First they came for Vibe magazine, and I didn’t give a shit

All of a sudden, the great magazine die-off of ’09 is hitting a bit closer to home than I’d like.

It was one thing when it was just Vibe magazine. I’ve been waiting for them to go out of business for a good decade now. They took $20 from me at a time when I needed it almost as much as I do now. At the time, I didn’t have a dollar to my name – I had to save up just to pay my father back when he forced me to cop a two year subscription to Vibe. But at least I was still living at home.

I started to get concerned when Blender went out of business, just because I know they always did the wrong thing, and that’s the kind of behavior that’s supposed to be rewarded in our society. URB magazine once made the mistake of putting Aesop Rock on its cover, so of course it’s gonna go out of business. But Blender specialized in pictures of female pop singers in their underwear. And Blender’s content was just a buncha asinine lists. It was the Complex magazine website before there was a such thing as the Complex magazine website.

If a magazine like Blender could go out of business, what’s there to say that XXL couldn’t go out of business? in which case I might have to move back in with my parents for the first time since the late ’90s, contrary to popular belief. As Tracy Morgan would say, it’s a public misconception that I really do live in my mom’s basement. If I did, I probably wouldn’t be nearly as angry as I am. My mom’s basement is nicer than most people’s houses.

But I figured I was probably still relatively safe. I’m gonna tread lightly here, lest this post get swallowed by this site’s notorious software glitch and/or conflicker, but suffice it to say that I’m aware that XXL has taken certain measures to cut down on costs. They’ve got that $200 or whatever it was they were paying me to write my print column, plus whatever they got paid to make that Charles Hamilton video.

Then I read yesterday that King magazine is going out of business. Ruh roh. Not only did King specialize in pictures of women with huge asses, which should have been a license to print money (it’s not like guys in prison can access Xzibit’s Dailymotion account), but King was owned by the same TIs that own XXL.

It just to go show how quickly things can change in the magazine business these days. As recently as the day before yesterday, King was interviewing Joe Budden about the fact that his girlfriend Taheezo was gonna be on the cover of next month’s issue, and now they’re not even gonna bother printing next month’s issue. Or are they?

And it’s got me thinking: What am I gonna do, if I don’t end up blogging here for the rest of my life, as I was planning to? If you notice, there don’t tend to be second acts in hip-hop journalism. Or at least not very good ones. You either come up with a scheme to funnel money from Interscope Records into your blog, or you write a book about which rappers you’ve blown. And I’m not about to blow any rappers.

So I guess what I’m trying to say is, if any TIs are interested in becoming part owner of The Mindset of a Champion, holler at your boy. I might end up needing that money.

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  • Foshiggadale

    The Tahiry cover issue will be King’s farewell issue, according to the report I read

  • Cal

    Best blog in recent weeks! Those jabs at elliot are hilarious!

  • El Tico Loco

    King mag is going outta business? Hell, what you expect when the main selling point is ass (I subscribed, thanks ass)but the rest of the magazine is about shit people ain’t checking for like rims and other expensive shit when there’s people that had to redirect their priorities like say, keeping their homes. Maybe if they did more average joe friendly articles or got the girls naked (XXL too) you might save the publication and your career.

  • Gee

    I got 7 months left on XXL. Thas all I am worried about.

    • Mario

      i still got subscription to XXL until march 2011

  • sealsaa

    I had been waiting for VIBE to go out of business ever since that 50 Cent issue (the one that came out when GRODT had just dropped). They rode his dick almost as hard in that single issue as Elliot Wilson did during his era at XXL. They interviewed Vivica Fox in that issue (who was licking his balls at the time), and she said something to the affect that 50 was like Biggie and Tupac combined. I almost died.

  • macdatruest

    You either come up with a scheme to funnel money from Interscope Records into your blog, or you write a book about which rappers you’ve blown. And I’m not about to blow any rappers.

    Look at you Bol…You bout to get Billy X Sunday-ed. I don’t know why but for some reason, I had the feeling your career(?) was coming to an end. It’s like, I been looking at the increased number of blogs you been doing lately, and I was thinking, what purpose does do you serve xxl? why should they pay you for your “cult following” of wierdos and outcasts you generate traffic from? Do they want anybody who even knows what a TI is visiting their site? The shit you talk about, it needs it’s own platform. I see how you plugged on the slide so maybe you do got some nuts. But then you go on to say you ready to sell out so maybe you don’t got no nuts. Anyway, yea you outta here, adios, hasta la vista, all that shit. But at least you know XXL is a super shit sandwich

    • Tony Grand$


      Lol @ mac………..

      I was going to make some correlation to Blogs & economic downturn, but dude caught me so off-guard that my thought train derailed.

      *shrugs shoulders & presses enter*

      • Pierzy

        Tony, it’s been nice trading lines with you, Amar, $yk and everybody else. Looks like this site could be a dinosaur soon. Yikes.

        • Tony Grand$

          No Furneral Music just yet, P (no curtis)!

  • OG Matt Herbz

    Wait…so you DON’T live in your mom’s pad?

    Ah shit, Byron…I feel duped, mang.

    XXL’s got more history than King magazine so they at least have THAT going for them. I’ve never gone any deeper in King than the cover so I don’t know if they write well, but I can’t stand me some airbrushed-ass asses, nahmean?! Weren’t they referred to as “The Maxim For Black Dudes” or something? That’s nice and all, but for your shit to be considered a copy of something else, it hurts your chances at longevity–especially in the fickle magazine market.

    Maybe it is best to jump ship while it’s still close to land, you know?

    –OG Matt Herbz–

  • $ykotic

    Damn Bol, mac and OG Matt went in.

    I like the indirect darts you throw within the paragraph. gets a major pass…

    But keeping it 100, Grand$ and Herbz are coming for your crown. Respectfully.

    Grand$ is humble yet deadly and OG is aggressive.

    You spoke volumes last week…

    Billy X is done?

    • Tony Grand$

      Thanks for that $yk….

      I was having a pretty fuck’d up day until now (no homo).

      Funny thing is, [not that anyone gives a shit, but] I just posted a blog about how the recession doesn’t affect unrich dudes such as myself. No Dice. Like my G-mom says, maybe it’s taking it’s “sweet ass time” lol.

      Yeah, Bol’s been drinking that new New pimp juice lately. Going in extra. We see you Byron.

      • $ykotic

        And that was good post Grand$.

        Pulled a number off that!

  • technai~the comment blogger

    Bol…u know i hate u! but that was a beautifully written blog! how bout you go get a degree in journalism & actually get hired to actually write for XXL…just a thought..

  • amar

    maybe u should put some ads in your website and such

    commision junction that shit


    first billy now bol might be out the door man this is kinda fucked up. i actually care but forget king the losers at my area post office. kept sending my mags late then i just stopped getting them same with my xxl mags. these mag companies need to look at the shifty people who work at the post office. i canceled both and got my money back. now they fucking with my complex mags smh i just wanna read a magazine.

  • Jhon da Analyst

    Ur the best that ever did it on this bloggin shit and yes, print media is out the door. Good luck Byron. And besides that, if they don’t get it, they don’t get it. Meaning, like Ms. Rogavin told me, never start a sentence with a conjunction. And, But, or Because…………….Fuckeers!!!!!! Work with me Byron. (917) 570-779* No Homo

  • Dub Sac

    You’d think XXL coulda just left that lame-ass fashion blog alone and held on to BSX. I wasn’t the biggest fan, but at least he dropped some insightful shit once and awhile.

    I hope this website stays up. It’s my #1 time killer when I’m on-line.

  • macdatruest

    I think xxl been slacking on the music coverage, sales is dropping, bloggers is gettin axed, covers is gettin’ weaker and weaker. XXL wasted it’s prime years, when The Source fell off, riding G-Unit dick. They seen those Interscope dollar signs and sold their soul in the form of longevity. That was when they shoulda established themselves as the magazine no magazine could ever come close to fuckin wit, but instead they wanted to do Interscope’s dirty work like XXL presents Shade45 with Eminem. Now they doing videos for Charles Hamilton. Next it’s gone be Wale, he on Interscope too. So basically XXL fuckin’ suck as far as doing anything other than being a whore for advertisers. More ads in the magazine than articles!!! This magazine is a joke without a punchline. I’ll buy a subscription to XXL when Detox drops

  • macdatruest

    By the way, tell your (former?)bosses at XXL that Charles Hamilton video sucked dumb ass balls. Tell them don’t ever direct a video again. Plus Charles Hamilton make you wanna slap the shit outta him and knock his headphones off

  • yoprince

    read a book niggas

    • Smel

      We would if we could. All the bookstores are going out of business.