David Letterman is doing more than growing that crazy-man-living-in-a-cabin beard during his retirement from late-night television.
In a new interview with the New York Times, pegged to his episode of Years of Living Dangerously airing Oct. 30 on the National Geographic Channel, he talked about life after the Late Show With David Letterman, which went off the air in May 2015. It turns out that the man who was engaged in late-night wars with Jay Leno for years doesn’t miss it and is actually “embarrassed” that he spent so much time focused on the show.
Here’s what the 69-year-old funnyman says he’s up to now that he’s no longer tied to 9-to-5ing…
1. Growing the beard. The thing first made headlines during his St. Barts jog and it’s taken on a life of its own. He now describes the facial hair as “a good reminder to me that that was a different life.” Letterman added that his family (he’s married to Regina Lasko and they have a son Harry) has “given up” on the beard. His son “thinks it’s creepy.”
2. Shopping in Target. There isn’t a superstore that Letterman, who splits his time between residences in NYC and Westchester (though still has his sprawling Montana estate), doesn’t like, apparently. He’s also shopped at CVS and Walgreens, according to the story. He even got to visit Target on a weekday afternoon! “I’m the guy who holds up lines because he always thinks he has the correct change. ‘How much was that? I think I may have the 87 cents,’” he explained. How cool would it be to see him in line though?
3. He also rides the commuter train. The article says he can “appreciate the quotidian activities he’s rarely engaged in since the 1980s,” including “riding the train into Grand Central Terminal.” Suspiciously though, there is only one Twitter sighting we could find of Letterman on Metro-North and it was posted in 2014 (before he retired), so we are skeptical.
4. Dogging Trump. In another recent article with the NYT as well as at the New Yorker Festival, Letterman trashed the Republican presidential candidate, calling him “damaged” and “a person to be shunned.”
5. Having dinner with Paul Shaffer. Our favorite tidbit from the new story was that he continues to meet his show sidekick and band leader “every few weeks” for dinner.
6. Traveling. In addition to stays at his 2,700-acre ranch Montana estate, where he drives an electric car and recently installed solar panels, Dave traveled to India for Years of Living Dangerously. “You talk about the energy of New York City — India makes New York City look like nap time,” he told the paper about the trip. Sydney Trattner, a producer who made the journey there with Letterman, said that the superstar was dogged by self-doubt throughout the trip. “He never thinks he’s doing a good job. We had to reassure him constantly, saying, ‘Dave, you’ve probably spent more time talking to people than anybody alive.’ And it still wasn’t good enough for him.”
7. Hanging with Harry. He gave an update about his boy, who will be 13 in November, talking about his entertainment interests (his favorite cartoon is The Amazing World of Gumball) and life with his friends (he recently went to a birthday party at a steakhouse). He also talked about his parenting approach, saying, “Early on, I did all the things that I liked to do when I was a kid. Not many of them stuck. Then you realize, all right, we’ll just see how this develops. That’s probably more fun. You really don’t want a carbon copy of yourself running around.”
Most interesting though was that Letterman said unequivocally that he doesn’t “miss late-night television,” adding, “I’m a little embarrassed that, for 33 years, it was the laser focus of my life.”
Sounds like he has plenty of other interests that are making him happy.