Last week I had to go to New York for work and had a little bit of free time before my flight home so a friend and I went to stand out on the plaza of where they shoot the Today Show. It was a grey and overcast day. It may have even been sprinkling, but we really didn’t care.
Because we were in New York City! And NYC is about as different from Birmingham as you can get. Parts of it reminded me a lot of London and parts of it reminded me a lot of Jeddah.
We had to ask for directions to where the Today Show was taped and the doorman at our hotel couldn’t believe we needed directions. But you know, we weren’t from around there? Whatever.
When he was giving us directions, he told us to “Bang a left” and then later to “bang a right.” I can’t even begin to tell you how much it tickled me that we should “bang a left.” I’m giving all turning directions this way from now on. I’m sure this will only drive my sister more crazy since she already hates it when I say “hang a left (or right).” Love you, sister!
So we banged a few lefts and a few rights and then we were there. Where the magic happens. OK, so where some of the magic happens. When they’re outside. Whatever. It was awesome! Especially when they all started walking outside.
We watched Al come out onto the plaza and head straight to the cameras. He talked to people in the crowd as he walked by, but didn’t stop for anyone. He was a man on a mission.
Matt Lauer was heads down and really focused on what he was doing the whole time. He didn’t talk to anyone in the crowd while we were out there either. Ann Curry, however, was a whole different ballgame. First of all, she came out at a brisk walk in 4 inch heels. (Really cute 4 inch heels.)
We were oohing and aahing over the whole crew and snapping pictures like crazy (obviously). Where we were standing was directly in front of the door where they come out onto the plaza (as you can see). This picture where Ann is moving at a jog? She had spotted my friend and I and beelined straight at us.
Straight. At. US!
When she was close enough for us to hear her? She was oohing and aahing over us!! She ran over, grabbed our hands and squeezed while saying, “Look at you two! You are so beautiful! Thanks for coming out!” We were so shocked and flabbergasted that we just kind of stood there grinning like idiots and not really saying anything. And then she was gone, rushing to get in place to do the news. It never even occurred to us to ask her to take a picture with us until she was gone.
It was amazing.
The Today Show crew in action! We couldn’t hear a word they were saying standing behind them, but I really didn’t care. I was seeing it in action!
Al comes out first and leaves last. After he finished his segment, he took time to chat with people. These guys were all incredibly polite and professional the entire time they were out on the plaza. Natalie Morales also stayed and talked to people for quite a while. It was really nice to see.
And you can’t go out to the plaza and not get a picture with Lenny, right? In case you can’t tell, it was a little windy.
This was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had. I’m not really enamored by Hollywood or famous people, but I have watched the Today Show for a long time and these are people I respect professionally. It was a real treat to see them do their thing in the flesh.
When I got home, B and I watched the Today Show (he dvr-ed it) to see where I was on it. It was really surreal to watch it on television after being out there, the same day actually experiencing it. Are you ready for my television debut? Keep your eye on the top right hand corner. If you blink, you’ll miss me.
Did you see me? I’m standing behind the lady in the houndstooth coat. Mostly, you can see my hair and that’s about it. That’s about as “in front” of the camera as I’ll ever want to get. I have way more fun behind it. But I still think it’s pretty cool that I was “on” the Today Show. But even cooler? Meeting Ann Curry.