I’m pretty sure that I am not the only one this morning who got a little tearful when it was time to say goodbye and godspeed to Charles Osgood, after twenty-two years of spending time with someone who had become a friend, albeit not someone who ever came to dinner, but would have been welcome, any day, any time. It was a reminder that we count on certain people to be our constants in our lives. It is also a reminder that we can measure the time of watching CBS Sunday Morning by seeing Charles (and this is the most familiar name which I will refer to him) grow older, week after week, year after year. The depth of our mutual relationship with him was in the greeting we heard and the comfort he showed us when the stories aired were difficult, and we could feel the connection between the pixels from the television to the couch or chair where we always watched him.
It was so lovely to see the life he has between Sundays and the people he loves and shares his days with. A husband, a father and grandfather and a colleague, so loved and so admired. It’s good to know that he makes pancakes, and plays the piano and seeing the beautiful home in the south of France he spends time at, makes it clear that although he relates to his viewers as a kind of “regular” guy in many ways, that he has worked hard and is an exemplary professional who is so deserving of this next chapter of his life.
Feeling like we are special to him as his viewers, his Sunday peeps, made it more emotional to let this part of our Sunday morning ritual change. We know we have changed too and we grow older and we don’t often want some of the changes to happen but they do. My peers of a certain age know that if Charles is retiring, can we be far behind? Do we wonder what he thought about as he made the decision at 83 to call it a Sunday. Our lives are busy, and thinking about our work lives and careers being finite at some point, if we are lucky to make that decision because it is our choice, can be daunting. Working for many of us is defining our worth and what we “do”. When we stop “doing”, we have to reset our mindset to know that our work is valuable but keeping it in context that our job is not our life. All that surrounds our weeks (168 hours) surrounds our work. That’s our life. So glad that Charles was a part of my Sunday and we know we will “see him on the radio”. I’m feeling good about Jane, as she is another televison friend from way back, and I know she will be welcome at my breakfast table.