You head to the buffet and start loading up your plate behind the older gentleman. As you’re scooping Caesar salad onto your plate, he gives you a friendly smile.
You introduce yourself as you grab a roll.
"Nice to meet you," he says. "You can call me Bert." He sounds grandfatherly and cordial.
Is he someone I'm supposed to know? you wonder. Bert…there's an agent named Bert Brava, isn't there? Or is it Bertrice Brava? You study his suit—tan plaid, looks like it's been in his closet since 1974. Certainly not the standard power suit you've come to associate with industry professionals. You study his face—pleasant, unassuming. His hair—well, he needs to push his toupee back about an inch. He motions to a table.
"Would you like to sit?" he asks. You accept, and as you're sitting down you try to think of what to say. He sits across from you and blows out his cheeks, gazing around the room as if he’s looking for someone. His wife, you think. He does look a bit bored, if not completely out of his element.