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The best seat by the fire

Monday, December 10, 2007

12:32PM - Holiday cheer

Just a little note to let everyone in the Furry Community know that I have indeed read your feedback, and I will indeed answer each and every one of you.

You've asked for it, now you're going to get it.

Both Barrels.

Some of you are going to wish you had sucked on the pipe end of a shotgun before I get done with you.

But it is Hanukkah, and since the Shuttle won't fly again until January. :( I have a little time to relax and catch up on the work I would rather do than bandying words with some of the long-winded short-brained jackasses who replied.

Some of you may have the culture and education to have read or seen "Sweeney Todd."

Besides the forthcoming film (which is really cool) it was also a play.

Some of my responses are going to get VERY Personal. Sweeney Todd is a missionary compared to some of what I'm going to do verbally to some of you. I know you, I know who you are, and since I have nothing to loose anymore with this mess of idiots and morons, I'm going to have some genuine fun. It's time that someone gave some of you the complete and utter thrashing that someone who cares about you never got around to, from the looks of things.

I have one novel, two scripts, and three short stories to finish. I ought to be done by Boxing Day. I'd start dropping bombs the day before, but I'll let you have the day for your Christmas hypocrisies in peace.

It will be the last peace anyfurry will find here, until I've had a chance to say my piece.

My friends need not fear. Once a friend, always a friend. But I'm going to start treating some of these morons like baby harp seals during Canadian hunting season.

Yes, I know it's terrible, and it should be stopped. But the analogy fits perfectly.

I warned some months ago that bad was coming.

REAL BAD.

It's here.

Run, fast.

But I hope that some of you gutless wonders will hesitate. I'll enjoy seeing the proverbial dark of your eyes before I bash in your metaphorical heads and let the deep vacuum out.


Happy Holidays
and to all those tiny brained Furries,
Good Luck
(You're going to need it.)

Roci

(and to all, a good night.)

Friday, September 28, 2007

3:24AM - An open letter to the furry community, if there is such a thing.

I want to take a moment to address the problems we've put up with from the idiots and morons out there. Granting for a moment that those two extremely descriptive terms could cover 15/16th of humanity, please allow me to sharpen both the focus of my discontent and my claws on some of tonight's victims.

First of all, some perspective. I have been a Furry longer than 85% of you have lived. Most of you out there think that life and modern civilization began sometime in the 80s. You can't possibly hope to remember anything that came before that, except to hear your older and wiser parents, brothers, sisters, and siblings talk about what went on in the "old days" of the 1960s. I have been a furry since 1975. I speak to you now as a survivor, and one whose longevity has given, as longevity usually does, the double-edged ability to both look back, and to see forward.

This happens because you've climbed a hill. For any of you who've been fortunate enough to live in any of the great cities, such as Rome, or San Francisco,(I have lived in both.) you know the advantages and disadvantages that climbing up a hill can grant you.

There's been another wave of furry bashing floating around both on the net, and in RL, as we are so fond of saying. We've had an entirely new wave of half-wits, morons, idiots, politicians, used car dealers, and phone sanitizers feeling free to take potshots at us, just because the technology and the opportunity exists to do so. It doesn't take a second doctorate in astrophysics to see clearly what happens when these peawits get bored, get tired of straight porn, or just want to jump on the bandwagon and be popular again for a minute or two.

Since Furry Bashers are generally people of obviously low IQ, and even lower creativity quotient, and a rock-bottom self-esteem, it's both easy and appealing to add their presence to that ever-growing bandwagon that sees all the problems in the world originating with Furries.

These people don't worry me. They are as common as dirt, and as worthless as played out soil. You could throw away 16 tons of them, mix their worthless, colorless, mundane lives with water, dirt, and straw, to make mud bricks, and use the bricks to build something worthwhile. That would be about the only way that any of these cheap, creepy, Furry bashers could amount to anything.

What worries me, and drives me to fits of anger bordering on despair is that Furries are doing nothing about it. One of the things that continues to make us an easy target for the rest of the zombies that fill the malls these days is that we don't fight back.

I've never spoken at length about myself, suffice to say that I grew up the most dark, evil, and violent temper any sane person could dare to imagine. Don't worry, I changed. I grew. Being Furry changed me. The Skiltaire changed me. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, Sy. Like it or not, and sometimes I don't like it one little bit, I have committed the balance of my life to non-violence and the creative arts. As tempting as it might be, I can never suggest, nor would I ever suggest that any sort of violence be used against anyone who is a furry detractor.

But being non-violent does not mean being bovine, nor does it mean being passive to the point of having your detractors tattoo "welcome" on your backside with hobnailed boots and then using you and something you believe in as a doormat.

Nevertheless, this is exactly what has happened to Furries in general. They lay back, they hide, they change their names, even their spirit animals,and they just blend into the same mundane, colorless, worthless, world populated and generated by our detractors.

The truth is that I'm sick to death of gutless, cowardly, lay down Furries.

They might think they're laying back, blending in, safe and sound.

I say they're laying down. And they're pulling the rest of us down right alongside them. No people, group of people, or community with common interests can rise above a certain level unless there is a point in time when they are willing to stand up, stand out, speak out, and dare to begin the long hard work of making themselves understood in the face of disinformation, lies, hatreds, and everything which makes the world all of the things that we wish it were not.

Wishing is part and parcel of the core of what we are, and it is the first stepping stone upon the path we choose to take toward whom and what we really wish to be.

But the sad reality is that we have come to live in a world where wishes are ground into a vile sort of pixie dust, its power turned and darkened as a part of something that leads us along with the rest of humanity to greed, self-absorption, self-interest, and in the end of lack of a soul which gave birth to the wish in the first place.

In today's world more than ever, wishes, dreams, and hopes must be armored, lest the barbarian hordes wipe them away, and in a sense, ourselves along with them. When someone strikes us, we bleed. When someone tickles us, we laugh. Thus, we shelter and preserve that shard of unique humanity within us which is Furry.

We Furries are in a unique position to armor ourselves and our wishes against those who would so ill use them. Yet, armor is only the first piece of genuine protection which we require.

I no longer advocate protection alone as a way of life, nor do I recommend it for a community at large, nor for any group of people with common interests.

What we as a group must now advocate ever more strongly and forcefully is a doctrine of active self-defense. When we are attacked with lies, we must take up the sword and buckler of truth, no matter how small the buckler might be, nor how dull the edge of the sword might seem. For too long, Furries have been silent in the face of lies, slanders, libels, and misinformation.

It has been our silence and our acquiescence in the face of these evils that has planted them as seeds of truth in the minds of others. By our inaction, and lack of reaction, we have grown us up a garden of weeds, rather than a corner of Eden, wherein we should fashion for ourselves to stand.

Allow me to be unwaveringly clear and surgically concise. Furries are among the most intelligent, the most creative, and the most technologically savvy people on the only planet we inhabit so far. I am advocating by these articles, the formulation and effectuation of a new attitude and activism among those who call themselves Furries.

This new paradigm involves creativity, nonviolence, and sensitivity. These are the greatest strengths of Furries at large. Let us use what we know, and craft how we apply it to defend ourselves from these culturally deprived attacks. At the same time, rather than striking back, or striking out with violence of deed or word, we must become masters of using the self same opportunity to reach out to others and to demonstrate in ourselves, and by our actions as well as our words, the truth of what we believe, and who we are.

Now the first and most obvious problem with this whole new idea is the fact that it requires work. (Oh god, there's that word again!)

Relax. This work will be fun, which really makes it play in the end. And when do we learn most?

When some pinhead with a voice synthesizer smears excrement about Furries all over some popular video site or other, Furries ought to come together, and use their strengths and their know-how to produce not only a reply, not only video reply, but something that educates as well as refutes slanders, lies, and falsehoods. The core reason why people as a whole are so willing to accept and ingrain a negative image of Furries is because there is a vacuum of information, a lack of experience, and a damning silence from those of us most affected and most hurt by those who would hurt us.

The reason that more of this work is not getting done is because there is an alarming population of self-centered, self-absorbed, shit-for-brains Furries among us, just as among the great unwashed, uncaring mundane population out there.

Charity begins at home, but so does necessary change. There's a whole segment of Furries out there who are so focused on their minuscule corner of existence that they have no faculty that warns them they are being thrown on a dung heap along with the rest of us, and together we do nothing about it.

I'd like to sharpen my claws on some of these elitist, snobbish, (in no particular order) Fur Suit-ers, Tin-plated Convention "gods", Hucksters, "Comic Artists", mailing list Nazis, and (tossing bricks at my own glass house) Furry Porn Writers and Collectors who are more interested in their threads of the Furry fabric then they are in the cloth as a whole. When you pull long enough and hard enough on the warp and the weft of a fabric, it invariably unravels. This is what has happened, leaving holes for people who don't like us to crawl into and to exploit.

If you are furry, and your first thought has to do with "your" (next) convention, you need to be slapped.

If you are furry, and your first thought is about your fur suit,you need to be slapped.

If you are furry, and your first thought is about your comic book, comic strip, or comic story, you need to be slapped.

If you are furry, and your first thought is about writing furry porn, to be posted on any kind of website, or printed on dead trees, or collected on your server, you need to be slapped too.

Now some may take slapping as a violent act, at odds with my previously expressed philosophy of nonviolence. Administering a physical slap to someone can be an act of violence. But there are times, particularly in moments of urgency, where the shock of a slap may restore the senses, and a sense of self-preservation in an individual, or in this case a group of individuals.

To bring this discussion back around, I am seeing all this from high on a hill made of years. I have seen in that vista how far I have come, and taken in how far I have yet to go. But perfection is neither the hill, nor the vista. Our quest is the road we travel in order to climb the hill and see the vista we must use to get and maintain our bearings.

There have been more attacks on Furries in the last five years than in the last twenty-five years. More attacks in the last five than in the last fifteen years, and more attacks in the past five years than in the last ten. They increase geometrically because the technology increases in the same fashion. Because opportunity and ease of opportunity increases along with technology. And the only thing that remains the same is our own sickening self-determination to do absolutely nothing and so sell our dreams down the river to be used as doormats by Mundanes as they trudge along the muddy river banks of a dull, empty, existence.

If we have been given or have found something within ourselves which is of true value,and it can help bring a gentler, and somewhat more lofty aspect to the next generations of human existence, then there must come a time when we are willing to fight for it, as well as to fight along side it, in defense of what we believe, and in defense of the truths we perceive.

To many of you have forgotten your roots, and forgotten the gifts you've been given. Stop laying down.

Stand up instead, and come together, so we can stand up for the truth as we've come to know it, and so we can share it with those who seek it in the same way which we do.

Roci

Sunday, July 29, 2007

3:11AM

So we're at the height of summer. August is looming up on us. Three quarters of a year gone.

I was in Wal-Mart the other day (July 22 or so) and I overheard (as did half the people browsing for electronics) a very animated argument between two employees. One was obviously the middle-level management type, and I believe that the other was in charge of stocking shelves. The two ladies were having a cat fight over where to put *CHRISTMAS* Displays once all the back-to-school sales were over.

Yes, Folks, only rampant American Consumerism can bring you so close to so much holiday cheer, even before Santa and Rudolf leave Fiji ahead of the winter rush. If there's one thing out there more messed up than the Fandom, it is America's Balance of Trade. Not that I'd expect any save a few out there to know what I'm talking about.

What the hay?I love Chinese food of all sorts, and I already eat most everything up to and including ice cream with chopsticks, anyhow. I'm leaning more and more Cantonese every day.

So when a horde of Beijing based psudo-capitalists call in America's foreign debt to China, and wind up foreclosing on the last tail feather plucked off of the American Eagle, I'll feel right at home.

Lenin once said "The Industrialists will sell us the rope, with which we shall hang them."

I've been around long enough to remember when America had a positive trade balance. Yes, believe it or not, there was a day when we exported more to other countries than we imported. Those days are as shadowy and distant to most people now as the Presidency of Warren G. Harding.

Americans by and large have gone nuts. We're addicted to things, rather than principals, and to what we own and what we owe rather than to one another.

I love the iPhone. I love Macs. (I'm not as bad as a skunk named Sabrina, but I'll do in a pinch.) On the the day the iPhone came out, there was a young lady who showed up at a store with $10,000 in cash. She told people in line that she was going to be rich, because she would buy twenty or so iPhones and eBay all of them. Her dream of being a communications mogul ended when someone in line told her that the store was selling only two to a customer.

Yes, it's funny as all hell, and I believe it happened too.

But then, you start taking the story apart, both in terms of motivations, aspirations, greed, and something that goes far beyond a modest pride in ownership. Most Americans can't put their hands on ten long these days unless the take out a third mortgage, raffle off a kidney (If eBay will let them, that is) or sell the kids to some of the overseas companies who used SLAVE LABOR to meet the demand for the iPod.

To their credit, Apple seems to have done something about that, but not enough for some people, including me. I won't EVER touch an iPod for that reason, until the world at large is presented with proof that this ABOMINATION has really been corrected, and not just via press releases.

But as long as we're talking about abominations, no tree ever grows without a seed.

What was the real, root cause of Apple, or anyone else, having to go to such lengths to satisfy demand?

Who demands, and at what price, in coin, and things far more valuable than money? (Or so we tell ourselves, until we find out there are 400 of some new toy to be bought, and we're number 403 in line.)

Americans rank near to or at the very bottom of survey after survey when the average amount of Savings is considered. True, we do have a(n artificially) high per capita income, but the cost of living and people's demand for instant consumer nirvana (credit) cuts most of that away. If most people in the US had to live solely on what they had in the bank, people would be starving to death, stacked up knee deep in Central Park, because it would be as bad or worse then the Great Depression.

We have all become a nation of addicts, dependent on anyone save ourselves to meet the constant demand of our childish wants, while our children go wanting.

I have also been around long enough to remember when TV screens were not only round, but made in this country, too.

Now, before I go any farther, let me say that I AM NOT one of these jingoistic "rah-rah" America types.

Hopelessly, more than 85% of what America needs to survive as a Nation comes from beyond its own borders. We are gone from the Great Water Wheel, turning the engine of production to a great fountain of money and demand which fuels the export-driven economies of many other Nations, including my beloved Japan.

Without the electronics and IC's made there, and in Malaysia, and Singapore, iPhones would not exist at all, Nor would the nice box I'm banging on, or the screen that is a part of it. And if they were forced to be made (as some advocate) in America for Americans, the only customers for the iPhone would be in the board rooms at Apple, because they would be the only ones who could afford to pay the price that profit would demand, and the only people they would be able to talk with would be the ilk of Bill Gates rather than John Q. Public.

This unrivaled stuffing match of unchecked consumer lust has gone on now, basically un- noticed for more than a quarter of a century. Given a holiday meal with all the trimmings every day, who amongst us would be so foolish as to go hungry?

But as we all know, what evils befall us when we don't know (or won't admit) that we've had too much? As a people, American's eyes have become too big for their stomachs, and they have only now begun to feel the survival instinct that goes along with those first few moments before it all comes back on us, in bile and sickness, rather than our supposed satisfaction of only a few moments before.

There is a great debate in process within our Nation. Policy makers hammer at each other daily trying to divine the future in what many call "The Chinese Century", now nearly a tenth part done.

I think they are only partly correct.

I believe that this will indeed be a "Chinese Century." But only if Americans remain semi-comatose, as is common after too much turkey for the holidays. That is the state they are in now, and unless they impose upon themselves the same kind of discipline that helped save the world once before, it won't be turkey that gets fed to them. It will be plucked eagle, boiled in oil money, and force fed to us with chopsticks by the sort of people who crushed Democracy under tank treads, and then built a Starbuck's coffee not far away.

That Starbuck's went away not long ago, driven out by a jingoistic Chinese news man, and a bunch of "rah-rah" Chinese people, who thought it was a blight on the Chinese Culture that their Government tries constantly to re-draft, so it fits the same ideology that handed the Chinese Government a fistful of hard currency that paid for Starbuck's to open in the first place.

These are the people, and sadly, we are the People, who have put ourselves into this danger. And unless we wake up, and grow up fast, we had better get used to a new Chinese dish: 1000 year old bald eagle.

Roci

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

1:42AM

I've been bothered of late by several reports that have reached my ears. Furry fandom is so small and incestuous that eventually, everything gets heard-told-heard again and again. It's like playing post office after smoking your own weight in weed. Now add the emotional level of a group of life long enemies forced to play a game of SORRY together on a rainy Sunday afternoon, because the Internet is down and the CamCorder batteries are dead.

You get the Idea.

I hear about friends of mine and people I know sort of "Re-styling" or being scared because some rock heads who run a website someplace think that it's jolly good fun to "Expose" Furries. I've also seen or know of one or two Furries who have "re-styled" themselves as the years have gone along. This means that they take up a new Totem, change whatever name they have, and the whole process continues.

How sad this all is.

I can and do accept the concept that as Life changes, so do we all, and that Totems are badges of the journey we undertake.It is unthinkable to me that someone might feel (or have been made to feel) that for some concept of personal advancement or "Growth" that they must give up or hide away some part of themselves so that another part may prosper. It is even more sinister that anyone, in any place and time has come to feel that they must to some degree live a lie to propagate their own well-being or material wealth.

There is an old proverb that has been once again done to death because of some "spider movie." It has to do with power and responsibility. I won't repeat it here because my ears tire of it, and my soul is even more fatigued from people not learning from the proverb.

Which brings me to the point of all this.

I have always expected more and not less from Furries. This is because all of us are on a journey, and "courtesy of the road" ought to apply to us all, and amongst us all. But there is more too it than that, as there usually is with anything truly worthwhile. I expect more from Furries because travel broadens the mind, the heart, and the soul. Most of the time, this happens in spite of some of our best efforts to the contrary.

You simply cannot "untravel", if you will. The sum of life experience, for good and ill is both wonderful elixir and dark witch's brew, the draught of which is the distillation of who we are, and what we have discovered. This mix is how we view and cope with life from moment to moment and from dream to dream.

How can anyone "run away" or "Hide away" from this?

It has been tried, surely. The result is always the same. Pain, suffering, and all of the dark things that demand a cancerous toll paid out in hope, love, dreams, and all the things which we need to make this world better, for ourselves and others.

You can run, but you cannot hide. If you run, when you catch up with yourself again, you will only be tired. So who needs being tired? Especially in this day and age, when Furries have so much that we ought to be doing for ourselves, one another, and the worlds we share?

Perhaps the more ominous question is when will we dare to stand up and stand alongside what we believe in, and how long any one of us, or all of us can afford the real costs of not doing so?

Risky? You betcha.

Costly? Yep, I reckon so. If all you count is coinage,that is.

Somebody might get hurt. Plan on it. It will most likely be you, but better you than someone else.

Will things change? Yes,slowly.

And therein lays our rewards for services rendered.


A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.-Margaret Mead


"If not me, who? And if not now, when?"- Golda Meir

Never being one to argue with wisdom of this magnitude, I will close now. I hope some of those who read this might open as well.

Roci

Thursday, May 10, 2007

11:56PM - A future without Yiffstar

Last night, I took down all my work at Yiffstar. While part of me hates to pull down work anyplace I put it, this just had to be done. Trusting your work to any website anywhere is in part a fool's errand. No matter what the high-sounding intentions of those involved may be, if you place your work in a position where someone else has control over it, and you are left with only "remote control" over it, you're asking for heaps of trouble.

Moreover in this case, a trust has been breached, and I simply feel better and more secure away from that site. You see, my problem is that I'm not interested in any sort of "Furry fame." I don't want to be somefurry who runs this, or somefurry who does this site or that. Furry fandom is too small for that sort of tommy rot, both in terms of overall numbers and the real ability to support all the egos that thrive on being somefurry "big" in the Fandom.

I write for those with whom I share life. It is my one and only desire that they stand out, and that they shine. For years, I've told anyone who will listen in a serious moment that I'm really not much more than a typist comme secretary (Tho I talk to my computers these days. Very soon, I'll finish the first story I've ever done without striking so much as a single key. Not much of a milestone as the greater things in life go I suppose. But it is a mark that the times and the technology are catching up with those of us who quest to see beyond the next hill.)
But in that role, as both secretary and conservator, it *IS* my job to see to it that the stories are presented in the best possible light, in such a way that as many people can enjoy them as possible.
I have had friends urge me to set up some sort of pay scheme, or at least to place a "Donate" button along with my works, over the years. It is possible to do that these days, almost to easy as a matter of fact. I have no problem with artists or authors for that matter who choose to do so. Live and let live.

I have never taken any money whatsoever in return for anyone having access to the work that I do. The reason is simple, and goes to the heart of it all, as far as I can see.

These works of mine are a gift. I cannot say with certainty from where they flow, or from whom, or for any reason and sundry. All I know and see in my own sight, is that they are the wonders of my world. Gifts given freely ought to be given freely in turn. I can no more conceive of trying to place a finite value, no matter how high or low it might be on any story which I have been given,any more than I could try to place a finite or an infinite value on the sunrise, the breeze of spring, or any other of the wonders great and small which surround us all.
I do not presume to justify my own feeble efforts as being on a par with wonders such as these. But my wonders lay not only in all the things around us. They lay in equal measure in the extraordinary personages and places with whom and to which I have been conducted, and am thus compelled to report upon in as much as my own abilities might permit.

Each and every one of these journeys has been offered to me freely, freely given, and freely undertaken. It is therefore just as well as logical that whatever flows from these roots ought to be free also. A gift given freely, shared freely in return.

I will confess to more than a modicum of sadness that more of those within the Furry fandom do not share this philosophy. I set forth the foregoing not to evangelize, but as a frame of reference in which one can see where it is that I hold these works which I have been a portion of, and why in turn, I wish them to shine freely and brightly. They are the stars of my firmament, and when one is cast down, all shine less brightly. It is my absolute dedication to these stories that they shall all shine as brightly as they are able.

I see now that I cannot trust to any bulk repository of stories any sort of real stewardship over these small traces of stardust and wonder.

Some of these well known furry sites and the names that revel so loudly in their own ego and fire might shine in their turn for a brief moment, but never so long, nor so brightly in these eyes as to eclipse the shimmer of an ocelot's true love, nor to outshine the light and fire in their souls when true lovers find one another, and confess, each to the other.

No, my friends, I have my own "Yiff Stars", and any thing else, anywhere else, is like the flicker of a single matchstick against the majesty and wonder of the stars in my sky.

No comparison.
No compromise.
Lights out, "Yiffstar"


Roci

Thursday, May 3, 2007

2:25AM - YIFFSTAR NOTICE

I normally don't mention certain Furries by name, or in public if I have a problem with them or what they do. But this one has gotten WAY out of hand, and I must resort to public notice, as all attempts at private communication have failed or been intentionally ignored.

I have a lot of work on Yiffstar.com. Yiffstar is run by Toumal, the "yiffy" orca.

According to the login section of yiffstar, my e-mail address is not found. It is [oykoyr] (at) {yahoo (dot) com.) I have had an account there for some time, and have 38 stories posted.
I find it "convenient" and very strange indeed that I am "suddenly" "Non-existent", especially in view of the fact that I have made it known that I do not care for the way Yiffstar is run, and have also announced that I intend to remove all of my work from there. (I am one of the best "XP" authors there. Could it be that someone doesn't want me to leave? I do not know, and I do not care.) You see, as long as I'm "Not found" in their data base, I can't do anything with the stories already posted, nor can I send e-mail to anyone running the site. Isn't that nice for them?

Since I can't E-mail these people, I'll just post it here. I will also post this on several prominent "Furry" sites, mucks, and message boards.

I hereby rescind, revoke, and render null and void any and all Rights and licenses, real or otherwise previously granted or inferred to be granted for the public exhibition of any and all works done by me which can be accessed at Yiffstar.com, or any other subsidiary website controlled by the owners, maintainers, and those who lease of the domain name known as Yiffstar.com.
This revocation is absolute and immediate. I shall as of now consider any exhibition of my works, in whole or in part, to be COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT by the owners, maintainers and those who lease the domain name of Yiffstar.com and or any other subsidiary website. Said Infringement shall require legal action if all works containing my copyright are not removed from public access forthwith and at once.

WILLIAM GROBE, Author

If anyone out there knows anyone running Yiffstar, point this out to them please.

Roci

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

2:48AM

My birthday today. Birthdays, beyond the light and fun aspects usually lend me a moment or two for introspection.I've spent many an hour during the last few weeks looking deeply into the part of me which is furry. I've been deeply troubled by some of the things I've seen in the fandom, and where the fandom is headed in general. The most vexing part of the entire issue is that the furry fandom holds great promise in terms of creativity, self-discovery, and self-expression. That's the great, grand, profound side that we wish the world would see rather than seeing us in general as a group of people who dwell on the frayed fringes of something.

Part of our ongoing problem is that we have allowed others who live in glass houses and love to throw bricks to define who we are, what we are, and mostly what should be done to us. As far as I can tell, this very small, very vocal group of harpies has largely had their way because we with in the fandom have failed both as individuals and as a group, to take up, to shape, and to truly expound to the world at large who we are both as individuals and as a whole.

This is clearly a state of affairs which I believe the vast majority of Furries never wished for, and do not want.

While a vast majority of the fandom is also willing to admit these problems, the same majority of them when asked for solutions, or at least antidotes are left with nothing to say because they as individuals hold themselves powerless to play any part in their solution.

Nothing could be fur-ther from the truth.

While no one individual or group of individuals can lay clear, historic claim to the foundation of furry fandom as it is known today, there are both individuals and groups within the fandom which can affect for good or ill both its public perception, and the nature of its drift if not its overall direction.

The fandom as an entity has a certain age of somewhere between 30 and 40 years. Reflect upon that for a moment if you will. If we were to engage in our favorite pastime of anthropomorphic attribution, I venture to say that the fandom in general can certainly be understood to have outgrown the clumsy cub stage at the very least. The lesson here is that growth and change must come to all things if they are to live, survive, and finally thrive.

There's no denying there's nothing more frightening than change. For nothing is more uncertain, and yet there's nothing else in the world that can lead to more and greater wonders. There are a number of changes which must come sooner or later to Furries. These changes affect individuals first, and more directly the body of the fandom as a whole.

The largest and most direct institutions which affect the perceptions of Furries both among themselves and to the world as a whole are our conventions.

If you ask 100 Furries at a convention what a convention ought to be , you'll get a hundred answers, or so they say. The real truth is that you might get 25 answers, 50 blinks of pseudo recognition, and 25 Furries to busy going to someplace in to much of a hurry to consider a cogent answer. Anyone who's ever survived a con weekend in the Bay Area, Garden Grove, or the San Diego area will know exactly what I'm talking about.

I have a completely different view of conventions. I've grown to dislike, and even despise what has become a cookie-cutter sameness of formula not only had individual conventions from year-to-year, but also the whole corpus of furry conventions in general. Most of these functions each maintain some elements worthy of praise in general. Charitable auctions and other fund-raising activities for institutions and people who benefit the animal or animals we so admire and emulate are entirely laudable, and ought to be expanded as far as possible. these activities are one of the very few things visible to anyone at a furry convention which put on proper public display the types of positive influences that Furries as a whole can have on the world as a whole and the perceptions of it.

Unfortunately, the balance of activities are furry conventions these days divide, compartmentalize, and in some cases stigmatize furry fans, furry fandom, and most important those who might be new to the fandom and are in quest of first discoveries about their furry selves.

If one picks up any of the literature published by a convention for a convention, especially a program book, the divisions are subtle but very clear indeed. Broadly speaking, the cookie-cutter formula which has fallen into use divides Furries into a number of categories. These categories also subdivide the convention programming. Generally speaking, these categories are as follows:

+Artists, and art techniques
+Fur suiting and costuming
+Furry Identification and Communal meetings (Furry spiritualism)
+Other creative endeavors (creative writing, Anime, and Role playing games etc.)

While these general subdivisions might form a sound basis for the formulation of coordinated weekend programming, the sad truth is that they have become the bane of not only conventions but a major point of division within the fandom as well.

The truth is that furry conventions are still "Owned" by individuals whose biases for or against one of these categories has come to influence the spirit of the individual conventions. Individual biases are also applied in the way in which conventions are seen and perceived both by Furries themselves, and by the public at large.

It is stunningly simple and quite stark to see where these biases lie and how they are expressed in both substance and form. If you pick up a programming book, and discover the large majority of the program is devoted to fur suiting for example, it doesn't take a brain trust to figure out that you're at a "fur suiting convention", and if you're not into fur suiting, for example, then other than the "dealer's den" and a range of private "activity" in individual hotel rooms, you stand to be pretty much bored out of your skull, and at $100 (or more) a nite for a room, who needs that?


You can go to a panel, if you want to. The same one(s) you go to every year, and after an hour, you're back to being bored again. Any of this sound vaguely familiar?

Have you ever spent hours wandering around convention function spaces or individual rooms looking for someone you haven't seen all year because some of the most tech savvy people in the world still hasn't efficiently solved the fundamental problem of Furries communicating with Furries in a hotel full of Furries? It could be regarded as low comedy if it weren't really and truly pure tragedy.

Did you really come to the Con to spend the nite in the video room?

Is the Con Suite REALLY supposed to be a major source of food for anyone who is staving, or has had to starve themselves for the money to "enjoy" this gathering?

Is this sad litany of ongoing problems truly reflective of the way Furries would run their own world?

Think about that for a moment. Yes, it's true. When we take over a hotel or more than one for a half a week, is it not so that for all intents and purposes, what we do is create a version of a Furry universe? What visage do we put on this world? What do people see, and as a result, how are Furries perceived?

That single perception change is the sea change that should come over all that we do as Furries whenever and where ever we gather together.

We are miserable failures at taking care of our own as individuals, but the flaws magnify, as flaws will, when we gather together. The purpose of these gatherings is self-indulgence, wrapped in a nearly worn out furry pelt of charity and greater involvement.

The very nature of these Conventions ought to change. Not so much to do better as institutions, but simply because it is high time that we acknowledge that we ought to grow up and grow together, beyond the bounds and bonds of muddle-headed egotism, and pure childish self indulgence.

What should we do, and how should we do it?

More on that soon.

Roci

Sunday, March 18, 2007

2:16PM

I normally don't mention certain Furries by name, or in public if I have a problem with them or what they do. But this one has gotten WAY out of hand, and I must resort to public notice, as all attempts at private communication have failed or been intentionally ignored.

I have a lot of work on Yiffstar.com. Yiffstar is run by Toumal, the "yiffy" orca.

According to the login section of yiffstar, my e-mail address is not found. It is [oykoyr] (at) {yahoo (dot) com.) I have had an account there for some time, and have 38 stories posted.
I find it "convenient" and very strange indeed that I am "suddenly" "Non-existent", especially in view of the fact that I have made it known that I do not care for the way Yiffstar is run, and have also announced that I intend to remove all of my work from there. (I am one of the best "XP" authors there. Could it be that someone doesn't want me to leave? I do not know, and I do not care.) You see, as long as I'm "Not found" in their data base, I can't do anything with the stories already posted, nor can I send e-mail to anyone running the site. Isn't that nice for them?

Since I can't E-mail these people, I'll just post it here. I will also post this on several prominent "Furry" sites, mucks, and message boards.

I hereby rescind, revoke, and render null and void any and all Rights and licenses, real or otherwise previously granted or inferred to be granted for the public exhibition of any and all works done by me which can be accessed at Yiffstar.com, or any other subsidiary website controlled by the owners, maintainers, and those who lease of the domain name known as Yiffstar.com.
This revocation is absolute and immediate. I shall as of now consider any exhibition of my works, in whole or in part, to be COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT by the owners, maintainers and those who lease the domain name of Yiffstar.com and or any other subsidiary website. Said Infringement shall require legal action if all works containing my copyright are not removed from public access forthwith and at once.

WILLIAM GROBE, Author

If anyone out there knows anyone running Yiffstar, point this out to them please.

Roci

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

5:30AM

I recently attended a very "popular" Furry Convention held in the Bay Area each year. Conventions are not something I anticipate with glee. This stands in stark contrast to the bulk of Furry fandom, most of whom would stake their own mothers to an anthill for a chance to attend one of these things. I am a longtime con attendee, and was present at some of the "zero level" gatherings that would become some of the most "Famous" in furry fandom. I state this only to dispel the notion that I'm some sort of newbie with an axe to grind. I've been around the block on Conventions folks. In some cases, hell, I helped BUILD the block.

Let me take care of a small pet peeve right up front. It is my considered opinion that anyone who uses "Fur" or "Furs" is an imbecile. We are Furry Fans, therefore the correct plural is Furries. "Fur" and "Furs" are animal pelts and/or sickening "garments" worn by Humans who have no sense of social responsibility. Yet, the term "Fur" has propagated like the measles, used by half-wits who can't handle English most of the time, let alone the unique place they so loudly proclaim for themselves in our corner of the world.

Moving on, I've been a Furry for three-quarters of my adult life. Some will proclaim that the fandom got started in and around the C/FO, in the early 1980's. I was there, too, but I was also a Furry in spirit long before fans started gathering in a dance studio to show third generation Betamax tapes of Anime to roomfuls of dopey fanboys hopped up on manga, Japanese magazines, and too much sugar.

My own journey to Being Furry began as a spiritual one, thanks to some time I spent on an Apache Reservation one summer. It is still like yesterday to me, but is also almost too far away to remember in some ways. So my basis has always been, and always shall be more spiritual than material. Please note that this aspect of spirituality is not meant to overwrite or undermine faith, personal or otherwise, or organized religion, personal or otherwise.

Since those days, I've walked with a White Lion. His name is Ryokyo. Ask me about him if you're curious, should we ever meet. But here's a friendly word of warning. If you want me to shut up again, you'd better have a tire iron or a crowbar handy. :)

So that is where I come from. I set this forward now as a basis for some of the things I am about to say.

Being a Furry and walking with Ryokyo has changed my life much for the better. I am also incontrovertibly convinced that he has saved my life for me on at least two occasions. Whether or not I have been worthy or his effort worthwhile is an ongoing debate between myself and my beautiful white spirit guide. But I digress, and with reason.

Some of my fondest memories have been of people, here and passed, and friends here and passed, who in their own way underwent a journey of self-discovery just as I did looking into what some might call the Dream Time. Let me say that in voicing the critique which follows, it is not my wish or undertaking to question the validity or value of anyone else's journey, or the path which they have chosen to walk by themselves or with others.

But as a traveler along some of the same paths, I do have, and must exercise, a right and a responsibility to question where we shall go, and for what motives.


Let's face it, friends. You say "Furry" to anyone who has been around any sort of fandom, and most of them will cringe, if not step back and away in revulsion. (I had this happen to me not long ago when I mentioned to a new "friend-of-a-friend" that I was a Furry. He literally pulled his hand back from me and made an effort to get as far away from me as the room space we were in at the time would allow.)

We have been made the object of everything from LCD "humor" on trashy Television shows to the focus of outright hatred by some people who have a fair amount of talent, and seem to have made a cottage industry out of perpetuating and amplifying that hatred. You'd think that talented artists would have better things to do. Oh well, that's free speech for you. They have the right to speak in their own way, and I have the same right to ignore them completely. Isn't freedom wonderful, boys and girls? I don't think some of these types will ever change their minds, simply because if they did, their object of hate would evaporate, and there would be a hole in their soul someplace. If I had the time or energy, I would pity Shawn K and a few others. But I simply cannot, because they've chosen to look at something wonderful and see only the self-serving and perverse, because it is the self serving and perverse in the Human condition which satisfies them.
Personally, I'm far too happy, busy, and excited most of the time to let nudniks like these take away from the journey that we've begun together.

But being able to ignore the worst of our detractors for fun and profit doesn't mean that there isn't a problem someplace that we ought to think about addressing when and where we can.

More on that Tomorrow as my time allows.

Roci

Saturday, January 27, 2007

11:38AM - My mourning ends

Ironically enough on the 40th anniversary of the passing of three more of my friends.And the day before another cold January day that stripped away yet another of them.

I cannot bring myself to remember so much death. It comes at me with the violence of helplessness, like electrons stripped from atoms,creating a vicious plasma that still sears my soul, each and every hour of each and every day.

I miss them all, I respect them all, and I think I can be forgiven that emotion that still says, yes, I love them all. That is my memorial to Gus, Ed, Roger and El. That's all I can do, and that's enough.

I warned people a few posts back that as soon as the Shuttle Landed, I was going to go after some of the mutton heads in furry fandom. I haven't forgotten, and you'll get yours soon enough. Most of you are just plain unworthy to be mentioned on this page among my departed friends. In fact, for the first time EVER, I'm dead ashamed to mention the fact that I am a Furry at all, in the presence of the memories of my friends.

So, I won't start in just yet. I don't want any of these furry knotheads to think I'm speaking out of grief, or sorrow. I can wait a few days more, and then you best collect the kiddies and hide the breakables, because I'm going to start dropping bombs.

You've been warned.

Roci

Monday, December 18, 2006

8:13PM

Joe Barbera passed away tonight. I can't talk about it now, but I will soon. I admired him a great deal, and the sense of loss just leaves me hollow and hurt inside. My condolences to Jayne, Neal and the family.

Roci

Sunday, December 17, 2006

10:25AM

It's Sunday, and another EVA planned for Monday. WOW! The hits just keep on coming! This EVA will have been planned in about 18 hours. They sent the STS/ISS crew procedures just about an hour ago for a six hour EVA that was quite literally planned overnite! The Military overuses the term "Outstanding", but hot damn, this qualifies! The problem is just what I thought it would be, and the shaking they did still leaves them about 15% of one of the solar arrays to fold up all the way.
The big deal here is that they have to do the very same thing (folding arrays) on the next Mission (STS-117 in March 07)and this is the ruffest form of on the job training, as they are likely to have some of the same problems then as now.

Every once in a while, some half-baked wingnut looking to save a penny or a penny and a half, will say that space exploration can be done with unmanned probes and all that sort of happy horse shit.

This is the main reason we need the Human Mind and Hands out there, always. To think, feel, evaluate, and act in ways that can't be pre-programmed. We have the two Canada arms, one the Orbiter, and one on the ISS, but they can't solve this problem, even together. This problem, and so many others need the ultra fine resolution of the Human eye, and even the diminished sense of touch inside a space suit glove is better than any control and feedback we have over one or both of the robotic arms.

So I don't wanna hear from any of these mental cases (some of them have popped up in the media already) saying that all this is an outgrowth of man being in space in the first place. Tell these idiots to take a spacewalk without a tether, and it'll improve the breed considerably.

Well, I got too much angry blood in my coffee system, so while the Flight crew is moving into EVA prep for tomorrow, I'm going to get breakfast. Be back later.

Shalom,

Roci

Saturday, December 16, 2006

7:18PM

So it's after sundown, and I can write again, which is probably my best gift for the first nite of the holiday. That and watching the beautiful images on TV. I found something interesting on the web this morning. I should preface this by saying I do research on the web for a lot of people who don't have the time (so they say) or are just too phobic to chance going out onto the Net. (according to them) But I digress.

There was a soft drink made in the late 90's called Josta. I loved it, and so did a lot of other people. Some stupid bean counter at Pepsico had a bad dream about it, and it got pulled from the market. It was the first and best try at an "energy soda." These days you find "Bawls" and 47 others, all with unbelievable amounts of sugar and caffeine. (America's two drugs of choice after saturated fat.)

Today I found a web page with a recipe for a Josta-like substance. It uses Bawls (Ironically enough) and SoBe Dragon Fruit among other things. I plan on whipping up a batch of this, and trying it, just for fun.
I am also old enough to remember real old Coke. (Not "coke classic") Altho the last time I had a real Coke, in the correctly shaped glass bottle, was at a filling station in Mexico a few years back. I was with a friend and between us we bought four wooden cases of real Coke from the fellow who took care of the station. He said that four cases usually lasted him about a half a year! We treated it like fine Champagne rather than Soda, and for years afterwards the only time "our stash" would see the light of day was for Birthdays (Ours) and Christmas. We did part with two bottles as a gag wedding gift for a friend of ours who, to this very day (unless he's reading this) still looks at me like I can walk on water for coming up with real "dissolves engine grease" Coke when the entire world was swearing up and back that it didn't exist anyplace anymore.

Just goes to show ya,

If you love something and remember it,
It gets a life of its own. And that is as it ought to be.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I think I'm going to celebrate First Nite with a glass of real Coke. I only wish all of you could join me (singing on a grassy hillside optional) so you'd know what you've been missing all these years. You'd also realize how long and how well some big beverage company has been taking you for a ride every time you open a red and white can of something that is a mere shadow of it's former self.

Shalom,

Roci

Friday, December 15, 2006

8:30PM

Happy Hanukkah, everyone! Another year, no candles, no gelt, and no latkes for me. That's what I get for living 50 miles from noplace. Oy! But I do say the verses, and light the candles within, as I always do for Shabbos. I still have all the nites to go, and maybe, just maybe today (Saturday) I can go out and find a few things, kosher and otherwise.

When I converted, I converted at heart first, and in the material things last. If you were to walk thru this metal box I live in (sort of) you wouldn't find much to tell anyone I'm Jewish, and that's always bothered me more than I'd like to admit. Religion has never been a been a huge part of my life, but faith always has been. It bothers me to suppress or to not express any part of what I am in a positive way.

So, here I am, in this dry, cold, and soon to be white place, cut off from every trapping that symbolizes that I'm a Jew.

Know what? I think it's a good thing, in one aspect anyway.

For long stretches of the history of the Jewish People, we've been scattered around here and there, in pockets, communities, and yes, even in ghettos at times. So being Jewish has been in part more a soul aspect than a material one. So it could very well be that I feel even more keenly Jewish, not because I don't have so much, but because so much of the faith has to come from the place where material things don't matter at all.

But, there's still a part of me that likes potato pancakes, and wants to light the candles, for myself, and just maybe for someone, someplace out there in our world that wants to light candles as much as I do, but has to carry their light inside, too because they have all the faith, and not a wick to spare.


Shalom
Peace and light,

Roci

3:04PM

Interesting day. Solar array folding problems. If I hear one more "map folding" analogy, I'm going to scream and leap. Things not going as planned. No surprise. This hardware has been on orbit for years, and going from baking sunlight to way, way below zero 15 or so times a day for years on end will have its price. The folding system depends on a lot of fine wires, and grommets, all of which are metallic, and therefore sensitive to long term exposure to temperature gradients. The tension on the array is wrong, that's why it billows and won't fold properly. You have to get the crew out there somehow, and have them GENTLY follow the natural crease in the bay, just like allowing the fold lines in a map (Oh god, now I'm doing it!!!!!)to pop the map back to a folded shape.

BTW, just for the record, I never had any problems folding, re-folding or otherwise with a map, I'm just patient, gentle, and willing to spend time to see how it ought to be done. Fortunately, the fine folks handling this anomaly (space talk for a problem) have the same virtues. They'll get things neat and pretty, eventually.

They've also turned off the KU band antenna on the shuttle, so there isn't as much TV as usual. Less eye candy, but still good work, and done fast, too.
Now that they have the power, what will they do?

With all their power, what will they do?

*snicker*

Roci

Thursday, December 14, 2006

4:55AM

Easy day today, both on orbit, and here. I havent been working at all during the 116 mission, because I've been trying (and failing, for the most part ) to sleep when the crew on orbit sleeps.
As this entry proves, I'm a night person, mostly because I'm mostly alone, and it's beautifully QUIET around here. I can hear myself think at nite, and consequently, my mind has no neutral gear or off switch. It's always been both a blessing and a little bit of a harsh mistress for me. So sleeping at nite is right out, unless I'm totally bagged, shagged, and tagged. Medical issue don't help. In fact they hurt, quite a bit. But when you have enough adrenalin flowing thru you to light up southern Canada, it's hard to be as tired as the body should be after a long day.
So for me, it's a domestic day. Can't go anyplace. So it's laundry, reading, watching NASA TV (as usuall on a flight day), and just knocking around a bit.I enjoy it today, because I know tomorrow is another spacewalk day. Long day for the crew, and for the folks on the ground.

C'yall laters!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

12:19PM

I just can't get enough of watching the 116 crew space walking. It ties in nicely with what I said before about commonplace miracles. Imagine orbiting the earth, or any planet in a spacecraft. That's mind-blowing enough, but now imagine putting on, that is wearing, a smaller more personal version of a spaceship, and then going outside, into a hard vacuum, and working. Oh, and while your working, you can glance around, and watch New Zealand floating in another sea of blue 225 miles below!

Gosh, if there's a better definition of a "wonder of the world", I wish you'd tell me.

Six hours and 36 minutes! How's that for a feature film?

Think about this. In 1947, while the modern world (warts and all) was still sorting itself out after the last great World War, great visionaries, science fiction writers, and a few (mostly German and Russian) scientists were maligned, and their loyalty was just as much in question as their sanity when they wrote fiction about these very events.

Now, I can sit here and watch it, as real now as the fiction was to those who wrote it, and paid a price for their vision so many years ago. Arthur C.Clarke is one whom I think of constantly as I watch this miracle he helped to create.(He put forth the basic theory for the communication satellite.) He once said that we got to space and to the moon, by standing on the shoulders of Giants.

How right he was, and thank you so very much.

Forget the pod bay doors, HAL; I'll open them myself :)

Roci

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

12:45AM

Just a quick note for anyone reading out there. If you have NASA TV on cable or dish, turn it on now. If you have Hi speed web, do the same.

Nothing is wrong.

But the shots of the earth from space are positively the best view you'll ever get to go with your morning coffee :)

Roci

Monday, December 11, 2006

2:11PM

Nice quiet day on orbit for the STS 116 crew. Love listening to the air-ground. It may bore the snot out of some people (Can't imagine why- I mean we're tasting the frosting on a hi-tech layer cake that is nothing less than a miracle.) They say that modern man has become jaded. They throw away wonders and they expect miracles the same way we expect straws at a fast food joint.

I've never quite lost the wonder, and that applies to a good many things in daily life.

I'm a Furry, as some of you may know. I'm not one of these ninnies who hang around piling up porn or stolen artwork. I do write, and most of it anthro fiction. An outgrowth of that is a habit I got into years ago. It works a little something like this. Whenever you do anything, go anywhere, or pick up the most common everyday object, there is (or should be) a part of your mind that whispers quietly to you:

"Now, Let's see, how would a Furry do this, or what would it be like in their world?"

The results are rather astounding. What this kind of thought process brings you is that you reach a point where you are world-building all the time. Not just big huge things like spacecraft, or star ships, but small things (like plastic forks and satellite radio) in short the tens of little things that "dress up" everyday life, not just as far as technology is concerned, but things that we've become so accustomed to that most Humans never think about "life" without them.

Here's a small example, that starts (pretty much) when you roll out of bed and start your day.
Pick up your toothbrush and have a good look. Immense amounts of time and thought went into it, and companies will (literally) kill one another to get you to spend two or three bucks on something you'll toss away eventually, like used dental floss.

Now, How does a non-human accomplish the same thing?

-Do they accomplish it in the same way?
-If yes, how do you change the shape, materials, and most of all the balance and fabrication of a toothbrush an antho character (always influenced by species) would use so as to make it both interesting, practical, and (most of all) believable (and fun) as you make it real for an audience.

-If not, what would they do, and how do you make it all of the above?

-Some sort of chewing gum?
-Old fashioned chewing stick? (precursor to the toothbrush)
-Some sort of high-tech liquid wash, or a toothpaste you can swallow? (Like they use on the Shuttle)
Imaging this entire mental process, going on consciously and subconsciously for every item of technology you encounter. At the end of the day, you have tens of notes and notions that you can write down or write out, or just file away for future use in the "vault" of whatever universe you happen to be working in at the time.



Now, let's bring all this home. A few days ago I was doing a scene for a story between Scrappy, and his young daughter Starbrite.

It's the sort of moment that Father's typically share with sons, as a bonding moment. Well, I'm not sexist as such, and I wanted to have just a cute little moment where Starry is just watching her father, quite in awe, as he does the most everyday things.
Sons get this kind of moment watching their Father's shave.
Starbrite is a girl, so the interlude has to be gender neutral.
Scrappy (being canine and fur-bearing) does not shave.
So, I sort of turned the moment sideways.
Scrappy (and everyone else in my world) uses a jelly dentifrice, that liquefies and foams (like peroxide) to clean, and then it is swallowed harmlessly.
Starbrite watches Scrappy from around the corner (He knows she's there) and just sort of hams it up, being slow and careful so she can see everything as he cleans his teeth. He pads out of the head (aboard ship) and pats a surprised Starbrite on the head (she was trying not to be seen) and Scrappy tells her to come eat breakfast, which has been laid on for them already.
Scrappy sits and eats, after waiting a while for his daughter, who is "too quiet" all of a sudden. Scrappy adds two and two, and bolts for the bathroom.
Well, lets just say that the tooth jell is winning, altho it's a close run thing. Starbrite is a mess, and it looks as tho she has rabies rather than clean teeth. The poor dear is heartbroken. She was trying to be a big girl for daddy.
Rather than being angry Scrappy scoops her up, and before he cleans her up, he teaches her how to use the tooth jell. Starbrite is delighted and proud, (because Scrappy is too) and it's also a growth moment for Scrappy (who's looking for ways to get closer to Starbrite anyway) because rather than loose his cool, he keeps it, and his reward for that is a bonding moment with his daughter.

The entire scene was the product of this chain of thought that began with me looking at rows of toothbrushes at a CVS. It was all there for me in one wonderful moment. So much so I could hardly wait to get home and write it. It really is one of the best minimal dialogue, pure character scenes I've done for both of them.

My point over all is that the next time someone hands you a miracle, ether on a launch pad, or from a drug store rack in the midst of a store(and a life) full of wonders, take just a moment, give the miracle some consideration, and see where it takes you, if you'll let it.

Roci

Saturday, December 9, 2006

9:32PM

Well, I'll be hornswagled! As a former Floridian, I know something about changeable weather, but this one has to be awarded a cake :) STS 116 is up and away in grand style. I've missed nite launches, and I'm glad to see a little flexibility returning to some NASA thinking. Being cautious is better than good, it's life. But taking away nite launches was like boxing using pillows instead of gloves. Between the cameras we did have (and what spectacular views!) and the OBSS there's still plenty of ways to tell if something's not kosher. Radar didn't see anything going uphill that I know of, and from the sound of things, the flight crew may need an extra helmet size or two to make room for their smiles :) about now.

Can't think of a group of people who deserve it more, so I'm jazzed too.


Laters,

Roci

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