marko_the_rat: (standing)
At last, I have photos up!



Here is the full album on Flickr.

Photos taken by White Paw on my crappy camera from the Rodent Room Party Dittman and I organised at MFF 2014.

It might sound silly, but I was so excited to be around so many rodents, especially ones I hadn't met in the flesh/fur before I was almost hyperventilating! Thanks to everyone who showed up for making it such an awesome event!
marko_the_rat: (standing)
Google made this story out of my adventures in the US. It is a good incentive to use my phone for taking photos in fact because I'm often too lazy to sort through photos later. There will be more photos to come, especially from the Rodent Party, but I will put those up probably on Flickr later.

https://plus.google.com/110978269106056674656/stories/e4d63fe4-ecfd-3c2f-8a31-1fdab3ee0a5c14a389477f6
marko_the_rat: (standing)
In a few hours I will be heading off to the US. Sort of my gift to me for getting a job again last year. I will be having my first ever Thanksgiving (as a big yankophile, that's a big deal to me--thanks [livejournal.com profile] nicodemusrat and [livejournal.com profile] kit_ping) and I will finish off at MFF. Hope to see you guys there!
marko_the_rat: (standing)
(Heh, I never got around to posting my thoughts on the longest joke in the world, did I? Maybe later.)

Tomorrow I shall be embarking on a road trip down to ConFurgence in Melbourne with Marcwolf. I'm sure it will be a grand adventure. Rattus and Ziggy will be there of course, and maybe a surprise extra suit at a dance. I hope I'll see some of you guys there.
marko_the_rat: (standing)
What better way to get over RivFur finishing than by registering for ConFurgence? Now that I have a job I feel enough confidence to register. I still haven't decided where I want to room for it though. I know I said Confurgence is my next stop, but I really hope it won't be so! Now that I'm expecting to see the warg at the Burleigh Heads Fur Meet at the end of August I really want Rattus there for a photo op. I missed him at BunFur and now RivFur. I will stalk that warg across the country if I have to! I am also giving FurJam in Sydney (early September) some funny looks.
marko_the_rat: (camera rat)
Finally got around to uploading a few photos Ristin and I took at FurDU 2013. Hendikins took a lovely photo of Rattus and I at the mini-golf.

marko_the_rat: (fursuit)
[livejournal.com profile] jagafeh invited me to play test a new card game he is working on. That was the first play test so it is early days yet and still needs some work, but I did enjoy it and I hope to see it come to fruition as a fully-fledged game. I will let you guys know when you can get it in the shops. Won't be for a while yet.

The point of the game is to run a blog and accumulate followers. It reminded me guiltily of how remiss I have been in updating this blog. If it is of any consolation to you remaining LJers, FaceBook hardly fares better (although they did get a Christmas Rat photo which I confess it didn't occur to me to share on LJ--LJers still celebrate Christmas too, right?), but Twitter, which I once despised, gets the bulk of my attention. Twitter however is at best a micro-blogging site, badly unsuited to this sort of long(ish) post where once can take some time out for quiet introspection. (I am in fact in need of some quiet introspection, for reasons I will not at this time go into here or elsewhere. I will blog about it when the time is right, if it ever is.) I've been away from LJ for so long that they have changed the user interface on me. It will take me a bit of time to get used to the changes, but I think it is heading in the right direction (though I note with dismay that it still can't suggest an LJ friend when I tag them). It still needs work to be as slick and interactive as FaceBook, but I still consider LJ "home" when it comes to blogging. Somehow FaceBook does not lend itself to thoughtful (I hope) posts like this one. I will however cross-post this to FB, so I look forward to being proven wrong.

Anyway, I think this is enough metablogging for now, let us abandon navel-gazing and instead get to the meat: A very belated MFF report. This will basically be a (censored) transcription of a description of my MFF experience given to a fellow rat.

I got there Friday afternoon, though it sounds like I should have gone there on Thursday. By then I was getting a bit worried because [livejournal.com profile] spottacus (with whom I was rooming) never replied to texts or phone calls. I first texted him on Thursday evening. At the airport in desperation I called Rukario. Unbeknownst to me, Rukario was also rooming with Spotti so when I got there he loaned me his key so I could offload my fursuits and freshen up, thus earning my eternal gratitude. (I should point out I was immensely grateful to Spotti for putting me up (and putting up with me) so this shouldn't be taken as a criticism of him. When I visited him at his home he was a delightful and attentive host but at a con he goes into "con mode" which doesn't leave much room for indigent rats, and I remain very fond of him.)

I met [livejournal.com profile] colifox in fursuit and hung out with him a bit. Got to chat with [livejournal.com profile] tzup briefly. He said we should hang out but cons don't work out that way. He will be at MiDFur anyway. Then I went up to Kellogg's room and we had a nice talk and caught up since I hadn't seen him for five years. Rukario and I later went up to our room where we finally caught Spotti. We all went out and had dinner. Sadly he had a loud friend with him who really got on my nerves (conspiracy theorists tend to do that to me--call it a character flaw).

Saturday morning I had breakfast with Kellogg. Saturday was the fursuit parade too? It's all a blur I'm afraid. I met Rodent (another rat) after the parade and we swapped mobile numbers via FA. Also found Seanc (an Irish goat) and Dyandod (a new rat I discovered there!). I had a lovely dinner with Rodent and friends. Rukario hosted a fursuit party. I started fading around 2 and Rukario and I slept in the fold out bed downstairs. I wasn't exactly getting full nights in Denver either, and the older I get I find the less tolerance I have to sleep deprivation. I think Saturday is also the day Rattus got his first public outing at this con. He didn't seem to have much name recognition at MFF but his lab coat was popular. Good for finding furries too. It was in Rattus that Scooter Squirrel gave me a Dermouse. I was deeply touched by the gesture. <3

A mouse I was really looking forward to seeing there was Dario Mouse. Unfortunately, I never got a chance to be photographed in fursuit with his fursuit, which is much the photo I would have preferred sharing with you, but this of me in my human suit with Dario will have to suffice.

Me and Dario... )

JBadger and I didn't get much quality time on Saturday as he was so busy. He did score me an invite to Tzup's birthday party but I ended up never attending.

Sunday I realised I needs to be more focused with my time management. Spotti and I scrambled to go see the Pawpet show (as it was called, but not a patch on what the Europeans do). He empowered me to go out in my kigurumi, for which I'm grateful. I got to collect a gift [livejournal.com profile] savant_da_rat left with a friend in the dealer's den. It was a big Roland Rat poster! I loved Roland as a child and he probably helped me become a rat. Sunday I was reduced to allotting time to furries, with of course con time trying to foul things up. I saw Toni (the Producer of A Tail of Identity) in Ziggy and we had a nice talk while she took portrait shots. Dyandod was staying in our room for a few hours because his closed down and he wanted to continue fursuiting. As thanks, he left us lots of leftover food. He's a nice rat, and I was pleased to have the opportunity to play on the inversion of a negative rat stereotype.

After midnight I went out in Ziggy to check out the dead dog dance but it had wrapped up. I wandered about a bit and found JBadger and bought him up to our room to chat.

Monday was a dismal experience, as the last day always is. Sad goodbyes and depressed furries. Toni came to the room to shoot me packing up and although Skov and Rukario were sceptical at first they soon warmed to her and opened up. It was all just chatting though; no video or note-taking, but she did take their contact details. Big brownie points to Skov for patiently helping me back Ziggy without the benefit of my space-saver bag. I then took the shuttle to the airport and with great heaviness of heart (though obviously looking forward to seeing Ristin again) I set off back to Australia.

So the only scheduled event I attended was the (desultory) Pawpet show. A shame because I always love the furry talent shows.

Although I had misgivings heading into the con, I had a great time once I was there and met many friends and had a lot of fun. I was scared I would be lonely there because it didn't seem to me that a lot of my friends were attending, but I managed to fill my time, with thoughtful help from Rizzo. I hope I will be able to go again this year, but that will depend on me finding a job.

TL;DR version: Jagafeh is making a card game; it will be a lot of fun when it is finished. LJ is still my favourite blog. MFF was great fun.
marko_the_rat: (fursuit)

We're back and we're blown away! You need to attend this con! It was a well run con with a much more laid back feel than the other Australian con (though I'm glad we have the choice and I'll be attending both). It seems to have reached that con critical mass where you want to go because everyone else is going, thus making it a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Unfortunately, growth comes at a price. They had to move hotels to cope with expanding but the new hotel didn't feel as welcoming as The Vibe, and they seemed to "forget" their promised discount rate for prebooking breakfast. The con space felt too small for the number of attendees. I would venture to suspect FurDU will look elsewhere for next year. It didn't feel as if they really wanted our business. Also, [livejournal.com profile] ristin and I really missed not having a balcony on the Gold Coast (though admittedly we wouldn't have been able to make much use of it with all the rain).

This growth also hit the fursuit games. I really, really hate to say it (because I know I wouldn't make the grade) but they have too many fursuiters and will have to do something to get the number of players down to a manageable level, like holding semi-finals or running a raffle. It was fun, but there were just too many fursuiters (I made it worse of course by pushing my worthless carcass into it). I think they need to think of more games. The giant twister board named Get Knotted! (PG con!) was a good idea but letting ten fursuiters on at a time was still too crowded. I'm embarrassed to admit I knocked another fursuiter down during Grab the Bacon. I didn't see what I did myself of course, all I know is that I hurt my finger and he got the bacon anyway, so I hope he wasn't too upset over it. He didn't seem to be hurt, but I still feel bad about it. Rattus is really such a gentle rat by nature.

In a testimony to their clever planning, the rain cleared just in time for the fursuit beach walk. Not wanting to get sand in my suit, I wore Rattus as a partial. It's a lot easier and cooler suiting as a partial but I'm never pleased with how I look then. So I was quite bemused when a lifesaver insisted on getting a photo with me. He even pulled me out of a group photo for it. I played along because of the good work surfies do for the community. It's worth it to make him happy, even if it means I miss out on being in what I'm told will be the iconic group photo for FurDU 2012.

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPad.

marko_the_rat: (Default)
I've been reading by John Irving. In it there is a story about a family whose job it is to investigate hotels in Austria (bear in mind this was written in 1976, long before we started furry conning):
'Of course it's not serious!' Father said. 'How could there be bears in a pension?
*
'

...

'It's probably not a real bear,' Robo said, with obvious disappointment.

'A man in a bear suit!' Johanna cried. 'What unheard-of perversion is
that
? A beast of a man sneaking about in disguise! Up to what? It's a man in a bear suit, I know it is,' she said. 'I want to go to that one
first
. If there's going to be a Class C experience on this trip, let's get it over with as soon as possible.'

'But we haven't got reservations for tonight,' Mother said.

...

'I'm sure we don't need to make a reservation in a place frequented by men who disguise themselves as animals.' Johanna said. 'I'm sure there is always a vacancy there. I'm sure the guests are regularly dying in their beds–of fright, or else of whatever unspeakable injury the mad-man in the foul bear suit does to them.'

So you see, it's really not our fault at all. We've been struggling with a negative image even before we started. That's why we should welcome all the positive media attention for cons we can get to counter these sort of cruel misconceptions. Unheard-of perversions, indeed!



*
The name for short term and not-so-short term budget accommodation in Austria.

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Marko T. Rat

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