Fucking with Furries  

Alright guys, it's time again to rehash another post from the past, to look back at the glory days of my burgeoning blogging career. Since the pages this post originally graced are now dead and gone, this is going to be new content for the majority of people. However, those of you that have been looped in on my childish tendencies for long enough will certainly recall this post. It was one of my most popular -- as well as a personal favorite -- despite the multitude mixed reviews. My readers either seemed to love it, or express disappointment that I went to such great lengths to waste a fellow freelancer's time. Both are valid points, though I maintain it's still one of the funniest things I've ever done.

Oh, and this is a long one, but so very worth it.

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Originally posted June 28, 2007

I can only assume that the predominantly sick and twisted readers of this blog are already aware of furry culture; I know for a fact that some of you actively participate in it. For the unacquainted, I suggest you skim this before reading on.

Now that everyone is up to speed, I'd like to present you with a little social experiment. The premise is simple; respond to multiple Craigslist ads with something so outlandish, it was inevitable that somebody would take the bait. I decided to single out amateur event photographers, because let's face it -- most "artists" are desperate enough to put up with anything. After only 5 emails, I found my mark, Jeff. What follows next is an exact, untouched transcript of my virtual conversation with him.

from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com
date: May 22, 2007 11:49 AM
subject: Wedding and Event photography

Good morning to you. My name is Darryl, and I am in need of an event photographer at the end of June. I would anticipate that out of professional courtesy you take the time to give this business request serious consideration before passing judgement on the lifestyle that my associates and I choose to live.

I chair the Oregon chapter of F3, or Furry Fandom & Fantasy, a collective dedicated to the expression of role playing and fantasy interaction through dressing in big furry anthropomorphic suits. Odds are you've heard about our unjust legacy as a bunch of next level "furverts."

We've got a bi-annual conFURence fastly approaching, and member attendance is set to be very high, enough so that we'd like to call in a professional to document the whole thing. That's where you come in. The job would involve approximately 3-4 hours of candid and group photos. Also, what is your experience with high action shots? This years event lineup includes a three-legged race, a six-legged race, a fashion show (with catwalk!), plus a whole lot more. As you can imagine we are all very excited about it, and hope to find a photographer open minded enough to keep any looming insecurities at bay.

Given the unique nature of our circumstances, there are a few equally unique stipulations you would be required to adhere to:

1. You arrive at the exact time finally specified. A handful of our members have otherwise prominent positions in the community and public eye, so privacy is of the utmost importance. Quite a few family men, and even a state representative. Your arrival would need to be coordinated within a fifteen minute window between us being suited up and the opening ceremony.

2. We expect certain aspects of reality to be suspended. A good example here is names. You and everyone else attending happen to know my birth name is Darryl, but at all times during the event I am to be addressed as JoJo.

3. You will need to bring your own lunch. It's nothing personal, and we can reimburse you for the cost of the meal, it's just that in the furry world, a person eating from the same table as us would be akin to an animal eating from the table around a group of people. All part of the fantasy, you know?

I think I've done well to outline the bulk of what's needed here. Let me assure you, that while these conFURences do typically end up with large group displays of sexual conduct, or yiffing as we like to call it, your services during this portion would not be required. In trying to procure a photographer previously, I was turned away because I had originally hoped to find someone capable of providing this service. While I am still very receptive to the idea of having tastefully done pictures of this after party furballing, I have relegated the task to Mr. Winkles, senior ape and event committee co-chair. So, while I leave this additional work on the table and up for grabs, let me reiterate that it doesn't have to be part of the deal.

Thank you for your discretion, and if interested, please respond with a time & materials estimate as soon as possible.

Regards,

Darryl Trejo
(aka JoJo the Foxhound)

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from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: May 22, 2007 8:11 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi JoJo,

I hope it is appropriate to call you by that name here. I have some experience shooting bands, three on stage and one promo setting, which I believe is action filled enough to suit your needs and I don't have a problem photographing any of the events you mentioned below or following your guidelines but I do shoot in film. Not a problem since the labs are all extremely discreet but something you might want to keep under consideration. I can not guarantee anything while the film is out of my hands. However I can promise that all the negs, prints and c.d.'s (if you want them) will be given to you and not used anywhere else by me.

Please let me know if this is acceptable to you and we can meet up to hammer out the details.

Thank you,

Jeff

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from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: May 23, 2007 8:44 AM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Thanks for the quick response. It certainly sounds like you have enough experience to handle the unique brand of action going on here. But speaking of action, I wanted to clarify something from your previous email. When you say "I don't have a problem photographing any of the events you mentioned," does that include the massive orgy that is our closing ceremonies? I don't mean to push the issue, it's just that I'd hate to foster any false expectations here. That and I would need to start considering upgrading our lighting situation. There's no sense it paying for someone as skilled as yourself, only to have the shots of our zebra girl getting tag-teamed by two man wolfs come out as a dark, furry blob.

Keep in mind that the majority of what I'm looking for is on-the-fly, just capture the moment kind of stuff. Now although I might be skewed to the sense that I have to wear a tail under my pants to feel normal, I'm not crazily expecting Pulitzer prize material here. I don't think it will be necessary for us to meet up. At this point I'm hoping to get clarification from you on your previous email, as well as a rate quote. Let's assume 4 hours of work time (plus 2 more if you're in for the bonus material), 2 meals, 1 set of prints, all the negatives, and one CD of the highest resolution images possible. From there we can smooth over any remaining details via email.

Furgards,

JoJo

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from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: May 23, 2007 8:55 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi JoJo,

Yes, I am willing to photograph the orgy at the end and I will not be repulsed, judgemental or opportunistic. The quality of the pictures should be fairly good but I am anticipating a low light situation which requires a high speed film. That only means that some of the pictures will be a bit grainy but all the details will be there. I can also switch from color to black and white if you want to make it a bit more artsy when they are blown up. Since I will be shooting with 35mm cameras the sizes for a quality print will be a bit limited ( unless someone wants to pose in front of a tripod ) but even if someone wants a poster sized print the images will still be o.k. Unposed or photojournalistic shooting is what I do best so there are no problems there.

Costs for the night ( all night ) will be a $350.00 base rate with additional costs based on your wants/needs overall. Once we work out all the details I can give you a more accurate cost but based on what we have discussed so far I think you can rely on the above quote. Lighting can be handled through me or feel free to do what you think would be the most comfortable for your group. Just let me know so I can have the material I need to make it work.

thanks

Jeff

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from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: May 24, 2007 12:51 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Thank you again for your discretion Jeff. I can assure you that furgy will not be as much a sideshow style display as some might imagine. There's really not a whole lot that isn't covered by the full body suits, and the majority of us wear specially designed genital prosthetics called "hoffs." Nothing really gross happens, and the urinating on each other is kept at a pretty conservative minimum.

I'm completely on board with your quote. Please don't forget that we'll also reimburse you for two meals, plus travelling cost to and from our ranch in North Plains. Since this begins the final phase of discussion, and thus far you've been nothing short of ridiculously understanding of our needs, I'd like to extend an ancillary offer to you. In my assortment of attire, I have a gorgeous ocelot costume that easily fits a wide range of men's sizes. I am willing to pay you extra for the consideration of wearing this during our conFurence. It's truly nice; vented to prevent excessive heat, and even has a tiny fan in the base of the neck to keep airflow circulating. If you wear it for the whole event I will give you an extra $300; if just during the furotic finale I would make it half of that. Surely you can appreciate the heightened level of fantasy for our group by making this happen. We could also work it out so that you rent your own suit (please nothing lame like Chewbacca or The Cowardly Lion), you get reimbursed, then the difference up to $300 is paid out as well.

If the fursuit is a no-go, I should forewarn you about one last thing. Although I believe we've already established that your contact with the members will be extremely limited, it's possible that during an interaction you may be referred to as "flesho" or "smoothie" (referencing your lack of fur). I think it's a silly exercise of dominance on the part of our members, and you would never hear such a thing for me, but it still happens. Should such an incident occur, please just ignore it. But hopefully you will be receptive to the added compensation and fantastical possibilities that would come with transforming yourself for an evening.

Furcerely,

JoJo Von Foxtrot

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from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: May 30, 2007 2:33 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hey Jeff. I apologize if I went too far last time in suggesting you go furry for a day. You just seemed enthusiastic enough to be the purrfect photographer for this kind of gig. There's also the option of some very light face painting; quite a few of the members are level 3 anthromorphs, meaning that they are cool with just makeup and a clip-on tail.

Anyway, while I can't really blame you for reconsidering, it would be great if you could confirm whether or not you've backed all the way out. If I don't hear from you by Friday, I'll have no choice but to purrsue another photographer.

Furever True,

JoJo

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from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: May 30, 2007 10:47 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi JoJo,

There is nothing to apologize for. I'm not offended and in fact, appreciate your openness about it. It makes me less ill at ease to just speak openly than to try and figure out the hints and innuendos that some people might feel inclined to use. The face paint and tail are fine and I am looking forward to shooting your event. All of it. It will be a challenge and a lot of fun. I am more concerned about creating a quality product for you than anything else. Believe it or not the suits introduce a whole new dimension of things to consider when choosing film, flash and lenses. I don't remember if you were O.K. with black and white or not. Is it something you would like to see or would you prefer all color shots? Any way, if you are happy with the pictures you have seen and want to hire me then I see no problems but I do think we need to meet up and finalize everything. A few things like the contract (unless you prefer to keep everything paper free), the money and the details of where/when/how.

Jeff

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from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: Jun 4, 2007 8:58 AM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Excellent news! I'll have my partner Cheetarah come up with some face paint designs to run by you this week or next. I'm thinking simple wolfish, but knowing Cheetarah your only choices are going to be a plethora of bejeweled felines.

As long as we get a good mix of shots that chronicle the entire event, I'm impartial to whether you use black and white or any other super technical style. Hell, a quarter of our group is made up of pandas and zebras anyway.

I suppose if we have to meet up I can swing it, although there's a few things that you should know before we start making things too professional here. 1) I plan on paying in cash; 3/4 up front and the rest upon delivery of all proofs, photos, negatives, and 2) I'm a 5th level furry, and only sign with my pawprint. It's been my experience that this does not allow me to enter into a legally binding agreement in any state. At least not until the name change goes through.

Fur Fur Fur,

JoJo

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: Jun 6, 2007 9:12 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi JoJo,

Unfortunatly it is really important to me to have something in writing to insure that I am not responcible for such things as anyone being underage and all that other legal stuff. Since I shoot in film anything considered illegal by the lab will be automatically reported to the police. If you can't or won't sign a contract then someone else will need to. Personally I don't much care for all that legal crap either but in todays legal environment and because I have a sensitive day job I must be very carefull with this kind of thing. Why can't you sign with a paw print? Didn't Prince use some wierd symbol to sign his contracts with? Anyway, a wolf would be my first choice as well but a feline is just as good. A little instruction on proper ettiquette would be great too please.

Thank you for understanding,

Jeff

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: Jun 18, 2007 9:14 AM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hello Jeff! Sorry for the recent absence. I've been down in New Mexico living off the land (plus two he-wolfs and a she-tiger) for the past week. Rowr!

FYI - we have decided to move the ConFurence to mid July. Some of our members had major conflicts with the original date, so for now we will plan on it being in the 2nd or 3rd weekend of next month. Please let me know if this causes any trouble for you.

I suppose if absolutely necessary we can put things into writing. Email me the contract and I'll get back to you on it. My name change will be binding at the end of this month, so no more worries about the validity of my pawprint.

As for etiquette, we may be a bunch of freaks, but our standards for courtesy and respect are hardly different than that of "normal people."

But I appreciate you asking all the same, since there are a few minor things:

1. Be cautious about sneaking up on people. Even if it's unintentional, the results could be fur-raising.

2. No animal noises. Sure we do it, but coming from a flesho it's a tad condescending.

3. If anyone asks you to "scratch their back," just politely decline. Trust me, it isn't as innocuous as it sounds. There are probably some things I'll think of in respect to our humongous orgy, but we'll knock those down as they arise.

Furrificly,







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from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: Jun 19, 2007 12:52 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi Jojo,

Sounds like you had a really great time. I'll need an exact date before I can let you know if I can make ir or not but hopefully it will all work out. As to the paw print, well.... sorry but I have a lot of worrys about it. I think I'll need to bring along a witness and have them co-sign as such to cover my butt legally. No offense intended towards you but it is a touchy situation for me and I just can't afford any legal mishaps. I am still working out the contract and will send a copy on to you as soon as I have it done.

Jeff

ps: I never trust anyone who isn't a bit freaky. (grin)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

from: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
to: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
date: Jun 24, 2007 6:04 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hey Jeff, I've got some bad news. On Thursday I was involved in a pretty severe accident, one that occurred while myself and four other F3 members were attempting to break into the North Plains Canid Research Institute. The intent was to free a small pack of our wolf brethren from the inhumane shackles of this organizations "scientific" endeavors. It appears we grossly underestimated the level of acceptance the animals would show us in our furry suits. Despite the fact we had taken on the dress and spirit of the wolf, chaos ensued the moment we tried to remove one of their radio collars.

Long story short, I suffered massive trauma to my left arm and leg, not to mention the unspeakable condition of my fur suit. To make matter worse, I am being cited for six counts of trespassing, unlawful entry, and to top it all off, animal cruelty. As if. Although I was released from the hospital yesterday, I will remain under house arrest until my next court date in two weeks.

Needless to say, this years conFURence has been back-burnered, and all committee funds diverted to help with the mounting medical and legal costs associated with this unforeseeable string of blows to anthropomorphites everywhere. I appreciate your willingness and great communication over the past few weeks, but I fear this is where we part ways. Should I have a need arise for your skill in the near future, rest assured I will make contact with you. Until then, as we furries say, "Grab life from behind -- that way you don't get the claws."

Furget Me Not,







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from: Jeffo <jeffo@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.com>
to: Coq Master <coqmaster@gmail.com>
date: Jun 24, 2007 9:27 PM
subject: Re: Wedding and Event photography

Hi Jojo,

I'm sorry to hear about all the problems you have incurred. I hope it all turns out well in the end and I applaud your intentions with the animals. Better luck next time.

Jeff

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