Jay Leno is stepping down from the "Tonight Show" spotlight. Conan O'Brien will take over the most famous late night chair on television. I have a Leno memory I wanted to share with you.
In the early 90's, before Leno took over for Johnny Carson (he was the fill-in host at this time) .. he was in Wichita doing stand-up at a local comedy club. It's no secret that Leno loves old motorcycles. It just so happens my grandpa is a well known antique motorcycle collector and builder. Long story short, Leno heard about my grandpa, and wanted to see his collection.
After his set that night, Leno bummed a ride to my grandpa's house in west Wichita. Friends and family were already there, having caught wind that Leno was stopping by for a visit. I was there, and I will never forget when Leno arrived. He was wearing his customary denim shirt and jeans. Nothing fancy. In fact, he was so regular and normal .. you would never know he was famous. He stayed for a few hours, and he made people laugh the entire time. He checked out every motorcycle in my grandpa's collection. He spoke to everyone.
I was just 14, so I really didn't know what to expect. I remember he took time to talk to me .. even signed an autograph to my 8th grade teacher .. It said .. "Let Jeff out of class, he's with me!"
Not much to this little story, except to tell you that Leno was a class act. It seems that he is still a great guy all these years after taking over the "Tonight Show." My grandpa still builds motorcycles, and the pictures of Leno's visit are proudly displayed in my grandparent's home to this very day. A good memory that I will never forget.