Thoughts From Our Wayward Co-Editor

by Tom Gates Aug 4, 2009

Kate and I have been co-editing nights from outside of the USA. Kate’s in Buenos Aires and I’ve been taking a pretty long traipse around Earth. Neither one of us thought that we’d be editing a travel blog and we are both amazed that we get to do it every day.

The fact that we’re in charge is probably good evidence that you could be doing anything, anywhere. Neither one of us has a slew of experience and we’re happily winging it. It’s making me wonder how many people out there are strapped into the cubicle, daydreaming about doing the same thing.

The past few weeks I’ve been traveling with an old friend, a teacher from DC. She’s been doing week-long vacations for years and I coaxed her to come to Spain for a month. That thing happened – the thing that changes lives forever. At one point she looked at me and said, “Whoa. I can do this whenever I want. I can…do this.”

She’s now back home enduring the postpartum that must always come with travel – it’s made even worse by the new realization that she no longer has a tether.

The author has been looking for an excuse to use this photo.

Fear evaporates when you realize that you can do your thing almost anywhere in the world. It’s empowerment on a whole other level, usually one that nobody in your family can understand. But look around and you’ll find like-minded people, especially here at Matador. Folks who get the glaze in your eyes when you talk about obscure trails in Malaysia, or drool a bit when the subject of Mexican street food comes up.

It’s in this state that we edit MatadorNights. We’re most excited when we meet writers who are clamoring for a chance or have a whackjob idea for an article. It doesn’t matter to us if you’re in Peoria or Russia. We want to hear your ideas about your experiences, or even things that you’d like to research and explore.

Possibly – possibly – this is what makes the whole thing at Nights work. Kate and I function incredibly well in our underwear and are happy to code articles in bed. We’ll read just about anything submitted to the section, even if the author has disregarded basic principles of the English language, yet has a voice and a story to tell. We like the odd, the eccentric and the loose-lipped.

We’re seeking writers who are in the same boat as we are, captains who aren’t even sure what the hell a knot or a league is. We’d like to take this opportunity to remind you that you’re all welcome on board.

Tom (Edinburgh, 8/2/09)

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