By Deborah Hamilton-Lynne, Executive Editor
Success. As a culture, we Americans are fixated on success. But what is the real definition of success, or as my father often put it, “What is the true measure of a man?” When I think of success, a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson comes to mind: “To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to leave the world a better place; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”
This quote is always in the back of my mind when I choose the men we will feature and the stories we will tell in ATX Man. If you are fortunate enough to spend time with Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo, you will quickly find a man who definitely knows how to laugh often and much (and one who will have you cracking up along with him). He also has the respect of intelligent people: his peers, city and state officials, and the men and women who are his police force and his charges. He understands duty and never takes that obligation lightly. But the thing that impressed me most is the chief’s vision for Austin and how to leave it a better place when his duty is done. In his short tenure, he has become a part of the fabric of the city, so much so that many people can’t imagine Austin’s police force without him. Read and learn how he is leading by example, wearing his servant’s heart on his sleeve.
In 2012, ATX Man launched the Giving Man Pledge and named 2012 The Year of the Giving Man. We are pleased that so many people responded to the call to make a pledge to make our city a better place. In this issue, we feature four men who are committed to making Austin a better place for us all. Hopefully, their stories will inspire you to look for ways you can succeed by making a pledge of your own in 2013.
When we look at the iconic measure of a man, who could be a better example of a man who has it all than James Bond? In this issue, we have fun with our hometown man of mystery and intrigue, Hunter Ellis, and his beautiful compatriot Bond girls, Jade Mingus and Melissa Mahadeo, in our Style section. We also take a look at 50 years of Bond on the big screen and get a he-said/she-said perspective on the lure of 007 from Hunter Ellis and Michelle Valles.
In early November, one of Austin’s most beloved men, Coach Darrell K. Royal, passed away. Coach Royal was indeed the epitome of Emerson’s definition of success, not only in his professional life, but most importantly, in the lives he touched. We pay tribute to this legendary figure and a life well-lived.
The holidays are upon us—Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day—and all coming quickly. In this issue, we give you tips on buying a ring (and conversely, advice on not getting swept up in the holiday pressure to commit) in the Relationship column, Four Ways Not to Propose. We also look at great date nights and gifts sure to please anyone on your list, as well as romantic wine-country getaways.
Looking for a diversion during the holidays? Why not check out the best of the trailer-food scene or educate yourself about saké? We’ve got the scoop. As you look back on 2012, contemplate 2013 and consider your New Year’s resolutions, I encourage you to reread Emerson’s quote. I hope you will consider whatever is your personal definition of success, that you will laugh often and much, and make a pledge to not only make Austin a better place in the coming year, but make a pledge that—when looking back—will allow you to know that you have succeeded, according to YOUR definition of success. Happy holidays to you and yours.