ditch the tape

What I first noticed about David Letterman was how quickly he ditched the suit.

During a taping of the Late Show on Monday at the Ed Sullivan Theater in Manhattan, he put off donning his suit jacket as long as possible, greeting the crowd in just a shirt and tie for a pre-show Q & A session before shrugging on the coat just as recording began.

Minutes after the show ended — the big highlight was seeing shock jock Howard Stern try to kiss Letterman on the lips — the host was completely out of his monkey suit. Clad in a long-sleeve shirt, khaki pants and hiking boots, he looked nothing like the big shot broadcasting legend who had held court with Don Rickles and Stern just moments earlier.

And perhaps that was the point. Because as Letterman answered questions posed by NPR about his impending departure, it was obvious he had settled into the idea that his historic run was finally coming to an end and his life was entering a new chapter.

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