BLFC’s little snags and big success

by Patch O'Furr

Part 3 of 3

Reno, NV used to be the Wild West. It reminds me of bison, cowboys, cattlemen and sheepmen. Freedom had a lot to do with animals and boundary fights.

On frontiers of culture, furries have a colorful little corner where lines are pushed between normal and weird.

(Pic by PictureNV)

(Pic by PictureNV)

When I started to write about BLFC, I felt sorry about including some gossip in my last year’s con report. I’d love to balance it with pure positivity. It mostly related to locals from Reno, and the way they looked at the con. It was mild conflict between grey conservatism, and colorful, younger, wilder furries.

Unfortunately I saw reminders of the same issues this year. Oh well, let’s be honest, and talk about security. But don’t worry. The con was wonderful.

As long as I’m sending a little feedback… A lot of room parties were shut down by hotel security responding to noise complaints. My buddies went to 5 or 6 in a row that were immediately shut. Later, I heard there was a planning difficulty, and they didn’t have an official “party floor” until last minute. If this was a surprise to attendees, it seems like something to prepare for next year.

Late night bowling made a great gathering spot for con-goers. I’m not sure if Reno has other stuff open at night, but bowling was definitely popular with locals too. It was an interesting- and volatile- mix. Drunks made unpredictability.

A super drunk guy next to my lane was very friendly. He’d never seen furries in fursuits. It kept making him tell me: “You’re such a huggy guy! Look at you!” – “That’s what I’m for”, I said.

Because I'm shameless...

Because I’m shameless…

I got chatty with another bowler- Hemms, a young fox studying anthropology. He told me:

You have this subculture where people meet online, then real life, and hook up. Suddenly they’re making families and raising a new generation of kids as furries. When that happens, you’ve leapt a gap. It’s no longer just a hobby. Someone should study this!

I’m not sure that’s beyond “cult” yet… I mean it in the best way. It’s about personal expression, the opposite of cultish rulers. And it’s a cool topic anyways. A couple at the con casually told me about their furry house with a furry landlord. And this list of furs married at fur cons needs updates.

While chatting, I saw Extremefox. I invited him over, and the talk got less happy. He was noticing crowd hostility.

Then I saw it. I was near another fursuiter who was getting double hugs. A macho guy with two buddies walked by, leaned over and hissed “Queers!” I called him back to get some hugs, but the place was too loud to get his attention. I’m glad I said something, but then I’m glad he didn’t hear.

Some people should consider that it doesn’t cost anything to just be nice. My gossip last year mentioned hostility towards furries too. BLFC’s forum has a few feedback posts that mention it:

Not going to lie, I was a bit scared, and I know my interaction wasn’t even that bad compared to other people’s experiences. – Wolfforce58205

Several times (normally in the elevators) I saw one fur being picked on, or being bombarded with questions that were very rude – SuneeDPaws

Reno isn’t the same as tolerant San Francisco. It has some people to be careful about. But BLFC isn’t responsible for mean people who just happen to be at the hotel. Security is something to mind, but this stuff isn’t holding furries back. Record growth makes the future look good.