Modern Rodding STARTING OVER
A headshot picture of Brian Brennan grinning

A Year of Firsts

By Brian Brennan

y now I’m sure every hot rodder is aware of harnessing the sun’s natural power through the use of solar panels. Solar panels on homes are no longer the sole idea of the Jetsons. Nowadays we see homes, businesses, and schools all over the country showing off their own solar panels capturing this “free” energy from the sun. While nothing is free, the end result is a better way to harness energy.

It’s the Jan. ’22 issue and a new year has begun, a new rodding season is upon us, and Modern Rodding is growing­—literally. Starting with this month, you may (we hope you do) have noticed that your current issue, the 16th in our youthful history, has an enlarged format.

Why? Good question. Well, it’s not only Modern Rodding but also our sister publications Classic Truck Performance and All Chevy Performance. There are two immediate benefits. One, as the book becomes physically larger it becomes more desirable to hold, view, and read. Our art director Rob Munoz (go Dodgers) sees the increased “real estate” as an opportunity to design better-looking layouts, bringing the features more to life and the tech stories more easily followed. It should be noted that the enhanced size also means advertisers have more “space” to show off their product, presenting more product, or including more benefits.

As a point of reference, the December issue measured in at 7.625 inches wide by 10.50 inches tall, while this January issue comes in at 9.00 inches wide by 10.875 inches tall–and that’s the way it will stay going forward. Back in the old days, at least 25 years ago, maybe longer, books used to come in just under 8.50 inches wide and 11.00 inches tall. Then the cost cutting began. A “shave and a haircut” began on virtually all magazines. The reasons were self-evident. There was a cost savings in paper, printing (ink), and freight (which includes shipping and USPS mailing). Each of these incremental cuts, or magazine shrinkage, were barely noticeable but over time readers began to notice. Of course, corporations needed to keep cost cutting at the forefront, hence the savings were never given back. Some of you may also remember the days when magazines used to come in either polybags or paper wraps. Here the intent was to protect the book (individual pages) from damage and to deliver the magazine as close to its original crisp condition as it came off of the printing press as possible. Those too went away. Not so anymore. All of the titles from In The Garage Media come in a polybag with the intention that you will receive a clean, crisp copy each month. We also like the enhanced physical size believing that you, our reader, will received more value for your dollar.

ITGM Attends First SEMA Show

While I am at it. There were two other firsts for ITGM recently. We attended our first SEMA Show. Now, I’ve been to somewhere around 40 SEMA Shows but never with my own company. So, for Tim Foss and I to arrive at the show knowing we are now one of the approximately 1,200 exhibitors in 2021 was a bit mind-boggling.
Brian Brennan poses for a picture while holding a Krispy Kreme doughnuts box at the SEMA show
This was the first show since the shutdown of 2020. While the show was still very good the number of exhibitors was down for several reasons but this worked in our favor as it allowed us to be located in Hot Rod Alley, something that would have never happened had we been one of 2,800 exhibitors. So, time will tell us where we end up next year. Sure, we would like to be amongst our brethren in Hot Rod Alley but the booth gods may have a different take.

It was fun to speak with a number of readers who have followed the staff’s journey over the past decades and have come to know us quite well, if not in person from our ramblings on the pages in front of you. As such some funny things happen. In my case a hot rodder who had followed my stories over the years came by and knew I liked Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Well, lo and behold I was presented with a dozen (yes, I shared) assorted from the nearby doughnut palace.

HRIA Business of the Year

In closing I would like to make one more mention about ITGM taking home the 2021 HRIA Business of the Year award presented at their Wednesday night banquet. It was a stunning surprise to all of us. Once again, we are very excited and thankful and as mentioned elsewhere in this issue we have a lot of people to thank so from the bottom of our hearts “Thanks” from all of us at ITGM: Yasmin Fajatin (associate publisher and operations manager), Sarah Gonzales (managing editor and ad coordinator), Patty Ludi (office assistant), Rob Munoz (art director), Rob Fortier (editor of Classic Truck Performance), Nick Licata (editor of All Chevy Performance), Tim Foss (co-owner and publisher), and Brian Brennan (that’s me … co-owner and editorial director).
Modern Rodding
VOLUME 3 • ISSUE 16 • 2022