As I write about my feelings concerning the outpouring of affection in the wake of the death of The New Yorker magazine's former "Grammarian," Eleanor Gould, I wonder what she would have made of this sentence. Alex Ross humbly wrote of her influence earlier in the week: "I am forever grateful for the education, and I will long savor the memory of that triumphant day when one of my pieces came back with fewer than ten spidery annotations per page." Today I read David Remnick's official salute: "Her effect on a piece of writing could be like that of a master tailor on a suit; what had once seemed slovenly and overwrought was suddenly trig and handsome. The wearer stood taller in his shoes." Of course I never had the pleasure of being schooled by Miss Gould; the only words I've written for The New Yorker have been anonymous and spare and crammed into the front "Goings On About Town" section. Still, I have long dreamed about someday contributing to that magazine's legacy in some substantive way. And it is a legacy. And that legacy forges on, despite celebrity journalism and "how to be a man" magazines. How do I know this? I know this because when a member of the New Yorker staff passes, the magazine celebrates that person's character in paragraphs. The magazine that doesn't care to flaunt a list of its writers and editors like A-list celebrities on a front-of-book masthead -- a magazine that doesn't care to waste three pages devoted to pictures from cocktail parties held by its parent company in concert with some huge commercial concern -- does, in fact, celebrate those who built it. And how heartening in a publishing environment where you're only as good as what unique luxury product you called in for photo yesterday. Too many people in my line of work find common ground in some version of the phrase: "I'd LOVE to write for the New Yorker." But too few of them want to write for the magazine for the right reasons. They want to write for the New Yorker to win a book contract, to seem literary, to get famous, or just as shallow, to ramble for thousands of words on some "quirky" issue they find "fascinating." I find plenty of issues fascinating, and I'd love to write long articles about them. But I've always longed to be a part of the New Yorker because even in these days of corporate conglomerates and the evil they reap it seems like a family. One that values authenticity. One in which elders teach a craft with a lineage to younger colleagues. One in which there remains honor in upholding its values: curiosity, simplicity, wit, and wisdom. Mr. Remnick, if you're reading, I will forever be interested in starting at the bottom of a pyramid built on those values. I care about the passing of Eleanor Gould because I care about what she stood for -- how she exemplified her values in her daily work and how that contributed to career from which she never wanted to retire. Earlier in the day, I read a predictably snarky -- and hence boring -- blog post about an interview with Kevin Bisch, the screenwriter of the new Will Smith film "Hitch" on Defamer.com. In the interview, Bisch talks about leaving an editorial job at Details magazine to write rom-coms: "I realized that it's not 1968, and this is not Esquire, and I may not be Tom Wolfe," he wrote. Despite some quality work in the hopper, I'm experiencing that disillusionment with magazine work as well. It's an elusive art, winning even a fact-checking job at the New Yorker; I don't know if it will ever happen to me. But few respected bastions of magazine publishing seem as committed to keeping a legacy built on literary values and devotion alive. And fewer seem to celebrate those who helped them shine. For that reason the magazine will always mean something personal to me. And for that reason, I will continue to read about and celebrate those who made it great.