It's been hard to put a name on what I am doing: most people call it "retirement" but if I'm working just as hard in a year as I am right now, I'll be happy. I'm really looking forward to getting out of the studio and getting involved in the stories I want to do. I'll miss that daily routine: I think everyone who works on the show when we're packaging it - every afternoon - would agree that there are more laughs per minute than in most other places. You need that when you're trying to make your energy level peak at 6:00 PM.
On the other hand, getting out of the studio is really the only authentic way of getting a feel for our audience. I realize that every time we shoot a Jay's Journal on the street somewhere and have the most amazing diversity of people stop and comment on the show. I'm reminded of it at Daily Planet book signing events where almost every person in the line is a fourteen-year-old girl or boy. And if they don't have a book, they ask me to sign their arm or even their forehead. I'm hoping that I will get a taste of the best of both worlds: to have the opportunity to be involved in some great television stories and to move around the country and meet some of the people who love what we do.
I do regret that I have many friends in the Daily Planet office whom I will see much less often than I do now, but there's no doubt that I will come back from time to time, maybe even to an annoying degree! When the day comes that the producers stop recognizing me, that'll be my cue to ride off into the sunset - for good. But for now, it's au revoir, not adieu.
May 17, 2011