David Letterman is unrecognizable just 10 months after his retirement. Bald, bearded, and extremely happy, the former late night talk show host was captured on camera jogging on the Caribbean island of St. Barts. While many fans can’t help but see a certain resemblance to another famous bearded man, San Diego’s CBS 8 News cast members pointed out another quite unusual fact about the new David Letterman – his sweaty shorts clinging a bit too tight to his legs.
When running along the beach of St. Barts, where David Letterman reportedly owns property, he was wearing a loose T-shirt of his alma mater, Ball State, and bright yellow bathing suit trunks. As CNN International reports on March 23, “Wow, David Letterman — is that you? It’s been only 10 months since the late-night host did his farewell show on CBS, but he already looks quite … different.”
Since his retirement in May 2015, the host of the “Late Show With David Letterman” has kept a rather low profile with only a few appearances at the Indy 500, Michael J. Fox’s benefit to fight Parkinson’s disease in New York in November , and then an onstage chat at his alma mater, Ball State.
In an interview with Brian Scott of the Whitefish Review, Letterman recalled his 33 years of being a host on late night television and his new life on his ranch in the northwest of Montana. In the interview, David talked about his retirement, raising his son Harry, his love of Montana, his own childhood, and growing that amazing beard.
“We did this television show—my friends and I—for a very long time. It’s probably like anyone else’s professional pursuit. When you are doing it for so long, and for each day—I have always likened it to running a restaurant—because you get response to the day’s endeavor immediately. Either from the audience or the ratings, but you know as early as the next day how you did,” Letterman said in regard to his long-running TV show.
“And because of this introspection, you believe that what you are doing is of great importance and that it is affecting mankind wall-to-wall. And then when you get out of it you realize, oh, well, that wasn’t true at all. (laughter) It was just silliness. And when that occurred to me, I felt so much better and I realized, geez, I don’t think I care that much about television anymore. I feel foolish for having been misguided by my own ego for so many years.”
David Letterman knows all too well about being able to appreciate life for whatever time you have, after his own father passed away at the age of 57 and he himself had to have a life-saving heart surgery 15 years ago. In regard to being able to raise his now 12-year-old son Harry, David Letterman shared the following:
“Because of my son I’m not growing up. Because of my son I do things I would have done when I was 12, to show him—look, you can do this. It’s okay. You can do this. Don’t be worried about this. Don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself. A lot of this is in Montana. A lot of this is skiing or hiking. I have gotten into the habit of jumping into any body of water we come across when we’re hiking in Montana—that as you know, is really too cold for any form of life other than fish. (laughter) You can feel your heart being sucked into your digestive tract. And so I’ll just jump in. Because I want him to know that it’s okay for him to just jump in.”
“We’ll get in the river and we’ll float the river. We’ll get out of the boat and he and I will just float in the river. You know—let’s do stuff. So, I find on his behalf, I’m not growing up. You have to grow up to have some wisdom, but I think part of that is letting your kids know that there’s some pretty silly stuff that you can get away with that is going to enhance your life.”
Whether being a young boy or a 68-year-old man, one of the things that you can certainly get away with is running along a beautiful sandy beach while your shorts are clinging to your sweaty body.
In regard to having to look perfectly for his TV appearances, Letterman shared the following insight:
“You know what? I used to say, every day, ‘I am so sick and tired of shaving.’ I had to shave every day, every day, for 33 years. And even before that when I was working on local TV. And I just thought, the first thing I will do when I am not on TV is stop shaving. And everybody hates it. My wife hates it. My son hates it. But it’s interesting. I’ve kind of developed a real creepy look with it that I’m sort of enjoying. And I can tell that people are off-put by it. And the more people implore me to shave, the stronger my resolve is to not shave. So the day that I shave, I’ll call you.”
Undoubtedly, David Letterman does not only look extremely happy but is truly happy while jogging on the beach and being all sweaty. Quite apparently, that happiness began when the retired show host realized there is more to life than being a late night TV show host:
“ I can remember the first day that Stephen Colbert took over—put his [new] show on the air. I thought I would have some trouble, some emotional trouble, or some feeling of displacement, but I realized, hey, that’s not my problem anymore. And I have felt much better. It’s something for younger men and women to take on. So I haven’t missed it, the way I thought I might. And I do little things here and there to sort of keep me up and moving. But no, I don’t miss it the way I thought—and then I think, holy crap! I’ll be 69 next year and I’ve been doing this for 33 years. What did I want? Like you work until you’re a hundred? “