1274 Noticed.

Pretty much the moment you start talking to Thomas you are potentially a way for him to alleviate his own monotony. Whatever help you get should be seen as payment for his antics.

Tomorrow, or today if you’re reading this on the official posting day, is the first day of school for the Teen. She is very nervous. I can empathize since I hated the first day of school even more than I hated every day that followed. I’m still crossing my fingers that the first day doesn’t devolve into hysterics. She’s been campaigning hard to let her skip the first two days. All that would do is set her back from everyone else and make the first day she actually went even worse. My ability to be sympathetic does have limits. There’s no getting out of school. I did my best to make her last week of summer as good as I could.

The volleyball girls are, apparently, trying very hard to get her to try out. She is something of a bruiser, so I can see why they’d want her to participate. She’s taller than most girls and solidly built. I know it would be good for her, but I can hardly argue against her reasons not to do it. School competition isn’t fun. It’s a means to an end and the athletes are little moneymakers for the school. As such, the coaches remove what little enjoyment there might be, for someone whose goal in life is something other than putting a ball someplace, more times than someone else. Of course I’m biased. I’ve never been one for school spirit, athletics, or any of that. If that’s your thing I don’t begrudge your love for it, but I don’t like sport.

I’ve always had bad experiences with coaches and their teams. I too was tall and powerfully built (also a fatty). So my little school wanted me to play their games. I chose not to do so and was punished. Not openly, but punished every single day until we moved away. My friends, who were already few, were alienated from me, and the sporting teachers were hostile. There were 3 other boys who chose not to take part in football the year I chose not to. Eventually they gave in. I did not. No, all of that further fueled the rage that carried me well into my twenties. It destroyed what little trust I had in school authority, and made me slow to trust everyone else. School, particularly jocks and coaches, hardened me, fostered my hate, made me despise people I perceived as weak minded. Made me cruel. Even though I could have fought back physically I internalized everything and learned to wound people with words. Eventually they learned to fear me. Because I could read their weaknesses in seconds, and point them out just as quickly. I might have become something much more horrible than I am if I hadn’t made some friends once we moved. Also the anonymity of a large school kept me from being singled out so constantly.

So yeah… I don’t like sports.

All of that probably also contributed to me never having that one teacher that “made such a difference in my life”. There were teachers that I liked, but for the most part I saw them just like any other ape trying to make it in the jungle.

This is kind of a fitting thing to talk about in light of Robin William’s suicide. That stuff is all part of the pain that taught me to be funny. Anger and humor got me by. They were my sword and shield. They still are, although I favor the shield more than the sword now. Funny people shield others from their darkness with comedy, but that leaves them on the other side with it.

Anyway, the Teen want to play zombies some more. I’m sure she’s not feeling very happy so I’m going to indulge her again. I’ll see you guys later.


Wait until he finds out about yiffing. :D

If it’s anything similar to how I found out about it he’s either going to laugh himself silly or begin to question the sanity of humankind…

I hope the Teen has a good first day. If not a good one, hopefully nothing too terrible. The thing that always got me through the first day was that it was usually just a “rules day.” We always went through the school’s code of conduct, etc, some teachers did the sampler of what we’d be starting with as far as material…

The classes I hated were the, “Introduce yourself and share a thing about you” classes. Ugh.

Careful John lest like Allan Alda’s Pierce he’s, “Never more serious than when I’m joking”!

I hope this leads to a short sequence where Thomas explains all furry history with a few simple paragraphs and inspired puppetry of items found in the toy aisles!


As to the school thing. I understand somewhat.

They asked me and put pressure on my family. The funny thing was when told that my family didn’t have enough cars to drive me to the events none of the “team’s” parents let alone the coaches or teachers could swing by and pick me up. Even after this was explained and they failed to find anyone to help in any way for even SOME of the events they STILL annoyed my parents and tried to make them feel bad about not making this happen for them somehow……………………………

There was some other stupidity involving my early experiences with the school sports programs that all adds up to me having 0 school spirit and a strong dislike of sports for my first couple of decades.

I’m sure I and everyone here could bitch about school for hours on end. And my school wasn’t even that bad compared to most of what I here from others! O.O

Unsolicited advice from an Interent stranger in 3… 2… 1…

It really does come down to the coaches, and school administration. I, as a very short stocky barrel of a boy, skipped out on regularly PE and joined the dance classes. Then again I was never in any of the competitive side of things. Being the 100% wrong body shape with almost no upper body strength. I also got involved in the computer repair/recycling program… so dancing short nerd it was.

Speaking as eduction support staff who’s dabbled a bit the classroom, you get all types. There those of us out there who really do want to see other people’s children succeeded at where their gifts are. I guess if you want to address your concerns is to find out the recent history of the team under the current coach and support staff, and what division they play in. Also taking to the PTA and any Booster club members associated with the school sports programs. You’ve had your whits sharpened for people dissecting, and can likely detect a runaround or obfuscation. Another clue is the how the school handles athletes who get into trouble academically. A sign of a good program is one that has a confirmed history of benching players (even their best) if they aren’t keeping up with the academics. I had classmates back-when who were benched from football and put on hard academic probation. Also the coaching staff universally had a very clear and enforced anti-cheating stand, to the point us non-sports people knew it. I can say with confidence there was more cheating among the “honor roll” students then there was among the “athletes”.

Again parents in the booster clubs or if there is a teacher (support staff, we see/hear lots) at the school you can trust. This should also net you any gossip about how the student athletes treat each other and the non-athletes, which can be almost more important. What other clubs/activities are they involved in? What is the clique cross-pollination like?

Although at the end of the day she’ll likely find her own way. And as long as she is encouraged to stay away from substance abouse or acts of petty criminality she should be fine (says the concerened educator in me). The best advice I can give and give to students regularly is to try. If you don’t try, you don’t find out if you like a thing, and no one who’s actually worth your time it’s going to really force you if you polity and with good reasons decline. Also, most groups that are of good sprite will be inclined to let you “sit in” and just observe if you’re not super excited about joining in, and of course won’t take it as an affront if you decline. Example good reasons: “I know I need to focus more on my academics this year and know I wouldn’t have consistant time to commit.” Or “am also interested in XYZ club(s) this year and their meeting schedules do conflict.”

I’ll let former student athletes pick up from here. Best of luck to the Teen, and to all the Teens and Pre-Teens this school year. Even the Big Teens at them fancy colleges.

“…discovered /an/ aspect…” Sorry, but seeing ‘and’ in place of ‘an’ is a mistake I commonly make when binge writing and I can’t help but notice when others do it as well…

For my sins, I am a bit of a jock, albeit one who was extremely lucky to be good at whatever sport I turned my hand to. At the age of 15, I was running sub 4 minute miles and the school coaches were extremely excited about my “potential”, especially when they learned that I wasn’t much of a trainer.

“With coaching,” they declared to my parents, “He’ll be looking at the Olympics in three years time.”

You know what? It never happened. I lost any love I had for running due to the coaches and I was bored to tears with the repetitiveness of the drills I was required to do. One day I told my coach that I’d had enough of it and quit – I could see his disappointment because I was effectively his meal ticket to bigger and better things and it was much the same for my parents, although they understood when I explained how frustrated and bored I was becoming. Dad actually also realised that I needed mental stimulation in my training and, for a runner, that is incredibly hard to achieve. So he directed me towards football (soccer) and, of all things, I became a referee.

I’m actually doing quite well in this and, hopefully, in the next few years I’ll achieve national status and the running training I did has really helped that.
Now I’m helping to organise referee fitness sessions and, for the first time since quitting running, I’m enjoying running again because I’m training with a group of my peers and we can chat as we do some of the slower paced stuff. Things that were missing with coaching.

Also, comics were a nice distraction and I would sit down with them to avoid thinking about doing any form of training. So when you see a jock, they will probably be secret comics readers (just so you know).

There is a postscript to all of this. A few months ago, I ended up accidentally meeting my old coach and we recognised each other immediately. We sat down for a coffee and we ended up chatting about my running and my abrupt retirement. I’m still the best pure talent he’s ever had, but me never running again made him re-evaluate where he had gone wrong and he ended up changing his coaching methods as he realised that he had driven me away from it. I took up his offer of going to a coaching session and I could see that he had changed things around immensely:

He had paired athletes together to become a “team” and they would be challenging the other “teams” in a sort of mini-league. The training was more dynamic and he also discussed the tactics to be used when running. Training was also a lot more tailored.
He also introduced me to his athletes as “the one who got away” and I ended up having a little sit down chat with a couple of them by the running track and it really felt like I was like an old man passing down the wisdom of the ages.

One of the kids decided he wanted to challenge me to a race, just because he could. 1500m and trailing 30 seconds behind me, he was a bit upset that I hadn’t trained for that kind of running for nearly two decades (I’m 33 now). He now contacts me through my old coach asking for tips or for me to come and watch him, when I can.

I’ll say this, if I can be have the positive influence on him as Crave has been on the Teen, then I’ll be a better man than I used to be.

I love the fact that i’m the guy who people go to in my life to ask those questions such as “Whats a furry? or whats Bad Dragon?” always a fun filled afternoon. Then Again i had a buddy who decided a great christmas gift would be a giant dragon phallus from said bad dragon so i can show it off whenever i explain.

On the note of school i feel the Teen’s pain i got one week until my senior year starts and despite my never playing any sports, besides my tenure as a boxer, the whole football team wants me on defense line. i guess im big and strong enough. But i have a piddly little right arm with 3 fingers so im a terrible wall.

Typo alert! Panel 5. Besides that I’m interested to see how much Thomas knows about this subject, especially since there is not a hobby on earth he hal ass

Frankly, I’m a little jealous that she (and you, Crave) had people bugging you to try out for sports. Of course, it sounds like a small school. I was in a fairly large school, and I really didn’t stand out in … Well, I stood out in one way, and that’s not something I’ll discuss right now.

In spite of not ever having done any athletics in high school, I turned out reasonably athletic, anyway. I didn’t learn to drive until I was halfway to seventeen. I opted to ride my bicycle all over town. My brothers and I played video games, sure. This was the SNES era, though. We couldn’t really stay interested in our games for more than two hours at a time. We had grown up playing games where we’d chase each other all over the neighborhood with the neighborhood kids.I am still a decent runner and a fairly strong sprinter, in spite of needing to lose at least 50 pounds.

I was somewhat oblivious to events in high school. I really didn’t like or dislike school. I told myself I liked it while I was in school. Years after I graduated, I realized how naive I was. Nevertheless, I managed to maintain a largely positive attitude about school. This was primarily achieved through orchestra. Don’t get me wrong. I never practiced. It was just the highlight of my day of classes.

In many ways, I’m glad I can’t go back to high school knowing what I know now. I’d do so many things better, but I would undoubtedly also get into a great deal of trouble.

Crave, your sports were my “Frat’s” when i went to college. I couldn’t stand them.

Every so often when we left our dorm door open, often while i was studying, one guy would come through the halls smelling partly of ammonia, invade our room “without the least obeisance”, spout a 10 second diatribe about his frat party and place a flyer on my homework…only to be followed by a similarly half-drunk brother of an opposing frat who even less ceremoniously snatched the flyer out of my hand and replaced it with his own…

All while I stood there in stunned silence…


I am really lucky, apparently, that my small school wasn’t like that. No one got bullied about whether they did sports or not, and the “jocks” were also the smart, nice, popular kids.
But Americans seem to take their sports a lot more seriously than we do, at that.

Ah school. The sad thing about my last years of school were that I spent them in slings from shoulder dislocations and STILL kept getting hammers to join the ratfuck meatheads who ran the sportball teams. I never had any interest in that. My interest always was the internet and Let’s Plays. Maybe you and The Teen can try doing a Let’s Play together Jackie?

So… you know it would be good for her, but she doesn’t want to do it, huh? Perhaps she should do the old pro/con list thing. List reasons she should join the volleyball team. List reasons she doesn’t want to. For example:
Pro/exercise does a body good, challenge to improve from where you are, chance to learn how to interact with and understand the girls on the volleyball team, if she’s good it can boost self esteem to succeed at something, character building taking on something tough and sticking to it, setting goals and working hard to achieve them
Con/coach is a jerk (if the coach is a jerk that is), girls on the team are mean (if they are – although if you have a thick skin it doesn’t matter much – but then again teens are not usually noted for their thick skins), she might not be very good and that could be embarrassing, athletics can be a lot of work, risk of injury, time commitment – time spent practicing and competing with the team would not be available for killing zombies, fear of the unknown

These may not all be actual pro/con reasons for the teen, but you can see where I’m going. Let her decide her priorities. If you think her priorities are skewed, you can advise her, but when it comes down to it, she should make the decision. If she decides against it, then help her with pat answers for the coaches, students, etc. that are polite but firm. Something like “I’m flattered that you would ask me, but I have other activities that keep me busy that are a higher priority to me. Thanks for thinking of me and asking though.”

Oh, John Kepler, thou hast uncorked the keg. Drink deep — or run! John’s a little insecure anyway, and that’s why Carol can dominate him so easily. He tries to be cooler than he really is, but Thomas sees through the ruse and pushes his buttons. I discovered the whole ‘Furry’ thing in the early nineties (when the World Weird Web was yet young). It’s been kind of like watching a train wreck ever since; I want to look away, but I can’t. Yeah, I have accounts on FurAffinity and Weasyl, although I’ve never posted a thing on either (yeah, I do have a little junk on DeviantArt).

I don’t know why, exactly, but I never had a problem with the first day of school. Maybe it was because I always had some new clothes to wear or some new gear I wanted to try out. I started First Grade in 1963 (yeah, I’m old) and it was a slightly different world. I also had my middle brother to look up to; he started Fourth Grade that year in a neighboring school, but we rode the bus together.

Now, my brother hated school. We had moved the third week he was in Second Grade, and he was the New Kid in School. The new teacher beat the hell out of him physically, mentally and emotionally, because he was new and he wasn’t French or Catholic (although this was a public school; I suspect she was a failed nun). Our Dad went down to the office toward the end of the first semester and handed the principal his attorney’s business card. He told the old bastard that if the abuse didn’t stop, there would be legal action (he did this for us three times, that I know of). Unfortunately, the damage was done; I have no idea how the poor kid made it through High School. Somehow, he graduated from a Technical School with honors.

My first two years in High School, I was the Little Fat Kid. Even the bus driver called me the Little Dude. I was about 5’7″ or so and pretty hefty. Suddenly, over the Summer Break before my Junior year, I got a growth spurt and hit 5’10”. I was just over 5’11” at Graduation. The Grits (the Vocational Agriculture kids, mostly) and the Greasers (back then it meant Vocational Opportunity — Shop classes all day or expulsion) used to terrorize me. In my Junior year I started fighting back, and I never lost a fight.

I was still heavy, but now I was big, so the Coaches tried to make me a football tackle. I always hated any kind sports; I still do. I inherited the family’s nerve weakness in my hands, so climbing the damned rope was out of the question, giving the Coaches had another reason to hate my @$$. Ever play Dodgeball? Yeah, I was the target. I got so I could throw pretty hard — revenge was sweet.

Ugh. School Sports.
In New Zealand, there’s no money in it, so less pressure to sign up. I was tall, so had a few people saying “Hey, you should play basketball” but I was also terribly uncoordinated, so these people were never from the actual teams. :) And I found (still find) sport incredibly boring and preferred to spend my time reading.
Yes. I was that kid.

OHHHHHHH boys . . .

Nothing wrong with doing something because it is a means to an end. And occasionally, that something turns out better than you thought it would. Good Luck to the teen this year on whatever she decides to do! :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.