When I was in high school I passed through a phase of fascination with the ads in such magazines as Popular Mechanics. Most of them proposed to set you on the road to power and fortune with a minimum of effort — "at home in your spare time," in fact.
At one stage I carried my fascination to the point of investing in a hundred post cards and responding to that many ads. My mailbox groaned for two years afterwards. I even discovered that the price of Charles Atlas's Secret of Dynamic Tension dropped to $3.50 if you ignored his letters long enough. One memorable ad's headline proclaimed: "Don't Envy the Plumber — Be One." It was not until I became a homeowner that I grasped the full import of this message.
These reminiscences lead up to a proposal that I would like to make to this magazine's readers and contributors:
Edit THE ECPHORIZER at Home in your Spare Time.
I can't promise fortune, and about the only power you'll have is that of seeing that your own writings get printed without backtalk from uncomprehending publishers. But you'll gain a certain notoriety in the Mensa world and have a lot of creative fun. Most of all, you'll perform a genuine service for Mensa and for intelligent people everywhere who want to communicate with one another.
THE ECPHORIZER is a project supported by Region 8 of American Mensa and administered by some of the facilities of the San Francisco local group. It is a recognized member-to-member service of American Mensa, as well as being listed in the standard directories of magazines and archived by at least one library. After six years of publication, it is a magazine of consequence.
Why am I looking for a replacement? The bird of time is on the wing, and I seem to be always running after it. Having two infant children, a new job, and a house that needs painting contribute as well. As a consequence, we're running a few months behind again and some of my correspondence with our long-suffering contributors is embarrassingly tardy. Besides, our readers deserve to hear from somebody new for a change. Variety is part of THE ECPHORIZER's charter.
Because it works so well, we propose to preserve the current setup for printing and mailing, including computer maintenance of the subscriber base. The new editor's job will consist of receiving and evaluating manuscripts, corresponding with contributors, getting each issue typed and assembled, and sending the camera-ready paste-ups to our printer. We'll continue to do the rest.
So let us hear from you, if you've got 20-30 hours a month that you can devote to THE ECPHORIZER. You need no longer envy the editor — you can be it!
George Towner was born in Reno and grew up near Berkeley. As a teenager he began making gangster movies using an old 8mm camera, one of which featured a car being pushed over a cliff off State Highway 1. He has started and sold two successful technology firms, and currently works for Apple Computer, where he is the most senior in age. He lives with his wife in Sunnyvale. They have two daughters and a son.
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