EDITORS NOTE

Work that matters

If, When I was a boy, someone had told me that I would be a magazine editor when I was grown up, I would’ve probably given them a strange, confused look. While English was definitely one of my favourite subjects, I never considered a career in media or working on magazines. I was obsessed with sport, and I think all I really wanted to do was play county cricket in England, and then represent South Africa playing for the Proteas.

I also loved animals, so a plan B was to maybe become a vet, or perhaps a game ranger… Which young person ...
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Work that matters

If, When I was a boy, someone had told me that I would be a magazine editor when I was grown up, I would’ve probably given them a strange, confused look. While English was definitely one of my favourite subjects, I never considered a career in media or working on magazines. I was obsessed with sport, and I think all I really wanted to do was play county cricket in England, and then represent South Africa playing for the Proteas.

I also loved animals, so a plan B was to maybe become a vet, or perhaps a game ranger… Which young person in South Africa doesn’t dream of one day being a game ranger?

I didn’t quite make it to the top level of cricket, I didn’t have the heart, stomach, or grades to become a vet, and I quickly realised that being nice to tourists all the time wasn’t one of my character strengths, so game ranging was out of the question. My trajectory into the world of magazines was unexpected and a little unintentional, but I soon realised how much I enjoyed the work, and how it suited my personality. And here I am, almost 18 years later, having enjoyed a career that’s taken me along many of the back routes of Southern Africa, on several overseas trips, exposed me to the most interesting people, and given me the opportunity to drive hundreds of new cars, and try out countless clever gadgets, devices, power tools and inventions.

Another thing my job as editor of POPULAR MECHANICS has shown me is there are more professions out there than I could ever have imagined. I look at my younger friends today and marvel at the types of work they do – their occupations most definitely never occurred to me when I was younger.

This issue’s short feature on ‘How to be good at what you do’ focuses on the owner of a skateboard-making company. His work resonated with me, because it also entails creating something tangible, that brings joy to others. If my work has taught me anything, it’s that I value being a part of something that’s worthwhile, that brings enjoyment to others. I realise that’s arbitrary, and that ‘worthwhile’ is subjective, but that doesn’t really matter, because that’s how I view it. Oh, I also thrive on the meticulous side of my work, ensuring a story reads well, and is highly accurate and grammatically correct.

If you think you do something that’s a little different, or you simply want to share the ins and outs of your career with others, please drop me a note at popularmechanics@ramsaymedia.co.za. I’d love to hear from you.show less