Interview: Ossivorous Oose of TRC

TRCLampreyLogo
The Red Cellar Logo

In our last post, the GrumpyVamp team brought you the official statement from Alexia of The Red Cellar. I’d like to take a moment to thank her for providing clarification of TRC’s stance on these issues. It’s an important counterpoint to my last article and I hope everyone will take time to read it. But she’s not the only person on the TRC staff who was called out in the document presented in The “Med” Sang Menace.

I reached out to the TRC admin team for their comments and I was fortunate enough to be able to interview Ossivorous Oose, who is the other leader referenced in the infamous document. It is my privilege to be able to present their take on the situation to the GrumpyVamp audience.


Sylvere ap Leanan: Thank you for taking time to speak with us. Please introduce yourself.

Ossivorous Oose, affectionately, though misleadingly, called Leader No.2 in the document.

SAL: As we know, nothing happens in a vacuum. In your own words, please describe the events that led up to the creation of the document authored by Spooky, Jamie and the Unknown Editor that claims to be for the purposes of “Addressing the Internal Infrastructure, within ‘The Red Cellar’ for the Support of Sangs Reflections, Discussion and Future of the MedSang movement”.

OO: What tied the proverbial knickers in a knot? Well, to be honest, the actual moments of catalyst are severely disappointing when paired against the ridiculous level of outrage implied by the writers of the document. Ultimately, I think those involved with this repulsive word salad / shit bomb had the wrong idea of how TRC is run, what it’s actually about, and also of their own importance within the group itself. Perhaps they were disappointed that it’s not some sort of elite social club of selective sang supremacy?

SAL: It has been suggested that one author is primarily responsible for the content of the document and that the others contributed very little, if anything, to its content. Do you believe that suggestion is accurate? If so, who do you believe to be the primary author of this document?

OO: I feel that Spooky was the main culprit behind the whole ridiculous affair, from initial instigation, to the actual drafting of the document. That being said, however, I do believe that Jamie was in complete compliance with the disturbing stance and what was eventually written down. Going back in the chat logs of our server, I can see the hate filled gospel begin churning months ago. With both of them. If Jamie didn’t significantly contribute by way of actual conception, she was certainly down with and willingly subject to indoctrination.

SAL: How large a contribution do you think the other authors made to the document?

OO: Without further evidence, it would be difficult for me to make clear judgement on the amount of content contributed by the individuals involved. That being said, however, a good amount of guilt by association is reasonable, I think, especially when one considers the inherently offensive and hateful bile that made up the core of the document.

SAL: One of the co-authors has claimed that this document was stolen, edited, and subsequently leaked by a third-party proofreader for some malicious purpose. Do you believe this claim has merit? What are your reasons for that belief?

OO: To be honest, I don’t buy the “document was edited!” shtick. They released the document to several themselves in failed pursuit of finding support for their agenda. I believe these claims to be a desperate attempt at saving face and back-peddling, which is a tactic they both employ often when confronted with any sort of push back. The document was meant for circulation. I think that’s quite clear to see.

SAL: According to one of the co-authors, this document was created because the TRC staff has an obligation to listen to any and all suggestions, concerns, and other feedback from the general membership, otherwise, they are dictators. This same author insinuated that the TRC admin team is also obligated to implement policies based on that feedback. What are your thoughts about this?

OO: We are not under strict obligation to listen to all grievances and, furthermore, retain the right to moderate our space as we see fit. We don’t make decisions lightly, bow to so-called popular opinion of the GVC, nor operate out of any attempts at being oppressive overlords. We hold the right to judge situations & people through personal interaction, and deal with dangerous content / individuals in ways we find appropriate.

Contrary to what the document wants people to believe, our actions are decided as an administrative team and stem directly from the need for fairness, accuracy, and safety. If a member becomes abusive, supports an unsavory agenda, or spews hateful propaganda, how can they logically expect us to be receptive to what they have to say?

SAL: In her guest post on GrumpyVamp, Elizabeth Hopka included a statement of apology attributed to co-authors Jamie and Spooky. Do you accept the apology? Since the apology extends beyond the borders of TRC, do you think the GVC as a whole should accept it? What is your reasoning for this opinion?

OO: I acknowledge the attempt in atonement, however, considering the character of those involved, I find neither sincerity, nor comfort in it.

Honestly, I’m not interested in shotgun apologies. I just hope that those involved with this deluded vitriol take a very good look at who they are, what they’ve done, and why they did it.

SAL: As a member of the TRC staff, you are expected to uphold the established policies of the server. However, in your personal opinion, do you agree with the current direction of TRC or would you prefer it to go another route?

OO: I agree with it entirely. Our current direction is something the administrators have come to collectively after a great deal of toil and dialog. Admittedly, we haven’t always been easy to get along with. Many of us come from difficult GVC situations that, I think, negatively skewed our overall point of view in the past. Being decent to others in no way challenges our core concepts or integrity. If having people with different beliefs around challenges your own self-image, I think that’s a personal issue, and need to evaluate your true motives at that point. Our current direction, if anything, makes it easier for us to help those who are in need.

SAL: What do you want readers to know about TRC, in general?

OO: Our mission is to support blood drinkers, not be judgmental, hate propagating piles of stinking excrement.

So there you have it. The two leaders who were called out have spoken. It sounds to me like TRC is just as horrified by that steaming pile of bovine excrement as anyone else. And it also sounds like they are genuinely attempting to do something positive for the GVC, regardless of how an individual self-identifies. For those who perceive a need to consume blood for the health benefits it gives, The Red Cellar is one of the top resources for information and support. Check them out.
Editor’s Note: Previously, this article mistakenly used incorrect pronouns for Ossivorous Oose. It has been updated to correct this error.
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The “Med” Sang Menace

ChurchLadySpecial
Dana Carvey as “The Church Lady” on SNL

I recently received a copy of a document that has been circulating for a few weeks in the back-channels of the GVC. Normally, I would ignore something as puerile as this manifesto, for lack of a better term. However, there’s a community-wide chat in Lady CG’s Darkened Mirror server on Discord (https://discord.gg/HgPGprE) happening tomorrow, October 20, 2018 at  8pm – 10pm EST 6pm to 9pm mountain (-7GMT). The topic is: “Community Hijacking”- When someone decides the owner isn’t “Doing it right” and I think this document is a prime example of how not to address concerns over the direction of a group.

I want to say upfront that, yes, posting this document is technically a violation of the Golden Rule of GrumpyVamp because it calls out specific individuals. However, Grumpy has graciously allowed me to post it because Grumpy feels there are extenuating circumstances that warrant a higher level of transparency.

However, this highlights a community trend in which people decide a group is DOING IT RONG so they attempt a hostile takeover, and trends are exactly what we call out here at GrumpyVamp. This is not a new thing. This isn’t even the most well-orchestrated attempt at a coup the GVC has ever seen. But it’s the most recent example, and this one holds up a mirror to the GVC and shows how bigoted and ugly it can be.

So here is the document, as I received it, without edits. Read it. Decide what you think about it. Then head over to Darkened Mirror for a discussion tomorrow night. And watch this space, because I’m fairly sure the writers at GrumpyVamp are going to have some choice words to share.

Everyone needs to sit down. I am the torch lighter and despite my limitations (that I never complain about) I will attempt to place it into words.
English is not my first language and I have a severe learning disability that I fight every time I need to organize thoughts into proper sentences or read.
Please just read over the points that I have more than likely taken over an hour to create. With that said I am not a keyboard warrior and would like to
schedule maybe a discussion time with the lampreys and leaders concerning the direction of TRC.

Digestion Session: A conversation that is constructive and supportive need to be brought up with the member of the lamprey and leaders about their
individual fault, needs and drives.

*** Needs to be completed

** Needs to be Edited
* Final Revision
(Blank) Completed! =^_^=

Addressing the Internal Infrastructure, within ‘The Red Cellar’ for the Support of Sangs
Reflections, Discussion and Future of the MedSang movement

Created by: Spooky & Jamie
Edited by: ‘Name Blanked’
*************************** IF ***************************

This document is to be allowed to be spread to the GVC, please remove any content that is in italics (that is not a famous quote) . Not all content will
be received well and the creators of this document do not wish to have the Therians, Otherkin, Mystics and Energy Manipulating Witches having alarming
issues with their storytelling identities. There is not enough certified therapists on staff in the GVC to assist in the crisis this document could potentially create.

Please note that throughout the use of this document there will be following terms used:

Psi’s will be referred to as Energy Manipulating Witches, or EMW’s.

Otherkin will also be used as Species Dysphoria.

*************************** Consider ***************************

Not to sugar coat this next paragraph will feel a bit condescending or harsh, but considering the nature of the document it tends to be be worded in a
way that is extremely forward and forthcoming.

A lot of the content within this document will incite any number/range of emotions. This is written by friends for friends, with that in mind. Please
if you do happen to have an adverse opinion or feeling towards any of the text to come, take the time to review the sentence or paragraph again. Take a walk,
think on it and come back with a clear mind. There is more than likely a rational reason as to why that particular piece of information upsets you negatively.
You need to be able to understand that it is your feelings and only you can control them. The document is not responsible for your actions, you are the only
one in control of your on body, feelings, life, identity and goals.

This document will challenge you.

Remember things always and will fall apart, but only to fall back together back; and a new.
With that being said let’s dig in:

Objective and Initiative

Within the confines of this document and the upcoming discussion we seek to address the current state of the MedSang Movement, and by extension the TRC, and
its members. The concerns, challenges, strength and areas of weaknesses in need for improvement that as a group can overcome and grow from.
Table of Contents
Agreeableness ~^ 3
Need for Gratification ^* 3
Validation ~^ 3
Need for the Feelings of Usefulness ^* 3
Medication ~^ 4
Advocating for Medication ~^ 4
Use of Soft Language ~The Powerful Weight of a Word~ ~^ 4
When to be a Social Justice Warrior and when not to be ~^ 4
Support within the Discord Environment ~^ 4
Redirection ~^* 4
Supporting while you are still walking the walk ~^ 4
Liability ~^ 4
The Overall Purpose and Direction of TRC ~^* 4
Past vs Present = Future ~^ 4
Outside Perception ~^ 4
Leadership / Diplomacy ~^ 4
Agreeableness – Need for Gratification – Validation and Need for the Feeling of Usefulness

Agreeableness **

Agreeableness is a quality of what is known as the Big Five personality theory, in brief a person who scores highly in agreeableness demonstrates, a warm personality,
is tactful, a friendly demeanor, and express optimistic viewpoints, a team player, and easy to get along with. Contrarily someone low in agreeableness would serve their
own needs and be colder, may be more curt and callous in communication, a pessimistic attitude, and struggles getting along with others. Agreeableness is composed of
6 subtraits: 1

Trust

Morality

Altruism

Cooperation

Modesty

Sympathy

In a group environment, the desire to feel that one is doing a good turn, may exist. By in large, this is not a bad thing, save for the unhealthy situation whereas
the desire to fulfill the need to embody the above traits overtakes the core focus. It feels good to be Trusted, seen as a moral person, a practitioner of altruistic
deeds, one who seeks to help and cooperate with others, yet maintains the modesty to say they don’t do it for any personal gain, and will be quick to lend a shoulder
when someone need the sympathetic friend. Sometimes to do the right thing for the whole, one must set limits, even when those limits might make them appear externally
as though they are defying the traits they hold sacred, such as refusing to help someone who is abusing their kindness or can be better helped elsewhere.

It also need to be noted the Altruism is a philosophy thoroughly analysed by Ayn Rand, that is strongly believed and proven to not to exist in humans. A good example of
this is shown

1Sourced: https://www.123test.com/big-five-personality-theory/

with the story of the ‘Drowning Piglets’. One would perceive the individual that saves the piglets from drowning as being an true Altruist, but in fact there are
several Egoist drives that a person does not actively think about, but act them to prevent negative feels or repercussion in the future. By saving the piglet you could
be saving yourself from feeling guilt for letting them drown. You could be doing it to bring up your social standing and praise for saving them. You could also be saving
them, because by next year they will food to eat. All of these action from the perceived ‘good’ action are all selfish at the core. This being said when we move through
this document please consider how what you perceive as helpful or a selfless act and internalize why and what you are gaining from your actions.
Need for Gratification ***

There is a list of positive and negative reasons why people seek out gratification. Here are a few to consider and we will break them down for an indepth look at a few
of them, Anticipation, Desire to Avoid Delay, Uncertainty, Age, Imagination, Cognitive Capacity, Poverty/Wealth, Impulsiveness, Emotion Regulation/Irregulation.
Understanding the type of gratification you are seeking is extremely important in social situations and imperative that leaders know how this element is impacting their choices.

Anticipation: Almost everyone loves the gratification with foreseeable good outcomes in the future and avidly attempts to avoid negative events.

Desire to Avoid Delay:

Uncertainty:

Age:

Imagination:

Cognitive Capacity:

Poverty or Wealth:

Impulsiveness:

Emotion Regulation & Irregulation:

Validation **

As no one is truly a mind reader, or able to see into another spiritually and see their feelings, because of this humans have developed a sophisticated means by
which to interpret and connect with another person’s feelings in other ways. Validation is one such skill. “Validation is the recognition and acceptance of another
person’s thoughts,feelings, sensations, and behaviors as understandable. Self-validation is the recognition and acceptance of your own thoughts, feelings, sensations
and behaviors as understandable.” 1

As emotions are complex Marsha Linehan, Ph.D. defined 6 distinct levels of validation

Being Present- When you share an experience with someone, for example, by holding their hand through a situation, or simply being there for them, this contact, or
close connection shows you gave someone your attention.

Accurate Reflection – This is the expression of a feeling that can be from the person feeling it, or from someone empathizing with another. For example “I was really
disappointed I didn’t get the job”, or from another “You must be feeling really down, you worked hard to get that job”. The purpose of this is to differentiate thoughts
and emotions from one another.

Mindreading – Despite its name, this is not actual mind reading, rather it is when a person interprets the body language, context, words, and other hints to make a
determination of how someone else feels. It is a bit different than accurate reflection, because the other person was not there to experience the emotionally impactful
event with the other, and/or the person feeling the emotion is masking their feelings, hiding how they feel. This is more of a guess as empathy, making an assessment of
the person and remarking on how they may feel.

Historical/Biological Understanding of Behaviour – In some cases if the history of someone is known, there is a fair chance past experiences may lend clues to how a
person may behave. An example of this may be “When the boat started rocking you must have been terrified” when said to a person who you knew nearly drowned years ago.
Using knowledge of their past suggests they might be afraid of a similar danger in the present.

Normalizing Emotions – This is remarking on a common-sense emotive state. For example “You must be nervous, I believe you got this!” before someone takes a big exam.
It is reasonable that someone might be nervous prior to a test without needing to know extraneous information about someone.

Radical Genuineness – When you have a deep, personal, and highly detailed understanding exactly how someone feels. This is an infrequent situation because it requires
a near identical experience and context. A situation where his might occur might be in the event you experienced a close loved one die from cancer, and your friend is now
going through it too, you might note the similarities, and know they might be feeling the same set of emotive states you experienced. In this case it is possible you could
validate their emotions from a first hand point of view.

Validation is a connection, a way to empathise with another. Knowing which type and the contexts may help better, and more accurately connect you with someone in need. Of
course we need this too, we need to feel some validation that our feelings have merit, its natural. In support environment that emotional connection, weather to make them
feel better or to help you confirm an emotional state of another, are extremely important.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/pieces-mind/201204/understanding-validation-way-communicate-acceptance

One could say that sangs might feel they have a Level 4: Historical / Biological Understanding of Behavior when it comes to how they feel when someone else is suffer or
has gone without blood. Recalling one’s own experiences, and seeing another suffer a very similar situation.

Need for the Feeling of Usefulness ***
Medication – Advocating for Medication

Medication **

It appears the use of prescription drugs is widespread within the TRC. While there are conditions where medication is used to manage the symptoms legitimately, the sheer
quantity of drugs, used amongst members is alarming. Furthermore the majority of members live in the US, where pharmaceutical companies advertise their products on television
just like Coca-Cola, encouraging the general public to request drugs by name. Conversations within the TRC have oft resembled kids comparing their baseball card collections,
instead only comparing drugs and symptoms. The sheer ubiquitous presence of drug use within the space, suggests there might be symptoms and issues and side effects that are
aggravating or contributing to the illusionary inclination of a blood need. While not always the case, it cannot be ruled out.

Also, blood is not a medication and should not be suggested as such. Comparing it to a nutritional supplement is a healthy way of approaching the topic.
Advocating for Medication **

It is a dangerous endeavor to promote a medication. It is fine to say that your medication helps you for this or that reason, but at no point should you be suggesting or
advocating medication to another member. You do not know their medical or mental history, you are not a doctor or pharmacist. What works for one does not work for all.
Also as much as you believe you know a person online, or in person. You are not aware of what they are experience inside themselves, and what limits they will go through to
relieve themself of said symptoms. The people you consider friends could all of a sudden stop appearing online and you will have no way of knowing that your suggestion as lead
them to be hospitalized.

If you do not believe in the power of suggestive behavior, we will use an true example that happened within TRC. It only took one person talking and sharing a photo of their
Huel cup. Before long several members had purchased and were ingesting the Huel product.
Use of Soft Language

When to be a Social Justice Warrior and When not to be.
Use of Soft Language **

Problems with soft language is that it fakes the truth. It is an attempt to soften something that people refuse to accept as absolute truths and coat it to say the same thing
with a pleasant sounding diction.

“Political Language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” ~ George Orwell.

Soft language is used in mainly address to facets of social gains. One is for severe political or economical gain, and the other is to ease an individual’s comforts into
accepting a grave truth. A doctor’s bedside talk oft utilizes soft language when explaining to a client about the disturbing mound of cancerous flesh.

What is the problem in TRC concerning soft language?

We have a social phobia around being offensive with our use of words. But less mindful of our actions and their offensive consequence. In an environment that is primary
text based and lacking the physical cues that an average conversation would have, we run in the problem of mixed communication and loss of the desired intent. At first
glance/read a sentence can appear to have unintended malice, which has been proven to jump started extremist social justice worker to reap down on people as if they were
righteous angels dismembering the wicked.

Healthy ways to prevent yourself from falling for this disemboweling behaviour towards others, is to ask questions before your make the first cut. Questions can be as simple
as, “I do not think I understand you?”, or “Could you reword or rephrase?” You may also make statements similar to this: “It read to me that you enjoy carnage? “Do I understand
your intent?”. They may say, “Yes, I love sundering people.” At this point you might be inclined to pull out your social justice angel sword and create a new orifice into random
on their body of text. Careful now, when you do this, you have just become what you hold in contempt, and just as guilty.

This is where we need to start discussing ‘The Powerful Weight of Words’. As well all know a large collection of words in the English language have become taboo or considered
politically incorrect. The only reasons these words have been placed in rubbish bins, stems from peoples lack of understanding the illusion of power, control or lack thereof.
Here is a beautiful example that all lamprey can understand. The word “Woo.” Woo is used by the Med-Sangs to describe those that they find lack the internal tenacity to obtain
rational thought, which in a way is calling them blissfully ignorant people that enjoy chasing stardust and licking rainbows. Similarly the word ‘Canuck’ has been used as far
back as 1835 by Americans to describe Canadians in a degrotory fashion. It is assumed that this term came about, because of the involvement of the Canadians in the War of 1812,
when the ‘Canuck’s’ burned down the White House. It’s intent was to make Canadians seem backwoodsy or uncivilized. The word “Canuck,” in the modern world no longer has the same
understanding. Canadians are proud to declare themselves “Canucks.” Words like Canuck and Woo are designed to designate inferiority. But owning the words people can reclaim the
power that was intended initially be taken from them. Take the NHL Hockey Team the Vancouver Canucks, what was once a word of insult, today a proud brand. This is a real world
example of turning a word around. Politics would prefer you to use words in a way that makes people passive and complicit, but letting the words breathe so to speak, allows the
opportunity for reclamation, empowering us to own our language, rather than be enslaved by it.

What can be done to help advise/advocate, before railing people that believe in a clean and clear version of words?
Social Justice Warrior ***

Every cause is personal; wherein we charge to war. “Every sperm is sacred!” Every life needs to live. Every voice needs to be heard. Everyone needs to be supported. Everyone
needs a blanket. Everyone becomes weak. Everyone – thing has the right to life. Everything will die. We do not have the right to interfere with death. We cannot stop death. We can
help support survival till death. Stop you can not stop death.
Support within the Discord Environment- Redirection – Supporting Another, While you are still Walking the Walk – Liability
==== ((Notation for etching by Gustave Doré, but no picture was in the copy I received)) ===
Support within the Discord Environment ***

As human beings with have the capacity and innate desire to empathize with others for a wide variety of reasons. There are two main types of empathy: Cognitive Empathy and
Emotional Empathy. The reason this is important to understand is that not everyone is able to use both types of empathy and one can appear as a more cold approach; but both are
able to empathize. As for reasons the list is endless, but for the majority of any given situation humans are social creatures and desire on the deepest level for sameness. It is
a glue that binds everyone together, because even if we have not experienced something we can imagine what another has undergone.

Key things:

Know what you are supporting in detail. As well as understand those that are in need of redirection from the story-telling they have created for comfort or out of need for an identity.

What is the perceived Purpose of the TRC support as a whole?

To offer the compassionate advice, and support otherwise lacking in the VCN or GVC. By offering rational medically based advice, opposed to recommending energy, magic or
alternative treatment strategies

Where is it failing?

Increasing instances of individuals who require support outside the available scope of the TRC has resulted in numerous failures to contain a support situation. The lack of
proper support training has resulted in circular non-productive encounters where the problem the individual seeking support suffers was aggravated by improper redirection and
coping strategies. This resulted in persistent negative reactions, or the creation of a toxic environment, in many cases the individual being removed only after the damage was done.

In addition, a handful of nameless members ignore criticism and advice, while being ignorant to the damage they are advocating. Wherein generating an environment that that
halts any degree of social growth.

It is failing to provide proper support, because of:

– The problems or areas of needed support are escalating past what members can provide.
– None of the members are equipped with the skills necessary to assist or provide responsible and value direction to those in dire crisis.
– The support in TRC is being allowed to churn in on itself like a bermuda triangle

What is wrong in TRC?
Redirection ***

Before I get deep into this section. Redirection is a beautiful, but scary thing that unequivocally cures Species Dysphoria colloquially known as Otherkin. Considering the first
line a lot of a lot of the members within our small community will not enjoy what this section talks about and it more than likely the most challenging for people on an individual level.

“Our experience of the world is shaped by our interpretations of it, the stories we tell ourselves, and these stories can often become so distorted and destructive that they
completely hinder our ability to live balanced, purposeful, happy lives, so the key to personal transformation is story transformation.” ~Maria Popova

What is the purpose of redirection?
Redirections is a tool used in psychology as an intervention to story-editing. It aims to assist in reshaping of a person’s narratives that they tell themselves. Personal narratives
are created for a number of deeply rooted reasons. The majority of the reasons the stories exist are to create some kind of comfort, a search for security in oneself (not to be mistaken
for self-esteem), to appoint a unique value towards an event or to apply when dealing with a traumatic event. When it come to the GVC we need to understand a bit of the psychology
leading up to how these identities are created and perpetuated. As children we cling together, not in the effort to seek sameness, but rather a more animalistic survival inclination.
Someone with spotted skin or any physical identifiers, are shunned instinctively not out of cruelty, but out of an impulsive response for safety from physical ailment. Moving into
teenage years the sameness has moved to a more social approach based on interests, but it is at this age that individuals begin heavily applying autonomy to their identity. It makes
them unique, and separate from the masses, however in this quest to create identity or an internal view of oneself is not an easy quest, the only references are stories, movies,
religion and the people around us. A youth has limited points of reference by which to formulate their view of the world and themself, its this vulnerability this limitation that
lends itself to strong acceptance of suggestions provided by their subconscious rational. A rational that is accustomed to storytelling, belief in imagination and fiction holds their
hearts in the songs of childhood. If unchecked or challenged they can fall into creating identities that are self-deprecating and centered around esoterism. If the fictional identity
is allowed to develop, like a cancer becomes malignant, and spreads, so does this harmful identity, moving from storytelling, to a socially impactful mode of story-promoting. They
will being to promote part of their self-perceived identity through applying or finding ideniting element that they see as tangible in the physical body and surroundings. An example
of story-promoting is when someone claims they flashed across a room in lighting speed. They are clearly Superman, a vampire or marvel’s The Flash, but in reality they only experienced
a dose of adrenalin. If in the wrong environment the rational addition of informing them of the effect of adrenalin, they will perpetuate the story turning into a sea of irrational
beliefs, lead-on by naive minds. Redirection is diverging the mind away from the irrational self polluted story-telling, however it needs to be done tactfully. In the same way that
general ‘support’ has its dangers, redirection does as well. When using it never do the following:

Do lead the individual away from the conversation into a controversial one.

Use clear and indisputable facts if you are going to propose a counter.

If you take on the front of rationality through facts, be prepared for them to get extremely sensitive and/or defensive. Keep in mind this is the world they live in within
their mind and only step into this kind of conversation if you are 100% sure of what you are about to say, because if you mess up they will internalize it as a win for their reality.

Happy
How does it work?
What is it used for and how does it help people?
Supporting Another, While you are still Walking the Walk **

Another way to view this frequent situation; because human desire to seek sameness and innate willingness to empathize is similar to a drowning person reaching out a hand to another
a few feet deeper. Either both drown, or one crawls out, but nothing constructive comes out of the situation. Another useful expression, is the “blind, leading the blind”. Until you
as an individual have completely overcome an element that has crippled your core, and no longer plagues your active life, where no negative impacts, implications or sways to your day
are an issue. Only then can you unequivocally provide what worked for you. Please note, that I did not say you can provide support. You can only let someone know your troubled tail.
Take caution, you can not let them know tools or methods you used, because in most countries that is considered coercive therapy.
Liability **

TRC is attempting to play doctor for political standing ground within the OVC as well as being overwhelmed by the need to feel useful and inclusive. TRC is playing recklessly with
individuals mental and physical health without understand the potential impact. TRC is not a government, or medical office that is equipped with the necessary personnel to handle
extremely sensitive issues. Conversations about suicide, substance abuse, mental health and debilitating physical conditions should be done in a clinical office with a doctor or
therapist. 100% of the researched support that any member in TRC can provide are all done using the same search engines that are available to everyone globally. Providing
authoritative directional support to these people, can have grave legal ramifications.

An example of this, could be a member conversing with another that is in a severe situation in their immediate physical surroundings. If the individual undertakes a grave and
terminal decision, in the dead of night, when the legal departments examine the scene, and finds that improper support or direction had been provided to the individual from an
community board. How to you believe these so called ‘kind’ actions are going to be received?

When it comes to “supporting” another risk is always a factor. Not just risk for the individual seeks support, but the individual supplying it, and potentially the server and
members of that server. This is why in depth “support” needs to be redirected to the proper places, establishments, agencies, and resources not accommodated within the confines
of a group that has no on-staff therapists, and is still struggling with its place in the larger community.

One last thing to consider is the confines of the internet and distance between individuals globally. We may be able to communicate instantly across thousands of kilometers, but
every country and even state to state, province to province, the laws behind ametur mental healthcare, have different legilation and regulations.

The Overall Purpose and Direction of TRC

~As a Whole and on an Individual Level~
Purpose **

“For people who perceive a physical need to consume blood and those curious about medical sanguinarians. Our focus is scientific inquiry and research into sanguinarianism; as well
as advocacy for sanguinarians, including but not limited to, awareness, outreach and support.” ~sanguinarians.com

******Request nicely for ‘Name Blanked’ to elaborate further.
Direction **

******Request nicely for ‘Name Blanked’ to elaborate further.

Past vs Present = Future
Past **

Reflecting upon the past year, The MedSang movement, has evolved. In the past MedSang were more reclusive, and private. Facebook, and Media, and of course TRC, Sangunarious,
and a few other resources were the principal outlets of the cause. Known for fiery science and fact based debates with the Psi’s, the MedSangs were more infamous than respected
by the GVC, and at the time that was OK, MedSangs didn’t want to be a part of the VC, didn’t want to impress the VC, they wanted to show them that they lack of rationality by which
the VC’s identity and community are based upon. All the while establishing research and facts to build credibility for Sanguivory through the pragmatic approach.
Present **

The creation of the TRC discord marked the new approach to the public and the establishment of the MedSangs as a quantifiable group. For the first time the doors opened to the
general VC, and members of all identifiers got an opportunity to converse and socialize with the MedSangs as never before. The public policy of aggressive debate was softened to
foster a more cohesive separate but peaceful relationship with the VC, namely the VCN. The influx of Therians, Otherkin, Energy Manipulating Witches and Mystics that claimed the
GVC as home and were cast out from their groups have found a home in TRC that is currently attempting to soften it’s borders, but has allowed the borders to become a tender as
wet bread. New cases of people requesting support, the effort to provide that support has been, and continues to be daunting to those that were/are seeking the support from fellow
sangs. The range of issues spanned from minor to suicidal, quickly posed a difficult situation where limited qualification and improper environment resulted in inefficient and
sometimes hazardous “support” that in some cases aggravated the condition the person suffers from. In addition to ill-executed support efforts, the focus of supporting Sangs
became more dilute as EMW and the above mentioned identities were occupying the conversations, while they could be getting their support elsewhere in the appropriate areas.
This complicated problem has led to internal tension, hypersensitivity, and quarrels from even innocuous remarks viewed as critical.
Future **

This area is to be filled in with after the voice chat in TRC. Genuine sangs are extremely rare and the future of this ‘home’, ‘space’ or ‘haven’ needs to reflect their wishes
and aspirations for the future.
Outside Perception
Outside Perception **

The outside perception of the MedSangs and TRC has shown positive growth over the course of the year. Progression from a reclusive group, whose strong assertive viewpoints where
regarded as hostile by many, to a welcoming and all inclusive support group, while internally we have fallen into gross self-deprecating levels. Where the the need to drink blood
is regarded as a burdon, something that should be devoid of enjoyment. Also, it is a social environment where prescription drug use and poor health is standard. What has happened
to lead up to this drastic change? A vocal conference took place on July 13th 2018 to attempt to address the complaints the OVC had towards the MedSangs, by solving the public
relations issues. Since, then the flood doors have opened allowing anyone to enter the home of those who drink blood. Considering a large number of the new members are energy
manipulating witches or those that are unsure; opposed to genuine sangs. The general rooms of TRC have been the scarce recipient of any real substance, in regards to support for
those that take blood, and more about support for those with crippling illnesses. Soft language has had the leaders avidly attempting to silence any harsh diction choice that could
regres the MedSangs PR back towards the hostile attitudes seen in the past. However if we were to imagine a whale as the representation of gall, tenacity and standing point of what
is the Med-Sangs. The weight of this whale weighing down on the OVC has created a large impression, however when this whale is asked to swim in a cup of water it quickly starts
cracking the walls of the cup. To keep itself with the constructive confines it has resorted to cutting pounds of flesh from the internal infrastructure.

TRC wants credibility about what they claim as their title/identity as a med-sangs; the individuals in a vampire community that claim to have an need to consume blood. However,
if an outsider glanced in they would just see a sea of pill popping people addicted to not only medication, but the need to be the most diseased, sickened or mentally unstable.
It takes their credibility into the negatives. A rational person would ask them if it is not the medication that would be inducing their ‘symptoms’ or maybe their need comes from
there drive to keep a diseased identity going. More than half of TRC complain about any effort required in order to obtain blood. Some members come up with elaborate reasons why
they do not take blood, almost to the point that one would say if you have not taken blood in ‘X‘ number of days, weeks, months or even years in some members case, is there really
a need for blood? There are hard questions that need to be asked when thinking about these variables, which can be challenging considering it rattles the fabric of what or if sangs
have any legitimate claim. It is poisonous mess if both ‘addiction to disease’ and ‘the elaborate reasons’ come out of the OVC. There needs to be a clear distinction between those
that, ‘Cut their lip and liked it’ and those that actively take on a regular basis. In saying this that does not mean we are going to be intolerant or elitist around who is more
sangs, but a clear definition needs to be established. It is fine clean, clear and simple if you do not take blood regularly you clearly do not have a dire “need” for it. At this
point you need to be honest with yourself, and say that you only “want” the experience of drinking blood. With saying this, it is known that it will rattle some members identity
that they have self proclaimed off of one experience with a few drops.

Not naming sources, but a recent inquiry was asked to several individuals that are not in the leadership role or in the lamprey room, concerning how TRC is being perceived. The
results were extremely almost wordverbatem the points illustrated above. Here are some quotes from the nameless few:

“The Med-Sangs lack the ability to be as rational as they claim.”

“They are quick to case judgement or point the first finger, but are unable to see the four fingers pointing back at them.”

”Med-sangs are a sickly bunch with rocky leadership. Their leaders seem to just want to kiss VCN ass as of late and are taking in some heavy flakes.”

Desired Perception **

I (Spooky) can only speak for what I have disgusted from my interpretations of readings within the group. With that said it appears that the desired intent of TRC is to provide a
comfortable place of support to sangs on a general level. On a deeper level it seeks to find sangs and provide a safe haven to converse about sensitive topics and safe methods
regarding the globally taboo intake of blood. TRC attempts to achieve this by providing support, answering questions and including uptodate medical documentation on relevant
blood topics.

The Med-Sangs wish to be considering legitemt in their quests to find rational and logical reasoning for the long disputed question of, ‘Why is blood needed?’ Considering this
document is for the eyes of the leaders of TRC and Lampreys, should we exhaust effort in VCN cesspool? We all know and are aware, that the ‘Energy Manipulating Witches,’ or
‘EMW’s’ enjoy their story-telling identities and are in love with the word ‘Vampire.’ If they want to run with the word vampire and carry it as if it belongs/applies to them.
Let them, using the word only has us standing beside them as if we are in the same tall tail boat. I feel using the word Sanguinarians assist in the separation of us from them.
Even though keeping them around provides no added benefit, they do provide a smoke screen of creative insanity that keeps us in the dark. The problem is that this smoke screen
has possible need members getting lost in translations. We need to define our target audience and how we aim to reach them. Both for new sang members and well as any grounded
research endeavors.

Touching on his raw conversation was not able to be achieved on July 13th 2018, because of the space that held the sensitive conversation. The EMW’s have their claws in a lot of
places and do not appear to want to let go. If we bring it down to a rootamery imagery. Think of the Med-Sangs and the EMW’s as children fighting over the claim to the same toy.
Why fight them when we can just walk away and get a new toy?

IF and WHEN, we got our own toy, how and what would we like to see it shape into?
Leadership / Diplomacy
Leadership ***

As a leader people look up to you naturally and take your words with considerable more than most, which can be a lead to a problems if mindfulness of this fact is not upheld.
Our leadership has undergone some change since the flood doors opening, however without an agenda of how to move forward; welcoming individuals of all flavours, while still being
able to support sangs, as the original intent, has been lost. The leaders have been repurposed and their nature taken advantage of.

Leader No.1 direly needs to feel appreciated, busy with purpose and revels when importance weighs down on each shoulder. Considering that most genuine sangs that join TRC already
know a decent amount of proper protocol, they normally do not know need a den parents to coddle them. Since the floodgates have opened No.1 has found importance though the outcasts
of other VC discords. These outcasts have been silenced for reasons within their native EMW (VC) communities and No.1 is relishing in the attention and importance that the outcasts
have bestowed on them, for allowing them to run rampant in a space that was not ready or willing to entertain them. Leaders need to understand when a change is set forth or changed
through an emotional need, it affects those that are occupying the space currently. A good example of this is if you think of all of the members of TRC as organs inside a body.
Should the mind, No.1, decide to eat unhealthily, the organs have to contend with the malnutrition that was consumed without their consent. The junk Food in this case are the EMW’s
or any other irrational outcast. Considering there are precious few places for sangs to communicate. This makes the flesh walls of this imaginary body a prison. The organs (members)
cannot just simply transplant themself into another, more healthy body.

Leader No.2 needs to feel as if they can still have an impact in the world and that they are not useless, but sometimes find themselves in a sea of helplessness. No.2 finds
comfort in engaging in hyper sensitive support topics, when they themselves have not yet freed themselves from the undertow that sucked them out to sea.
Diplomacy ***

Efforts to offer to the public rational articles, media involvement, and improve relations with outside groups of the VC has been ongoing and productive. This year saw an
initiative to mitigate the animosity, and apprehensions the VC held towards the MedSangs from the years of hostile debating. This was achieved by adjusting the public approach,
no longer persistently debating, but rather taking a more neutral role in the public and responding to sang related issues primarily, and refocusing our efforts within the TRC.
this has shown itself to been mostly successful with many axes being buried and constructive public relationships thriving.

Donors Are Friends, Not Food

NoFoodSign

 

Yeah, yeah, I get it. You are Teh Uber Lord McDarkity Vamp, the supreme deluxe predator, and everyone else is either food or fucktoy. But let’s get real for a minute. Donors are not cheeseburgers and chattel slavery is so 1860. If you’re dreaming of 69 red silk kitten porn stars begging to wear your pearl necklace, you’re going to be disappointed, sparky. That’s not how any of this works. You can’t head over to the nearest McDonor’s and order up a super jumbo size Happy Ending Meal. You may think you worship at the altar of the apex predator but the reality is that you’re a dick unless you give donors the respect they deserve. And that means seeing them as human beings with agency first, last, and always.

Now I know words that have more than one syllable, like “agency”, are difficult for you to understand. It’s okay, reading is hard. Think of it this way: You are not the boss of a donor.¹ Donors are independent people capable of making free choices. Donors have rights and they deserve to have those rights respected at all times. You need them more than they need you, so try not to be too big of a douchecanoe. There are no shortcuts to finding a person willing to let you drink their blood or energy. You’re going to have to take the radical approach of being a person worthy of earning a donor’s trust. Objectifying donors and referring to them as “food” or as a resource you can “farm” without their consent² is degrading. Knock it the fuck off.

Right about now you’re probably getting your panties in a twist and screaming “you’re not the boss of me.” And you’re right, I’m not. Guess what – I’mma still call you out, motherfucker. Because your attitude is fucked up. This isn’t about dictating what happens between consenting adults. It’s about recognizing the dignity of other human beings. Donors are not prey animals and you are not a wolf, a shark, a good shepherd or whatever pseudo-naturalistic fantasy you’ve concocted for yourself. But this article really isn’t for you. 

This article is for everyone else. The GVC has not cornered the market on predators. Not even close. There are predators at the library and the supermarket and in the cubicle across the office. This is for the people who think your busted-ass bullshit is normal because that’s the dynamic they saw growing up and it continues to play out in their relationships to this day. Or the ones who think it’s normal because that’s the only experience they’ve had with the GVC and they don’t know any better.

This. Is. Not. Normal. This is abuse, plain and simple.

The same goes for anyone who says donors should “know their place” or that donors have no right to speak and should not expect to have a voice in the GVC, despite the undeniable fact that what happens in the GVC impacts donors just as much as it does vampires. Someone who espouses this attitude isn’t likely to change. They’re beyond hope, a lost cause. But this attitude is all too common in the GVC and it needs to stop. Seriously, if someone you know expresses this sort of attitude, run the hell away. This is three gallons of craycray in a 2-gallon bucket and you don’t need that mess in your life.

 

¹ Even in the context of a BDSM relationship, both partners have power. Otherwise, there could be no power exchange. A partner who identifies as submissive or a slave still has the power to say “no.” Even if the individual has agreed to a total power exchange, the submissive partner can end the relationship if the dominant partner disregards or violates the negotiated boundaries.

² Consent is a mutual agreement about what will happen which is entered into without manipulation or coercion by either party.

If you or someone you know has experienced consent violations, including sexual assault or domestic violence, these resources can provide more information. Some of them may be able to help get you or your loved one to safety.


RAINN: https://www.rainn.org/articles/what-is-consent

Submissive’s Bill of Rights: https://friskybusinessboutique.com/consent-in-bdsm-the-submissives-bill-of-rights/

NCSFreedom: https://www.ncsfreedom.org/component/k2/item/580-consent-and-bdsm-the-state-of-the-law

Domestic Violence Hotline: http://www.thehotline.org/healthy-relationships/consent/

 

American Vampires – Another Rant

statue-of-liberty
This essay also appears in Vampires in Their Own Words.

Why do vampires in this country insist on forming “courts,” “covens,” and “houses” that take on the trappings of feudalism? If we were European, Asian, or Indian it might make more sense. Those countries have long histories of caste-based societies, complete with all of the problems associated with them.

But we’re Americans. Our nation was founded on the principle that all are equal in the eyes of our Creator and should be acknowledged as such by those around us. We waged a revolution to establish this philosophy as a fact and emerged victorious. Over the centuries, we have fought other battles, both military and civil, to expand the reaches of democracy so that all humans everywhere might enjoy the rights and responsibilities of this way of life. In some areas we have made tremendous strides. In others, the battle continues but we persevere, confident that our cause is just and that we will prevail.

Yet, in clubs and on the Internet, we revert to the very societal structure from which our countrymen struggled to free us. Is it a need for a sense of community? I don’t think so. There are plenty of people, vampire and non-vampire alike, who do not feel the need to be addressed as Elder or Lord or Mistress. There are egalitarian organizations everywhere that welcome all without the need to elevate an elite cadre over the masses. Surely those who seek a sense of belonging can have their needs met by one or more of these groups.

Why do we persist in subjecting ourselves to an artificial hierarchy? Why do we continually adopt false titles that have no basis in merit and serve no purpose except to offer a flimsy excuse for the bearer to put on airs and degrade others? Oh, I’ve heard all the standard lines about honoring those who serve our community and offering titles as a sign of respect.

Those excuses are simply not good enough. I know plenty of people who have worked long and hard over the years to better the community. They hold no titles and do not care for any. So recognizing achievement cannot be the underlying purpose of adopting a title. Are the titles hereditary? Of course not, because we abolished such counterfeit structures when we declared our independence. So, why do we do it?

Is it so that we can feel powerful? We have long felt ourselves to be outcasts, have felt the need to hide our true selves from the eyes of the world – is this irrational drive to adopt an even more discriminatory order a product of our need to feel special? Why do we need to justify our collective existence by establishing a system of recognition that oppresses others as we have felt ourselves to be oppressed? Where is our pride? How does subjugating each other equate to unity? How can bigotry and snobbery ever generate harmony among us?

How many times have we heard the call to “unite the vampire nation” under this council or that order? How many of those groups have fallen by the wayside or degenerated into harmful cults? If it is unity we seek, how can we ever achieve it by allowing our peers to subjugate and tyrannize us while we prattle on about how our so-called leaders bring honor to us by upholding the “old ways”? Honor is not a prize to be won or a gift to be given. It is something we know to be true about ourselves. No one can bestow it where it does not already exist and only we can take it from ourselves. There is no honor in assuming the façade of an outdated power structure. To say otherwise is to belittle and demean the warriors who have fought and bled and died to give us the freedom to choose for ourselves who is worthy of our respect and admiration. It is those brave soldiers who are truly noble. It is those who cherish their liberty, bought with the coin of sweat, blood, and tears, and use it to lift up all whom they meet who are the most honorable among us. Those who give selflessly and ask for nothing…it is they who display integrity.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”

No pretentious title will ever hold the significance, contain the splendor, or bear the majesty of the philosophy that gave rise to those words. None ever could.

The Elders Are Not Tutorial NPCs

NoSchool

A newbie walks into a vampire group. If you think that sounds like the setup for a bad joke, you’re not wrong. Settle in, kiddies, because it’s time for some real talk.

It happens every few months and it’s almost always the same theme, with little variation. A newcomer to the vampire subculture prances into a group, throws some “look at me, I’m shiny and new and I have shiny new ideas” glitter around, and then can’t figure out why no one is rushing to welcome them with open arms. Because, gosh darn it, they have Thinky Thoughts™ they want to share. They want to know ALL THE THINGS and they want it now.

To the newbie’s deep chagrin, no one cares about their Thinky Thoughts™. Everyone’s busy having a discussion or a debate. Or bickering, let’s keep it real. There’s no ticker tape parade, no red carpet rolling out, no pats on the back and no one gushing over how interesting the newbie is and isn’t it wonderful we have a new Kindred in our midst, bang the gong and go tell it on the mountain. So the newbie huffs away, disgruntled at being greeted by a chorus of crickets.

Or, worse, the newbie trots out one of their shiny, new ideas only to be told “been there, done that, rocked the t-shirt, now sit down, junior, the adults are talking; listen and learn” by people who have been engaged in the vampire subculture longer than the newbie has been toilet trained. Wait, what? But this idea is special, by Vlad. How dare anyone fail to recognize its merit? What do you mean it’s been done before? The outrage! Before you know it, the poor newbie vampire, who is now far less sparkly than when they arrived and sporting a bruised ego, has stormed off to write a pouty, whinging screed about the horrible abuse they received at the hands of the elders. Those big, mean meanie-heads.

There’s a lot of baggage to unpack in this scenario. First, let’s take a stroll down memory lane and provide some context. Patience, grasshopper.

Vampires In The Information Age

More than twenty years ago, I had my first experiences with what would come to be known as the Vampire Community. The most memorable was with a tall, gangling girl who lived down the hall from the apartment I shared with my then-boyfriend. We stayed up into the wee hours of the morning, drinking too much coffee, talking, debating and making prank calls to each other’s answering machines. She collected cheesy Halloween decorations and empty Count Chocula boxes. She adored all things vampire. She also liked drinking blood. That tall, gangling girl became known within the vampire subculture as Sanguinarius. She built a website. Maybe you’ve heard of it.

Those late night discussions transitioned from our living rooms to IRC and AOL chat rooms, Usenet groups, and dozens of email lists. Although we shared similar experiences, my own path was less straightforward than Sangi’s. For her, it was all about the blood. For me, it was more complicated than that. There were others, too – Sphynxcat, Vyrdolak, Michelle Belanger, Lono, Mistress Mikyla, Akasha, Mairi, Lady CG, and even more who lost interest, got busy with life, or drifted away. Our debates sometimes became heated arguments, but the experience was valuable.

Two decades is a fairly significant stretch of time by any reckoning. By internet standards, it’s a lifetime. In the modern vampire subculture, it’s ancient. Those of us who were active participants in the discussions that took place in those chats and mailing lists were instrumental in shaping the vampire community as it is today.

Back in the 1990s, information was sparse and scattered across the internet. It was difficult to find and separating the wheat from the chaff required considerable effort. We had to figure things out for ourselves through trial and error. A lot of it.

By comparison, newcomers today are practically handed information on a silver platter. Google exists. Facebook acts as a centralized point of contact, fairly bursting at the seams with discussion groups dedicated to the vampire subculture. One of the oldest, largest and most active groups is Vampire Community News, founded by Merticus of the Atlanta Vampire Alliance (AVA). I don’t think it’s possible to spend more than two months in most of those groups, especially VCN, without hearing of Sanguinarius.org, the AVA or Voices of the Vampire Community (VVC).

There is a wealth, an absolute plethora, of educational information on Sanguinarius.org alone. Never mind what’s in the AVA’s educational archives, the VVC’s compilation of articles and their translations into multiple languages, Sphynxcat’s site, Michelle Belanger’s books, including the Vampires In Their Own Words anthology, which showcases essays from a wide range of vampire subculture members, and Joseph Laycock’s book Vampires Today: The Truth About Modern Vampirism. Finding quality information requires only as much effort as it takes to click some links and dedicate a couple of hours a week to reading articles.

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that an elder in possession of experience, knowledge, and a position of influence, must be in want of a newbie to mentor.

Actually, that’s false. But a fair number of newbies – and even a few veterans – seem to function under the assumption that this is the way things should be. Just…no. That’s not how this works.

Those of us who were active in the earliest days of the “online vampire community” and who are still active today have put in a lot of hours for a lot of years to establish ourselves as people who are accomplished, knowledgeable and capable of passing on the benefit of our experience. We built the websites, wrote the articles, held the meetups and established the Houses, Covens, and councils.

So it’s no surprise that newbies want to ask questions – a lot of questions. There’s nothing wrong with curiosity and enthusiasm. It’s great that newbies want to learn and participate. But when, where, how and to whom those questions are posed can be problematic.

Anyone who has spent any length of time in social justice activism circles, even on the margins, has undoubtedly heard the saying “it’s not my job to educate you.” The reasons for this are many, but they usually boil down to one or a combination of a few basic issues:

  1. The person being asked never offered to answer those questions;
  2. The person being asked doesn’t have the time or energy to provide answers;
  3. The person doing the asking hasn’t made any effort to educate themselves using the resources at their disposal;
  4. The person doing the asking has already demonstrated they are prejudiced, insulting or otherwise not genuinely open to receiving the information in the first place.

The same holds true for newbies in the vampire subculture. There are plenty of community veterans, often referred to as “elders,” who are willing to answer questions. There are always those who want to share their stories and explain things.

However, there’s a huge difference between sharing our experiences in an atmosphere of mutually beneficial discussion as we did “back in the day,” and having the responsibility for educating every looky-loo who comes along forced upon us. Especially when the same questions have been asked and answered dozens of times in the past. Chances are good there’s a FAQ for that.

“You are not special. You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else.”¹

Curiosity and enthusiasm do not make you entitled to our time and energy. For some of us, the answers newbies ask for hold a deep personal significance. Sometimes, those answers can be difficult to explain, especially in a limited space like a Facebook comment thread. There’s no way to condense a response into an elevator pitch or an easily-digested soundbite. It’s more expedient to link to an article or a website that deals with the topic in greater detail. Yes, it’s more work to read and try to educate yourself. But that’s not the elders’ problem. Do your homework, there will be a test later.

We’ve also had to deal with people who pretended to have a genuine interest in learning and then used our answers to ridicule, belittle or threaten us. In fact, it happens so often, it’s become normalized for us to give side-eye and throw shade at anyone who comes sniffing around. We’ve learned the hard way not to waste our time on a relative stranger until you’ve proven yourself. Part of that is demonstrating you’ve made an effort to learn on your own. Bottom line: We have the right to choose when and how we use our voices. We also have the right to say no. If you come into a group assuming we want or demanding that we accept the role of educator, you’re gonna have a bad time.

I Am Jack’s Inflamed Sense Of Rejection

All too often, newbies jump into an intra-community discussion without knowing basic concepts that everyone else already knows and, therefore, don’t need to discuss for the eleventy billionth time. You wouldn’t expect a bunch of stock brokers to pause a discussion they’re having among themselves to explain what the stock market is to a layperson. So why do newbies insist that elders hold their hands and guide them through the vast amount of information they need to know before taking part in the conversation?

Newbies shouldn’t waltz into a group, insert themselves into a discussion and expect people to cater to them. That’s known as “derailing” – in other words, steering the conversation off course and centering it around the newcomer. It’s lazy, disrespectful and the sense of entitlement it projects is offensive, especially when we’ve already spent so much of our time creating and aggregating information. Seriously, if you expect the elders to explain things you can and should be learning on your own time, you’d better be willing to compensate us for our labor. Buy us a fucking fruit basket or something.

And this is how the scenario inevitably plays out:

In their willful ignorance, a newcomer will come up with an idea that has been tried before but failed because of lack of interest or overly-complicated logistics. Or one that the newbie would know can never work because of the fractious nature of the vampire subculture if they’d actually bothered to do even five minutes worth of research. Or, worst of all, the newbie proposes a thing that absolutely no one wants because every time someone brings up that tired, old idea it causes months of bickering and drama that no one wants to repeat yet again because things just settled down from the last time someone brought it up.

Then, when people rightly criticize their shortcomings, the newbie complains about the treatment they receive and whine that everyone is against them. They never stop to consider the possibility that they have only themselves to blame for the cold reception. It’s much easier to lay the fault on someone else’s doorstep than to do any self-examination.

Get The Fuck Off My Porch²

Newbies, here’s a tip:

Stop trying to reinvent the wheel. Rein in that enthusiasm long enough to study the dozens of articles, essays, and books that have been written by and about the vampire subculture. If someone tells you to sit back quietly and observe for awhile, do that. It’s not that we can’t or won’t tell you what you want to know. Sometimes there’s no other way to get the answer; you have to witness it for yourself. This isn’t the Matrix and the elders can’t download all of our experience directly to your brain. The process is long and occasionally daunting. Embrace it.

If you want to make a tangible contribution to the community, you should research the projects that are already in place and then politely ask how you can contribute to them. I promise you’ll find people who will turn up their nose and poo-poo your offer. You will get your face bitten off, chewed up and spit out and have your ass handed to you more than once. Learn to tolerate the discomfort because it’s the only way you’re going to make it here.

“A guy who came to Fight Club for the first time, his ass was a wad of cookie dough. After a few weeks, he was carved out of wood.”³

If you manage to survive the snarknado, you’ll also find people who are friendly, helpful, and would love to debate ideas with you or have you get on board with their project. You don’t need to create something “new” when there’s already a perfectly good thing or five that could use another set of willing hands. While you’re at it, do some digging and figure out what concepts and projects have been considered and rejected and why. It’s a lot of work and not nearly as exciting as seeing your name at the top of the marquee, but you’ll experience much better results.

The elders are not tutorial NPCs who exist to teach newbies to navigate community interactions, help them with their level-up quests and provide them with all the magical things. The vampire subculture is not known for being an easy realm to inhabit. It never has been and never will be. There are no safe spaces and trigger warnings are in short supply. This is not Hello Kitty Island Adventure. There be dragons here.

Welcome to Bite Club.

 

¹ ² ³ Fincher, D., Milchan, A., Uhls, J., Linson, A., Chaffin, C., Bell, R. G., Pitt, B., … Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Inc.,. (2002). Fight club. Beverly Hills, CA: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.