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Elevator, Population 2

February 1, 2010

I had an interesting encounter in an elevator today.

I stepped inside and held the door open for the elderly gentleman behind me. I pressed “10” and he pressed “5”. I tried not to stare, but he looked very familiar. He had that distinguished actor vibe about him, and at first I thought he might be James Whitmore, but Mr. Whitmore died almost exactly a year ago. Maybe he was also on “The Twilight Zone”? I couldn’t place him. He must have read the puzzlement in my face.

“Are you an actress?” He asked. Before I could answer, he continued. “What’s on the 10th floor?”

Nobody’s ever mistaken me for an actress before. But flattery will get you everywhere. Distinguished white-haired gentlemen seem to live by this philosophy.

“No, not an actress,” I said. “There are a lot of businesses on the 10th floor. One of them is a website that I’m going to do some work for.” I was curious why he thought I was an actress. “Is there an agent or someone like that in this building?”

“No agent, but a studio. I’m on my way to do some recording.” He said. “‘Boar’s Head…Pass it on.'”

Aha! I knew I recognized his voice. You might too:

“Oh my god!” I said. “I know you!”

He grinned. I could tell he gets a huge kick out of that moment of revelation. The elevator opened onto the 5th floor and he stepped out into the hallway. “Hope to see you again, m’dear. ‘Take Back Lunch!'”

I couldn’t help but laugh as the doors closed. There went a man who loves his job.

Immediately after my meeting, I Googled to find out his name. None other than Mr. Joseph Sirola, Hollywood veteran and, according to IMDb, “perhaps the most successful ‘voice-over’ actor in the history of the profession.” As a wannabe voice-over actress myself, very cool.

Next time, I’m getting his card.

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