Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) are still on the track, and have been since 1992. But as if chasing unknown animals wasn't enough, we are involved in education, conservation, and good old-fashioned natural history! We already have three journals, the largest cryptozoological publishing house in the world, CFZtv, and the largest cryptozoological conference in the English-speaking world, but in January 2009 someone suggested that we started a daily online magazine! The CFZ bloggo is a collaborative effort by a coalition of members, friends, and supporters of the CFZ, and covers all the subjects with which we deal, with a smattering of music, high strangeness and surreal humour to make up the mix.

It is edited by CFZ Director Jon Downes, and subbed by the lovely Lizzy Bitakara'mire (formerly Clancy), scourge of improper syntax. The daily newsblog is edited by Corinna Downes, head administratrix of the CFZ, and the indexing is done by Lee Canty and Kathy Imbriani. There is regular news from the CFZ Mystery Cat study group, and regular fortean bird news from 'The Watcher of the Skies'. Regular bloggers include Dr Karl Shuker, Dale Drinnon, Richard Muirhead and Richard Freeman.The CFZ bloggo is updated daily, and there's nothing quite like it anywhere else. Come and join us...

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Sunday, December 06, 2009


My dears,

Thank you for all the kind emails and IMs you have sent regarding the death of Marjorie Braund yesterday morning. I am very touched at quite how many people cared about her. Thank you all from the bottom of my rather battered heart. I am going to keep them and pass them on to Kaye and her family when the dust has settled a bit. I know that David usually reads the blog each day and will take comfort in the fact that so many people cared about his beloved grandmother.

Thank you also for your kind emails regarding my state of health. Just as I thought it would, the rumour mill of the Internet has already worked overtime and I am meant to be having "major chest surgery" in January. It is, I guess, chest surgery as it is the removal of a lump from my chest, but it is external rather than thoracic, and it is by no stretch of the imagination `major`. Indeed it is being carried out by the `Minor Surgical Procedures Team` and if all things are equal I shall be out the same day. However, I am a confirmed coward, and am not looking forward to it.

Syd, bless him, read me a lecture about not going barefoot when you are a diabetic. He is (of course) right, and both nurses and my dear wife have been telling me that for ages. I now wish that I had listened to them because my left foot is still bloody sore after friday morning's incident. But it seems to be healing slowly. Lawrie (bless him as well) also gave me a lecture about my health. Thank you, my dears. It is heartening to know that people care.




Aubrey said...

Jon you have nothing to fear from surgery. Once drugged it will go by so quickly that you will miss all the fun. I have had surgery for a major hernia and had no fear what so ever, all went well. Within three hours of the surgery I found myself slipping out of the private clinic and going to a near by store to purchase a lottery ticket. So please have no fear my friend.

Ego Ronanus said...

Jon, I have only just seen the notice about Marjorie Braund. Will you please pass my condolences on to Kaye and her family? I shall greatly miss her at my lectures.

While I know that this has affected you greatly, the strain on Kaye herself must have been nothing short of immense over the past few months. Please tell her I have been thinking of her especially.

Dr Dan Holdsworth said...

Jon, I suspect for removal of a cyst from the outside of your chest, the surgical team may not even use a general anaesthetic, but rather a sedative and heavy local anaesthetic. This has the advantage of not depressing respiration, and also gets you in and out of the hospital more rapidly; it also greatly reduces the risk of side-effects.

However, with regards you escapades with obstacles on the floor, might I suggest either some stout slippers, or a light source of some sort? A company called Krill make glow-stick replacements, battery powered, which provide just enough light to find one's way around at night whilst not being bright enough to hurt one's night vision. I have even used these feeding and checking on horses at night, where the objective is to move about and not annoy the equine occupants of a field, which a standard torch tends to do.