Conan O'Brien and I are the same age. We started out at NBC within a few years of each other. I remember Conan's first day working at SNL. We were in an elevator together. I remember this tall, skinny, redhead guy chatting with an SNL member of staff with whom I was familiar. He was giving Conan a first day orientation of the building ("Commissary is on 7...etc."). With that height and that hair, he stuck out everywhere. I'd run into him at 30 Rock all the time.
We both lived in the same neighborhood, and we'd run into each other on the street often. I might remember we had a relationship where we just nodded to each other, but I could be wrong. Those details faded.
When he got Late Night, it blew my mind. It was like hearing that Harry from accounting got his own TV show. He was just another employee, albeit a talented one who would appear in SNL sketches sometimes.
Now that he's leaving, it feels like I'm saying goodbye to those memories. Wow. Over 20 years gone by now. I left NBC in 1990 after almost five years of internships and various jobs. But the network always felt like a family to me. Yes. Family. Those were good times at NBC. Leaving it was a hard decision for me too, but with the recent take over of GE and various lay offs, the network made it hard for drones like me to stay. I apply this disappointment to Conan's in a small way. It's crushing when a dream is dashed due to corporate decisions.
I can't add any more than what everyone on internet land has already said. Conan is class all the way. He'll be back, and things will be funny again.
He also talked about cynicism, and how there is no place for it in life. Sadly, this blog has been filled with all the snark and smirks of a television cynic. That is why I've been slowly pulling away from TVBlogster. Much like Conan, I might take a break and come back when there are television shows to love and write about again.
Having said that, goodbye Conan. For now.