evel Knievel (see Evel Among Us) but of course he wasn’t and was far too young. Had a look-a-like jacket though. :-)
    Maria recently posted..Dinner with BillMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      January 15, 2013 | 2:16 pm

      Good point! The Shining is pretty creepy, too!

      So you met ‘Evel Knievel’? That’s hilarious.

      PS: I was once told that I resemble Linda Blair. Maybe that’s why this man claimed to be the director of the Exorcist? LOL

  2. Maria
    January 15, 2013 | 2:27 pm

    Nice compliment, Linda Blair is pretty and talented – I think he was trying to impress you with his knowledge of American film. So glad he didn’t offer to show you his “etchings”
    Maria recently posted..Dinner with BillMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      January 15, 2013 | 2:38 pm

      That’s cool! And yeah, really–not sure I’d want to see those…LOL.

  3. Amy Turner
    January 16, 2013 | 7:43 am

    You do resemble Linda Blair, and perhaps that odd man thought so, too. This could be the reason he struck that conversation, with the Exorcist as the opening entry, and as to his claim, well… Could be he’s suffering from psychosis or dementia? Sometimes, though, odd people think presenting themselves as somebody is a joke for them.

    • CB Driver
      January 20, 2013 | 12:29 pm

      Could be psychosis or dementia. Hard to say. Hmmm. :) Maybe it was the resemblance to Linda B. Hard to say!

  4. Craig
    January 18, 2013 | 10:55 am

    Haha! What a strange interaction.
    Maybe that’s how they pick up women in Jordan? Much like the “I’m an important stock broker/lawyer/doctor/entrepreneur” line that guys here in the US use?
    Craig recently posted..19 Free Things to Do in Providence, RIMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      January 20, 2013 | 12:25 pm

      Hi, Craig. That’s hilarious! I don’t think he was trying to pick me up–well, I sure the, um, hell hope not! LOL

  5. Suzy
    January 20, 2013 | 6:32 pm

    How strange! Got to love these weird and wacky encounters though. They certainly keep travel interesting.
    Suzy recently posted..My Packing Secrets: Dos and Don’ts of the Practice That Connects All TravelersMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      January 21, 2013 | 6:13 pm

      Hi, Suzy–yes, very strange. I wonder if he says that to all the people who stop by the store–or just to the foreigners!

  6. Hogga
    January 21, 2013 | 11:42 am

    Whaaaa the Exorcist was shot there?
    Hogga recently posted..Coolest Things I’ve Bought Around the WorldMy Profile

  7. Wilfredo
    January 21, 2013 | 2:49 pm

    Perhaps he directed the Arab language dubbing of the film?
    Wouldn’t that qualify him as an Assistant Director?

    I wonder what he would tell people at a news stand in Manhattan?

    • CB Driver
      January 21, 2013 | 6:15 pm

      Ooh…good point. Maybe we should have asked that question! If so, yes–it would mean that he was truthful! :)

      What would he tell people in NYC? Perhaps he’d say that he played one of the baboons in The Omen…

  8. Wilfredo
    January 21, 2013 | 7:42 pm


  9. Colleen Brynn
    January 27, 2013 | 6:36 pm

    Haha… I love these quirky travel moments. I always like to believe the stuff people like this tell me, but the rational part of my brain soon kicks in. I bet he was just a crazy old man, but it’s fun to believe otherwise!
    Colleen Brynn recently posted..Home For The HolidaysMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      January 28, 2013 | 12:15 am

      Thanks, Colleen–glad you enjoyed this super quirky moment! I like to believe people, too, but…sometimes…well, when they’re ‘possessed’ to say really crazy stuff, I start to doubt them–LOL.

  10. Rossana
    February 21, 2013 | 2:23 pm

    Hahaha…OH my god, Miss Lisa. That was really funny. Like you, I thought he was telling the truth. Wow, this really made me laugh. Well, I never met a real celebrity or a person who claimed to be famous. This man, Mohamed, could be an actor because of the question that you asked him and also his appearance, I was sure that he was the assistant director of the Exorcist movie. I really like the experiences that had. I love your pictures. You look pretty, and the young teenager is handsome. Nice!:-)

    • CB Driver
      February 22, 2013 | 11:47 am

      Hi, Rossana. I really thought he was telling the truth, too. Crazy experience, right?

      PS: That young teenager is now an older teenager. He’s my friend’s son and I’m going to let him know what you said. I think it will put a smile on his face! :)

  11. Linda Blair
    March 4, 2013 | 6:19 pm

    Hey, it’s me, the real Linda Blair. Let me say, first of all that no one is as pretty as me.

    Second, I do remember a strange pointy eyebrowed man hanging around the exorcist set who seemed to appear out of nowhere and then vanish. Perhaps this was him?

    • CB Driver
      March 7, 2013 | 11:36 pm

      Dear Linda,

      You are very pretty (or you used to be)–especially when spitting pea soup. As for the strange pointy eyebrowed man, someone told me his name was Leo. I wonder, however. It just doesn’t seem to fit…

      When he vanished, was it right after looking in the mirror?

  12. Linda Blair
    March 5, 2013 | 4:09 pm

    I do remember him on the movie.

    • CB Driver
      March 7, 2013 | 11:36 pm

      On the movie? Was he sitting on the DVD? Or is that L1 interference? LOL

  13. Laura Zera
    March 21, 2013 | 1:37 am

    Yowsa, those are some eyebrows! And maybe he meant to say ‘extra’ instead of ‘Assistant Director,’ haa!
    Laura Zera recently posted..Travel: Suriname’s Amazon Jungle – Part IIMy Profile

    • CB Driver
      March 21, 2013 | 8:42 am

      That’s funny, Laura. Maybe. He he he! I wonder if he had them surgically altered or something.

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