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Hurricane Matthew has diminished to a category 2 storm as of 5 p.m. Friday. The storm is still “hugging” Florida’s eastern coast, about 40 miles off the beach in Jacksonville, and inching north at about 12 miles per hour. The storm is still powerful, though, unleashing maximum sustained winds of 110 miles per hour and threatening the shoreline with storm surges up to 11 feet.

David Letterman entertained live audiences (plus millions of viewers at home) every weeknight during his 33 years as a late-night television host. And Friday night at Manhattan’s SVA Theatre, just blocks from where he broadcasted for both NBC and CBS, the former stand-up comedian convened his largest crowd since retiring in May 2015—a sold-out group of nearly 500—at The New Yorker Festival. His wife, Regina, and their almost 13-year-old son, Harry, watched from the second row as a besuited and bewhiskered Letterman fielded questions from New Yorker articles editor Susan Morrison, who also oversees the magazine’s humor page.

Ostensibly, Letterman, 69, was on hand to promote his October 30 episode of the National Geographic Channel’s global warming-focused series, Years of Living Dangerously, for which he traveled to India to meet with leaders in the world’s fastest-growing economy. But talk did not actually turn to climate change until nearly 75 minutes into the conversation. However, it took less than three minutes for Morrison to bring up Donald Trump, a frequent guest on Late Night with David Letterman and the Late Show with David Letterman for decades—before he was the Republican presidential nominee.