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January 1999 Trail Head

Posted in Features on January 1, 1999
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Those of you who actually read editorials and mastheads will notice that I'm the new guy who's changing your magazine. And if you can't figure out how to say the last name, it's pronounced pay-way.

Not that I worry about that too much, but the title of this mag seems strange to a lot of folks who don't know about the word Jeep. Because Chrysler holds the proud title to the word and defends the use of it to the nth degree, our title is pronounced jay-pee, not Jeep.

But what's in a name anyway? This magazine is about Jeep vehicles and for Jeep enthusiasts of every sort and variety. No amount of name-niggling can change what we like, and hopefully, you, the reader, will like the changes that are taking place in Jp. If you haven't noticed yet, Jp is easier to read, and your favorite stories are easier to find. We've still got all the neat stories you've come to love, but gone are the fluff, lifestyle items.

The new Jp will concentrate more on in-depth stories on restoration, refurbishment, and modification. Throw in some great trail coverage from around the nation, and we'll be producing the magazine you've always wanted.

All that still leaves the question of what you want in the magazine. So far, on the issue of our format, we've received only a few letters-on both sides of the coin. Do we leave it alone or change it? When you read this issue's Dispatch column, you'll find that readers feel strongly about the matter, but the fact is that change is here to stay and more is coming. To do our jobs right, we'll need your continual input.

I guess that, not unlike Mother Teresa, it's my job to bring all facets of the Jeep world together in harmony. Since that's not likely to happen, I'll just do my best to make Jp the magazine you want to read.

And me? Well, 30 years ago, my Dad taught me to drive a CJ-3A, and my life hasn't been the same since. I've driven in and worked on almost every type of Jeep ever made, all around the world, with a fear and loathing of all lesser vehicles. For the last three years I've been the technical editor for 4-Wheel & Off-Road magazine, so many of you may have seen my name. I've even been to our Mecca, the Jeep House in Toledo. I've never met a Jeep I didn't like, although I've seen some that deserved a new owner. To me there's nothing quite like a weekend road trip in an old Flattie-especially when you get to jump into a new Grand Cherokee for the commute on Monday.

That's all for now, boys and girls-I have to go help restore a couple of combat rims for my Dad's '43 GPW. After that, I'm going Jeepin'-that's the real reason for this job.

See ya on the trail. Rick Péwé

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