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A brand new channel launched in August 2014 called TruTV. TruTV is owned by Turner Broadcasting – the broadcaster behind TBS which airs Conan O’Brien’s ‘Conan’ talk show in the US. ‘Conan’ airs on TruTV Mondays-Thursdays at 11pm – the first time the show has been broadcast on UK TV. So, I thought why not try my luck at TruTV’s Twitter hashtag competition at the end of July, where you had to tell them why you deserve to go to their launch party in London.
I recently visited New York, and as a big fan of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, I was keen to see if I could attend a taping of a show. Normally, this would mean showing up at the studios quite early, or emailing Comedy Central months in advance, but luckily I have a friend of a friend who works on the show, and they were good enough to put me on the “VIP List”.
I was in New York in August and, as always, going to a taping of the Late Show With David Letterman was high on my list of things to do there. I had been to Late Show tapings in the past and always loved them. We arrived in New York by Amtrak train on Sunday 26th August after having been in Washington DC for a few days beforehand and had already planned we were heading to the Ed Sullivan Theater lobby on the Monday to put our names on the ballot.
My second visit to New York City was Saturday 21st to Friday 27th November 2009. This was my first time in New York since October 2007. I was lucky enough to attend a taping of the Late Show on my first visit and was hoping to do the same on this visit, so one of the first things I did on the Sunday after I arrived was to register myself in the Letterman ticket ballot in the lobby of the Ed Sullivan Theatre. Walking into the theatre lobby was just as surreal as the first time a couple of years earlier. I had a chat with one of the Late Show interns and explained I was from London and had come all the way to New York to see the Late Show.
My 40th Birthday is hurtling towards me like a runaway train with no brakes. “How can I cope with this milestone?… obvious – I’ll go to New York and see Dave!… easy to say!… who will I go with?… erm, myself!” And so I did! It cost me more money than I could spare, but what’s money for if not to enhance and enjoy your life, right? (or as Dave wisely puts it – “travel is the best investment one can make in oneself”). “I could have bought a 50inch plasma TV with this money instead!” I told the man at the Post Office changing my hard earned Sterling into US Dollars, “You’ll have a lot more fun in America!” he wisely announced!
It was really surreal walking into the lobby (and even seeing the marquee outside) for the first time. The main concern I had with this was having to give the hotel name as I only had a UK mobile (cell) number – nothing in the US. They said they would phone the hotel if I was successful in the ballot lottery for tickets and leave me a voicemail or a message on reception – which sounded great. The interns in there were very helpful and I explained I had come from London and ran lateshowuk.com.