Argon - Editor / Maxl - Associate Editor

Rown Rabid Vixen Transforms Many

The peace and serenity of the rose garden was shattered Sunday by the appearance of a rabid vixen. Kendra, local kitsune and SpinDizzy regular somehow contracted a case of rabies and bit anyone in the rose garden. The unfortunate (or fortunate for those that enjoy such things) result was that the attackee was transformed into a very well endowed vixen. Although there were some differences in each victims character, due to each victims personality, build and overall size, most were very curvaceous large bosomed and  fluffy tailed.

The pack of vixens was kept in check by Kendra in between times of nibbling on Nimble who was in turn nibbling on Kendra. Kendra had become a rabid skwirl while Nimble became a rabid vixen and both made sure they stayed that way. When anyone’s curse wore off Kendra would re-bite them and turn them back into bosomy bimbo vixens again and then return to Nimble for a few more bites.

As vixens went most were along the lines of the model of Kendra except for the multiple tails. These vixens were certainly attractive but they weren’t what you would call “fast”. Vassily, local Hoffman’s sloth and SpinDizzy regular, was very relieved that he couldn’t be fast by any standard. There were three exceptions to the rule though when it came to the transformation. I became a vixentaur, Ping, local mouse and SpinDizzy regular, became a female mouse resembling a certain rescue ranger which I’ll leave unnamed, and Mouser, local fursnake and SpinDizzy regular, who became a vixens tail.

There was great concern when Mouser was bitten because of his lack of legs and his impending oversized bosoms. Vassily was worried that he might be confused with a certain marital aid but we were all relieved when he just became a vixen’s tail. This wasn’t a problem at first but later on you’ll see how bad a problem this became.

The confusion was broken only slightly when Kendra accidentally sat on Dread Fae and SpinDizzy regular, Flutterz. The smushed Fae had to pump her wings to get back into normal shape. Kendra’s onslaught included more than the males of SpinDizzy. Olivia, local otter and SpinDizzy regular was also bitten. The only result was her feeling a little extra yiffy.

 No fights broke out but gossip flowed freely and the phone bill was run up pretty high. There was even romance in the air as Mouser, now a vixen’s tail, struck up a relationship with one of Kendra’s tails. Between times of posing kyootely, I watched as the romance started from Mouser ever so romantically sneaking onto Kendra’s behind and chomping onto her butt blending in with her other tails. Then he struck up a bridge game with the other three tails while Kendra nibbled on Nimble again. Although Kendra tried to break up the relationship, Mouser fought for his beloved tail valiantly! When it seemed that things were going against him, Mouser called for Kendra’s tails to come to his aid. When Kendra got distracted, Mouser took advantage and began a whirlwind romance with one of Kendra’s tails while another of her tails became insanely jealous making a romantic triangle.

Mouser sent a dozen roses to Kendra’s tail but some how they ended up going to my tail giving it the wrong idea and making it pine for Mouser! Unfortunately, all of Kendra’s tails dumped Mouser at the same time while mine got mad at him and refused to ever date anyone again becoming a bitter old maidtail.

Mouser began stalking Kendra’s tails thereafter sending them threatening love letters everywhere they went. Sadly, they were never reunited so Mouser spent the rest of the evening pining for his lost piece of tail.

It turned out that the curse could be broken if the one effected got far enough away from Kendra’s influence. Once done the transformation back was instantaneous. 

"Iron Monkey"
  For those of you who have seen 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon', and have enjoyed it, then be sure to watch 'Iron Monkey'. Why are you doing still reading this review? Go on, scoot! See the film! Trust me! You'll love it!

Still here? Ok, then you are probably wondering why I am saying such things about this film. First, where 'Hidden Dragon' was lacking somewhat in action and the rather large exposition dragged the film to a sudden halt, 'Iron Monkey' removed that and filled it up with action as well. The film as a whole held about four times the amount of action as the previous film, and was found to be severely lacking in angst and drama. It made up for this in outrageous acts of 'Fu-Physics' and light humor. To borrow from Joe-Bob Briggs, the film had Pole-Fu, Sleeve-Fu, Food-Fu, Furniture-Fu, and even Fool-Fu. 

Thankfully, there was a minimum of blood and gore so that even this reviewer was able to tolerate and even enjoy the near- 'Wile E Coyote'-esque-ness of the spectacle.

Argon and I both give this film two tails up. A 'Must See'.
Brian Root On Characterization and Other Notions
         It being observed that recent postings on the board concerning the issue of what is appropriate and inappropriate as far as characterization and role-play are concerned in public places on this muck has become an issue of some contention of late, and also in the face of changing social conditions on the muck (or rather, seeing that conditions have changed since my departure in 1999) I have compiled a few of my observations and suggestions, and question in the hopes of fuelling a dialogue on the subjects.
         I realize many of these ideas will be met with opposing.  Some people will find certain proposals offensive or distasteful.  I realize that it will probably be noticed that I  myself have been in violation of one, some, or possibly all of these propositions at one time or another, in one form or another.
         But please be reassured that it is not my intent to preach or pretend to know what the proper course of action is.  I know that oftentimes presently and formerly I have provided my opinions unsolicited and in a very aggressive manner; and I have endeavored to make my words as diplomatic as possible now.  I consider myself to be a part of SpinDizzy and a part of the community that built it--the history of which predates SpinDizzy, and TFF as well--one that has it's origins in Dreamtime and possibly before even that halcyon muck.  Before me.
         As part of that community, I consider SpinDizzy to be my online home.  It is in my interest and the interest of every SpinDizzy resident to preserve and foster a high quality of interaction and keep it fun.  It is my hope that these ideas will work in that direction--that the social climate will improve, that minds will expand, and that we can reach a consensus in understanding and abiding an unwritten code of conduct.
Observation I.  Distinctions of Characterization
         When I was growing up, I loved to read. I still do.  But I hated to look up words I didn't know.  A lot of times, though, it wasn't necessary for me to put down a good book just because I was hung up on one bothersome word.  I found that often I was able to guess, accurately the meaning of a word by how it was used in the sentence or story.  It was wnot until I was much older that I learned this technique has a name:  inference out of context.
         After I began mucking I found that it was also easy to tell when a person was in character or not by what they said and how they said it--A dragon is as unlikely to attend C classes as a reclusive electronics hobbyist is to breathe fire (and those tempted to counter this assertion with inane claims about hydrogen-saturated Japanese beverages are missing the point.)
         I am suggesting that it ought not to be necessary to specify when a person is IC or OOC.  Inference out of context is a valuable skill for interaction on a muck and one worthy of cultivation.
         I am not in favor of hard and fast rules for governing where IC is acceptable, where it isn't, and likewise do not like extremes on any end of the spectrum either in individuals or communities.  In-character role-play among friends with similar interests is one of the fundamental appeals of mucking and attached to that is the sense of community fostered--and the relationships developed through this role-play are deepened as the players get to know one another on a personal level.
         If you eliminate role-play entirely, it is the same as chat.  If you outlaw reality, it is lacking in depth of interaction.
         It may be preferable to have a sense of 'right of way' for conversations taking place--if the prevailing traffic is IC, perhaps OOC should be reserved to whispers or taken elsewhere.  And likewise the other way around.
         I've seen all ends of the spectrum--I don't believe Strange Attractor will succeed on account of the barriers raised by it's enforced anonymity and I don't think it's a good thing to have 24-hour Linux techie chat in the Rose Garden, either.  A happy medium is ideal.

Observation II.  Social Competition and Snobbery.
         It is safe to say that nobody likes to be made fun of.  But among certain individuals it seems as though the only jokes they are able to make is at the expense of others.  Why is this?  Spindizzy ought to be a place to relax among friends, not another arena for social competition.  I had hoped to escape that sort of posturing and hazing when I left junior high, but improving one's self-image by attacking others in the name of a good laugh is a disturbingly regular activity.
         And perhaps more disturbing is the fact that those responsible are probably too oblivious to realize it's them I'm talking about.
         On a similar note, I've noticed that some people don't say hello.  And by that I don't mean not saying hello when entering the rose garden (that's usually do to lag or laziness)--I mean not acknowledging a greeting addressed directly to them, more than once, sometimes whispered for attention.  Forgive me, but I find that to be a bit rude.  For the most part, this behavior has been with people I don't know and the only reason I can think of why this would take place is clique behavior--not interacting with those outside of a certain group of friends and acquaintances.
         I would like to suggest that SpinDizzy is not large enough to support this practice.  It ought to be easy to get to know the regulars quickly enough as small as this muck is.
         And one more bit of snobbery that I have noticed is attempt to squelch Rose Garden chat when the majority of the people are talking about any given subject.  Once in a while you will see one or two or three individuals who might say things like, "Spongemuppet snuggles Pornflake and tries to shut out the surrounding conversation," or, "Lagpacket yawns, clearly bored," or engage in attempts to divert the attention of the Rose Garden to themselves.
         When a person is not interested in participating in the social environment at the time, I would think that the best course of action would be to either wait silently until something of interest comes up, attempt to make a meaningful contribution, or to go elsewhere.
Observation III.  Language skills
         On this subject I am afraid it is very difficult to pull punches.  When a person does not put forth effort to use proper capitalization, punctuation, or grammar, I have a very hard time treating them with respect.  I know that language skills are not always indicative of intelligence, but when I see:
plonker say, "  hello  How are you  smile purr
Instead of:
Hipcat smiles and says, "Hello, how are you?"
         My initial reaction to the first will likely be much more negative than the second.
Observation IV.  Furry Enculturation
         It was my understanding when SpinDizzy was created that SpinDizzy was not to be a specifically Furry-themed muck.  The wizcore at the time seemed to concur.  I am aware that many people that connect to SpinDizzy identify themselves as 'Furries' or 'Furry Fans'.  This is understandable; SpinDizzy feeds primarily from mucks that are furry themed, and they should by all means be made to feel welcome here.
         But I still don't see SpinDizzy as a 'Furry Muck.'  I don't consider myself to be a furry (nor even a furry fan), and it is not very pleasant to be asked why I am here--or worse, told that I shouldn't be here--when the subject comes up.  It ought not to be impossible for furries and nonfurries to peaceably coexist.
         It seems as though I have been seeing more and more furry enculturation creep into the muck--and by that I don't mean more furry characters, but more ideas that are peculiar to the dodgier end of the fandom, i.e. the "Furries good, humans bad" sort.  I am very glad to report that I've not yet heard anyone use the word "mundane" here and mean it (although the word "everyfur" has somehow surfaced, unfortunately).  It evidences an attitude no one could benefit from.
         Tangents:  There are two side effects of this furry enculturation.  The first is a diminishing acceptance of different playstyles.  Like some of my alts, for instance.   There is just no tolerance for playful obnoxiousness.  I am reminded of a conversation I saw on Furtoonia some years ago between Beer Rat and another individual.  Beer Rat played the role of a perpetually drunk, overweight, smelly bum with delusions of grandeur.  This second person wondered aloud, in sort of a condescending manner, why anybody would want to pbe somebody like him.  This person played a voluptuous winged coyote woman and in real life is a morbidly obese gentleman who had under gone a gender-reversal operation and now considers himself a lesbian.  Draw your own conclusions.
         At one point, it seemed as though pushing the envelope of weirdness and charting unexplored territories of characterization was de rigueur for this muck:  Steam-driven robots, anthropomorphic colonies of amoeba, fireflies inhabiting human skin, super evolved weasels, plaers-as-puppets, and even the water in the fountain featured as characters here at one time or another.  Is it still acceptable?  Are hermaphroditic alien dragons with four sets of external genitalia (all the rage on traditional furry mucks) the new 'weird'?
         Which brings me to my second tangent--dodgy descriptions.  The internet is really in no short supply of lewdness.  Every day I must receive at least twenty unsolicited emails from women who want me to view pictures of them naked on their web pages--which is very flattering and all--but I'm really uninterested.  Is it necessary to have that sort of thing here?  I know that hormones are formidable creatures as I suffer from my fair share; but we ought to be able to keep them under control in our fair burg.  SpinDizzy is not a place where I really want to be confronted with carefully articulated descriptions of heaving bodices.
         SpinDizzy is a different sort of place, and one very special to me and many of you.  There was, at one point, so much that set it apart from the mucks that surrounded it.  I think it is still different, and still special, and I am not calling for a return to "the good old days."  I realize that the muck will continue to grow and evolve, but I hope it will grow into something different from it's cousins, and not a clone of them.  I look forward to hearing what you have to say.


Maxl, Assoc. Ed. EDITORIAL: That stuff on the board
  Having gone through this a number of times, I'm loathe to help spark another debate about if SpinDizzy is as wonderful as it used to be in the days when we were all innocent little perfect
children, and everything was sunny and wonderful, and there were maybe six people on in the evenings. But, alas, the issues that Rootdown posted on the board need some examination, and since it seems like I'm the only person who agrees with him even in part, I should probably share my views.

Please note that I, too, am not professing to have any 'correct' answers. The following is merely what I think.

I: Character distinctions, IC/OOC

Root is right about not needing to say specifically 'I AM IC' or 'I AM OOC' to indicate what you're doing; it should be obvious. Moreover, it can be fun to play a character that blurs the distinction between the two, making distinctions totally irrelevant. This might even
be the best way to compromise.

As for IC/OOC conversations being relegated and determined by what's going on in the park when you arrive, if you're deeply upset by the fact that there's OOC conversation, try and get folks interested in RP by doing something outrageous and/or silly. Undoubtedly at least one other fellow will respond. Other than that, if the OOC conversation displeases you, you're always welcome to suggest another topic and try and get folks to go along with it.

I, too, am vehemently against outlawing RP/enforcing RP in public spaces like the garden; likewise, I detest nothing but OS wars and tech talk all the time. They were fun back in 1998 or so, sure, but that's because we didn't already know each other's views to an absurd point.

II: Social commentary / competition

I've found that this sort of thing happens on every MUCK, to be honest. There's always backbiting, backstabbing, and outright vehement hate. This seems to be part of the nature of the online world, more or less, and there's not terribly much that can be done about it.

It does bear reiterating that SpinDizzy's AUP amounts to "Don't be a jerk", though. Undoubtedly we're all in violation of it frequently. This can be superficially fixed by at least taking all nastiness to whispers and pages.

III: Language skills / idiocy

I think we all are more or less in agreement that communication in a text-based medium is based on how well you can type. I'm not referring to frequent minor spelling mistakes or typos, but the sort of radical ineptness that Root suggests.

This is fairly obvious, but it needs to be said.

IV: Furry Culture and tangents

It is no secret that I play a furry character, but don't consider myself a 'furry', despite the repeated insistence of some that I must be one, as I am on a 'furry MUCK'. This is, astoundingly,
detrimental to my opinions of some, and it should be generally realized that SpinDizzy, as Root pointed out, was not founded for the express purpose of being a furry-themed MUCK, despite the fact that it's filled with furry critters. Tolerance of other opinions should be encouraged, especially with the bit below about RP.

As for the un-acceptance of different play styles: This dates back, actually, to possibly the first 'RP vs. MINDLESS CHATTER' rift on the MUCK, which as I recall was rather nasty. I certainly wouldn't pin this sort of thing entirely on the influx of furries but just intolerance in general.

Weirdness on the MUCK seems to have somehow gone away and been replaced with, more or less, normalcy. This is perhaps the biggest problem with SpinDizzy 'changing' to people who have been there since the Dawn of Time; it was a lot of fun because of the sheer damn oddity of it all. Some of it still happens, but sparsely and not nearly as inventive as previous endeavors.
Whether or not the spirit of wackiness will return is, more or less, pretty much up to at least a few individuals who feel like taking initiative.

I've not noticed any increase in dodgy descriptions. Again, they have existed since the dawn of time. I've also not noticed any licentious ones lurking about, but that again may just be my
general lack of attention. As for other licentiousness, it must be admitted that it happens everywhere. I'm sure we all agree that descriptions involving dripping throbbing things shouldn't be seen in public, though, out of kindness.


If you want to change something, do something.
Argon Town Meeting ~ Party
  A Town meeting to talk about recent discussions on the bulletin board, and just to celebrate SpinDizzy's birthday will be held this Friday the 19th around 11pm est which is 8pm on the far coast.  This time may change, or it may not happen at all, but if the meeting doesn't occur, the party will.  More info on the Rose Garden Bulletin Board as it becomes available.
Argon Weekly Survey
  Argon asked in this week's survey, "I'm doing a survey to be published in @Action News.  The question is,  'What  sorts of things would you like to see other folks do here?'
Maxl hisses, " I would like to see other folks... do whatever the hell they want to do.  I honestly don't really care."
Lamar yaps, "I'd like to see people give me money, then not pester me. Oh, yes, I'd also like to see more interesting mavs."
Suri says, "I'd like to see everyone touch Lamar."
Flutterz would like to see thingies giving her more sparklies!
Rown says, "I would like to see other folks do less technical spamming. It wouldn't hurt if they lightened up a bit as well. It's okay to have both a OOC chat environment and an RP environment side by side in the rose garden but when a closed conversation is being carried on and only a couple have any idea what's being talked about they should take it somewhere else." 
Lavender writes down, "One thing I like doing is a game where you quote song lyrics, and see who can guess them."
Reiter says, "More RPing, definately. I'm guilty of often being OOC myself but... I dunno. We need more plots and stuff. Morti's been doing a good job with that... I think we should do some more of it. That'd be cool."
Mouser hisses, "We used to have that...and the Artist's Jam too. You know, there are a few things that have sort of dropped off over the years."
Smirk says, "Stand on their head and juggle oranges, and convert to Soism."
Shoe says, "I kinda want to see more excitement"
Mavra says, "The Macarena.  Ok, the YMCA' as well, then."
Dellway chrrphisses, "Wearing more fursuits! :o9"
Felicia says, "Maybe more fun role-playing?"
Cye says, "more role-playing."
Argon The Doze Garden

@Action News Info Guidelines and Procedures for Submitting Articles
  Submitting a story or artwork for @Action News is easy!  Just send it to newspaper@spindizzy.org, or qmail or page Argon or Maxl about it.

Most any type of story or article will be excepted.  Generally, we'd prefer things that aren't out and out lies or flames about other folks, and have a basis in the reality of SpinDizzy. Things that occur in public areas are fair game. The things reported don't have to have actually happened, (Any more than anything that happens here does.) but make sure you don't overstep the social boundaries and rules of interaction that we have.  These are pretty broad guidelines, but we expect good sense to apply.