How A Night At SNL Brought Back Twenty-Something Memories

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I want to work here. It looks like so much fun!

I went to a taping of Saturday Night Live a few weeks ago when a friend of mine was nice enough to get me two tickets. Halsey was both the host and musical guest.

My boyfriend and I walked into 30 Rock and entered into a well-oiled machine. Stand in this line, show your ID, sit on a couch in this waiting room, stand in another line, have a seat in the studio.

There we were – on the Saturday Night Live set we had seen hundreds of times on TV. It was very exciting.

Although I couldn’t wait for the show to start, I enjoyed watching people work on the set while we waited. From the moment we walked through the front door, each staff member was knowledgeable about the studio and the inner workings of SNL. I was amazed by how quickly these smiling men and women seated the guests without incident. Seeing the crew set the stage and speak to the cast was fascinating.

Everyone was happy. Nobody working at Saturday Night Live seemed stressed or worried and there was a sense of camaraderie in the air. What great place to work, I thought.  To be clear – I am not looking for a job. It just felt like a magical place for all involved.

I think of myself as a people person. I could see myself seating guests with a smile on my face, then having the good fortune to watch the live show every Saturday night while hanging out with fun and happy coworkers. It seems like an amazing job. Yes, I would love to work here. I thought that those who do are quite lucky.

As I continued to observe the SNL employees around me, I noticed something else…every person was young. By young, I mean in their twenties. This could be their first job out of college. It was then that my whole thought process changed.

I pictured myself working and hanging out with these young employees. It was ridiculous. I am in my fifties – not my twenties! I don’t look like them, I don’t act like them, and I could actually be their mother. I would not fit in here at all.

The thought depressed me for a moment. When did this happen? I used to be a cool, fun twenty-something. How am I now a fifty-something mom of two girls in their late teens? I swear I just graduated college.

My first job out of college was working for Mattel Toys. While working for a toy company is not like the movie Big, it was a great place to work. Every year in February the toy industry hosts “Toy Fair.” Mattel put us up at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. (I actually lived in Manhattan at the time and they still gave me a beautiful hotel room.) We worked extremely hard that week but we also had so much fun. There were nightly dinners and an annual banquet. Many of my coworkers were also twenty-something and we had a great time together.

Eventually I got married, moved to the suburbs, had children and left Mattel Toys to become a stay-at-home mom. I have never regretted that decision for a moment, but being at Saturday Night Live made me relive my time at Mattel with fondness. Being young, with the world at your feet, was a fantastic thing.

However, being fifty-something is really great too. My kids are growing up and starting their own first act, while I am happily in my second. I might not be running around New York these days, but I am now doing something that I love. I have found my passion in writing and am super excited about our site, Living the Second Act. I can’t wait to see where it leads me.

Besides, I couldn’t possibly be running around on a TV set at 11:30 pm. I am in bed by then :).


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