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Now, don’t go getting too excited. Despite what this headline says, we’re not looking for someone to replace me — not yet, anyway. But we are looking for something that’s required of all magazine editors: ideas and opinions. And I know there are lots of you out there with great (and sometimes not-so-great) ideas and opinions, because whenever I’ve met you, you’ve always been eager to share them with me. So here’s your chance to make it official.

Available right now on our website is a survey that I really, really want you all to fill out. By doing so, you stand a chance at winning 50,000 AAdvantage miles, and an even greater chance of shaping the stories and tone of this magazine.

And this is no idle promise. All of us at American Way are pouring our hearts, souls, and brain matter into this publication for you, and we want it to be something you look forward to — almost as much as you look forward to wherever it is you’re headed.

The only way we can know what’s on your mind is if you tell me when you run into me somewhere (visiting a place that sells wine will certainly increase your odds ), send us a letter or an email message (have I mentioned how empty my inbox is lately?), or fill out this survey (something we will ultimately scour over and commit to memory).

We’ve made it as easy as we can by putting it online and keeping it to a mere 40 or so questions. And what’s easier than talking about yourself? Better yet, these aren’t essay questions — we help you out by giving you actual choices. You just need to click the answer or answers that apply to you.

In this issue, you’ll notice a lot of quirky stories, including articles about a chic garbage man in New Orleans, a fella who creates cool art out of crayons (as in sculptures that are made with actual crayons, not drawings done with crayons), a couple of guys who take off on a road trip in an environmentally correct car that runs on vegetable oil, and a writer who’s having to fight his cat for his food.

But we also have a few “normal” stories. There’s our personal (and, we like to think, dead-on) take on which teams will — and won’t — be big baseball contenders this season, a chat with Kevin Spacey on what’s more important than making movies, and an in-depth look at some little-known islands off the coast of Sweden.

So here’s my question (er, questions). Which kinds of stories appeal the most to you? Do you like the quirkier stories about people you probably haven’t heard of before? Or do you prefer the more straightforward stories about celebrities and sports and the best places to golf? Do you think we should have more travel in the magazine, or maybe you’d like to see more fashion? Do you wish you didn’t have to see my column every time you open the magazine? Or would it just not be the same without me? What about that Jim Shahin guy? Do you love him or hate him?

We want you to tell us all this and more — and the quickest way for you to do that is to visit www.americanwaymag.com and answer our questions. We’re even giving you a whole month to do it. But our offer is only good through April 15, so go now! If you won’t do it for me, consider the fact that “magazine editor” will look pretty good on your résumé, no?


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Sherri Gulczynski Burns