The excellent headline "Fursuit of Happiness" belies the seriousness of the topic: how do furries fare in therapy? Professionals find that it's best to bring along the fursona rather than put it aside on the couch, writes Hussein Kesvani.
According to Sharon Roberts, a sociology professor at the University of Waterloo and one of the few researchers who focuses on identity within furry communities, Max’s therapy experience is pretty common. “There are some psychologists who associate fursonas with dissociative behavior, which by and large isn’t the case,” she explains. “In other cases, because of the aesthetic of furries — that they’re a colorful and quite loud subculture — society generally sees them as more likely to suffer from mental health issues, when the research shows that’s not true either. In a lot of cases, furries are less likely to develop severe mental health conditions because of how strong the bonds are in the community.”
To better spread (and back up) this message, Roberts co-founded the International Anthropomorphic Research Project, a collective of academics dedicated to producing evidence-based research on furry culture and providing insights about it to therapists.
Photo: Rob Beschizza (CC BY 3.0) Read the rest
Not all heroes wear capes; sometimes they wear fluffy, pink animal costumes. Outside San Jose's Further Confusion (FurCon) this weekend, a group of furries spotted a man abusing a woman in a car. So they intervened. From CNN:
"We heard a woman's screams coming from inside and saw the passenger throwing full fists at whoever was driving," (FurCon DJ Robbie) Ryans told CNN.
"We got up and ran towards the car, my friend pulled open the door and we both held onto the attacker. The girl driver was yelling for him to get out, as he started trying to fight us off."
Four other people who were attending the convention joined in and helped grab the man, drag him out of the car, and restrain him until police arrived.
Once he the felt the situation was under control, Ryans said he backed up and began filming the incident.
When police arrived, they alleged that the suspect, 22-year-old Demetri Hardnett, assaulted his girlfriend in their car, according to the police report. Hardnett was arrested and booked into Santa Clara County Jail for domestic violence.
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Every year in Japan, animals escape from zoos in a planned exercise. Except they aren't really animals, they're humans in animal costumes. And they aren't really escaping, they're part of an annual drill to train staff on what to do when a real animal does. While funny to watch, escaped animals are no joke in a country known for earthquakes.
Director of Tama Zoological Park, Yutaka Fukuda, told Metro in 2015:
‘In the event of a big earthquake, a tree could fall on a cage, or many other things could occur that may lead to an animal escape.
‘We think it is very important, and it is our responsibility to carry it out with seriousness.’
Look for the real lions, their reactions to the drill are priceless.
screenshot via The Guardian Read the rest
Furry fans sometimes use cooling vests to make hot fursuits comfortable to wear. Soldiers also have need for such garments. And now a Dutch fursuit maker has improved the state of the art.
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Tired of overheating in his own fursuit, Pepeyn Langedijk adapted a military cooling vest to his own ends to create the EZ Cooldown vest. Langedijk, a resident of the Netherlands, goes by “EZ Wolf” in lupine costume and named his invention after his character.
Langedijk and his husband Tom live in Amsterdam and run the EZ Cooldown business together full-time. They met during Elfia, a medieval fantasy reenactment fair, and their hobbies led them to test their product on themselves. The team told The Daily Beast that they sold more than a thousand vests in 2018, which each retail for $215, packs included. Roughly 80 percent of the company’s sales are to U.S. customers.
The pair don’t have official military contracts, but they told The Daily Beast that a small group of U.S. Navy troops in Japan reached out to EZ Cooldown three years ago to ask if the company could ship to military bases. The service members ended up buying 10 vests, then their friends bought 20, then 30, Langedijk said. He still doesn’t know how they heard of his product.
Merriam-Webster welcomes the furries to its candidate list.
Not all furries manifest their fursonas in the same way. Some see being a furry as a pastime and may only engage their fursona in online role play or chat, or they may participate in furry meet-ups or conventions wearing only a badge depicting their fursona, and maybe other representative accessories—such as a mask, animal ears, and a tail. Others embrace being a furry as a lifestyle and act out their fursonas in full costume—that is, in their customized fursuit.
Photo: Rob Beschizza Read the rest
It's Anthrocon time again -- the annual summer invasion of Steel city by the Fur nation. There'll be fun, costumes, art, screenings, and the amazing sight of a major city's downtown filled with countless fursuited convention-goers.
Anthrocon 2018 will be held Thursday through Sunday at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center ... Costumes are only part of the convention for many of those attending, board member John Cole says in an earlier interview. He adds that Anthrocon is different than, for example, a science fiction convention or Harry Potter convention in that there is no preconceived storyline. Only about 20 percent of Anthrocon attendees partake in costuming. Some write, some draw — it's all about telling a story, Cole says.
An emerging tradition: many Pittsburgh restaurants will serve your meal in a dog bowl.
Photo: Rob Beschizza (CC BY 4.0) Read the rest
Sometimes I think I've reached the end of the internet, you know, that I've simply "seen it all." Then a video of a humans dressed as sheep -- hunchbacked and bleating, no less -- pops up and I know there's plenty in this world left to surprise me.
This absolutely splendid "human-sheep shepherding" was performed by Toronto's Les Moutons, which is a special troupe within the CORPUS dance project.
Its description is as follows:
Reality meets fantasy in this wordless live installation that recreates a bucolic country scene in a typical urban setting. Travel to a strange & hilarious universe as CORPUS takes you through a carefully studied, surrealistic overview of sheep behaviour. Meet Julie, Marie-louise, Bernadette and César, 3 healthy ewes and a young ram. Routine activities include: shearing, feeding, milking and many more... This truly innovative performance twists reality in surprising ways and takes audience interaction to new heights!
To take a closer look at this mutton madness AND to see an awesome "sheep shearing," watch this performance of Les Moutons:
(reddit) Read the rest
Grey White takes the guest-spot in Oh Joy Sex Toy this morning in order to defend and debunk the fursuit, long the butt of sniggering sex-jokes. Read the rest
Syrian refugees who found their way to Canada have been placed in a hotel hosting a furry convention. Wonderfully surreal scenes of displaced kids dancing with fursuiters were captured on video and posted to YouTube. The New York Daily News described an "aww-inspiring" encounter. Read the rest
The 15th Midwest Furfest was evacuated last week after 19 attendees were hospitalized by chlorine gas at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare Hotel; hazmat technicians cleared out an "intentional gas attack" apparatus in the 9th floor stairwell. Read the rest
"Why?" The New York Times investigates:
“We are responding to the desire by our fans to experience the brand in more ways,” said John A. Frascotti, Hasbro’s chief marketing officer. “They imagined themselves as which pony they would be or which pony they identified with the most.” So Hasbro created Equestria Girls, a parallel world in which the My Little Pony characters were reconceived as teenage girls in high school.
Seriously, it's happening every day now, people coming up to us and saying "I want to experience your brand in more ways. Could you lose the hooves and snouts?" Read the rest
Gillian BenAry says:
This is without a doubt the next best thing to actually being a colorful furry animal (for those who’d be interested in that sort of thing). I got chatting with the guy who was wearing these fuzzy orange fox ears, which move in accordance with your emotional state (triggered by alpha and beta brainwaves). Turned out that Nick Hoffman, the guy under the ears, was also the guy behind the ears: his company EMOKI created these anthropomorphic accessories. He was really excited to tell me all about them and show off the range of emotion they can convey. For example, they perk up when you see somebody cute, they droop down when you feel relaxed, and they wiggle when you get excited.
MAKE: Mind-powered Animal Ears Read the rest
Per sez, "Belarus is usually referred to as the last dictatorship in Europe.
The opposition is jailed and tortured. The freedom of speech is non-present. Yesterday morning a small airplane entered the restricted Belarusian airspace, heading for Minsk. Flying on low altitude to avoid radar, the plane reached Minsk early morning releasing it's cargo of 800 plush teddybears with protest signs demanding free speech. The plane was able to return to Lithuania without being detected.
Later the same day day the Belarusian minister of defense denied anything or anyone entered Belarusian airspace." And if not for the small detail that we filmed everything our guess is that no one would have believed this ever took place. The only thing a dictator can't really survive is when the people are laughing at him, and this is what we people will do when a plane was able to circle over Minsk airdropping teddybears and get away with it."
Teddybear Airdrop Read the rest
British advertising regulators have dismissed a complaint against an ad that portrayed terrier-headed playboy "Trevor Mountleg" and sexual antics in the presence of animals.
The commercial, for Electronic Arts' Sims 3 Pets, has the hybrid creature describing what players can get up to in the game.
"Are you an animal person?" he says, waving a hand over his mansion as an entourage of full-blooded dogs drink water from a golden toilet. "Well, not like me, because most people are made up entirely of person. And if you're a person person, then you'd be missing out on the duality of life. With the Sims 3 Pets you can have a pet or be a pet."
"You can play both ways, and there's no shame in that," he continues, as a dog watches a couple dive into an opulent bed. "So, go on, experiment. Chase some tail. Lick your paws. You naughty little minx. Play with life."
After receiving complaints, the Advertising Standards Authority determined that the ad was clearly "silly" and unlikely to cause serious or widespread offense.
"We acknowledged some viewers might find the content of the ad, in particular the scene of the couple on the bed, distasteful," it says in its assessment, "but considered most viewers were likely to interpret it as being light hearted and mildly suggestive."
ASA Adjudication on Electronic Arts Ltd [ASA] Read the rest