New Year’s Eve

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Good evening,

With cup of hot tea on desk I am watching Repeat Performance (set on New Year’s Eve 1947) and editing photos. Each year I renew long-established tradition of staying home on this holiday while rest of world parties. I like to greet January 1 without a hangover 😉 Viewing Repeat Performance for second time since 2014 and highly recommend it. Love Joan Leslie. Next up I will be enjoying Marilyn Monroe, Lauren Bacall, and  Betty Grable in How to Marry a Millionaire.

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Happy New Year!!! May 2016 bring tremendous joy and rich returns on your kindness. I truly appreciate the sweetness, generosity, and spirit of all who visit me here. Very much looking forward to spending another exciting twelve months with you.

XOXO Tanya

 

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Santa’s Helpers

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Good evening,

Photos above come from December 16, 2013 – two weeks after breast surgery and two days before foot surgery. Do I look a bit shell-shocked? I felt it. Mad rush to make as much money as possible lead me to start shooting too soon. Honestly, I had scrambled all year to cover portions of surgeries which insurance would not – dancing, shooting, dancing, shooting, dancing shooting – and just barely succeeded before I lost insurance policy at year’s end. As mentioned previously I came within days of losing my home in a foreclosure proceeding around this same time. I am forever grateful to Jet Strip nightclub for putting me on payroll, (almost unheard of in an era when 95% of dancers pay clubs for privilege of working), during this challenging era. I thought about sending club a “thank you” card later on but wondered if they would think I was a dork. The Jet Strip, their customers, friends who visited me there, STJ, and all of my valued custom video collectors really came through with a vengeance in 2013. Eternal gratitude and a million thank yous to all of you. May your generosity revisit you throughout the years.

Funny how those pics took me back. Tonight I had merely been planning to post a few Santa shots with brief commentary before going to bed. Photos revived 2013.. in reality, I should have been lying in a couch on December 16, 2013, recovering from first surgery and preparing for next one, but morbid fear haunted me: “What if I can’t work for months after double foot surgery? How will I pay my bills?” I wanted to keep shooting til the very end – so I did. Seems a little extreme now but it did give me peace of mind at the time. Still remember the last 3 customs I filmed on that day – thanks, Jerry, Mikey, and Chris!

Happy Holidays to everyone who has read this far. May all of you enjoy a great New Year’s Eve and much joy in 2016.

Oh, yes… almost forgot to provide a link to the video which prompted me to start writing tonight. Footage made me do a double take earlier – check this out.

XO Tanya

 

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Xmas Abundance

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Happy Holidays! Think I have engaged in more activities this season than any other in memory – big change from last year. This December I made it a point to volunteer for charitable endeavors and get together with old friends. Now, back at home with endless pot of tea on stove, I am updating websites, editing photos, answering e-mails, and trying to get things back in order.

A million thank yous to Don, Apollo, Bob, Mikey, JM, two Anonymous Strangers, and Brad for astounding Xmas gifts!!!! Your kindness made my day when I finally visited mailbox to load up my car. Muuuuaaaaahhhhhh!!!!! I will try to incorporate many of your wonderful presents into upcoming shoots. On days near home I will be enjoying new laptop, perfume, earrings, Starbucks card, books, journals, Uggs, and running shoes. Thanks again to all of you for your amazing generosity. May your sweet sentiments return a thousandfold to your own doorsteps. All of you deserve the best and I feel blessed to have you in my life.

Tonight or tomorrow morning I shall return to answer blog comments. Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!

XO Tanya

P.S. One of my neighbors thoughtfully gifted me with a bag of lemons from his family’s yard (top pic.) Fruit represents abundance and, to me, lemons have very special significance. You know the old expression: “When life gives you lemons make lemonade.” Actually, I use their juice for body scrub – superb exfoliant when mixed with baking soda 😉

 

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Xmas in LA

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Good afternoon,

Still haven’t answered blog comments, e-mails, or gone to my mailbox. However, in addition to getting sloshed with my friends, I have accomplished a few things. Legendary wrestler Robin and I met at the STJ ring to settle some differences. Despite bitter California cold (60 degrees) we donned skimpy bikinis, braved elements, battled for honor. Tis the season for vengeance 😉

XO Tanya

 

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Around the Corner

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Good evening,

I greet you from home. Above pics trace trajectory of my day. After photographing decorated palm trees I motored into the sunshine and met my friend Joe at The Palms, new home to many of my former coworkers from now defunct Wild Goose. We talked, we laughed and it really felt like old times where I could simply speak freely without anyone raising eyebrows or looking at me like I had just descended from outer space. It made me feel like dancing again. After one Stoli on the rocks and two Guinness I knew that I had better head home. Rain pelted asphalt in torrents (2nd pic from top), quite a change from earlier landscape. With maximum focus I grasped steering wheel at 10 and 2 o’clock positions, drove safely. When nature called I stopped at a bar about a mile from my home. Signs identified men’s room next to a unisex restroom. This suggested presence of a ladies’ room but I didn’t have patience to find it.  Third pic from top shows scene which greeted me behind unisex door. It looks way worse in real life but I gamely pulled down jeans, tried to avoid surface contact. Fellow patrons proved friendly, generous, intoxicated. My car still sits in parking lot attached to bar because I walked home in the rain, enjoying every moment. Photos from 2000 (four pics from bottom) appear in this chronology because I shot them after turning a corner in my life. Things seem to be shaping up the same way now. I hope so.

Must pack for shoot but I shall return later tonight or tomorrow morning. I wish everyone a pleasant night!

XO Tanya

 

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Tis the Season

The tree is up

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Good morning,

Although I make little concession for the holidays I have somehow fallen behind on everything this month. In the next few days I plan to pick up mail, answer blog comments, clear out inbox but first.. I must have a cocktail. Meeting some old friends who have relocated to a new club since the closing of legendary Wild Goose. Hope all of you are enjoying the weekend!

XO Tanya

 

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Whiskey Bottle and Classic Car

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Since October mysterious 1970 Plymouth Valiant has prowled my neighborhood, inspiring second text version of Blonde Dahlia. Several weeks ago I claimed parking spot next to Valiant. Following morning’s early shoot time would enable me to photograph vehicle when  no one (like car’s owner) would see me and wonder what I was doing. Shortly after sunrise I emerge from home to discover that Valiant has already departed, leaving solitary bottle of Jack Daniels in its wake. Discomfited, I load suitcases into car, hit road. As noted in post from November I have recently been listening to biography of Lynrd Skynrd. Maybe that explains why odd lyrics (mostly culled from Sknyrd’s That Smell) begin floating through my head:

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Smoke screen, you’re in the way

There’s too many schemes and too many scenes

Fear is welling up inside you

Ooooh that smell

Can’t you smell that smell

Ooooh that smell

Devil’s torment surrounds you

I motor on, driving into fog as memories spray windshield , drift over car. Sun rises behind cloud cover, wattage diminished by atmospheric conditions.

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Choked scream, too much to say

There’s too much coke and too many jokes

Tears are welling up inside you

Ooooh that smell

Can’t you smell that smell

Ooooh that smell

Fermented death surrounds you

Car veers toward sidewalk, bounces off curb, parks. I pull out pad of paper, unsure if I want to remember strangely modified lyrics or not.

Angel of surcease is upon you,

Stuck a needle in your heart,

So take another toke, have a blow for your nose,

One more drink fool, will drown you..

Thoroughly rattled, I shut Pleather folio with defiance, as if I can escape verses just by expunging them onto paper. Words linger..

Much later – after work and after nightfall – I revisit Blonde Dahlia shoot. Original source material contains 789 unedited images, including those from same day filming of Black Magic Sexfight and POV Class A Blowjob. Inadvertently comedic aspect of some shots vanquishes dark clouds from my psyche. Below you see co-star Goldie giving her best male pornstar face, cumshot emitting from nozzle of plastic condiment bottle instead of dick, and condiment bottle resting in plain sight because we forgot to hide it.

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Afterward Goldie and I change outfits, proceed with other business (Black Magic Sexfight):

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Goldie departs and disgraced pageant queen Carrie Prejean shows up (POV Class A Blowjob):

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Above photos (aside from whiskey bottle at top) reflect how I spent Monday, September 26, 2011.  No wonder I have occasional bouts of madness.. and hear peculiar tunes inside my head. Just think of all the videos I have produced over the decades – constantly changing outfits, characters, locations, etc. So far this week I have wrestled legendary Robin of LesFemmesFatales.com and am now preparing for a round of custom videos which feature very imaginative storylines. Tomorrow I shall return to post new photos and answer blog comments. Hope everyone is having a great week!

XO Tanya

 

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Tally Ho!

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Good morning,

Not long ago I noticed an amazing roadside statue in a very unlikely spot. Somehow I failed to make a mental note of its location.  Memories of the statue bedeviled me until I took a road trip specifically to find it, packing laptop in car because I needed to finish editing a photo gallery within the day. Statue eluded me for hours as I motored through Artesia, Bellflower, Hawaiian Gardens. Finally I stopped at a donut shop where I could back myself into a corner and work on nudie pics without anyone looking over my shoulder. That proved impossible. Every corner table had a window behind it. Tried Starbucks but people, phones, backpacks filled all seats. Fate guided me to a tavern even though I should have resisted. As sky grew dimmer outside I decided to splurge on a motel for the night (top pic.) King-size bed in room extended from nearly wall to wall. I ordered pizza, reclined on gigantic mattress, and tried to figure out how to operate television with 6000 channels. Later, immersed in laptop, a funny memory floated into my head: photographer Gucci Lamour (who shot three bedroom pics above) once told me that he always edited photos during his frequent plane flights from Los Angeles to Atlanta.  That still makes me chuckle.

The following morning, brimming with coffee and determination, I set out to find statue. Vaguely familiar landmark – whimsical signage on Tally Ho Apartments in Bellflower –  titillated my subconscious. I parked car and started walking. “Welcome to Cerritos” pillar greeted me as I crossed bridge over Los Angeles River (yes, LA does have a much-ignored river.) Looking downward I saw a covered wagon (!)  on an unpaved trail next to the bridge. Fascinated, I descended onto pathway, half expecting someone to bellow: “Stop! You’re on private property!” No one did. Wood and metal comprised vintage 4- wheeled vehicle and it had a spigot on one end. Maybe it used to carry water?

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Venturing back into civilization I stopped in my tracks. Sunlight glinted off muscular body of bronze deity just a few hundred feet in front of me! He looked even more spectacular than I remembered.  Let me say right now that these shots with $50 point-and-shoot camera do not do him justice:

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Face of statue has a downright haunting quality when viewed in person. Upon returning home I Googled  such terms as “Atlas in Cerritos”, “Poseidon in Cerritos”, “Greek God Artesia Blvd. Cerritos” until misguided searches yielded accurate info:

“Strength of the Maker” was created by Colorado artist Denny Haskew and depicts a Native American man bending a bow across his back. The bronze sculpture is meant to represent the strength of a higher power that created nature and man. It measures 60 inches high and 60 inches wide including the bow.

In creating the piece, Haskew, a member of the National Sculptors Guild, states, “’Strength of the Maker’ right from its title…to the strength shown even in the toes, is a statement of how I view my very inner belief. Nature and all things natural have always been of the utmost importance to me all my life. Believing in a God, the Great Spirit, Buddha, Mohammed, the Mysterious One and any other beings of greatness is important. I feel they all exude the same message, a life of oneness, of love, of honesty and a source of emotional strength. ‘Strength of the Maker’ is my visual version of how I see my Maker.”

Later I found artist Denny Haskew’s website. He does incredible work, including other pieces in and around Los Angeles that I will go visit. Wonder who commissioned “Statue of the Maker” – City of Cerritos or private corporation or   ? Check out unlikely locale:

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Hope everyone is having a great weekend! I will be staying home and hoping for rain. We had a little on Thursday night and our still-parched Southern California soil can use more.

XO Tanya

 

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New Moon

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After a day spent fighting crime superheroine Virtue crashed at budget motel before returning to Hall of Justice the following morning. (pics above.)

Actually, that didn’t really happen. On Monday afternoon I attended a memorial gathering for my friend Andy, drank too much afterward, and decided to book a motel room (in top pic you can see waning crescent moon – just a little pinprick of light in upper right-hand corner.) Awakened by raucous neighbors early the next day I dressed, headed to post office to mail a package that had been riding in my car for a week. What a great post office (second pic from top) – plaque identified it as a classic Moderne structure built in 1934. I wanted to photograph plaque but someone was sleeping in front of it. Bottom pic comes from a new, super-powered video at TanyaTV.com.

Andy’s family presided over a truly heartwarming memorial on December 7. Coincidentally, his brother read the same Dalai Lama quotation that I had posted earlier in the day. Many present shared stories about Andy and discussed ways to honor his legacy of kindness and passion. His family is hoping to set up a photojournalism scholarship in his name at Kansas State. Maybe a month or two ago the homeowners’ association at Andy’s residence (where I also live) removed a bench in front of the building because homeless people were sleeping on it. Andy had protested vociferously. Many here are now hoping to replace the bench and also add a plaque in his memory.

On the morning of Andy’s memorial I had contacted his friend WanderingEarl.com to let him know of Andy’s passing. Already alerted through the Facebook grapevine Earl had posted this awesome pic from a trip to India. Naturally, Andy is holding a camera and occupying the center of conversation. Even in a foreign land he retained the gift of gab 🙂

I am adjusting to my friend’s absence although I think of him often. Time to resume normal activities. New moon is rising on December 11. Guess that means I should start posting nudie pics again 😉

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Superheroine Virtue has been feeling a little beat up lately (Twisted Demon) but she will recover. So shall l. Off to take a shower – be back in a few minutes to answer blog comments. Hope everyone is having a great week!

XO Tanya

 

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Andy

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Good morning,

Today I will be attending a memorial for my friend Andy. He and I first met about ten years ago when I moved into my current residence. I left the building but returned in 2013. Frequently Andy and I watched football, got coffee, enjoyed monthly art walks in our neighborhood, or just sat and talked. Recently he had seemed a bit restless. “What do I do for the world?” he asked one night while pacing his living room floor. “I mean.. what do I do for anybody.. aside from making money for my boss?” He seemed to be imploring the Universe for an answer rather than just speaking to me. “You are positive within your sphere.” I replied. “Each day you have a warm smile and a kind word for everyone. You brighten the world around you. Just think if everyone did that.” He stopped and blinked, as if I had unexpectedly tossed something in his face. “Thank you for saying that.” he said after a long pause.

On November 8, 2015 Andy and I met for coffee at a joint down the street. He thrust his phone at me rather insistently, saying: “Read this.” On the screen appeared the Dalai Lama image and quotation which I have now placed at the top of this post. After getting home I asked him to e-mail it to me. Twenty days later Andy died of a massive heart attack. To my awareness he had not been experiencing any health issues. In fact, he trained religiously at a local Gold’s Gym and rode his bicycle everywhere. The Dalai Lama quotation seems fitting here because Andy truly heeded the admonition in those words. He worked a regular job but also took time off to travel and photograph the world. His passions included the Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas State Wildcats (Andy’s alma mater), Breaking Bad, The Big Lebowski, and Bernie Sanders. He approached life with good cheer and burning intensity. In a recent conversation Andy expressed tremendous admiration for a friend, Wandering Earl, who navigates the globe and documents unusual adventures. I think Andy aspired to that lifestyle.

Andy, thank you for your friendship. Your kindness, sincerity, and great sense of humor invigorated many of my days and I will try to carry your thoughtful, generous spirit and unique perspective with me. Although I feel very saddened by your absence I like to think that you are now embarking on yet another great exploration. Say hello if you can, my friend. Hope to see you again.

Somehow I have written all these words with little mention of Andy’s overriding purpose in this earthly life. Please take a moment to view his amazing body of photographic work. The images speak for themselves.

 

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Passing of Seasons

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Good afternoon,

Many thanks for all the birthday wishes. I have not yet answered waiting blog comments but I really appreciate the thoughtfulness of those who sent a greeting. Huge hugs to Mikey for my lovely, new cream-colored knit dress and replenished stock of Subway gift cards. I shall toast you every morning with the free coffee that Subway graciously provides with each breakfast sandwich. Exuberant thanks to the anonymous individual who surprised me with an extremely generous Clips4Sale Tribute. Muuuaaahhh!!! By the way, I have several more boxes waiting for me at my mailbox and hope to pick them up today. Thanks again to everyone who once again made my birthday very, very special.

As seems to have become standard in recent years I planned to do a shoot on my birthday. In bottom pic you can see the photos that STJ released to promote my scheduled match with Niki Lee Young. Around 8:30am I was just sitting down to a Subway breakfast sandwich when STJ texted that Niki was running late due to flight delays. We agreed to reschedule for the following morning. At loose ends I called my friend Rainier, former manager of the Wild Goose nightclub where I danced for many years. Thus commenced a long, liberal day of heavy drinking. Just tried to recollect our journey and realized that we only hit two spots: The Castle (local tavern with history of employing very attractive bartenders, including wrestler Tina) and a Mexican restaurant in Playa del Rey where we encountered Santa Claus (top three pics.) Finally I succumbed to the festivities and fell asleep on Rainier’s couch.

How would I fare in the ring with Niki on the morning after such a celebratory day? I dragged myself from sleep, showered, shaved my legs, applied mascara, and read The Lost Rocks (thanks, Heartland Friend!) until STJ texted to say that Niki had cancelled again. Honestly, I had kind of expected that. Yesterday I spent the day in bed.

I can’t wind up this post without mentioning that my friend and neighbor Andy died of a massive heart attack on November 28. I learned of his passing on December 2 and am struggling to process the reality of his absence. Andy’s Honda still sits outside our building , new parking tickets accumulating on its windshield with each calendar day. I believe that Andy’s family will arrive this weekend to sort through his personal effects and make all arrangements. Rest in peace, my friend, I will do my best to cheer the Chiefs to victory against Oakland this Sunday. Now I am crying for the first time. I just can’t believe that you are gone.

XO Tanya

 

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Morning Mayhem

Haha.. joke’s on me. After yesterday’s post I crawled into bed, shut my eyes.. and then realized that I needed to rise at 4am to move my car out of a street cleaning zone. So much for getting lots of rest. I do love these hours of the morning though. Sun is rising outside my window as I type these words. Just remembered that last week I promised to present some photos of awesome new wrestler Shia:

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On morning of Shia shoot (which occurred on a Sunday) I had floated through traffic and arrived at STJ’s place long before appointed hour. Not wanting to descend on him too early I sat in my car and, true to lifelong habit, began scribbling on a notepad.  I later found these words lurking inside a folder where I keep model release forms:

Leaves blow, church bells toll. Absurdly early, I park car a few blocks from STJ’s ring and watch two guys cleaning large, plastic container on their front lawn. Family with toddler in tow casts suspicious looks in my direction, enters different house. Sipping coffee I peruse script for thirtieth time, quite well-acquainted with egotistical opening dialogue and my later comeuppance at hands of ruthless opponent..

Either Apollo or CatfightBlogger had recently asked exactly what I do in the hours before a shoot. Above sentences reflect the rather banal reality. Wish they contained more excitement but I prefer to enter the ring feeling calm and composed. Incidentally, I rarely document the (non)events of my life as they simultaneously unfold. Preceding narrative reminds me of a Family Guy episode in which Peter was doing precisely that. Think Lois punched him in the face.

XO Tanya

P.S. That top pic looks a bit reminiscent of another episode..

 

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Conjunction Junction

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Good evening,

Just returned from a 24-hour jaunt to Ontario, California – a location far enough away to warrant booking a motel room. Friends kindly picked me up yesterday around noon. We slowly progressed to our destination, stopping at bars and restaurants along the way. Another pal was expecting us between 5 and 6pm that evening. At one point, in the midst of nachos and beer, I  inquired about the time. “It’s maybe 4 o’clock or so.” someone answered. I glanced through  a window and said: “But it’s dark outside and Monday Night Football has already started.” Everyone present simultaneously froze. We bagged up food, paid bill, stopped at a liquor store to buy a peace offering for host who had been expecting us for over an hour. Upon arrival at his house festivities quickly resumed. Late in the night host and I commenced a game of Scrabble. We were playing for blood and no one else wanted to participate. Ultimately I suffered a 229-230 loss. During the game such unlikely words as “quiz” and “weariest” emerged. Anyone familiar with Scrabble knows the improbability of building an 8-letter entry on the board or of fitting both “q” and “z” into one play. That game will linger in my memory forever. Afterward a friend drove me to my motel. “I really don’t feel good about leaving you here.” he commented as we peered into the frigid blackness surrounding Knights Inn Ontario. “Don’t worry, I’ve stayed in way worse neighborhoods than this.” I reassured him. He insisted that I take his knife (third pic from top) and then waved goodbye as I accessed my room on the second floor. Only after he left did I realize that the entryway had no lock. Not kidding. It sported one of those chains which enable you to partially crack open the door and look outside but the actual deadbolt did not work. Dark comedy continued when every hour upon the hour huge locomotive trains blew their horns as they passed through town. This morning I learned that an uncontrolled intersection of railroad tracks/roadway lies just a few hundred feet behind the motel, thus obligating train engineers to blast a warning signal when making their approach.

All in all I had a great mini-vacation even though I didn’t sleep much. Below shot captures my reaction when I saw final Scrabble tally in my friend’s living room:

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I have already demanded a rematch. (Pic actually comes from upcoming video entitled Twisted Demon.) Hope everyone is enjoying the first days of December. I shall resurface here in the morning after some needed rest in my own bed 😉

XO Tanya

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