My Twitter Feed

September 17, 2021

Fun at MSNBC – Shannyn Takes Manhattan and Rachel Bites Brian?!

I got to tag along on a great trip to MSNBC the other day.  Shannyn Moore, who was my traveling companion and roomie at the Netroots Nation conference and beyond, was asked to be a guest on Countdown with Keith Olbermann while we were in the Big Apple.


So off we went to the studio.  It was a huge, beautiful facility, and it was fun listening to Shannyn compare the studios in Anchorage with this one.  It was quite amazing and huge.   We posed for our photo ID at the entrance, and were escorted upstairs for a quick tour of the facility by Greg Cockrell of the Countdown team.

They had a case right by the elevator with little objects and letters that commemorated the NBC journalists and war correspondents who had been killed in the line of duty.  There were cameras that had been used in various war zones, and written notes and other little mementos.  It was a sobering reminder of the perils of being a journalist in dangerous parts of the world.


Then we popped in and waved hello to the staff of Hardball, Countdown and the Rachel Maddow Show.  Everyone was very nice, and working diligently, and happy to raise an eyebrow and give a big smile to the two visitors from Alaska.  It was a little overwhelming and I felt sort of relieved to be the one nobody really knew…not by sight anyway as I was to find out later.  Then Keith Olbermann himself burst out of his office on the way to makeup.  Time was short, but he was gracious enough to come over and said hello.  He was happy to see Shannyn, and shook both our hands.  I felt like a four year old.  Remember that feeling when you were a kid and you held a grown up’s hand, with your little tiny hand in their big giant hand?  That’s what the hand shake was like.  He’s quite an impressive figure.  Then he said he was sorry he didn’t have more time to chat, but that it felt like Chaos Day, and that there were about seven of those every week.  We laughed and off he went to work his magic.  No time for a picture with Brian, but we can’t have everything.  I was happy just to have had the opportunity to shake the man’s hand.


~~Countdown’s Greg Cockrell and Shannyn Moore~~

A short walk down the hall brought us to the control room.  Wow.  It was quite surreal, with dozens of TV monitors tuned in to every conceivable station, and switches and levers and buttons and people with headphones talking  to people on the other end of….something, each doing a job that, when brought together, created a seamless fluid dance resulting in…  Countdown!  What a great group of people.  I’ll never quite look at that show the same way again now that I see what goes on behind the scenes.

Before Shannyn went on, she was whisked off to hair and makeup.   I sat quietly in one of the chairs, soaking it all in.  It all felt very surreal.  I noticed someone walk in the room, and I turned around to see…Rachel Maddow.  I knew there was a chance we’d run in to her, but I still felt surprised.  She was friendly and gracious, and when Shannyn introduced me as  “Mudflats,” she brightened up and said, “Oh!  Mudflats!  I read that blog. Great!”  I was doing alright up until then, feeling very much under the radar and enjoying watching Shannyn be the media darling that she is, but at that point I was completely speechless.  Rachel Maddow is a Mudflatter.  Yup, just stood there.  Without speech.  I managed to recover enough to get a picture of her with Brian, which she was happy to do.  Then I mumbled something stupid about guessing that she wasn’t a vegetarian, and wished her luck on her show and burst out into the hallway completely overwhelmed. 


Then, back to the control room to watch Shannyn on Countdown.  She popped up on a bunch of the screens in the huge wall o’ media.  



I thought she did a really great job, and so did everybody else.  It was quite an evening all around.  Thanks to the great folks at MSNBC for being so gracious.  It’s fun to see people who really love their jobs, and who do them so well.



69 Responses to “Fun at MSNBC – Shannyn Takes Manhattan and Rachel Bites Brian?!”
  1. teutonic13 says:

    You really are a good photographer AKM- and the story was well- it was you- so unassuming in your presence, yet so deliberate in the details. You can really tell a story. And do it well.

  2. sauerkraut says:

    Good question… where is buttercup? Not that I really care, but… makes me think of a “prank” someone pulled at an outhouse out in the boonies back when I was in high school… the seat was replaced with a thin veneer… when a hapless person happened by, ummm… well, you get the picture.

  3. michigander says:

    Hubby has been watching for a hidden Moose on Maddow’s desk since AKM 1rst mentioned a photo.
    He is very disappointed that Rachel ate him )o:

  4. seattlefan says:

    #61 MonaLisa:

    I could not agree more with your sentiments! Rachel is indeed a treasure.

  5. seattlefan says:

    Great pictures! The control room looks amazing. I toured the CNN studios in Atlanta once but didn’t get this up and close. What a hoot that Rachel is! Lol!

    Hope you get caught up and back to your normal routines soon. 🙂

  6. SK in PR says:

    ENVY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So jealous… Good for you… I am an Olbermann junkie…

  7. VoteNov4 says:

    You writing about your adrenaline rush is giving me an adrenaline rush! That’s why I read your blog–you convey facts and emotions equally well.

  8. Tina in Tennessee says:

    @ 34 Kath the Scrappy

    Thank you SO much for posting the link to “Republican Pizza”!

    I loved how she turned aside and ordered it, anyway.

  9. MonaLisa IS MY NAME! says:

    You all have NO idea of the dimensions to which my head would be in danger of swelling, to find out that someone I respect as much as I do Ms. Maddow not only read my blog, but actually remembered doing so….

    …well, after someone fetched me some smellin’ salts, of course.

    Dear Rachel:

    That which you do is so vitally important. You’re shedding light and clarity in the murky miasma that is American Politics. That you can perform with such consistent cordiality in the face of the calculating obfuscation, blatant lying and sheer stupidity that seemingly permeates the public discourse today, only enhances my respect for you.

    I realize that your particular code of honor demands that you show respect to those less intellectually gifted than you are, but sometimes (as my dear, sainted Mother used to say): Stupid needs smackin’.

    (May I suggest you start with Tucker? Not that he’s at all relevant, but he seems to enjoy it so, setting himself up for it every chance he gets…. 😉 )

    Thank you for being an excellent (if sadly isolated) example of intelligent media.

    ~ MonaLisa

    (*off to get a tape measure now, to begin monitoring AKM’s cranial dimensions*)

  10. MinNJ says:

    That was just so much fun to read! And the pictures are great…I’m so glad you had such a terrific time in NYC. Very, very cool.

  11. Say NO to Palin in Politics says:

    Oops, I also meant to say wow and congrats to AKM and Shannyn, this must have been a very inspiring trip.

  12. Say NO to Palin in Politics says:

    I just watched Rachel’s “Republican Pizza” video, totally great! And I totally agree with her. Dang go for it, the dems need to put together the very best bill can come up with and pass it, no holds barred, make it an ultimate dream come true bill. Really shake things up and go back to Single Payer, it’s perfect. in time the rest of the country will come to realize it’s a good thing and be thankful for it.

    Personally, when it comes to health and safety, I’m not too keen on certain things being for profit, I’d like to see the hospitals owned by the taxpayer also.

    It is SO obvious the repubs will not cooperate and have no interest in moving ‘anything’ forward.

  13. NYCgirl says:

    I’m so happy that both of you got to see the sights and sounds of MY Hometown. Although the heat and humidity were unbearable,it sounds like you had fun.
    My favorite bloggers meet my favorite News personalities. Thank you ALL. You help me stay sane when the other channels feed me CRAP “news”.
    I would love to see a pix of Shannon’s face as she stepped out of Grand Central Station.
    Also,too, Keith seemed mutually happy to finally meet Shannon. You girls did well,and the work that you have done up to this point has not gone unnoticed.
    Welcome Home,glad that you enjoyed Manhattan. There is nothing else like it. It’s not the “Real America”but we enjoy it anyway.
    P.S. Where’s Buttercup

  14. craigtamy says:

    Oh my gosh I would have been starstruck!!! I’m so happy you had a great trip. I went to NY once about 17 years ago and it was magical, not at all what people said. Keith and Rachel, what a treat. Glad you’re home safe and thanks for the updates on your trip.

  15. mo says:

    wow, Kath at #34, thanks for posting the link to Rachel Maddow’s _brilliant_ “Pizza” segment on health insurance reform. That was great! I don’t watch TV much anymore, so I missed this. Maybe it’s time to start turning on the tube again, at least when Rachel’s on!

  16. bubbles says:

    akm!! beautiful pictures….i bet Rachel Maddow was very happy to meet YOU also. you are, what new yorkers call, a CLASS ACT. there is no greater compliment in our lexicon….welcome home.

  17. ENOUGHwiththetrainwreck says:

    rachel is stinkin’ cool. olbermann is major awesome.

    dang – what a cool way to end your tour of the lower 48.

  18. Claw Washout Palin says:

    You do good work, AKM. You are not a stranger among people. They may not know you by you name or face. However, they know Mudflats and enjoy coming to your site and reading the blog.

    BTW: It may surprise you how many people have bought your boots!!

  19. daisydem says:

    I am so glad Rachel is a mudpup! Not surprising though since she is one smart cookie!

  20. zyggy says:

    How is Brian’s leg doing after that emergency surgery? =)

  21. LisanTx says:

    That was very interesting! Thanks for sharing it. Sounds like you had a wonderful experience in NYC.

    I bet it was fun to accompany a newcomer (Shannyn) to the city. But in the MSNBC studios, she was the experienced one. So you took turns being awed. Very cool.

  22. Kimosabe says:

    “Not a vegetarian”, hahahaha very quick AKM!

  23. C.Rock says:

    I’m sooo jealous……………Rachel and Keith are the Best.

  24. trisha says:

    AKM-Welcome back and thanks for sharing your adventures and the great photo of Rachel with Brian.

    I “heart” Rachel and Keith!!!!!!

  25. Ripley says:

    That’s it. I’m in love. 😉

  26. Bea says:

    Pea green w/ envy here. Keith AND Rachel??? You are one lucky blogger!

    I wish our non-cable “journalists” would do half the work that those two put into their shows. Raise your hand if you’d like to see Rachel interview XINO… there’d be nothing left of Quittypants but a puddle of goo & hair extensions!

  27. LurkingSeamstressPDX says:

    I’m star-struck just reading this! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  28. JRC says:

    Was Rachel wearing her sneakers? 😉

    AK I’m glad you had such an awesome trip. And what an experience for you to go behind the scenes at MSNBC. Can’t wait to hear more about your trip.

  29. the problem child says:

    Lovely! Glad you got to meet all these cool folks at MSNBC!

  30. Amanda says:

    THAT is just so fantastic. I would have been a wide-eyed child just gaping at all the awesome.

  31. Linda -WA says:

    Welcome home! What an experience and thank you for taking us along with you. The picture of Rachel and Brian is priceless. I adore her, she is the daughter I never had (no offense to my son).

  32. lemonfair says:

    Great story – how nice to see you say you were quite overwhelmed. Some of us would be overwhelmed to see you, of course. Folks is just folks, but fame does this. So there’s a chain of overwhelmedness, I guess. Nice to have you back.

  33. twain12 says:

    very cool 🙂

  34. Kath the Scrappy says:

    And, umm Rachel if you’re reading, many of us folks with dialup or bottom line basic TV cable can’t get your show (or KO or Jon S or Maher) to load (after paying the medical insurance, who can afford high speed internet oftentimes).

    THAT’s why we have to rely on Youtubes. Not trying to cheat your advertisers, but we seriously want to watch you all ‘Slay the Dragons’. Thank you, you are doing such a fine job there!

  35. Kath the Scrappy says:

    @ 25 Tina in Tennessee at 9:03 PM

    …And, imho, Rachel’s ‘pizza’ skit (as Gryphen posted on IM) might have helped turn the tide on the health care debate.

    Hey thanks! I missed that at Gryphen’s but found it at Youtube. Watched it twice, as a matter of fact.

    I love watching Rachael normally, but she really slams home runs when it comes to the health insurance debate and the hypocrisies of the congress people trying to bamboozle us (once again) !!! Here’s the Youtube for her pizza commentary, a MUST see:

  36. califpat says:

    This is so exciting! I feel like I was there with you AKM, Shannyn and Brian. Just a little over a year ago, we came to this site with major concerns about our country. And because of AKM, Shannyn, Celtic and Gryphen and others we have accomplished so much.

    Now, MSNBC, Keith Olberman, Rachel and NYC!! Mudpups are palling around with stars, (AKM and Shannyn). I am so appreciative to be part of this inspiring community and thank you all. AKM., you created this community and I think I speak for most MudPups when I say , thank you with all my heart. Also, too, Brian’s becoming a world traveler.

    And to all the Mudpups who have fought the fights and made things progress in America, (and Alaska particularly) (snark), let’s keep moving toward change for a better America! We can do it! Yes we can!!

  37. pdx mb says:

    Ahhh, what a great post. We are so lucky to be able to live vicariously through you–to meet Rachel… doesn’t get much better than that!

  38. Oh, this was great to read about after a less than good weekend. Thanks, AKM, you made my day. And so did that pic of Rachel with Brian. That’s a hoot. And so was your comment about her not being a vegetarian. I’d probably have just stood with my mouth hanging open the whole time. 🙂

  39. Stuck says:

    Haven’t posted in a while, but you deserved this AKM! Way to go!

  40. Tantef says:

    Ahh, Rachel has had a taste of Brian….not long now before he shows up on her desk! HINT!

  41. Sean says:

    Great pictures! How cool must that have been??? Sounds like a very inspiring trip overall…Please post more pictures if you have them!!!

  42. BooBooBear says:

    What great fun, you two! For months I have forwarded Shannyn and AKM’s posts regarding X-GINO to Rachel and here all along, she has been reading your blog! Awesome! You have done Alaska PROUD!

  43. Irishgirl says:

    Wow, just wow. What an incredible experience. Thanks for sharing it.

    I spent a few days in NYC recently, got to meet some mudpups, Thanks for creating this community where I felt safe arranging to meet and stay and travel with fellow mudpups.

    I loved New York. I am so jealous that you got to meet Rachel, even though I treated my Brian a little better, he got to eat Alaskan salmon!!

  44. Tina in Tennessee says:

    This is a wonderful, vicarious experience! What a blast!

    And, imho, Rachel’s ‘pizza’ skit (as Gryphen posted on IM) might have helped turn the tide on the health care debate.

    Rachel ~ if you’re reading this, thank you for that skit, and thank you for giving Brian lip service he’ll never forget!

    (AKM ~ thank you for hauling Brian’s butt all over the place! Does he have a special pouch in your purse for napping?)

  45. LibertyLover says:

    Welcome Home, AKM! and a shout out to Rachel Maddow — one of the few journalists/talk show hosts that will ask the HARD questions of her guests!

  46. Bones AK says:

    nice piece, interesting angle, can’t wait to hear more about you and moore.

  47. curiouser says:

    I think your guess that Rachel “wasn’t a vegetarian”, as she chomped down on poor Brian’s leg, shows a nimble mind and smart wit…under pressure, no less.

    Hey, you got a sample of Rachel’s DNA. Can anyone make a funny about that? (The clever part of my brain isn’t working.)

  48. jojobo1 says:

    Same for me Cathy from Colorado Shannyn and AKM thanks for sharing everything with us about you experiences.Pictures are great. waving to Rachel.

  49. Cathy from Colorado says:

    Thanks for sharing your great trip with us.

  50. samper says:

    I did the standard, public NBC tour. NOTHING like this adventure! Looks like so much fun!!!!

    I’d rather meet Rachel than see the SNL set any old day!

    Welcome home, girls!

  51. CO almost native says:

    Amazing. If Brian’s a Maddow fan, I don’t think he’ll wash that leg for a loooong time.

  52. Eyes Wide Open in Pgh, PA says:

    AKM: Now you have a sense of how we Pittsburghers felt to meet you and Shannyn!

  53. Gryphen says:

    How weird, I just heard Shannyn’s version of this about an hour ago.

    She is still walking on clouds.

    I looks like you two definitely made an impression on New York City.

  54. Suchanut says:

    AKM – this is just so cool – what an experience. Last August 27th you certainly never thought that less than a year later you’d be watching Rachel Maddow bite into a moose, er…mousse – Farmer stole my line :). It is amazing how much has happened in the last year.

    I want to hear more about Cambridge and how that visit to Harvard came about. That must have been just as awesome, I mean, c’mon, Harvard. Cambridge. I’m sure you will tell that tale when the time is right.

    Welcome home. 🙂

  55. Women Who Run With The Wolves says:

    Wa Too Cool, Girls! You make us Alaska Women Proud!

  56. Rita says:

    Your photos & comments make this “real”.
    Thanks for sharing! You done good girl!

  57. mhrt says:

    Brian is really famous now, palling around with the elite in NYC. Cry your eyes out sarah palin. Next we need Brian to have his picture taken with a tiny, talented Hollywood starlet. Go Brian,AKM and Shannyn. I can not wait for AKM and Shannyn to have their own show.

  58. nswfm CA says:

    Good for all three of you! Worked on the other side of that building for 5 years. Fun to see it through your eyes!

  59. justafarmer says:

    boodog…great minds naturally think alike!

  60. boodog says:

    Welcome back, akm! (justafarmer stole my joke..)

  61. InJuneau says:

    How very cool (and we’re all thrilled that Rachel is a mudpup, even if she’s not showing the proper deference to our mascot! 😉 )

  62. Cynamen Winter says:

    Shannyn is a ‘natural’ in that environment….and talk about takin’ a bite outta the Big Apple, er–the moose’s caboose! It really looked like a whirlwind tour and great images AKM!

  63. mhrt says:

    Wow ..that was fun to read.. Thanks AKM..Is Brian OK.

  64. Far From Fenway Fan says:

    Ah, living vicariously is a wondrous and wonderful thing! Thank you for “taking” us to MSNBC to meet Keith and Rachel. I was thrilled just reading about it. I can only somewhat imagine what is was like to BE there. You gals have done us proud …. as always. I hope that the trip east confirmed for you what all of us on the other side of the monitor have known for a long time: you have made a difference and we thank you for it!

  65. dowl says:

    AKM, thanks for all that you do. I’m sure that Brian didn’t mind his picture with Rachel Maddow. He probably feels honored.

    I’m glad that your excellent ‘NAZI’ post made it to Huffpost.

  66. justafarmer says:

    maybe Rachel thought Brian was a chocolate mousse…

  67. pearl89 says:

    Love the photo of Rachel.

  68. sauerkraut says:

    ya’d think I’d notice something before octomom on the vid screen, but there she is. …

    what happened to the guys after netroots?

Leave A Comment

%d bloggers like this: