Seriously. Don’t read this. And if you do, blame Unzipped.
ZS: So how do you decide what you’re gonna write about? What’s your routine in the morning or afternoon or whenever you crawl into work?
PB: OK. My routine. I drink coffee and eat a bagel while reading Drudge Report and Andrew Sullivan. By then I’ve finished a bagel but left a little of my coffee, so I go outside and smoke a cigarette while I finish my coffee. Then I go through my feeds looking for something good. If I find something, I go outside and smoke while I think of how to write it up. If I can’t find something, I go outside and smoke away my frustration.
ZS: I wish we lived in like the 1950’s and could smoke at our desks while we write.
PB: And how do I decide what I’m going to write about?
PB: For me it’s a mix of how fresh the story is and how good it is. If it’s everywhere to be found then I’m less inclined to write about it. I also have my favorite personalities, like Ricky Sinz, because he’s really violent, and David Mason, because he’s a genius. I have to struggle not to get carried away writing up really insider stuff about industry personalities that nobody outside the industry cares about, like the short-lived feud between Angel Benton and Jason Curious, or interviews about Sword and Unzipped editors. But I also don’t want to get too broad, which is why I don’t write up stories about crocheted penises.
ZS: Yeah if something’s been written up on 25 sites in the course of a morning, it’s hard to write about it unless you have a take on it that no one else does, and even then it’s still probably going to be boring. I’ll always write about something if it has to do with big dicks though.
PB: I’ve been on a bulge binge lately.
ZS: It’s funny cause I’m not some size queen in real life (I’m lying), but big dicks make the blog look pretty, so it’s more of an aesthetic thing.
PB: That’s what’s beautiful about being a porn blogger. You get to cloak your sexual pathologies with buzzwords like “aesthetics.”
ZS: I don’t understand a single word you just said. But yeah, big dicks. Fun. And I like to write about twinks. But people get annoyed when there’s too much twink coverage.
PB: Yeah I’ve noticed that you write about twinks a lot. I think it might be because the skinniest guys are the biggest self-promoters. I personally don’t like twinks because I’m skinny and they remind me of myself, and I hate myself.
ZS: I think writing about twinks is fun because they have the most drama, and writing about drama distracts me from my own meaningless life. I don’t hate myself though.
PB: Though people overuse the word “twink.” It should refer to someone who’s skinny. Young muscle-studs are jocks, not twinks. You don’t hate yourself?
ZS: Well, alright, yes. I do. Are there things you hate writing about, but you do it anyways because people will be interested in it?
PB: Luckily, I have a lot of editorial leeway, so I try to stay away from topics that bore me. But there are definitely topics I don’t care about that I’m still obligated to cover because they’re part of my beat — certain shirtless celebrities and annual calendars, for example. I’m not interested in hot boys, I’m interested in the stories and the drama behind the hot boys. So when there’s no story, only pictures, that sometimes can bore me.
PB: How about you?
ZS: Writing about a porn star’s death is never fun. And writing about “serious” stories or news can be tricky. Are people coming to our site for hard news (haha) or do they just want to look at guys? I suppose it’s a mix…but we try to keep things light and want people to have a good time. After Prop 8 and for the first half of this year, there was so much news about protests and all the states passing marriage laws, etc. and it became boring. Not boring for the people affected by it, but boring to write about in a fun or interesting way. Writing about the wingnuts and homophobes reacting to the gay marriage laws, now that’s more fun.
PB: I didn’t write about Prop 8 once, except for my roundup of porn stars involved in the campaign. I leave news to the sweater gays.
ZS: Yeah but you’ve written about barebacking, studios, and HIV news.
PB: I write about barebacking and HIV because they have to do with sex, and The Sword is a blog about sex. Also I have a personal obsession with HIV, mostly because I think it’s the absolute only drawback to being gay. It’s like the hangover to my love of alcohol. Without HIV, life would be too good to be true.
PB: What’s the most flack you’ve caught for one of your articles?
ZS: Oh, where to begin? One funny thing was when we had to take down a post about Janet Jackson that went up on the day that Michael Jackson died. It was a total coincidence that it went up the same day (it was programmed days in advance), and it was a “Quote Of The Day” thing…but someone freaked out because they said it was insensitive to Michael Jackson. And there’s always someone who hates it when I write about Brent Corrigan, Michael Lucas, Mason Wyler, or Diesel Washington. Also, people hate me because I don’t like Lady Gaga.
ZS: What about you?
PB: The head of a major studio threatened me with physical violence after I told one of his model’s secrets — I can’t really go into more detail than that, unfortunately. And it was no fun when I drunkenly said hi to Brent Corrigan at a bar and he told me how much I sucked for calling him a cum dumpster, which in retrospect I can concede is not a very nice nickname. I’ve since learned three lessons: do not report anything close to everything you know, be nice, and do not tell porn stars you meet that you write The Sword.
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The COLT superstars joined a protest in Rome against the Catholic Church in order to make the claim that gay people are not pedophiles. There was a chihuaha involved.
I feel sorry for people with fetishes that can never be realized in real life. Take this Flickr user, who has to make do with his giants fetish using Photoshop.
I'm not one for bragging about intellectual accomplishments (it's something I learned from, you know, graduating with honors from Brown University), but Conner Habib is justifiably excited about his blurb in a book written by Carl Sagan's son.