David Letterman made a rare pilgrimage to Live! With Regis and Kelly this morning and just when it seemed like his segments would entertainingly be taken up by mocking Jay Leno (a preview of what to expect Sunday perhaps?), dissecting his Oprah-Jay-Super Bowl lovefest and mining his unreciprocated bromance with Philbin for laughs, the last few moments of his coffee talk were devoted—surprisingly honestly—to the elephant in the room.
Namely, his sex scandal.
For the first time outside the comfort of his own Late Night studio, Letterman addressed his headline-grabbing indiscretion, likening it to a bomb exploding, and opened up about his genuine efforts to rebuild his marriage with Regina.
The unexpected sincerity came after Regis posed a potentially worm-releasing can of a question about Letterman's home life. And after—this is Letterman we're talking about—a joke.
"I don't know if people know about this, but I've had some trouble," he began.
"You know when something like this happens—and mostly it was reckless behavior on my part—and if you behave recklessly and it hurts your family, well then of course it hurts you.
"And it was not a tragedy, it was just stupidity. And thank god, because we all know what tragedies are, and we all know how horrifying and scarring...and you can't get beyond some of these. We all know what we're talking about; you read about them every day. It's just godawful. And when you're a parent, this is your worst nightmare. So it wasn't that, thank god."
What it was, Letterman continued uninterrupted, was stupidity. Stupidity that might have—and might still—cost him a lot.
"It was stupid behavior. You take a look at the explosion and it knocks you down, and you wake up every morning and you're scared and you're depressed and sad and you kind of gotta let that knock you down…and pretty soon you've gotta start knocking it down.
"And then when that happens, you're able to take a look at the pieces left of your life, because you think an explosion has taken place, and you're looking at the shards and you see, well, can we put this back together? And by god, maybe you can put it back together, and maybe it won't be the same, but maybe it'll be different—maybe it can even be better in a different way."
What way that may be is something Dave and his family are currently working hard to figure out.
"So right now that's what we're doing, we're putting the thing back together to see what it's gonna look like—is it viable, is it something that can be satisfying and fulfilling."
If Regina was famous, she might've made the cut in our list of Hollywood's Top Five Strong, Scorned Women. Check out who made the list!