For weeks I was wondering where Morley Safer was every time I tuned into "60 Minutes" on CBS. I wondered whether he was going to do any more stories for the 48-year-old news magazine show, but I had never shown any bewildered amazement to find that he was still on the program. And that is the secret of when to bow out . . . leave them wanting more before they get tired of you.
Morley Safer was the last of the old guard of "60 Minutes" reporters, having been on that program since 1970. His stories ran the gamut from interviews with legendary actresses to exotic foreign locales, as well as biting pieces on implausible trends, such as the desire in the modern art world to call anything a piece of art (which didn't endear him to a lot of gallery owners or fine-art dealers). Hardened by his own CBS reports from the front in the Vietnam War, Safer was by turns witty and urbane, sharp and droll. He wrote better than some TV reporters speak, and he was always the cool, calm professional on camera. "60 Minutes," still a good show but having lost a good deal of its luster over the years, just lost a little more of what makes it special in having lost Morley Safer. I wish him well in his retirement, as I'm sure everyone else does. :- )