It had to happen, didn't it? A magazine devoted to the chicken-legged-beanie-clad-pad dudes. How phat is dat ma brother from another mother? Waddup wi dat ma sista?
The passion about climbing cordless has reached fever-pitch, a new lexicon is developing, and if you want to be a fully-signed up pebble wrestler, leave your Ron Hills at home and check out a Prana catalogue. But for most it's more than the uniform, it's a complete lifestyle and attitude fix. The mainstream magazines, whilst embracing bouldering, don't exactly speak or live nuskool and most of the editors are old and don't geddit (apart from that most of the magazine people have been bouldering for decades and they can't understand what all the fuss is about).
But if you've got "the hard fire inside", to borrow one of Jerry Moffat's best lines, you don't want to be treated to a treatise on the mechanics of the latest micro-cam, plough through 3,000 poetic words describing the inner-turmoil of some smelly self-absorbed alpinist, or even god-forbid hear about the latest send of some boring bolted 8c+ climbed by someone called Diddi Pi.
All that involves ropes, and ropes is hassle, sista! No, you want, in short snappy sentences and words, the latest news about Graham, Nicole, Rands, Sharma, Smith, Moon, and Kehl, illustrated with colorful double-page spread close-ups, tight grimacing facials, hairless-ripped shoulders and amply-filled sports bras, all washed down with a heavy dose of irreverence, fun, and none of those vomit-inducing ethics the ancient dudes spray about at a drop of their Jo Brown helmet.
You can feel a powerful sense of community out at the boulders, a heavy bouldering vibe - one people on the same wavelength, dudes AND dudettes pimping in spiritual togetherness and coalescing in a universal highness, our tribe, not your tribe. It's just like the sixties man, - yeah free love even.....most dudes hope.
So we have Vbouldering magazine created by Heath Norton of Sacramento, California to reflect all this. Started just as the US economy dipped, and when most mainstream magazines were experiencing dire advertising revenue decline (magazines depend on selling ad space for their existence). Will it be successful and survive? The magazine graveyard is full of self-published enthusiasts and Conde Nast rejections. It depends of four things: quality, relevence, distribution, and support from the climbing community.
We here at ROCKFAX/UKClimbing.com are pleased to be doing our bit. So with a little help we've put together a taster of what to expect.
- Jo Macleod of RockTalk has reviewed the premiere issue - a hot chicks who climb special.
- Vbouldering magazine have let us run their "Up, Close and Personal Interview" with bouldering diva Lisa Rands (available as html and as a pdf download) with photograhs by photo-journalist Wills Young.
- Or go and have a look at the Vbouldering website. Go on, it's good.
Now read on!