Dear Internet, it has been a while. I apologize. I haven’t posted since my last week at CONAN, and this being a blog about my experience as a Basic Cable Intern, my last week is something I probably should mention. However, it has been weeks since I was in LA – I nearly have the last traces of smog out of my system – and of course, weeks since I have waltzed through the secure gates of the Warner Brothers’ Lot and up the stairs to the best office on earth. The details aren’t hazy, but it does feel like years since I was last there because I’ve crammed a lot into these weeks. I won’t bore you with those summertime adventures. Instead I will throw bits and pieces from my mind onto my Word document and pretend you will be able to comprehend it.
Some of the highlights of my last week included an impromptu trip to the airport to pick up LaBamba. It was interesting to spend well over an hour in the car with a man who I’ve watched say so little on TV for years. He was a great conversationalist, I asked him about the transition from NBC to TBS and he asked me about what it was like to be an intern, lucky for him I am an expert. In my last few weeks, I started doing a lot more runs and jobs for the Bossman himself, at one point even delivering pizza to his house. I was given the opportunity to work closely with his assistant, who is not only on top of her business, but she is really fun and easy to hang out with. Over the last few weeks, it was easier to get more personal with people. I knew I was on the way out, and they were more comfortable with me so it really gave me the confidence to engage people more and learn more about them as people and professionals.
On my last day, I got to have an audience with Conan himself. By this point, he knew my name, which I never expected to happen. He had just come back to the office after being a guest on Lopez Tonight. I was greeted with a very firm then crazy handshake and we joked around a little bit. The first serious thing he said to me was, “Do you wear sunscreen? Because I see you’ve got a lot of freckles going on there and I can relate to that.” I told him of course, it was an interesting moment because there was actual concern, and for me there was a realization that he was actually looking at me. It became very apparent to me during the rest of our conversation, that Conan is, infact, a very real person. He was actually listening to me and asking me questions about where I was going next. He sincerely talked with me about my Chicago improv intentions. As soon as I mentioned Chicago he lit up and he told me to go for it. It was exhilarating to hear that from him, even though he has no real way of telling if I should go or not. Talking with Conan was easy, because he was so easy going himself. I was at first intimidated, then relieved by his genuine demeanor.
The rest of my time in LA, those last few hours are a blurr of packing and goodbyes. It was hard to realize I wouldn’t see many of these people for a while, but I honestly feel I will see them again. My Mom flew in the next morning. We got lunch with Tracy and had our “see you laters” as well. Having hardly slept the night before and being
a little unable to grasp all the emotions in my mind, I was a little numb. Finally we were in the car and on our way back to Indiana- after a quick stop in Vegas for a
surprise Paul McCartney Concert (my heart soared), then ultimately for me, on my way to Chicago. I’m heading to the Windy City to study improv, comedy writing, and explore. It’s where I need to be right now and I cannot wait to get up there and start this new chapter in my life.
This post has been written over the course of several days, strung out over the summer. The first day I started to write this, I was still in LA, sitting in my bed at Tracy’s house at 3:30 AM the morning I left, unable to sleep. Another day I poked at this entry, I was sitting alone in the living room of my Aunt Liza’s beach house, slowly tapping at the keys, trying to wake the sleeping Kevin in the other room. August 1st, I was writing while waiting for my oil to get changed at Indy Tire Center as an old man stared as if he’d never seen a modern gal such as I myself multitask (get oil changed-by someone else, check Facebook, glance at the news on the TV in the corner, and write a blog). Today I will wrap this up, as I lounge in my sister’s apartment in Chicago, my focus swirling with the thoughts of the interview I just had, the terror in my mind about moving to a new city, the anxiety coursing through my veins over deadlines and the idea of moving, the pain in my feet from the heels I’ve been wearing all over the city, and the little fire in my heart that is telling me I am doing the right thing.
Today I don’t have a million stories about my time at CONAN. Today I feel I can only reflect on the most important thing I learned, and the one thing I hope to carry with me forever, wherever I go, whatever I do, and with whomever I meet.
My time at CONAN has given me the assurance of something that I learned a long time ago and has been reiterated to me over the years. (weird grammar I know) In fact, my Boss even said something similar during his last episode of that one show-that-shall-not-be-named: “if you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” I remember watching this statement air, toasting to Conan, his career and his people. Not only is he one of my biggest comedic influences, but he’s been a great role model to me, a little Shirley-Temple-headed girl from Indianapolis watching him as I grew up. While I feel that being an Intern at CONAN is an amazing thing, and hope there are many more in the future, one thing is true- be kind. Work really hard and be kind to everyone.
Thank you to everyone who made my LA and CONAN experience everything it was. I mean it when I say we will be in touch, LA crowd.
**Writing this Blog has been a great joy for me. I thank each and every one of you for reading and responding to it in one way or another. Seeing as I am no longer a Basic Cable Intern, this blog may not work anymore for my new chapter. Not that you have to follow me, but I plan on chronicling my Chicago adventures in a new blog that has yet to be named or started. If you liked this one, I hope you will like my new one. I will post a link as soon as I have my new one. Thank you for reading, really. I didn’t think anyone but my Mom would read this- which is cool, I love my Mom, but it’s nice to have non Mom readers.**