We know that in order to get a book or story out we have to sell it to the editors first, and we know about their preferences. You need to have an immediate attention-grabbing hook. You need to make the conflict apparent as soon as you can, and so forth. Doing any one of those things differently is grounds for moving on to the next manuscript. It's one thing to know this as a writer, but these things have been starting to creep into my feelings as a reader. More and more I'm getting the feeling, "these are the people standing in the way of the stories I want." I keep asking myself, "if the standards are so high, why does stuff like 'The Motorman's Coat' and 'Firehorn' make it into F&SF while classics wouldn't get read past the first page if submitted today?" Is it because they think readers have the attention span of a goldfish? Do they think we're stupid? Is it because they really do only read the first page before deciding? Is it because they get so many submissions that they just don't have time to read each one carefully so they need to invent a standard to go by, whether it's a good one or not? Why is it that what the editors want is so much different than what I as a reader want when it is their job to give me what I want?