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Monday, 8 December 2014

Anthropomorphism Under Attack


@SiberHamster and @NaqRyba weighing in on the current situation... #MWFF #gascon 2014: image via MW Deep-Dish DogFest @skyandog, 7 December 2014

Furries convention

Frederic Cesbron, right and Maxim Durand, walk on the street outside the Hyatt Regency O'Hare hotel on Sunday in Rosemont, Illinois: photo by Nam Y. Huh / AP, 7 December 2014

Furries convention interrupted by chlorine gas that sickens 19 people: Annual ‘Anthrocon’, where many attendees dress in costume to celebrate anthropomorphic animals, is evacuated as police suspect foul play: Associated Press, Rosemont Illinois, 7 December 2014

Chlorine gas sickened several people and forced the evacuation of thousands of guests from a suburban Chicago hotel early Sunday, including many dressed in cartoonish animal costumes for an annual furries convention who were ushered across the street to a convention center that was hosting a dog show.

Nineteen people who became nauseous or dizzy were treated at local hospitals, and at least 18 were released shortly thereafter.

The source of the gas was apparently chlorine powder left in a ninth-floor stairwell at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare, according to the Rosemont public safety department. Investigators believe the gas was created intentionally and are treating it as a criminal matter.

The hotel is hosting the 2014 Midwest FurFest convention, also called “Anthrocon”, where attendees celebrate animals that are anthropomorphic –- meaning they’ve been given human characteristics -– through art, literature and performance. Many of the attendees, who refer to themselves as “furries”, wore cartoonish animal outfits.

They said they come for fun, but also for the spiritual and artistic aspects of the convention, during which they celebrate animal characters from movies, TV shows, comic books, video games and characters they create themselves. Anthrocon conventions typically draw thousands of participants from around the world, many dressed in costumes that they say can cost as much as $3,000.

Guests were allowed to return a few hours later after the hotel had been decontaminated, and by mid-morning the furries were pouring back into the hotel for more activities, chatting with each other and making their way to an outdoor courtyard where they took part in a group exercise session, with foxes, dragons and other characters getting an aerobic workout.

“We ask you to continue to be patient, and remember that the volunteers who make Midwest FurFest happen intend to give 110 percent to make sure that the fun, friendship, and good times ... overshadow last night’s unfortunate incident,” organizers said in a statement posted on the group’s website. Organizers declined to discuss the matter in person.

Pieter Van Hiel, a 40-year-old technical writer from Hamilton, Canada, said the conventions are about having fun with people who enjoy the same hobby.

“This is an intense weekend of socialization. It’s kind of weird, but it’s not weird here,” said Van Hiel, who said he writes role-playing games for animals. He laughed as he described being herded out of the hotel and across the street to the Donald E Stephens Convention Center: “There was a dog-grooming trade show going on and in walk all these people dressed like dogs and foxes.”

The conventions includes displays and vendors, an artists’ show, cartoon and character-related presentations, dances and live performances, and draw artists, puppeteers, costume makers, writers and just plain fans.

“Everyone is from a different background,” said Michael Lynch, a 25-year-old computer technician from Madison, Wisconsin. “Nobody judges anybody. It’s nice to come to a place like that.”

Dressed head-to-toe in a fox outfit, 35-year-old forklift operator Frederic Cesbron, of France, wanted to make one thing clear: “Nobody uses real fur.”

All the cuties #MWFF2014: image via PCD Puppy :( @Subastian_Puppy, 7 December 2014

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Hey guys, I got to make it to MFF after all, my friends came too! #GasCon2014 #MFF: image via Polar Joe @Joe2491, 7 December 2014 Whitehall, Pennsylvania

#GasCon 2014 was an inside job: image via Gundorito @gundir7, 7 December 2014

3AM and #gascon2014 is still hopping. We're going until dawn because the police won't let us go to bed: image via Ebdain Ahriman @Ebdain, 7 December 2014

#MWF chemical leak made National news: image via santa's lil Helper @Flash_Adalwolf, 7 December 2014 
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Blocks and blocks of emergency vehicles. Thank you EMS/etc guys too for being this at the ready at 3am. #MWFF2014: image via MidwestMommaburrFest @Kingdomcub, 7 December 2014

p. 92

The Old Crow Distilling Company advertisement for The Old Crow Whiskey
: Time, 11 March 1966 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

p. 80

Petri Wine Company  advertisement for Petri Wine
: Life, 27 December 1948 (Gallery of Graphic Design)


Calvert Distilling Company advertisement for Calvert Whiskey
: Life, 22 June 1942 (Gallery of Graphic Design)


Schenley advertisement for Schenley Reserve Whiskey: Life, 27 October 1947 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

Pink foxes were rocking it at the dance last night @MekoFox #MWFF2014: image via MFF Pink Fox @pjfoxes, 7 December 2014

Day 3: Selfies with @Artie ~ #MWFF2014 #BeforeChaos: image via NikonFoxFest #MFF @SinghaTheLion, 7 December 2014

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Me and @NekoHaiku #MWFF2014: image via Trance Husky @trancehusky, 7 December 2014

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I can't handle all this cute! @midwestfurfest #MWFF2014: image via Fabi @MrSchnozzle, 7 December 2014

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#MFF2014 #MWFF2014 I had to get his pic! From close to 30 furs Nuzzled up to one suiter to keep warm! To this! <3 i="">: image via MFF!!MartinFatFest @EikoTehMouse, 7 December 2014

p. 51
The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company advertisement for A & P Coffee: Woman's Day, 1 JAuguust 1940 (Gallery of Graphic Design)


 The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company advertisement for A & P Coffee: Woman's Day, 1 July 1940 (Gallery of Graphic Design)


 Wesson Oil advertisement for Wesson Oil: Better Homes and Gardens, 1 May 1936 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

Cluett, Peabody and Company advertisement for Arrow Shirts: Life, 24 May 1943 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

#MWFF2014 is now #Anthrocon according to the Associated Press: image via Bliznado @blizzard_wuffy, 7 December 2014 Rosemont, Illinois

A voice on the phone says: "It's #FursuitFriday!": image via Anthrocon, Inc. @anthrocon, 5 December 2014

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Smile! It's #FursuitFriday!: image via Anthrocon, Inc. @anthrocon, 14 November 2014

I swear, i didnt do this.. >.>: image via Shyanne @ShyanneSky, 5 December 2014

A little @FlacierFox head creeping on everyone! #MWFF2014: image via Midwest :3fest @KevShepherd, 7 December 2014 Schiller Park, Illinois

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Gots my paws!! I might not be at #MWFF2014 but have a suit picture anyway! #fursuit: image via Matt @MattPanther, 7 December 2014

These two were beyond awesome x3 @midwestfurfest #MWFF2014: image via Fabi @MrSchnozzle, 7 December 2014
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Hmm.... How DOES it feel?: image via Fruit Cake Fox @Willow_Fox, 5 December 2014

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Hmm.... How DOES it feel?: image via Fruit Cake Fox @Willow_Fox, 5 December 2014

...and someone getting shrink wrapped. Typical con stuff. #MWFF2014: image via MW Deep-Dish DogFest @skyandog, 7 December 2014

p. 5

 Ethyl Corporation advertisement for Ethyl Anti-Knock Gasoline
: Eric Gurney, Saturday Evening Post, 4 June 1955 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

p. 5

 Ethyl Corporation advertisement for Ethyl Gasoline
Eric Gurney, Saturday Evening Post, 14 February 1954 (Gallery of Graphic Design)

I don't know about you, but I'd say it's back to business as usual #MWFF2014: image via Midwest CrocFest @Crocosaur, 7 December 2014


TC said...

MFF 2014 -- The Entire Bloody Parade

Lally said...


vazambam (Vassilis Zambaras) said...

Fowl play? What a gas!

manik sharma said...


What exactly is a post-con depression kit?Sugar?

"It’s kind of weird, but it’s not weird here". It is definitely weird here, now.

TC said...

And the terrible thing is, when you stop and think about it a bit, one of these very same adorable furries may well have brought that chlorine powder into the joint, possibly hidden in a big furry tail, and... but why??

Kin dread?

Dunno, the great American Midwest is another planet, but still. Hard to disagree with Manik's conclusion.

("Research" for this post, by the way, brought the investigator up against some surprising -- but not really all that surprising when you think about it a bit -- er, implications, as to what the furries do at the con when the lights go out..)