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If it's a filet mignon world, why the hell am I still eating ramen noodles?

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Created on 2009-07-12 20:41:42 (#424666), last updated 2009-10-07 (415 weeks ago)

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Name:Badjah Sensei
Birthdate:Aug 28, 1972
Location:Cary, NC, North Carolina, United States of America
The following is a series of annotated excerpts from The Book of Badjah: An Owner's Manual for Your Large, Grumpy, Hairy Land Mammal

Meet the 1972 midwestern geekish badjah, currently version 3.7...

Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos Grumpaloticus--physical characteristics:

This rare variety of badger stands 5'11, weighing around 300 pounds. With a growing, shaggy mane of brown hair and matching shaggy beard. Bespectacled, its green eyes usually feature the haze of overwork and fatigue, complimented by bags underneath. Heavyset (fine, obese) in stature, the badger is prone to jeans, t-shirt, shirts featuring floral prints, and Birkenstock style sandals.

Personality and disposition of the Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos Grumpaloticus:

Passionate and loyal, the Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos is laid back and easygoing, with periodic bursts of sarcasm. An instinctive learner, the badger has an undergraduate degree and several graduate degrees. The beast is also said to be involved in the education field as a career. For some reason, the word "hippie" is usually found in pools of adjectives that apply to the badger.

Mating habits of the Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos Grumpaloticus:

Single at the moment, in search of suitable companionship.

Care and feeding of your Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos Grumpaloticus:

Prone to overworking and stress, the badger requires frequent naps and is prone to hibernation bouts on weekends. As it has no real love for footwear, and tries to shun it as often as possible, the badger is often found barefoot. When not barefoot, its sandals are always poised to be removed for brief periods.

When boredom strikes! Favorite entertainment of the Midwestern Obesitus Taxus Geektos Grumpaloticus:

Favorite food: Sushi
Favorite movie: Titan AE, The Fifth Element, Legally Blonde
Favorite TV shows: Frasier, Project Runway, Dr. Who.
Favorite comic character: The Beast, Hank McCoy. I've always identified with him, ever since I read him during his time in the Avengers. With some of my old body image and self esteem issues, I can identify with a character who feels trapped by his own body, and (at least then) compensates with humor.
Favorite CD: Skylarking, by XTC

Various realms of badger geekery:

Role Playing Games:
I started in 1983, with red and blue boxed Dungeons and Dragons sets. That served as the springboard into Star Frontiers and Gamma World in the mid 1980's. Following a brief period of underground gaming (as my father had bought into the then-popular suburban myth that D+D was the embodiment of all that was evil), I got into Palladuim's game systems around 1988--often mixing parts of the games into my own hybrids, for example Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle generated characters in Robotech scenarios. That was followed by a years long love affair with TSR's old Marvel Superheroes RPG. In the early 1990's, I picked up White Wolf's World of Darkness series, working primarily with Vampire and Werewolf. I currently have about four bookshelves of various RPG books, and a while minisuitcase of dice.

Collectible Card Games:
In August 1994, I bought this deck of cards for a game called Magic: The Gathering (though I declined on buying packs of that little "The Dark" expansion set *headslaps*), and I've been hooked since. Currently, I'm playing spite of multiple "rehab" attempts.

Video Games:
Some of my fondest memories are from the old Invaders Arcade and Playland in Grand Blanc, Michigan. I remember being one of the first homes in the neighborhood to have an Atari 2600. To date, I've owned over twenty home and portable gaming system. As I wait for the next-generation systems to burn in and go through consumer beta testing (the PS3 was a great example of that), I'm content with my PS2, Wii, X-box 360, and Gameboy DS.

I got hooked young--with Americanized translations of Kagaku Ninjatai Gatchaman (Battle of the Planets) and Uchuu Senkan Yamato (Star Blazers). By 1989, I had a regular source, and paired VHS decks to dub copies of anime. Finding good anime has gotten harder over the years, as most of what I see is the "tournament fighting" stuff popularized by Ranma 1/2 and Dragonball Z. I must confess a secret love for the mecha genre, and a super secret love for the magical girl genre--most likely fallout from my animated Jem addiction in the mid 1980's. I have just started what I suspect will be a long love affair with anime torrenting, and I'm always looking for new shows to find.

Comic Books:
Though I had been reading comics since I was three, I started collecting in 1982, with copies of Legion of Superheroes 283 and Uncanny X-men 152. I now have about 14 longboxes of books, all of which are in dreadful need of sorting. In 1996, I gave a go at self-publishing my own comic project, and plan to one day revise and resurrect it.

I always loved new toys. As I grew older, my tastes got a bit more exquisite, leaning to technology. I don't quite have the salary to be a true alpha geek, so I instead sit on the fringes of beta-geekery and pick up new technology when my old gear dies out. I'm currently armed with an iPhone and Mac Powerbook, as well as iPod and XM radio hookups in my Element and a GPS system.

When I was four, my mother bought a huge (at least from my perspective) wood cabinet stereo, sat me down, and started playing her Elvis and Beatles records for me. That same year, WXON (a then independent Detroit TV station) began playing the old Beatles cartoons. I've been a music addict since. With well over 500 CDs in my collection, and gigs upon gigs of MP3s, my tastes lean far and wide, with the only true exception being country music. In my life, I've seen the rise the fall of disco, the birth of punk and new wave, the genesis of hip hop, and the immortalizations of legends like John Lennon, Joey Ramone, and Michael Jackson.

Being a fat guy, I eat. Sometimes, I like to eat quality food that doesn't come out of a box or freezer container. Though I'm far from a gourmet, I love both cooking and consuming fine food.

As a child and teen, I was bullied. Frequently. Mercilessly. As an adult, I've taken to activism as a way to both exorcise the demons of my past and to try and insure that today's young people don't have to develop in a world as harsh as the one I grew up in.

One area I'm active in is GLBT rights. Having been in the political scene since coming out in 1991, I've seen huge cultural strides in making the world a safer place for GLBT's of all ages. However, we're facing a cultural backslide right now, so my activist efforts have been doubled. Additionally, I'm also a vocal size right's activist--no, not the sort of whacko commonly associated with NAAFA. I don't want the world to change for me. If businesses (movie houses, for example) don't see fit to accmodate fat people (wider or adjustible seats, let's say), I see no need to accomodate them with my money--it's that simple. I just don't want the world to give me unnecessary grief and indignity for being who I am.

Furry Fandom:
Yes, we've all seen the salacious news reporting. We've seen the episodes of CSI and Drew Carrey. We all saw "that" documentary, whichever one of several "that" one actually was. We all know a guy who knows a guy, who knows a guy, who knows a guy who swears that he saw something at some convention somewhere, sometime.

And it's bullshit. That same friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend was probably the same one who saw the Life cereal kid die from mixing Pop Rocks and Coke and who saw Elvis smoking a joint with Jim Morrison at some Alabama trailer park. File under "neo urban myth."

I've been in furry fandom since 1994. I've been to more conventions than I can care to count. I've run a distributing business. I've published fanzines. I founded and ran a convention. I've served as several convention staff leads. I've been on MUCKs, MOOs, MUDs, and IRC networks. In my twelve years in furry fandom, I've seen nothing more bizarre than anything I'd see at a Trek con, sci-fi con, or gathering or Shriners

I mean come on, every group has their freaks and pervs--always a small group that commands most of the attention because of their ability to shock norms. Just look at the Catholic church and Republican Party. Even Jesus' deputies aren't immune to getting their freak on. Yet in spite of the sex scandals, there was no shortage of alterboys and Mineapolis airport stalls, and life went on as normal. The only reason furry fandom gets more salacious or negative attention is because Trekkies got boring, computer nerds got rich, and The Jerry Springer Show took most of the usual "extreme" fare from the mainstream media.

Yes, I'm a furry. I'm not ashamed over it. Deal.

Of geekish badgers and spiritual issues...

In 1991, I came to a revelation: the god of Christian mythology turned his back on me, or at least he stopped paying attention. I spent a few years reading on the religions of the world (and trying to dodge both parents and cultural forces trying to bring me back to the "flock") before settling in on a belief system that worked for me, instead of a belief system that I worked for. Currently, I practice an ecclectic blend of shamanism and paganism, embracing several totem animals and periodic ritual. Ganesh and Buddha are my homeboys. ;) I've been to a few local pagan gatherings with mixed results--a few "witchier than thou" and "alpha witch" types, and eventually realized that Wicca is just Christianity with the females in patronizing, domineering, and manipulative power relationships, instead of the men, as seen in Christianity. I'm currently reconsidering my spiritual situation.

Geekish badgers and world outlooks...

I am unapologetically liberal and left-leaning. I grew up in a Republican family (or, since GWB has perverted the party line so much in the last 6 years, what many GOP members are now self-identifying as "Reagan Republicans," to separate themselves from GWB's vision), and saw most of my childhood and adolescence consumed in the air of cold war paranoia and nuclear fear that Reagan and Bush stirred for twelve years. Though our culture is always at a crossroads, I feel as if America is currently teetering on a tragic point of no return of Shakespearean proportions. GOP-funded lawmakers and corporations openly flaunt their abuses of power to a neutered and bumbling news media. The growing lower classes are becoming more angry and violent over the predominance of social injustice and their dwindling power in modern American class warfare. The middle class is becoming more and more blinded by false hopes and carrots on sticks of future prosperity and a possible place higher on the social ladder. The Republican party has used fear combined with smoke and mirrors to engineer a cultural and social blank check for extremist Christian zealots to rend social policy and reform it in the facade of a book of fables written 2000 years ago. The crooks and inmates are running the asylum in America right now.

I'm in no way purporting to be a voice in the wilderness, one of Samuel Alito's "mythical little guys." Instead I'm a part of the true silent majority--the silent majority that will helped to put this county back on the road to prosperity and restore our dignity and credibility with the world in November 2008.
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