Why David Letterman Doesn't Miss 'The Late Show'

"I feel foolish for having been misguided by my own ego," he said of hosting.

ByABC News
December 17, 2015, 3:34 PM

— -- David Letterman is adapting to life after "The Late Show" just fine.

The former late-night host said in a new interview that a few months after his final broadcast, he has gained perspective of his job as a late-night host.

"[Working in television, 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,'" he said in an interview with the Whitefish Review.

"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."

Now, Letterman, 68, is enjoying spending time with his wife and their 12-year-old son. He's also avoiding watching television, including Stephen Colbert's take on his former show, as he no longer stays up later than 10 p.m.

"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," he explained. "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.

"I don’t miss it the way I thought," he continued. "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? So there’s a lot of practical reasons why a person wouldn’t miss this."

One such reason is that he doesn't have to shave every day anymore. And while his wife and son both hate his new look, he insists that his beard is here to stay.

"I’ve kind of developed a real creepy look with it that I’m sort of enjoying," he said. "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."