Approximately one year since retiring, David Letterman received a Peabody Award Saturday night for his 22-year tenure as host of "Late Show."
Until now, Letterman's retirement has been largely characterized by his achievement beard.
But during his acceptance speech, Letterman recalled a moment during his recent White House state dinner that put the woes of retirement in perspective.
"I tell you, if you want to have something affect your self-esteem, retire," Letterman told the audience, adding:
"So I'm seated at dinner next to a man who is the assistant chief of staff to the prime minister of Norway. And I'm feeling like a big shot ... And when it comes about dessert time, and the guy says to me, 'Excuse me. Why are you here?' And I said, You know what? I think I picked up somebody else's mail. And he said, 'So you're here by mistake?' And I said, Yeah. And he said, 'Oh.' So there you go — you get invited to the state dinner, nobody knows why. That's the sum total of being retired."
Read a partial transcript of Letterman's acceptance speech c/o Vulture.