March 2, 2010

Brushes With Pre-Greatness (Volume 3)

Sam Anderson

Lost is in the process of wrapping up the bevy of mysterious storylines in this, its final season. It's a mystery to me how I almost had forgotten my one-time acquaintance with Sam Anderson, who plays Bernard on the show.

After graduating from college, I briefly moved out to the West coast with my friend Ron Hart to attempt to make it as a television writer. While Ron got a job as a cab driver, and learned much to his horror, that one of his co-workers, Vargas, could break into any car in under two minutes flat, I found employment at a bookstore, where the clientele was a bit more upscale.

I helped out celebs such as Morgan Fairchild and the brilliant Roscoe Lee Browne, who once had anonymously called ahead to pick up ten copies of Malcolm X's autobiography on audio cassette - a strange Christmas gift, we thought, until he walked in to collect his order and we realized it was his voice on the audiotape.

"The rubbing of the heads..."

Still, one of the "regulars" to the store was Sam, who came in every other week to browse. If memory serves, he was always in search of James Patterson's latest novel. Anyway, I just remember him being incredibly nice and at the time, I had no idea he was an actor at all. He always chatted about the news of the day, and all of us at the store looked forward to his visits.

Over the years since I moved back to the East coast, I started seeing him everywhere: guest spots on cop/lawyer shows, the principal or boss on various sitcoms, a fairly regular gig on Angel, and now, he's Bernard - and I "root" for his character, simply because, well, it's nice to be nice to the nice.

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