Today UNB turns 14. October 6th was the day I applied for the domain and made it official. Before this, I was on Blogger, and you had to know where you were going. A short project I wanted to do for six months turned out to be a significant part of my life and would go on to change my life entirely.
This is not a significant anniversary, next year, for the 15th, I want to do something BIG, but this year, I want to do something that looks back at the past, present, and future.
We have done some fantastic things over the past 14 years! Things that were super fun and others that were hard work but paid off in the end.
We had fun doing our guides; our Holiday Guides were the biggest we did all year long. We initially wanted to do four a year. Valentine’s Day, Swimwear, Back to School/Fall, and Holiday. We did one Valentine’s Day; the rest were swims and holidays.
The Holiday shoots were always long, but I think the guys had fun doing them. Our locations ranged from the City, mountains, a castle, and more! It’s a shame that we haven’t done one since 2018.
Swimwear Guides were smaller but a lot of fun. We have had several photographers over the years. The first was Seven Continents (Brian), then Ignacio Rivera Jr, and finally Taylor Campbell. I think scouting locations for this shoot was the hardest for me. I teamed up with Matt (who was in a few of our shoots), and he would handle all the locations. He had a new opportunity, and he jumped at it, and I would have too. It was down to the photographer and me to find locations. We shot at lakes and pools. My big idea to shoot in Hawaii never came to pass.
We did video reviews before social media got HUGE for underwear. These have been fun to do, and I know you guys enjoyed them. Video reviews are complicated when the guy isn’t local. There is still a place for them, but it requires a lot of planning. One funny thing is that we did a video review of the Baskit Just /b/ trunk by Alex, and we were fast approaching 1M views, I think we were around 775,000 views, and YouTube hit us with a “TOS Violation” and deleted the video. AARRRGGHH.
Magic & Curve were one of my favorite things. These trips gave me my love of Vegas! The first time I went was in Feb 2010. It was a 24-hour trip. It blew my mind; for the next six years, I would go every Feb/Aug to the shows. Over the years, Curve ended as a men’s show, and Magic became the show to go to.
At the start of the shows, I would host a Meet & Greet for any brand, store, or attendee who would want to come to hang out in a social setting. These were so much fun; some years, we had four people show up; in others, we had 20. No matter the turnout, it was still a lot of fun. A side note on the first one: Andrew from N2N, Scott (from Australia, formerly clone zone), and one other ended up at the 24-hour McDonald’s in the Luxor, and I didn’t get to bed till 4 am!
In 2016 I had some financial issues that caused me to cut back on going. I missed Feb 2016 through Feb 2017. When I returned, many brands were saving money and not going to Magic. Plus, one year, they put the underwear in a part of the show that wasn’t on the map and had very little traffic.
The last time I went was Aug 2021 after Covid. There was one brand at the official show and a few brands in suits. The heydays of the fantastic times in vegas are long gone. It’s so sad, it was like a reunion, and I got to catch up with some of the most amazing people in the industry.
UNB has gone through so many iterations, and the current one includes the Brief Talk Podcast. I have run a successful underwear blog and wondered if lightning would strike twice, and it has! The podcast has taken off and continues to grow.
The main show is a catch-all of the shows. It features interviews with brands, group shows, and topics such as spandex, lingerie, and more. It’s been so much fun to get all these guys together and have open and honest discussions about underwear.
Our most popular show by far is the Thong show. We get the most downloads, and it shows that you guys LOVE thongs. We will have more, but it’s a lot of work coordinating the schedule of the guys to get together. We are constantly working on the next show.
These shows have brought out the most feedback. Brief Tales are a way to hear a guy’s “origin story,” and it’s incredible how much we have in common! I don’t limit the show to just one kind of guy. I want as much diversity as we can get on it. These are my favorite shows because I get to talk to many guys about underwear. There is nothing better than hearing a guy share his passion and listening to it in his voice as he tells you things he hasn’t told many people. It’s like he’s sharing a part of himself he’s always wanted to share, and now he gets to do it with guys who get him and understand him.
WE HAVE MERCH! You know the “merch link is in bio.” It’s been interesting during the pandemic to rediscover my love of drawing and art. As a kid, I was always drawing or being crafty, and now I’m making some super fun things I want to share with everyone. It’s not a “Major Enterprise,” but it will grow in the next few years. The Merch is underwear related and sometimes not (usually showing my sense of humor). You can find our Merch at the UNB Store.
What does the Future hold for UNB? I wish I could spell out this detailed road map I have for the blog/podcast/store. But I don’t have one. I know what I want to do, but I go with the flow. The Brief Talk Podcast was fun to do again, but it turned into a big hit in underwear podcasts (that’s because I don’t think there are any other underwear podcasts, lol). Here are some things I want to do.
First, I want to grow the podcast into something bigger! We have been steadily increasing, and I have so many new show ideas after a recent podcast! I’m excited about these shows because I wanted to write a book but realized A. I am dyslexic and hate writing (ironic, I know), and B. I think a podcast would be much better than a book.
We need to venture into the world of video podcasting and doing video projects. We are working out a way to do this, and there are still a lot of guys who don’t want to show their faces or real names in the underwear world.
Video projects have been on the UNB Reader Survey for a few years. There are a few reasons that held me back. The first is the cost of the video. Luckily with new phones and equipment, those prices are falling. The second is finding guys to “collab” with, as they say. And Third, what exactly do I want to do in these projects?
One of my biggest dreams is to do an underwear documentary. I have one project in mind that I want to do. I’m in the process of writing a script and questions for interviews. And no, I haven’t asked the people involved, but I wanted a solid game plan before approaching them. However, I think it’s about time we start doing documentaries about men’s underwear. They just released the UnderGear documentary, but I think we could release them on YouTube and do a Patreon or Go Fund Me model to get them made. I want to do this, and most of you will also love the project I have in mind.
Ok, guys, I have rambled on enough. Thank you for making this 14-year journey so fucking amazing. I never expected to do this for so long, and I made many amazing friends through the blog. In my 10th year post, I thanked those who made the blog successful over the years. There are three people who I want to tip my cap for being there for me and being a part of my underwear family. The first two are Andy and Erik. They are my underwear brothers and have been there for me in good and evil. I have to think about my other underwear brother Stevie as well. I would not have continued this journey without you, boys. I love you and am so glad you are in my life!!!