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frameacloud: A stylized green dragon person reading a book. (A stylized green dragon person reading a)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Some highlights of what I posted to the Otherkin News Twitter (@otherkinnews) during the last few months.

About otherkin

Vice magazine ran an article about otherkin.

Journal of Language Works published an article on nounself pronouns. Cites the Nonbinary.org wiki and mentions otherkin.

Published in March, the book Youth Cultures in America briefly mentions otherkin.

A review of Danielle Kirby's book Fantasy and Belief, which writes about otherkin.

Due to the anti-transgender bathroom bills in the US during these months, newspapers ran anti-transgender opinion articles. As usual, some tried to undermine transgender people by comparing them to "trans-species." Some writers knew about otherkin, others didn’t. Cissexist hate speech isn’t worth featuring here.

Transhumanism

Cyborg artist Neil Harbisson said at a transhumanist event, "I consider myself a transspecies because I’m adding senses and organs that other species have."

Art and glamourbombs

You know the intro scene in FernGully, with the cave wall covered in handprints from humans and tiny fairies? It's based on some actual cave art, which does feature handprints just like that. The tinier prints weren't human hands. Not fairies, either, though.

The Merrylin Cryptid Museum featured preserved remains of dragons, fairies, and other beings, all created by artist Alex CF. Since it's a hoax-like exhibit, Snopes explained it.

Snopes also had to address a viral photo of baby dragons being reintroduced to Wales, which originated as a Photoshop contest winner.
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Content warnings: None.

August 22, Kansas: Nobody knows who has been building and placing tiny gnome-size houses all over the city of Overland Park.

(The otherkin community has practiced similar arts meant to provoke belief in fair folk and magic, which they call a glamourbomb.)

Source


"Gnome homes popping up all over Overland Park." 2013-08-22. KSHB Action News. http://www.kshb.com/dpp/news/region_kansas/johnson_county/gnome-homes-popping-up-all-over-overland-park
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings: none that I can think of.

Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, November 6, 2011. People gathered in the Newtown State Rose Garden and successfully broke the “most fairies in a garden” record in the Guinness Book of World Record, with 547 fairies, beating last year’s record of 67. To qualify as a “fairy,” participants needed wings, a wand, and a gold coin. This was a fundraising event for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

This event was not affiliated with the otherkin community. If any otherkin showed up for this event, please let me know.

- O. Scribner

Sources )
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings: violation of ancient sacred site.

The richest man in Ireland moved an ancient megalithic (standing stone) burial site twenty years ago, and now he’s gone bankrupt. There are a lot of practical reasons for his ruin, but locals voiced to interviewers that the violation of that sacred site, Aughrim Wedge Tomb, was the primary cause for his downfall: not just due to the expense, but because that action offended the spirits who live there, the dangerous Fair Folk (fairies). Belief in the Fair Folk is widespread in the area, connected with a taboo against violating any ancient sacred sites.

- O. Scribner

Source


Greg Harkin, “Sean Quinn’s downfall is fairies’ revenge say locals in Cavan.” November 22, 2011. Irish Independent. http://www.independent.ie/national-news/sean-quinnrsquos-downfall-is-fairiesrsquo-revenge-say-locals-in-cavan-2941144.html
frameacloud: A stylized green dragon person reading a book. (Default)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for this article: dead creature, ostensibly. Work-safe.

Earlier this month in Guadalajara, Mexico, unemployed bricklayer Jose Maldonado, 22, claims to have captured a tiny fairy, which he says was alive at the time. He then preserved it in a jar of formaldehyde. He charges admission for people to look at it, and purportedly thousands have done so. His family also sells souvenirs depicting the fairy, and he has been featured on television. Skeptics note that the fairy is identical to a particular two centimeter tall rubber doll, a commonly-sold toy.

Sources )
frameacloud: A stylized green dragon person reading a book. (Default)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for this article: environmentalist issues, suffering nature spirits, credulous and incredulous views of supernatural. Work-safe.

During this July in the village of Bolungarvík in Iceland, human construction of an avalanche wall and a tunnel through a mountain were halted by strange accidents, including an accident with dynamiting in which flying debris caused damage to the village. Seer Vigdís Kristín Steinþórsdóttir claimed that the accidents were caused by the spirits who live in the hills, including both elves (huldufólk, hidden folk) and giants. (No relation to the Earth Liberation Movement [ELF], which has also been known to sabotage construction.) These spirits were angered because the humans didn’t ask for permission to work in their hills. According to Steinþórsdóttir, some of the spirits had been hurt or killed by the construction.

To appease the spirits and give them time to safely evacuate, locals held a ceremony in their honor, and sang for the elves. Local musician Benedikt Sigurdsson performed and said, “I have now been asked by both elves and men to broker a compromise here, and I hope that this song will suffice.”

Officials avoided associating themselves with what they saw as an irrational explanation. “The mayor Elías Jónatansson did not attend the ceremony.”1 “Seers requested the Bolungarvík municipal government make a full apology to the hidden people [but] the council … refused to co-operate.”2 After the ceremony, construction resumed.3

The hidden folk are a significant part of Icelandic folklore. The Icelandic Elf School (Álfaskólinn), established 1991, educates about this folklore by collecting stories about them and offering field trips to sites thought to be haunted by hidden folk. The head of the school, Magnús Skarphéðinsson, claims that according to a 2006 survey, “26% of Icelanders believe in elves.”4


Sources )
frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for these articles: disillusionment, ghosts. Work-safe.


Unicorn hoax revealed

The Ontario Science Center revealed that it ran a hoax in order to promote its new exhibit on “Mythic Creatures.” The hoax consisted of a video of a white horse posted on YouTube, encouraging people to debate whether it was real. The science center had also created a unicorn sighting hotline before letting people know that it was a publicity prank. Read more about the science center's unicorn hoax and see the video for yourself.


In UK, 755 friendly supernatural entities reported in past 25 years

Rev. Fanthorpe, “one [of] the UK’s leading authorities on the paranormal,” concluded research on the Supernatural Angel Report, having “found that in the past 25 years there have been a staggering 755 official reports [of friendly supernatural sightings] to police and councils in the UK.” These reports are of sightings or interactions with helpful or benign supernatural entities, and the numbers break down like this: “192 sighting of benign entities - ghosts which just appear and vanish without scaring viewers - 127 friendly entities, which smile or wave at people, 104 angelic visions, 99 helpful entities which actively help people who see them, 69 animal spirits, 44 sightings of fairies, 41 visions of saints, 32 of white witches, 24 guardian angels and 23 healing entities. Last month it was revealed in a study by the same organisation that there had been 227 ‘evil’ paranormal reports in the past 12 months in the UK.” It's a pleasant surprise to hear that pleasant ones are several times more frequent than malevolent ones.

- O. Scribner

Sources )

frameacloud: A white dragon with its tail in a knot. (Heraldry transparent)
[personal profile] frameacloud
Trigger warnings for this article: none that I can think of. Work-safe.

Reported Sept. 8, 2009, in the Daily Mail, a British tabloid est. 1896: One night in 2007, Phyllis Bacon, a 55-year-old woman living in New Addington, near Croydon in South London, casually took a photograph of her garden without looking into the camera.  To her surprise, the photograph—shown in this news article—looks as though the flash has illuminated a fairy.  The light shape looks like a small creature flying through the air, with wings, legs, and a head with antennae.  Either it has awfully long arms, or it’s carrying something crosswise.1

To me, the fairy in this photograph looks like it’s not real… but not an intentional fake, either.  It’s probably just a blur caused by a slightly shaky camera and a long exposure.  Compare another photo with a similar apparition, where a winged angel seems to be standing beside a girl on stage, analyzed by the skeptical blog Forgetomori.2  There are other floating white dots in the “Croydon Tinker Bell” photo, and one of them has a double-image look to it, suggesting that the fairy is indeed an artifact of long-exposure blur.

I wonder what these motes are?  Insects, perhaps, or cottonwood, or snowflakes.  The photographer didn’t say what time of the year it was, and that would make a difference.  

That said, this “fairy” is a pretty neat-looking example of an accidental film artifact.  I’m impressed at just how fairy-shaped it is.  I’d sure be tickled to see one of my photos come out with a fun surprise in it like this.

Years ago, I remember happening across a website about artifacts that mysteriously appear in photos.  (Unhelpfully, I have no idea of the site’s name, or where to look for it now.)  Most of them looked an awful lot like dust on the lens or the flash, or a hair hanging into the frame… rather boring.  None of them looked so intriguing as this one!  The people running the website believed that these motes represented paranormal activity, or that a spirit had been present at the time when the photo was taken.  I suppose they would look at this photo and say, “Yes, there are indeed ‘motes’ in this photo, but they are fairies, too, and not cottonwood at all.”

- O. Scribner

Sources )

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