Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week

Category: Current events

The “New Paws” Hoax: How alt-right trolls piled on a disabled man to boost their failing careers.

by Patch O'Furr

A shocking accident.

In 2015 I met a furry who joined furmeets I organize in Northern California. He’s bright, enthusiastic and fun to host. It was a shock when he posted on Facebook about suffering an accident. There were graphic medical photos of extreme frostbite caused by dry ice.

Welp, I’m in the hospital with a life changing situation. It was my own damn fault. Been pushing myself so hard for so long, sleep deprived, pushing myself with arthritis in my wrists. Basically I fell asleep while icing my wrists last night. Woke up 6 hours later, hands were frozen. Went to the hospital, they care flighted me to a burn center in California. It was too late, damage had been done, it’s resulting in a bilateral hand amputation so things are about to get very interesting in my life. I’m doing ok, remaining optimistic. Honestly I’m anxious to get it over with and move on with my life.

To help with costs of hand amputations, one of his co-workers started a crowdfund. I shared it on Twitter, and added a light-hearted comment about helping him to get “new paws” with an article I wrote 6 years ago: Scaly, feathery alternative limbs leap the uncanny valley into the future of prosthetic design (2013). It was about improving the lives of amputees. Instead of hiding prosthetics, they can be featured, like transforming scars with cool tattoos.

I commented about “new paws” before I saw anyone else say it. The crowdfund was his co-workers idea. Those ideas didn’t come from him.

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South Afrifur 2019 – Convention Report by Jako Malan

by Patch O'Furr

Thanks to Jako Malan/Erdwolf_TVL for the guest submission. Compare the update with a look back at Fred Patten’s South Afrifur 2017 con report. And check out the guest articles sent here by Duncan Piasecki for another voice from South African furry fandom. “An exciting tourist destination to international furries”? Lekker place, maan. – Patch

Fursuiters SAFC2019 – Thanks to @FurnixWolf (Telegram) for photo.

In 2018, the local furry convention South Afrifur – then in its second year – had the unexpected privilege of South Africa’s largest Afrikaans magazine doing an editorial on the local fandom. I did not feel it pressed on me to write an official report then. This year the local convention attracted little attention from non-furries, but in a way, I think it had reached critical momentum and I felt inspired to write about it again.

Whereas the question on every muzzle in previous years had been “Will there be another con?” and “Did we succeed?” This year, there was tangible optimism and a sense of achievement. Other questions were being asked. “How many fursuiters will there be next year?” and “How will we fit everyone into the available accomodation?”

The 80s themed convention was held from the 12th through the 15th of July at the Ekudeni retreat about an hours’ drive from Johannesburg. As with previous years, the majority of furries came from the Gauteng province – the economic and industrial heartland of South Africa. The other provinces were represented too, albeit in much smaller numbers. We were also privileged to have four international visitors – Bravura and Aninok from Switzerland as well as Kit and Trace from Nebraska in the USA.

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Get furry at San Francisco Pride 2019 — Here’s the info you need to dance and join the parade.

by Patch O'Furr

Paws for thought.

The Popdust blog asks: Do Furries Have a Home in the LGBTQ+ Community? Well, I can say a lot about it from organizing for Pride since 2012. (Read to the bottom for past news, or try this 2017 San Francisco Furry Pride story by Smash.) The 2018 parade had the best furry turnout ever — I estimated over 100 came. They won the Absolutely Fabulous award. Whether or not that represents The Gay Agenda at large, SF’s “largest gathering of LGBT people and allies in the nation” opens a home (or a kennel) for us.

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Arrest of Lee Miller (Foxler) brings a call for witnesses to come forward.

by Patch O'Furr

Report tips to Detective Steve Bishop, Denver Police Department Sex Crimes Unit, 720-913-6903 

In April 2019, Lee Miller, a Colorado man who goes by “Foxler” in the furry fandom, was arrested for enticement of a child. Sources in the legal proceedings think other potential victims may be out there and want to talk to them. (Sex crime charges have protected info, but this site was asked for help and verified a need to share.) Please help if you can bring them forward.

Miller’s Wikifur profile gives an introduction to his history in fandom. In 2017, Dogpatch Press broke news about activity by his Furry Raiders group that went up to coverage in Rolling Stone and Newsweek. (Deeper details are in these loose notes that are being organized by a publisher’s request.)

Miller’s 2019 arrest was for an offense in 2015, before there was public dispute about him. It took time for police to investigate, but the reason was first reported to them as part of research for Aristide’s 2017 Dogpatch Press article.

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RIP to Downers Grove FurBowl organizer killed in Illinois road accident

by Patch O'Furr

Patch.com, a news source focusing on local communities, reported the death of Jimmy Harbin, AKA Scorch Dragon (not the same as another who uses the name.) The news was noticed with recent filing of a lawsuit to compensate his family. The 49-year old New Lenox, IL resident was the victim of a fatal accident with a semi-truck and trailer that crossed into oncoming traffic in the early morning of Feb. 19, 2019.

Harbin’s obituary page named him as father to a son and daughter and the devoted manager of his small farm. It asked for donations in lieu of flowers to a wildlife rehab nonprofit. It also has a video tribute showing his love of bowling and costuming. He was a volunteer with the Downers Grove Furbowl, an event of the Chicago area L.A.F.F. (Lake Area Fur Friends.)

Scorch’s last tweet was a wish for a sick friend to get better, and years of tweets from his friend Odie (head of the D.G. Furbowl) shows how he is remembered. Read the rest of this entry »

The Goodest Boy – Dogbomb’s victory lap against ALS

by Rune AngelDragon

Rune’s Furry Blog showcases “people within the Furry Community… their characters, life, thoughts, and beliefs”. Check out her tag for more. – Patch

Vet tech, runner, fursuiter, grease monkey, motorcycle hysteric and full time nutjob. ALS can kiss my fuzzy butt. I ain’t scared! – DogBomb

Words on a profile aren’t even a shadow of the figure that Tony “DogBomb” Barrett would create when he was diagnosed with ALS in March of 2018.

Furries, for all of the negative stereotyping they receive from time to time, have often spread light in many ways throughout their communities. Whether that be placing smiles on the faces of adults and children alike, raising money for animal organizations through their conventions, or, in the case of Tony (DogBomb), raising money and awareness for a very serious disease… Furries have always been there to lend their helping paw.

Tony not only shed light on his condition by documenting it as it happened, he also showed how something so devastating did not have to bring a person down. ALS is a very real and serious terminal condition… but Tony never let it stop him from loving and living his life in the only ways he knew how. Wherever he went, he continued spreading positivity and love, while educating the public on why taking action and pursuing research was important and even crucial to find a cure for future generations.

He took a terminal condition in stride as he continued to walk, boat, ride, and sit down with friends, all the while confessing that he shouldn’t be doing such things, but he had a point to prove, even with his doctor’s disapproval. Through laughter and moments of honesty, and even a few moments of vulnerability- DogBomb had nothing to hide from the community he loved so much. All he ever asked is that we pay it forward, and keep shining that light after he had gone.

“No one should be broken up over my passing. Sadness or anger at ALS is appropriate, but there is nothing to grieve about when you consider the ride that I was afforded. Wag every day, please. Hug your dogs and your friends. Smile when you think of me. No regrets.” – DogBomb

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The conspiracy of Beto O’Rourke, AOC, Sex, Politics, Furries, Hackers and the 1980’s internet.

by Patch O'Furr

Announcement: Until March 31, vote for the Ursa Major Awards to support the best works of furry fandom!

Hang on, this will be a weird ride. Start with recent furry news about this guy:

The story goes like this – this dude was deep in Jesusland and high on snake venom and arm-wrestled The Zodiac Killer, and … OK, I can’t do serious writing about political battles here, but Beto almost won a Senate seat from Ted Cruz in Texas. I think it’s kind of unusual for a Democrat to do so well there. It’s unusual enough that he joined the 123547 people who want to unseat Trump in 2020. That made some Republicans want to embarrass him with typical anti-sex, anti-gay stone age bullshit, so they dug up an old video of him wearing a sheep costume on stage when he was briefly in a punk band, and called him a furry with insinuation about freaky sex. (Like that’s bad? Could anything else make him seem cooler? Yeah, wait for it…)

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Sonic the Hedgehog artist injured by hate crime; life can be prickly for struggling artists

by Patch O'Furr

Milton Knight has a hand in works of animation and cartoon art seen by millions. For the 1993 Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog TV series, he did storyboards and animation and is credited with design for the villain Robotnik. In nearly 40 years as a pro, he’s made countless fans happy. But on February 25, he was hospitalized with “cuts, a broken nose, and more” at the hands of a racist stranger. Knight described enduring 15 minutes of provocative hate speech before it exploded with “endless punches to the head”. The attacker injured his fist and was jailed for battery.

Knight’s creative drive is inspired by retro style from the Golden Age of animation, and traditional ink and paint. As a pro since 1980, he got into animation on Ralph Bakshi‘s Cool World and The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat. In comics, he worked on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Mighty Mouse. Like his inspiration from untamed 1930’s cartoons, he also did mature work like Heavy Metal and his own indie comic Midnite the Rebel Skunk. A fact that readers here may like is that he experimented with “extremely adult furry” work in the independent spirit of 1980’s fandom. In the network where pros, fans, and art curators meet, he has done archiving for the International Animated Film Association (whose president Jerry Beck was very close to “fandom founder” Fred Patten.)

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Margaret Cho barks about furries, pride, and costuming on The Masked Singer

by Patch O'Furr

Dogged persistence seems necessary to win success as a standup comedian. In school, the class clown might not be who you expect to become a household name. That’s why one like Margaret Cho can be extra fascinating among mainstream celebrities. She’s got layers. Fabulous, fluffy layers. 

Live touring, TV, movies, fashion and music are all part of her creative canvas, with a palette of adult humor colored by mentors like Robin Williams, 1970’s San Francisco childhood, 1990’s alternative culture, Korean-American experience, female and LGBT identity, and enduring love for non-conformists. Her bio includes Grammy and Emmy nominations, accolades from the New York Times, and awards for representing the LBGT community among other activism for social progress. With such an arsenal of badassery at her disposal, she still graciously got on the phone with a little furry blog. 

Research for our chat turned up a few interesting facts: The show format (guessing the hidden performer) originally came from Korean TV, and she was tuned in to it before being cast. Despite the comedy label, her background includes burlesque and serious study to create comedy music on the level of pros like Weird Al or Flight of the Conchords. You can watch her on Season 1, Episode 4 of The Masked Singer on Fox.comEnjoy – Patch

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Josh Acosta Sentenced for life in Fullerton Murder

by Rune AngelDragon

Rune’s Furry Blog showcases “people within the Furry Community… their characters, life, thoughts, and beliefs”. It also covers furry issues and media plus some personal blogging. Rune joins other guest posters to Dogpatch Press like Tempe O’Kun and Arrkay (Culturally F’d). Welcome Rune. – Patch

Acosta sentenced to life for triple homicide

Frank Felix (left) – Josh Acosta (right)

On September 24th, 2016, media outlets blew up with the news of a triple homicide in Southern California. Now known as the “Fullerton triple homicide”, the highlight of the headlines following the incident was that there had been a murder among “Furries”. Despite the hate and jokes that circulated due to misleading titles and information, the fandom itself was broken over this loss.

The victims were Christopher Yost (34), Jennifer Yost (39), and their friend Arthur Boucher (28). The loss ran deep as those involved were very active in the Furry community. They were known through several local groups, including the La Habra Fur Bowling social group, and as attendees at the Prancing Skiltaire monthly parties (the long running furry house owned by some of the founders of 1980’s fandom.)

For the local Furry populace, Jennifer Yost was seen as the “Mom of the community,” thus her nickname of Jen-ma. She was known for her kindness in listening and helping others with their problems, and her crafting… making clothes and stuffed animals for her children. It was her youngest child (then 6-years-old) who called the police to tell them that their parents were dead that morning.

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