Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week

Meet Unid, the only known furry from Sri Lanka.

by Patch O'Furr

There’s an island off the southern tip of India, with a small furry animal on it, looking out for who else may share the same fandom. Through the internet, other creatures reach across the ocean and an international fandom works its magic. They may not all speak the same language, but they can share the art and everything else that furry fans call theirs.

Previous stories here have found furries in places like Iran. Today, meet a furry from Sri Lanka. A species so rare, there may only be one. The story tip about Unid came from Zinger, who wanted to share a friend’s wish to singlehandedly bring the fandom to his country. In return, we can learn what it’s like to live there.

Furries contain multitudes. If a fandom is a Venn diagram of overlapping interests, it looks plaid. So let’s find out more of what Unid is into. Are there Sri Lankan nerds? If a con happened there, what would everyone eat, hear or see? How about a heavy metal show?

Hi Unid. Can you share a bio, what you do, and something about you that might stick out?

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The Dealers Den plans to rebuild with unprecedented features and Blockchain technology

by Patch O'Furr

Help vote for success for the only furry auction site!

For over 20 years, furries have had their own specialized auction sites serving the “Furry Economy”. In 1999 there was Furbid and Furbuy. In 2015 we had Furbuy and The Dealers Den. Now only the last one is standing — and thriving. It may be poised to leap ahead of big corporate sites with an ambitious plan.

The Dealers Den is a furry-owned marketplace that brings outsized benefit to sellers and users. They don’t have to use Etsy, Ebay or Amazon. They can efficiently reach each other within their own niche. It keeps things in the “fandom family” without corporate middlemen and control. Ask users what the site does for them. (“Very surprised and very grateful”: fursuit maker Beauty of the Bass talks about a $14,000 sale.) It makes big support for independent art.

But for any niche community, there are downsides. Keeping things personal and relying on trust can be risky. Anywhere in the fandom, scam sellers can come back under new names, or good sellers can be hurt by false bidding or cheating on pay. It’s hard to scale up for new features — like a verified purchase review system, payment processing, or escrow protection.

Enter the Dealers Den rebuild plan.

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Q&A with Finn, founder of the Fuzznet Music netlabel for furries.

by Patch O'Furr

“World’s first furry-centered, full-service music distribution netlabel.”

A new netlabel for furry music has been announced! When I think of a label, especially on the small indie side, I think of curation for a certain sound or scene. (Example: a Q&A is coming soon with a fur from Sri Lanka where I asked about Goa Trance.) Here’s one I’ve been enjoying: Numero Group is a reissue label. Imagine digging through thrift store junk and finding a weird one of a kind record that sounds amazing — that’s everything they put out. They specialize in the history of unsung niches, local scenes and their heroes. It makes richer music history than the well-worn stuff on classic rock channels.

Specialty and indie labels make diversity. With that in mind I talked to Finn.

A music style for furries? 

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Fuzznet Music launches a netlabel to unite musicians of the furry fandom.

by Patch O'Furr

What if there was a convention for furry musicians? For BLFC 2018, a furry musical was created and performed there (and it wasn’t the first of its kind.) Imagine that kind of energy every year. Sustaining it would take a thriving scene with room for its own publishers.

But what is furry music? Why is it furry? A Dogpatch Press Q&A series asked musicians to explain. Some use animal themes or perform in fursuit. Some just share a social circle. Many music scenes work that way, so you don’t even need to ask why. A show takes a crowd after all. What kind of energy could they bring to a con? Furry DJ spots have a lot of competition, and musicians have played live for hundreds of fans at cons. Think: Matthew Ebel, NIIC The Singing Dog, or Fox & Pepper (who racked up $38,000 in crowdfunding for an album!) Some get lots of views, compose for films, and reach outside the fandom. FWA 2019 made brief crossover with mainstream act Mystery Skulls. Furry musicians are also collaborating to put out compilations.

That makes a scene with potential. Now they’re taking another step forward with a netlabel. So blow a horn and start a howl for FUZZNET MUSIC!

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Dysfurria: A Manifesto — by Alec Esther

by Dogpatch Press Staff

Welcome to Alec Esther, a new media theorist and aesthetic scholar. Alec uses “affect theory” to  investigate how people find belonging and becoming in group spaces. Alec’s undergraduate thesis was about Porter Robinson’s Virtual Self project. Now here’s a critical personal reflection about the furry fandom, and the feeling of distance between internal self and external fursona.

I. Pentagon Dust

 
“Wait a second,” my bunny-eared DJ buddy stopped us mid-walk. “You don’t actually HAVE a fursona, do you?!”

We were hopping along the San Jose Doubletree halls to find refuge in a PAWCon room party when the question arose. I’d hoped to dodge his accusations at least before a drink or five, but my neck was barren of badges sans my con admission. I guess that justified his suspicion: what kind of furry would frolic about a convention without a testament to their fuzzy side? Yet the remark only reminded me of the discomfort of human skin, the way it bumps and tingles at the first sign of trouble. My DJ name was on a flyer of his creation, advertising the very same party to which we strode. He knew who I was. Was there a part of me that mattered more?

I stashed this question in my carry-on and flew it back to my then-home in Arizona, a state in which I’d just partied the weekend prior at Arizona Fur Con 2019. I had only 48 hours before I’d be on another flight to an even greater challenge: a weekend in Florida spent with a furry mentor and his friends. Loath am I to pass up an adventure, but the thought of being surrounded by more “established” furries filled me with a hollow dread. More intimidating than the social falsehood of “popufur” status was the feeling of self-fulfillment that I knew I lacked. From the moment of my arrival in MCO, I’d be a fursona non grata in the inescapable form of isolated flesh.

It was not yet the weekend when I landed in Orlando. The others would touch down on Friday, and Thursday had yet to wreak its temporal terror. That day I took my mentor’s offer to accompany him to the UCF campus as he took his Thursday classes. I sought comfort in the arts building, just as I often did during my Midwestern education in art history, and admired the great works of UCF’s aesthetes until one peculiar project tackled my stomach to the tile floor.

Londoño, Marcela. El Caballero del Fútbol. Woodblock print. 2019, Visual Arts Building, University of Central Florida. mlondono.com.

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Interview with a Sleestak, the scaly monster that stalks the streets of Portland!

by Patch O'Furr

Beware! Get scared! There’s a Sleestak on the street tonight!

This scaly, green, bipedal creature was originally from the 1970’s TV show Land of the Lost. (A live action children’s adventure show mixed with claymation animated dinosaurs, about a family trying to get home from an alternate universe.)

Through some dimensional portal, one Sleestak recently appeared in Portland, OR. He was then discovered by the news. Read a story about him from The Oregonian: The Portland Sleestak wanders the city for scares, smiles and general weirdness. Another from King5: Brent Marr pays tribute to a 70’s classic and reminds his hometown it’s fun to be weird.

I saw the news linked by Bawdy Storytelling. (A show for kinky stand-up performers, which often has furries like me.) Sadly, I must disappoint friends at Bawdy because the Sleestak is family-friendly and can’t go on stage with spicy stories. But he did answer a Q&A.

I was curious about the Sleestak’s inspirations, and why he appears on the street where you’d never expect a scaly creature. It reminds me of street fursuiting (my favorite thing.) Enjoy our chat about it.

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MTV WANTS YOU! (Proceed with caution…)

by Dogpatch Press Staff

Not all media is created equal. The furry kind is best of course! But furry fandom gets damaged by protesting against “the media” every time a journalist starts on a good story that might not push good PR. PBS isn’t the National Enquirer. Sometimes knowledge is power or sometimes exploiters have less noble intentions… results vary, just be informed. Here’s Joe Strike, a journalist who is no stranger to working professionally in the media. He submitted this story based on contact he got as author of Furry Nation, the furry fandom history book. (- Patch)

September 6 2020
Joe Strike
joestrike@gmail.com

I received the following email last week:

My name is Joe Pinzone and I am casting a TV show for MTV called “Ghosted.”

We’re currently casting people who have been ghosted or have ghosted someone important in their lives due to people not understanding cosplaying/furries. I know that you wrote a book about it and was hoping you could spread the word by reposting the below notice. If you have questions, please let me know.

Did a friend, relative, or lover ghost you because of your love for dressing up as a furry or did you ghost someone who didn’t understand Furries?

Sharp Entertainment are now casting people 18-34 nationwide, who are ready to find or give answers, and share their story with the world.

Please send pictures, contact info & a short description of the ghosting in your life ASAP to: ghostedtvcasting@gmail.com

FINAL CAST APPROVED BY THE NETWORK WILL RECEIVE PAYMENT. NO TRAVEL REQUIRED. NON UNION—-

Joe Pinzone
Facebook casting page
LinkedIn Profile

Here’s my response to Joe P:

Personally, I’ve never been ghosted or ghosted anyone. I’ll relay your message to a few furry websites & message boards – with a proviso.

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Q&A with Christopher Polt PhD., who teaches a Talking Animals course at Boston College (Part 2)

by Patch O'Furr

We’re back after Part 1 of the Q&A with Christopher Polt, PhD., from Boston College. His Twitter is full of art and animation history that welcomes furry fans.

Rate My Professor loves him.

(Dogpatch Press:) It was interesting that you mentioned teaching a course in talking animals. Tell me all about it! Since when, and how unique is that, and how is it being received? What sort of students are in it and what are they studying in general?

(Christopher Polt:) I love that course — the material is so fun and weird and meaningful. The basic question we ask is, “What are we doing when we speak by using animal voices, and what does that say about our attitudes towards humans, animals, and the lines we draw between them?” It’s also my chance to teach some cool, off-the-wall art and literature. We read Apuleius’ Golden Ass, which is a novel about a guy who accidentally turns himself into a donkey and goes on a journey through the Roman provinces (think The Emperor’s New Groove, but much sexier and more violent), and Nivardus’ Ysengrimus, which is the earliest major collection of stories about Reynard the fox, an archetypal animal trickster.

Sometimes I also take students on field trips to tie historical material we’re learning to lived experience. One of my favorites has been to a local pet cemetery. We spend a few days talking about how Greeks and Romans use animals to think about divinity, mortality, and the afterlife, and we look at epitaphs and funeral poems for dead pets, which are often written from the animal’s point of view. There’s a great example in the British Museum, which commemorates the life of a dog named Margarita (“Pearl” in Latin), who died while giving birth to puppies:

https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/G_1756-0101-1126

She talks about chasing other animals through the woods, how she used to nap on her humans’ laps and sleep in their bed, and how she barked a lot but never scared anyone. So after we read a range of things like that, we go to the pet cemetery and read modern grave markers, and we compare how people grieve for animals differently and what they choose to celebrate and memorialize about them. My favorite is this one for a cat named Useless:

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Q&A with Christopher Polt PhD., who teaches a Talking Animals course at Boston College (Part 1)

by Patch O'Furr

It wasn’t long ago that Furry Twitter found Christopher Polt, PhD. and his threads full of art and animation history that whole-heartedly welcome furries.

His content isn’t just catering to fandom — it goes deep into history in a fun and engaging way. But the parts with furry interest reminded me of another account profiled here before, Ancient Furries. I asked him if he wanted a brief “Great Accounts To Follow” article, and it led to a much more involved Q&A. It’s special to get such effort from a professor who handles lots of students and curriculum! Here’s Part 1, with Part 2 posting tomorrow.

(Dogpatch Press): I see you’re a Classicist and Assistant Professor at Boston College. That looks like a super active place (with beautiful architecture!) Can you talk about what it’s like to work there and what the job involves?

(Christopher Polt:) If you like Collegiate Gothic, we’ve got you covered! It’s a nice place to work — supportive colleagues, friendly and bright students, freedom to teach mostly what and how I want. Each semester I teach two or three courses, which are a mix of intro/intermediate ancient Greek or Latin, advanced seminars on Latin literature (esp. Roman poetry), and courses on ancient culture that don’t require knowing ancient languages (some examples: Roman spectacles; art and resistance under the early Empire; and “Beast Literature,” which is about talking animals in ancient and modern literature and film).

I also spend a lot of time on research and writing. My first book, which is coming out from Cambridge soon, is about how Romans in the 1st century BCE used theatrical comedy to think and talk about their everyday lives and relationships.

I’ll bet Covid has really affected everyone at colleges everywhere, what’s your story for that? You mentioned starting to tweet about Disney history a few months ago, is that using social media to maintain energy with your work that got disrupted by the pandemic?

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Furry con staffer James Lovell Thompson accused of degree fraud, defends with fake diploma

by Patch O'Furr

James Lovell Thompson, AKA Keanu the Red Panda, was formerly known for representing the Anthro Southeast furry convention before a series of disgraces. In March 2020, Keanu spread bogus health info about the Covid-19 pandemic. He was accused of doing it with claims of a PhD. degree he doesn’t have.

Degree fraud (pretending to have credentials and authority) is often seen with professional cheating, lying on resumes, gaining licenses without merit, medical quack scams, identity theft, and other crime. It’s like stolen valor for academics. It damages trust and safety for victims, organizations and communities.

In response to the accusation, Keanu dropped out of social media activity for months, only to re-emerge with an elaborate defense. Keanu put out a video that repeats his PhD. claim while he shows off a diploma that is not genuine. Proof is in this Google doc, newly shared after months of seeking evidence.

Keanu Red Panda’s “Microbiology PhD.” — 8 reasons the diploma is fake.

 

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