Other than people under rocks and those poor, socially defective enginerds, most have at least heard about Conan Oâ€™Brien leaving NBC just seven months after taking over the heralded â€œTonight Show.â€
After about a week of back-and-fourth, he-said-they-said crap, the struggling network and the giraffe-like host divorced Thursday.
For Oâ€™Brien and his staff: A $45 million separation package ($12 million going to his staff) and at least a seven-month hiatus â€“â€“ if not more.
For NBC: Jay Leno, a potential hit in the key demographic (ages 18 to 49) ratings and lighter pockets.
So one question: How could NBC be so stupid?
The numbers speak for themselves. For the last Oâ€™Brien-hosted show Friday, preliminary Nielsen ratings tallied 7.0, more than all other late night network shows combine.
Also, the show drew about 4.8 on the scale for NBCâ€™s key demographic, which was higher than Jay Lenoâ€™s last â€œTonight Showâ€ for the same age range.
The point: Conanâ€™s got a lot of pull with young people, and theyâ€™ll follow him wherever he lands.
Despite this juicy tidbit of entertainment news, in a time like this, where people are still beneath rubble in Haiti and hundreds of thousands of Americans are out of jobs, itâ€™s a wonder to many why this storyâ€™s important.
In fact, itâ€™s not. In comparison, nothing relates to these horrible tragedies. And Conan agrees.
â€œFor 17 years, Iâ€™ve been getting paid to do what I love most and, in a world with real problems, Iâ€™ve been absurdly lucky,â€ Oâ€™Brien wrote in a statement to the New York Times.
But for so long weâ€™re the ones who have been lucky. Lucky to have an escape from this world of pain and grief, even if just for an hour of late night TV with a small mug of CoCo.
Mr. Oâ€™Brien, come back soon.