This is Daniel Roebuck. He's an actor. A pretty busy actor, as a matter of fact. You know him. He's that guy from that thing... you know. Actually, IMDB (the invaluable Internet Movie Database) lists him with over 250 acting credits, not to mention his numerous other credits as director, producer, writer and "special thanks." Here's a story about when I met Daniel... who is a really nice and gracious guy, to boot.
My in-laws owned and operated a store in a once-thriving farmers market just outside of Philadelphia. By the time they became my in-laws, the store was well into its fifth year of business. (Side note: my father-in-law opened this store as a stopgap while his primary business — a popular hardware store — was rebuilt after a devastating fire.) The store in the farmers market — Larry's Hardware — became a well-known "destination" as my wife and my mother-in-law brought in more "pop culture" merchandise, shoving aside precious shelf space once occupied by hammers, trowels and boxes of nails.
I began working for my in-laws by the time my soon-to-be wife and I had our third date. I worked every weekend while I diligently sought a job in my chosen profession — graphic design. Even after I secured many a position in the design field, I still found myself stocking shelves and applying price tags to various items each and every Saturday from early in the morning until late at night. On Fridays, I was at my regular job, but Saturday was "Larry's Hardware" day for me. My wife, however, worked both days. When our son was born, Fridays were the times I spent with him while Mrs. P worked late. After putting him to bed, I would try my darndest to stay up until Mrs. Pincus got home. Sometimes, I didn't make it and I was often jolted awake by the sound of a key turning in the front-door lock. The TV was showing something that I don't remember watching. We'd go to bed to get a little rest before tackling a marathon Saturday at Larry's.
One particular Friday, I was watching a movie that I had never seen before. It was called River's Edge, a 1986 independent effort from director Tim Hunter, who went on to helm a lot of episodic TV, including Twin Peaks, Mad Men and the recent Hannibal. River's Edge is a dark, disturbing tale featuring a quirky cast of actors with a young Keanu Reeves at the forefront. I watched the film, admittedly dozing on and off as the hour got later. When Mrs. P got home, we talked a bit. She told me about some regularly-occuring incidents at the store and we headed off to bed.
The next day, I caught myself dozing off while sitting at the unusually not-busy cash register. I glanced over at one of the aisles — ten or so feet away — and I saw my wife talking to a customer. He was a man about my age. He sort of looked familiar, but I couldn't quite place him. I stared at this man as my wife talked, gesturing to some items on a shelf, although they were too far away for me to hear actual details of their conversation. Where do I know this guy from? was going over and over in my head. Finally, it hit me... I think. I got up and walked over to them. At first, I didn't interrupt them and the man smiled and nodded at me. I couldn't hold back any longer.
"Do I know you from coming into the store," I began, "or do I know you because I saw you kill your girlfriend in River's Edge last night?"
He wasn't even taken aback by my accusation. As a matter of fact, he laughed. Loudly. And so did my wife. Through her laughter, she explained that she just had a nearly identical exchange with this man.
"I asked," she said, "do I know you from coming into the store or because I saw you in an episode of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman?"
|Daniel in Lois & Clark and River's Edge|
|Daniel as Grandpa|
Daniel popped into the store a few more times before its permanent closing in 2007. I have contacted him through various social media platforms, and after relating the story you just read, Daniel confirmed the episode and told how it still makes him laugh. He's a good guy.
If you didn't know his name before, you do now. And, just like us, you will now spot him in everything.