It's not easy to leave a home like The Times, where so many friends and brilliant colleagues remain. I am grateful to all of them, as well as to a pair of unexpected collaborators, the artists Seymour Chwast and Barry Blitt, whose inspired drawings took on an Op-Ed life of their own. My gratitude to The Times's omnivorous, demanding, quarrelsome readership is no less enormous. Even when Times readers despise every last piece you write -- and they do tell you so -- they make you want to try harder. I hope I'll meet up with many of you at the next stop.
Of all the things I've done at The Times, there may be none I'm prouder of than, in my critic's days, championing "Sunday in the Park with George," Stephen Sondheim's and James Lapine's 1984 musical about two artists in two different eras restless to create something new. For a quarter-century now, the show's climactic song has inspired countless people in all walks of life when the time has come to take a leap. "Stop worrying where you're going," the Sondheim lyric goes. "Move on."