Great Expectations

When you step off the elevator into the outer lobby of our Austin office, the first thing you see is the sign: “ Texas Monthly—A Great Magazine.” It has been hanging there for more than a decade, and in that time, it’s been lampooned as an emblem of our arrogance. Great every month? Even after all these years? Saying it doesn’t make it so, but all of us who work here—from the writers and editors to the folks in accounting, ad sales, and so on—take pride in what we do, and we absolutely stand behind the words on the wall. They’re a statement of not just who we are but what we’ve been, a reminder of our institutional history and the connection we’ve had with our readers since our very first issue, in February 1973. Not for nothing does Mike Levy, our founder and publisher, tell new employees, “Welcome to Texas Monthly. Don’t screw up.”

Mike’s admonition has been echoing in my head a lot lately. On July 1, I took over as the editor of Texas Monthly—only the third person to have the job. Among my other responsibilities, I’m the Sign Compliance Officer: Month in and month out, I’m the one who has to make sure we’re as great as ever, which is no easy feat, considering what, and who, came before me. In this space in the last issue, Gregory Curtis bade you all farewell. He was too modest to tell you what he’d accomplished as editor, so I will. In Greg’s nineteen years at the helm, Texas Monthly solidified

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