Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be on the TODAY show? I have. I’ve imagined chatting with the anchors as if we were old college chums and spouting fascinating, captivating bits of information. I have even imagined what I might wear - something blue. I think I look smarter in blue.
Well, if you watched the show last week, you saw me. ME! Hangin’ out with Kathie Lee and Hoda, looking uncharacteristically put-together and being as friendly with them as if we hung out every morning braiding each other’s hair.
It was surreal!
I flew in from Los Angeles the night before and the next day arrived at Rockefeller Plaza at 8:30 a.m. (…uh…I wasn’t due until 10). I waited it out at Bouchon Bakery across the plaza downing coffee and trying to resist the sweet siren song of sticky buns.
From the counter where I sat you could see all of the people gathered outside the studio windows waving at the anchors inside - hoping to catch somebody’s attention. Soon, I would be one of those people “inside.” I wondered if anyone inside ever waved back. I would wave back…if anyone waved at me.
At 10 a.m., I sauntered into 30 Rock where my editor and publicist were waiting to meet me. How unexpected! I had an ENTOURAGE! An NBC page (who told us it was her first week) escorted us to the “Green Room” where we would wait for hair and make-up, and hang out until it was time for my interview.
For those of you who don’t know, the “Green Room” is the general term for “VIP room” - the holding room where the show's guests wait for their interviews. And oddly, Green Rooms are never green. I think the only reason they call them “Green Rooms” is because of what happens to your face when the fear hits.
They’re not quite as glamorous as they sound, but there are some amenities, like snacks and a coffee bar.
And interesting people, such as TODAY anchor Natalie Morales, stop by!
I tried on a few potential outfits I had brought for the show and my entourage (I love saying that…) agreed that the purple was best and assured me that it made me look about as intelligent as anything ever would.
The page came back to escort me to hair and make-up where a genius named Bobby and an artist name Anne transformed me from my everyday self into a glamorous looking “somebody.” (I won’t tell you how long it took them…)
But I will tell you, you have got to get on TODAY for the hair and make-up alone. These people are fabulous. It was transformative.
After my hair was perfectly teased and twisted into a Julia Roberts-esque hairdo and my makeup was flawlessly applied, I was instructed by my hair stylist to change into my outfit without wrecking the good work they had done.
So I’m all dolled up, ready for my “close up” and (the surprisingly tall) Angela Lansbury walked in. And, wow, she looked fabulous!
They sent me back to the Green Room to await my interview. I was getting more and more nervous by the second. Just then, who pops in but Bobbie Thomas, TODAY's style editor who does the Bobbie's Buzz segment. (I notice she’s wearing blue.)
As I was nibbling on muffins and chatting with a very nice lady from Redbook magazine who was doing a segment on cocktails, they came for me. I can’t tell you what happened next. I don’t remember much.
I remember walking out on set trying not to trip over the hundreds of cords and wires that snaked along the floor.
I remember shaking hands with both Kathie Lee and Hoda, unable to stand up to greet them because I was tethered to my perch by a microphone. And I will always remember a woman and her daughter, out on the street behind me, looking through the window, waving…at me.
You know what? I waved back.
Sarah Maizes is an author, comedian, freelance writer and founder of MommyLiteOnline.com, a parenting humor site. Her new book, "Got MILF? The Modern Mom's Guide to Feeling Fabulous, Looking Great and Rocking a Minivan" is available now. Check out her TODAY show debut here: