Prefix your commands with 'sudo'.
So if you typed 'nano /usr/etc/filename', this time type 'sudo nano /usr/etc/filename'
You'll be asked for the password you created when you set the AA1 up in the first place. Sudo will them give you root access on a temporary basis.
For more on this, have a look at Reg Hardware's Linux for Netbook Newbies series here: