According to this article, "experts" are saying pot might become legal, and soon. And of course, people are freaking out.

"Caulkins said one of the main reasons for outlawing the drug is to make it riskier to produce and sell, driving up prices and curbing use.  A price collapse after legalization in some states could undermine marijuana laws nationally." OK, Mr. Caulkins, professor at Carnegie Mellon, aren't there ways to create the laws so this doesn't happen? Legalize marijuana and stipulate that there will be price restrictions or something?

Further down in the article: "One option would be to impose strict limits on how much of the drug retailers could sell to each customer." Bam. There you go. Actually, I know dispensaries in Colorado are not allowed to sell more than 2 ounces per day to a certain customer. Unfortunately that does mean that the customer can go to another dispensary and buy 2 more ounces that day, because there is nothing linking the dispensaries together to see if they have bought anything at other dispensaries. (Maybe someone should make a database that all dispensaries have access to...)

The article goes on to say, "Caulkins said Colorado’s proposition would allow residents to obtain a grower’s license fairly easily, making the state a good home for exporters of marijuana.

'They would be able to provide marijuana to New York state markets at one quarter of the current price,' he said, predicting similar price declines in other states."

If we were to compare pot to alcohol...Technically, you are not allowed to buy alcohol and take it to another state, according to this BBC article - I imagine you have to be some sort of "exporter" in order to distribute your brand nationally or something. I know the laws about alcohol are determined by each state, not by the federal government. (Another reason I wonder why the United States is called "United" if the states just do whatever they want.) And maybe it depends on which state you're in, maybe some states allow you to take alcohol out, and some don't.

I digress.

If they make the federal laws from the beginning that you are not allowed to "export" marijuana from state to state, then that solves that problem. I don't see why that wouldn't be an option. When Congress passes a law, they can write whatever they want in it, so why doesn't that get added?

Then you get the question about regulation. The Republicans are all about small government (yet they want to control what you put in your body and what you do with your body...hmmm...), and the Democrats don't seem to mind a little regulation. Alcohol is regulated, as I explained above. You can't take alcohol from Delaware into Pennsylvania? You can't drink unless you're 21? Bars have to close by a certain time at night? You can't sell liquor on Sunday in some states? Etc. etc. That's regulation. So, regulate marijuana. Doesn't seem that hard to me. Eliminate the middle man (and eliminate the "gateway drug" theory, which really only happens when people get pot from a dealer who then introduces them to harder drugs - you don't get that in a dispensary; I should know, I used to work in one), regulate how it's distributed and who can purchase it, and that's that.

In case you can't tell, I'm in favour of legalization. I think it's ridiculous that it is not regulated for adult use. And I think it will be legalized, and soon. Probably in my lifetime. Because things are changing so rapidly. More and more states are adopting medical marijuana laws. More and more people are coming out saying they are in favour of it. Alcohol was made legal again first by prescribing it medicinally. Now we know that alcohol is damaging to our system, and we wouldn't prescribe it medically. Yet we don't have much evidence saying marijuana is damaging (except that smoking it is not a good idea). So if it's safe for your body, why not have it legal? Education is a must, of course. Kids need to learn to use it responsibly, just like with alcohol.

I see no problem with it at all, and many people would back me up.

The government is supposed to represent the people, and let the people decide what they want. Over half of Americans polled are in favour of legalizing marijuana. Doesn't that say something? Shouldn't the government be listening to what the people want?

Oh wait. I forgot. They don't care. The people don't want poverty, but we still have it. The people don't want minimum wage to be so low, but it still is. Etc. etc.

I guess all we can do is hope, and talk, engage in dialogue about these things, write our Congressmen (and women!), and vote. That's probably the most important thing: VOTE.

Amazing post about shooting in Aurora

The original is here.

I feel a little bit morbid, obsessively following the news about this tragedy. It's part morbid fascination, part wanting to honour the people who were shot (even though I don't know them), and part fear that this could happen anywhere, anytime. What were the signs something might happen? What was going through his head? Why would he do something like this? Did he really do it so that a hero would "jump out of the screen," as the writer in the post linked above suggests? Also the fact that I am from Colorado makes me more sensitive to the issue. There was a horrible accident in Texas where more than 10 people died, but I don't have a connection to Texas like I do to Colorado, so it's harder for me to sympathize.

I think being a writer makes me think about these things so much, to build characters. After 9/11, I obsessively watched the news and scoured the internet. Same thing with the West Memphis 3, which happened when I was like 8 (I believe I was the same age as the kids who were killed), but I found out about it later in high school and joined the effort to clear the West Memphis 3's names. I have this weird obsession with cults, too. I like to read about them and wonder why people turn out the way they do, what made them into these crazy religious leaders, and why people follow them so faithfully.

(No, this doesn't mean I'm going to repeat the things I've read about, don't worry.)

 Anyway, back to the post. He says, "It’s true there was no Batman sitting in the theater to fly down and tackle James Holmes, as he hoped there might be. He had tactical assault gear covering his whole body, ready for America to fight back." What's driving me crazy about this whole thing is James Holmes just WILL NOT talk. I imagine more will come out when the trial actually happens, but right now it's maddening not knowing why he did what he did, if there was actually motivation behind it, if he just snapped, and if so, why it took him so long before to actually do it (based on the fact that it apparently took months to set up the explosives in his apartment). And on that note, what was up with the apartment anyway? Why did he rig it?

A bit further down he says, "That is one of our obvious strengths, but it is not our greatest strength. America’s awesome strength to fight is overwhelmed by its irrepressible strength to love. James Holmes took 12 lives Friday. Love saved 58 lives. Policemen on the scene in minutes, strangers carrying strangers, nurses and doctors activated all over the city." I find this sentiment interesting, because yes, it is true, there are so many people who live their lives for others, selflessly giving their time and efforts and expertise to keep people safe, to help people, to heal people...Even to help you find that perfect pair of pants or checking you out at the grocery store, or cleaning your office building after hours. All of these things are so important, and every little bit counts. While at the same time, the government does corrupt things all the time, kills innocent people in wars, doesn't give them health care, allows homeless people to freeze and starve, etc. etc. So while the individuals are doing good things, trying to get through every day, holding doors for people in the mall, giving flu shots, and who knows what else, the collective, the umbrella that is supposed to protect us is not. Individuals feel this love for each other as he says in the post, but the government doesn't (no matter how often or how loudly they say they do). It's interesting how things can be so different on different scales - the large scale and the small scale. Just like he says, "The awe of last night is not that a man full of hate can take 12 people’s lives; it is that a nation full of love can save 300 million lives every day." A nation, yes. The people, maybe. But the powers that be? Not so much.

Granted, the structure of a country is what sets up people to "love" each other and generally do good things. America is not the most horrible country on the planet, that's for damn sure. But there are some things that could be a LOT better, especially for a developed country. No country is perfect, but some are doing some things a little better.

"The answer is we love back. We live back. We deepen our commitments to all the unnumbered acts of kindness that make America an unrendable fabric."

"So while James Holmes settles into the cell where he will spend the rest of his life, wondering what we will do to fight back, we will love back. We will go to a park this afternoon and play soccer, we will go to the playground and restaurants and movie theaters of our city all weekend and all year."

These are nice sentiments. They are mostly true. But he says, "We will love back." Yet, so many people are commenting online on the pictures of Holmes in the court room, saying he should burn in hell, he's a "chickenshit motherfucker," he's a coward, he makes them sick, he should die, etc. etc. I wholeheartedly agree that he did a horrible thing, but I believe every person has the potential for good. This does not excuse him, but come on, he is still a human being. Justice should be served, yes, but do immature comments online really help anything? And if we are going to "love back," why are they pursuing the death penalty? There's nothing loving about the death penalty.

I like the last paragraph: "In a movie theater in Aurora 50 years from now, one of last night’s survivors will be waiting in the popcorn line and mention that he was in Theater 9 on that terrible summer night in 2012. And inexplicably, with an armful of popcorn, a total stranger will reach out and give that old man a huge hug and say, 'I’m so glad you made it.'" Because no matter what you think about James Holmes, or the situation in general, it was tragic, people died, families were hurt and are suffering, and it's an awful thing to have happened. No one is going to deny that, least of all me.

So, I like the post overall. I think it sends a message of hope, overcoming, and he pretty much suggests that by being good people, we can can fight back, and maybe even prevent something like this happening again - at least, that's my take on it, because he says:

"My friends were texting me that they had plans to take their kids to Batman tonight but were now afraid to go. Others who were going to play pick-up basketball or go out to dinner were now afraid to leave home. They thought they would bunker down in their home and wonder, 'How do we fight back?'

The answer is we love back. We live back. We deepen our commitments to all the unnumbered acts of kindness that make America an unrendable fabric. We respond by showing that we will play harder, and longer. We will serve more meals, play more games, eat more food, listen to more jazz, go to more movies, give more hugs, and say more 'thank yous' and 'I love yous' than ever before."

 I think he has a point there. If we would just stop thinking about ourselves so much and be in the moment with those we love, talk respectfully, have fun together, hold the door for people more, say thank you more, tell people you love them more...Maybe society would be lifted up by that, and maybe in a small way it could prevent something like this in the future, especially when children see people behaving in that way.

Sadly, it won't change the whole world, and it won't change all of society. I do believe that it can change in the future, but it will take a long, long time to get there. But maybe what he's suggesting is a good start.

The victims of the 2012 Aurora shooting
There has been a lot going on lately: Work, play, keeping the house at least somewhat presentable (yeah, right), yoga, etc. I have been trying to get up early to write before work, and that just hasn't been happening. I feel like my health is slipping backwards again, and the fatigue is coming back. I'm ready to go to my doctor and say, "ok, we've looked at obvious things, let's look at not-so-obvious things." It feels like something physical. Maybe the key is doing yoga every day again, maybe the key is 9 hours of sleep per night like my physiotherapist suggested. Or maybe there really is something wrong.

When I'm tired all the time, my creativity suffers, because my brain doesn't feel like it operates at its full capacity. Not only do I feel like I have nothing to write about, but writing it in a witty or creative way is even difficult. So, I apologize for not updating, and for my updates to potentially be boring.

Something that I've been thinking about a lot lately is the shooting in Aurora, Colorado. Colorado is my home state, but I don't live there anymore. When I first heard about it, I was pretty shaken up. I have friends in Aurora, who are Batman fans, and would have potentially gone to a midnight showing of the newest movie. I didn't know any of the victims, however. It's so tragic. I don't understand how people can be so crazy, and I don't think anyone ever will. I actually think something that makes people do these things is, well, society. We go on about how people should "fit in" and act a certain way, and think a certain way, otherwise they are on the fringe and they are "crazy." But honestly, the way we live is pretty damaging, I think. We are so separate, so isolated, we don't live in communities anymore. We may have social communities, but very few of us actually grow our food together, raise our children together, and build community that we live in together. I think that most people have been able to conform to the way we live pretty well - though so many people complain about how they have to work, and how they have to deal with bureaucracy, etc. But some people just take it further and go "crazy."

I haven't seen anything mentioning what the shooting suspect's motive was yet...But oftentimes these kinds of things are motivated by feeling left out, unfulfilled, not part of society, like everyone has wronged them. They just don't "fit in" and the only way to get the point across is it do something drastic a la Columbine High Schoolthe Amish school shooting (apparently he was acting out to "receive revenge for something that happened 20 years ago"), and Virginia Tech (the killer said in a note: "You caused me to do this"). But we don't listen to these people, or see the warning signs, or do anything to prevent these things.

Why aren't we listening and paying attention? Why aren't we seeing the patterns and trying to do something to prevent these types of things? I'm not saying that they are in the right, or that they should have dealt with their issues in the way they did, but they had valid concerns and complaints, and they festered inside of them for years and years until they finally snapped. But, is the real solution making people conform to what we think they should be, or changing society?

Honestly, I don't have an answer. But it's something to think about.

Maybe we'll never be able to prevent things like this. But I really think the fact that we are so separated, that we lack community, that we live in separate boxes, that we work in separate boxes, has made people feel unfulfilled. And I think that if we lived how our ancestors did, in groups where everyone was supported, everyone worked together, raised children together, etc., we wouldn't have as many mental issues (if any at all), and people wouldn't "snap."

Not that everyone can live like this these days. But it makes "intentional communities" more attractive to me. I wouldn't mind having a constant support system and community that is there for me, and being there for them.

Little update

Been having a hard time writing lately. There has been a lot going on in my life, just day to day, and I keep waking up too tired to write anything in the mornings before going to work. I will write something soon, I promise!
Consider for a moment Katy Perry's song "Thinking of You." The lyrics are:

Comparisons are easily done
Once you've had a taste of perfection
Like an apple hanging from a tree
I picked the ripest one
I still got the seed

You said move on

Where do I go
I guess second best
Is all I will know

OK, so, the first guy was perfect, he told her to get out of his life or something, and now she's all alone and has to move on.

The rest of the song makes me think she's actually cheating on him, though, especially the chorus:

Cause when I'm with him
I am thinking of you
Thinking of you
What you would do if
You were the one
Who was spending the night
Oh I wish that I
Was looking into your eyes

Then it goes on:

You're like an Indian summer
In the middle of winter
Like a hard candy
With a surprise center
How do I get better
Once I've had the best
You said there's
Tons of fish in the water
So the waters I will test

He kissed my lips

I taste your mouth
He pulled me in
I was disgusted with myself

"I was disgusted with myself." Doesn't that sound like someone who is cheating on her boyfriend? Why else would she be disgusted? Unless he was disgusting, I guess. But why would a hot chick like Katy Perry date someone disgusting?

Cause when I'm with him
I am thinking of you
Thinking of you
What you would do if
You were the one
Who was spending the night
Oh I wish that I
Was looking into...

You're the best

And yes I do regret
How I could let myself
Let you go
Now the lesson's learned
I touched it I was burned
Oh I think you should know

"You're the best, and yes, I do regret..." This part sounds like maybe she cheated on him first and then he found out and that's why he broke up with her, then she went back to the second guy, maybe? "Now the lesson's learned, I touched it I was burned." Sounds like it to me.

Cause when I'm with him
I am thinking of you
Thinking of you
What you would do if
You were the one
Who was spending the night
Oh I wish that I
Was looking into your eyes
Looking into your eyes
Looking into your eyes
Oh won't you walk through
And bust in the door
And take me away
Oh no more mistakes
Cause in your eyes I'd like to stay... 

If we take the song to mean that she cheated on him and he found out and she went back to her second choice, well, if she had been polyamorous, this wouldn't have been a big deal. Just sayin'!

(I also have to admit that this song is really catchy and I listen to it sometimes...This fact makes me cringe...Katy Perry is probably the most hypocritical "artists" I have come across. If you're curious about my thoughts on that one, ask.)

Slut shaming!

I have decided that every time I write or do yoga, I will put anything higher than a penny in a jar. Then I will reward myself with something when I have enough money saved up. This might take a while, but it's a good motivator, I think. I started reading a book called "Change Anything" a while back, and it says that when you have a goal, make it into a game. So, this is my way of making it into a game and rewarding myself. We'll see how it goes!

So, my topic today: Slut shaming.

I love Upworthy. They always have the BEST videos. So, this is a 13 year old talking about slut shaming, and it is worth 3 minutes of your time:

This makes me think about how when I was 13, I was so immature. I was still reading the Baby Sitters Club and worrying about my weight, not thinking about slut shaming and how it's a horrible thing. Geez. Was that something exclusive to me, or are kids just getting mature a lot faster now?

Well, anyway, she so has a point. She has many points. I feel like it's a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Which came first, the patriarchy or the slutty clothing? Let's face it, prostitutes have been around FOREVER. Ever since trading began, I'm sure. Prostitution is the oldest occupation, and I see nothing wrong with it, as long as they're being safe (using protection, able to protect themselves from scary clients, etc.). In fact, I think it should be legal.

I digress.

I love how she says: "Slut shaming is the unfortunate phenomenon in which people degrade or mock a woman because she dresses in tight or revealing clothing, enjoys sex, has sex a lot, or may even just be rumoured to participate in sexual activity. The message that slut shaming sends to women is that sex is bad, having sex with more than one person is horrible, and everyone will hate you for having sex at all."

A bit later she says, "It is nobody's business but your own how many people you're having sex with."

Amen, sista.

It's this kind of thing that gives polyamory such a bad name. For some reason, people think they should be involved in peoples' private lives, which is just stupid. If a conservative person were like "don't have sex with more than one person!" how would they like it if I pried into their private life and said "don't pray before bed!"...Ok, that's the only one I can come up with. Conservative people are boring.

Anyway, this culture of slut shaming we have has really paved the way for some screwy notions about sex. If we keep this up, girls are going to grow up feeling horrible about themselves, horrible about their natural sex drive, horrible about their bodies, they are going to feel like they're owned by other people because they think what other people say matters so much, some of them won't be able to even enjoy sex because the whole thing has been twisted into this evil thing...Oh wait, this is already happening.

I'm not sure how we can change this for the betterment of all women out there who want to enjoy sex, and for the girls who should grow up knowing sex is natural and enjoyable. I guess spreading this video and this message is one way. Things spread like wildfire on teh interwebs.

So go forth, link to the video, link to my blog!


And remember, kids: "If you've given your consent, if you're emotionally and physically ready for it, if you're using proper protection, and if you feel safe and comfortable with your partner, then sex is good. It is nobody's business but your own how many people you're having sex with or how much sex you have. And you don't deserve to be hated on for being sexually active with more than one partner."

Bam. Most mature 13 year old ever.
I had a very interesting experience yesterday. Actually, it was kind of scary. I went to my horseback riding lesson, and found I wasn't in the schedule even though I had confirmed it a few days prior. So they squeezed me in with another instructor who had a private lesson with another student who is more advanced than I am, but she went back and forth between us. We were outside, and it was really hot, there were no clouds in the sky, and I obviously hadn't had enough water to drink that day, because at the end of the lesson, I started seeing major spots. Actually, my vision was pretty much going, and my ears were totally muffled. I put my head down on the horse's neck and just breathed, then finally was able to get off the horse and take him inside and recover. I almost fainted, on a horse. At least he was standing still!

The other girl in the lesson had a worse experience - she actually fell off the horse she was riding while it was cantering. It just kind of kept going faster and faster and wouldn't listen to her when she tried to get him to slow down, and finally she just slid off. She said she was ok, but she asked the instructor about five times what the date was, and said she couldn't remember what happened. Looks like she might have a minor concussion. I hope she is ok and that her parents listened to the instructor and took her to the doctor.

Crazy day yesterday. Note to self: Drink lots of water before riding, eat enough before riding, and get good sleep the night before riding (which I also did not do).

I have been slipping back into my old ways of not putting myself first. I wake up so tired, I haven't been doing yoga every day (going to a class tonight, though), and I haven't been eating great, either. I don't know why I'm doing this to myself. I guess I just forget about myself.

Something I don't think I've shared on here yet: "Tom" and I are dating again, and it has been really great, I feel like I'm coming at it from a different place and that I'm a different person than I was a month ago. But I also think it drains some of the energy out of me. It's hard enough to focus on myself, and bringing someone else into my life to focus on brings my energy level down some, I think. Maybe polyamory isn't right for me right now just because of that.

Actually I have realized that polyamory isn't right for me right now anyway, because I have to really take care of myself these days, and I just don't have the time to date another person. Tom and I haven't really talked about when we would like to approach the polyamory thing again, and I think it's a conversation we should have.

(On a separate note, the name Tom really doesn't fit him at all. Maybe I should come up with another alias.)

Insecurity! Represent!

I was going to post this picture as a visual of being insecure:

But then I realized they're like "Embrace your shape! Love yourself! But here's a picture of a skinny woman with long legs!" So, you can only embrace your shape if you're THAT shape? Or what?

So I found this instead:

Yeah, that's more like it.

So, the point of this post today is...I am feeling insecure today.

And I know why.

I haven't been doing yoga every day, and I really think that is the reason. When I was doing it every day, my confidence level was HIGH. I also slept like crap last night, and didn't eat the healthiest food yesterday. Insecurity all comes down to how you treat your body, I swear.

The lesson here (for me) is: Even if I'm busy, I have to squeeze yoga in somehow!!! Not to mention good food and good sleep. I have no idea why I slept like crap last night, but the crappy food and the stressful day might have had something to do with it...

I keep waking up in the morning with the intention of doing yoga when I get up. And it just doesn't happen. I wonder what the best way to train yourself to do this is.

Love yourselves, kids. 

(Sorry about the ugly lines...I think it's because I'm using a custom template and Blogger doesn't like it.)

Something strange is going on...

I look in the mirror today and I like what I see.

I don't know if this is because something has changed, or because my views have changed. Possibly a little bit of both. I feel like I'm getting more toned doing yoga so much, and I've really been working to change my perception of myself. So I think they are going hand in hand. I also really like what I'm wearing today and I think it accentuates all the good parts of me. (See, I'm not quite at the point of saying that every part is good...But someday. Someday.)

I somehow started getting these E-mails from some website called "Upworthy," and I have no idea how I started getting them, but I'm glad I do. They had a video today, which is the following:

I love how she points out that you can't just judge someone by looking at them. After I posted this on Facebook, a friend of mine commented: "I weigh over 260 lbs and I: can run over 11 km non-stop, can do one handed push-ups, can fireman carry a full grown man the length of a gym floor... at a run, have thighs dubbed 'Zeus' and 'Thor' on account of the thunderous power of my kicks, and have seen thin people have to lay down gasping for breath trying to keep up with the workouts I do on a regular basis. You wouldn't know any of this just by looking at me (or maybe 
you would; nobody ever calls me 'fat' to my face)."

Exactly. Way to go!

I also love how she mentions that fat is just a descriptor, it's what you attach to the word that is hurtful or destructive. Sometimes, fat is good. It's Halloween, you want to get a pumpkin, you find the perfect one, you say, "This is the biggest, fattest pumpkin I have ever seen!" But then you say it about a person and it's not a good thing anymore. Interesting.

Anyway. I'm looking at some of the comments on YouTube that people left. This is one that kind of made me angry: "in a time/place that is not suffering from shortage in food and most people are well fed, being over-weight will never be the standard for attractiveness and will be generally 
seen as un-attractive as it shows poor physical health."

OK, that is true, there are people who don't take care of themselves and as a result have gained lots of weight. Guess what, there are people who don't take care of themselves who are rail thin. String beans.

It's too complicated of an issue for us to just see it as a black and white subject. There are so many factors involved: Genetics, health issues, metabolism, etc. etc. Just looking at someone who may be fat and saying you know everything about them is just ridonk. RI-DONK!

So, meghantonjes as you are called on YouTube, you keep rocking it! You're fat, you are an inspiration, and awesome, and as you say, none of those things necessarily negate or make the 
others true, amirite?

Oh, and follow it up with this awesome video, which is a lot longer at almost 10 minutes, but totally worth it: 

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*Twiddles thumbs*

I'm trying to figure out what's wrong with this picture.

The picture is that I am at work, and there's nothing really for me to do. My boss is out of town, as he usually is. The executive assistant is working from home, as she often does. There are others in the office, but they are just working on their things. I'm sitting here, browsing Facebook and updating my blog. And getting paid for it.

I've been thinking about what I can do, and there's not much. I'm waiting for feedback on things that I have done in order to move on with them, but there has been no feedback. I usually go to the executive assistant and ask if she has spoken with our boss, because she's the one who's usually in contact with him. I asked her about a couple things that I'm waiting to hear back about, and she said she hasn't heard anything either.

So now I sit here and I think...Should I be more assertive? Should I call my boss and bug him personally about the things that have to be done? I have a feeling if I do that, I will either get no answer or I will be told it's not a priority. Or I will be told that they're working on it and they'll get back to me as soon as they can, which will take ages.

I can't really just invent things to do, unfortunately. A bulk of my job is supposed to be answering phone calls and answering voicemails and E-mails, but my boss wants to have a meeting with me to talk about what I can and can't say before opening the phone lines, and that hasn't happened yet. Also he keeps saying there are other things that are taking priority, like updating our websites, and I am just sitting here waiting for the content I wrote for the website to be edited. If the websites are a priority, they sure aren't acting like it in terms of the content. And our web designer said she hasn't heard anything either.

Make that Words with Friends, actually...

Not to mention I was supposed to have a review meeting with my boss, which then got changed to it being with the executive assistant and the accountant, and that was supposed to be today, but it's not happening today. I've been waiting for a month to have this meeting.

So, what do I do? Do I just sit here? Do I call my boss? In my review meeting, do I say, "Look, I am willing and able to do work and I just sit here most of the time and it's really frustrating"? Should I find another job where I actually do things? I understand the company is basically still a startup, but the way things are run here is so inefficient, and I am sitting here burning their money.

It's really frustrating, and I don't know what to do about it. It might just get to the point where one day I just leave and say, "see ya, I don't have any work to do, let me know if you need anything, I'm going home."

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