A Casual Encounter in the Park

Out and about with Grogg Hammerfist

Cape Town – Model, socialite, dreamboat, author – and as it turns out, an all-round lovely person. We caught up with Grogg Hammerfist on his whirlwind tour for Deluxe Clothing Brand. He graciously made time for us during his whistle-stop layover in Cape Town. He proved as charming and down-to-earth in person as he appears imperious in his award-winning ad campaigns. Our favourite interview of the year revealed that there is much more to this global phenomenon than his flawless beauty.

Choosing a bench underneath an oak tree in the Cape Town Company Gardens as a spot to conduct the interview at first struck me as strange. Normally the lobby of a five star hotel or a chic restaurant or coffee shop would be selected by the person I’m interviewing, but as I got to know Grogg during the interview, this setting seemed apt. No frills, just like his clothing style. He strolled up to me wearing a lived-in plain grey t-shirt, a pair of dark blue jeans ripped at the knee and flip-flops.

Even in such understated clothes he still manages to turn quite a number of passerby’s heads. He is carrying two take away coffees. He greets and offers me one smiling warmly and winks – if I wasn’t sitting down I would probably have fainted, this man is gorgeous. Reaching into his jeans pocket he pulls out a couple of sachets of sugar and offers me some. I don’t normally drink sugar in my coffee but for this occasion I decided I do. He takes a few sips of his coffee and looks at me expectantly. ‘I’m not very good at interviews, but let’s give this a shot,” he exclaims.

Can you describe what this past year has been for you in one word?

Surprising. Going from just me, to being this guy who suddenly has international model status, seeing my face on billboards and on the cover of magazines, meeting celebrities and strutting on the catwalks of London, New York and Paris…

Who have been some of your biggest inspirations?

Just people I’ve met on the road, each with their own life-story and how they deal with challenges. Seems like I have the kind of face where people just want to talk and share with me.

Which places would you like to see?

Hmmm, in no particular order…Petra, the Great Pyramids and Machu Pichu. I’ve always had a fascination with those places – must be my inner Indiana Jones (makes cracking whip sound).

How do you keep your energy levels up? 

Naps – loads of them. I’m able to nap anywhere, anytime. Afternoon naps are an absolute winner for me, especially when I’m on my bed and the sunlight warms my spot. I know I’ve napped well when I wake up with that pillow crease on my face, looking like I wrestled a bear. Warning – I don’t look good when I’ve just woken up. If you look up bedhead, you’ll find a picture of me. (Laughs hard.)

What do you do with your spare time? 

I enjoy visiting museums and art galleries. One of the perks of travelling extensively is that I’ve seen so many. I always make it my aim that whichever city I find myself in, if there are art galleries and museums, I put that on my to-do list. I’ll probably head to a gallery right after this interview.

What do you do with your downtime?

In all likelihood, you’ll find me lazing around my place in my undies and an old t-shirt, watching loads of series or playing console games, crushing my opponents in mortal combat. (Laughs.)

I also dabble in a bit of writing. And when I have the time, I enjoy woodcarving. It’s not just about the end result; it’s about the wood, the colour, the grain… It might be a piece of wood I picked up in a place I enjoyed, and I turn it into something beautiful to keep a reminder.

Single or dating?

Single. Applications are still being accepted.

What traits do you find most attractive in a man?

Hmmm, hard to pin that one down. From a physical perspective, it could be his eyes, his hands, a quirky smile or a cute butt – those are the first things I’d notice. Even then, you don’t have to be an adonis to get my attention. There’s more to a person than just that – there’s also the way he relates to people, his confidence in himself, his ability to carry a conversation and, yes, humour is important. Seems like the list is endless, but it’s the whole package that counts. I hope that answers your question? (Laughs.)

Do you find it difficult to have relationships, given your busy life? 

Yes, it is very difficult since I’m never in one place long enough – a day in Milan, then off to London, then to New York or wherever my modelling work takes me. And I’d like to ride out this wave. If I’m in a relationship, it’s not only about the quality of time but also the quantity.

Boxers or briefs?

Commando (winks)… No, I’m a briefs kind of guy.

What is your idea of a perfect date?

Anywhere, anytime with the guy from Aquaman. Ahem. We could go to a drive-through and order burgers and it will still count as a perfect date. (Laughs.) But in all seriousness, a perfect date would be a moonlit evening on the beach with a beer and take-aways – burgers, pizza… I’m not fussy. Hmmm. I just want to be cuddling the guy as we talk about life or whatever.

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Your favourite luxury or indulgence?

Tiramisu ice-cream. I could eat gallons of the stuff. That would actually be my perfect date – me and a tub of tiramisu ice cream.

If a guy wants to date you, what would the quickest way to your heart?

I think we covered this… tiramisu ice-cream. (Chuckles.)

Do you plan on getting married?

I’ve never planned to. It’s not like I said by the time I’m thirty I must have a husband.  If I meet the right guy, or even mister almost right. But if it happens, it happens.

With the interview over, he thanks me and strolls away with the same ease and confidence with which he arrived. It is great to see that despite his fame he remains down-to-earth. We’ll no doubt see him feature in more campaigns and as the face on the cover of countless more magazines.

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