Jul 09

Barnett to make good on grand final bet

The West Australian Premier may have jumped on the Dockers bandwagon during the lead up to the grand final but he will visibly support the Hawks on Tuesday when he makes good on a bet.

Colin Barnett will don a Hawks jumper in the Hay Street Mall after Fremantle’s defeat lost him a bet with Victorian Premier Dennis Napthine.

The deal they made will also see Mr Barnett handing out brochures spruiking Melbourne as a tourism destination.

While Mr Barnett said he was disappointed the West Australian AFL team did not come out with the Premiership on the weekend the Dockers had performed well to get so far in the competition.

He said he is confident the team will do well next year.

“I am from that old-fashioned school that sometimes you’ve gotta lose one to win one,” Mr Barnett said.

He is expected to go through with his side of the bet at midday on Tuesday.

Mr Barnett said he was hopeful that the Dockers planned move to Cockburn could still go ahead despite the club having to reapply for funding to the Coalition government.

“Any new government’s got the right to go back and look at commitments that’ve been made,” he said.

Mr Barnett said he believed the project would still go ahead but may take longer than initially expected.

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Jul 09

This year’s top Christmas toys

Christmas toys are not child’s play: this billion-dollar industry starts gearing towards the gift-giving season from early January. So what will the marketing machines be likely to deliver under the tree this year?

Editor of industry magazine Toy and Hobby Retailer, Fiona Cameron, says toys are a robust business that can thrive in any economic climate and peaks every year in the lead-up to Christmas.

“People will stop spending on their own hobbies before they stop spending on their kids,” she says.

The industry has two distinct sectors in Australia: large retailers and independent toy stores.

“The big retailers have major toy sales in the middle of the year with a big push on lay-bys for Christmas,” Cameron says.

Thirty per cent of the major retailer toy trade globally is driven by licensing deals, based on television shows and films, computer games and apps – a market driven successfully by huge international marketing machines, Cameron says.

“The independents tend to go for more unusual European toys and more traditional top quality brands.”

Cameron says there are four distinct categories of customer when it comes to toy preference.

“There are some people who will only buy licensed toys for their children because they liked the movie. Then other people say, ‘No, I want eco-friendly, traditional wooden toys’. Then some who will buy a little of each,” she says.

“Then you’ve got the kids themselves who go to school, go to their friends’ places and see other toys. Kids don’t necessarily want what their parents want to get.”

Merchandise manager Jeff Drayton of Australia’s largest independent retailer, Kidstuff, says picking the next trend in toys is an important part of the business.

Part of this process is reviewing toy manufacturers’ marketing schedules – “It is rare that an item with significant dollars on television spend on it won’t perform,” Drayton says – though it is never an exact science.

“A lot of it is gut feel. It’s about building on success from the past. Look for the elements that are popular and combine them and you have a pretty safe bet.”

One product that meets this criteria that Drayton expects will abound this Christmas is the Whipple.

“It’s building on success of the past: girls make their own cupcakes and jewellery accessories and they combine that with the global marketing support.”

Drayton says this year’s Christmas will have references to the past, with Zelfs lined up to be a popular choice – a throwback to the troll dolls of the 80s. Another is Glitzi Globes where children can make their own snow globes.

There are a suite of timeless brands that are always popular at Christmas time, Drayton says, including Lego and the nuts-and-bolts set Meccano.

However there is a shift away from the classic Barbie, with this year’s doll Lottie Doll drawing parents’ dollars.

“The Lottie Dolls are more anatomically correct, it’s about girls feeling good about who they are, and their dolls doing things they do, like going to the park, not going to the disco,” Drayton says.

Deirdre Mcdonough, manager of independent toy store in Melbourne’s south-east, Toy Soldier, says the old school Sylvanian Families, a toy that has been around for almost 30 years, is experiencing an enormous resurgence and will be a popular Christmas gift.

“I’ve never seen anything like it,” she says. “They are good quality, quaint all-animal families. It’s just kids playing houses or hospitals.”

Mcdonough’s tip for most popular new toy is the Micro Scooter, which has the option of offering two wheels to stabilise younger children and can be adapted through a suite of accessories as the child becomes more independent.

“They are a phenomenon. It’s giving you a product that can take you from 18 months to probably about five years.”

The other big sellers in Toy Soldier are the perennial favourites from parents who have an interest in education, Mcdonough says.

“For girls, particularly in the craft area of six to 15, Djeco is hugely popular – it’s our best selling craft by a long way. With the boys at Christmas, you’ll find you’ll get a lot of Green Science, with experiments using recyclable products.”

These learning-based products are gaining popularity as people move away from the iPads, Mcdonough says.

“People used to think it was cute for kids to use an iPad, but there is a real swing back towards the traditional,” she says.


1.     Are there any educational benefits?

2.     Is the toy age appropriate?

3.     Are there any recommendations or reviews?

4.     Is it designed and made well? Will it last? Could it be passed around the family or down through generations?

5.     Will other siblings, mum and dad or grandparents want to play? Toys are great when the whole family can join in.

Source: www.kidstuff苏州美甲美睫培训.au

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Jul 09

Letter: Sex education

VICTORIAN state school students aged 13 and 14 are being taught to ‘analyse pornography’ in sex education classes.

It’s part of a program to promote ‘respectful relationships’.

We’re assured that the classes don’t involve showing the students pornography.

Not necessary. These children have phones giving access to x-rated videos 24 hours a day.

So what was that about ‘respectful’ relationships?

Sanity would demand that sex outside marriage be condemned – not a very fashionable thought.

‘Respectful’ at most means not raping the girl but ‘negotiating’ with her what she is ‘comfortable with’.

Would that be when she is sober or when she is drunk at a party?

Arnold Jago,Mildura

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Jul 09

Kitchen spy: Charlotte Wood

Although Charlotte Wood is best known as a novelist, her love of food and cooking led her away from fiction last year with the publication of Love and Hunger: Thoughts on the gift of food. Part memoir, part cookbook, it’s also a compilation of essays about what she describes as “the emotional and symbolic meaning of cooking for people you love”. The Sydneysider also writes about food at her popular blog howtoshuckanoyster苏州美甲美睫培训.

My toolkit

Otto stovetop espresso maker. Full Circle Suds Up Dish Brush with biodegradable, replaceable parts. I couldn’t live without my Magimix or Green Pan Rotterdam saute pan. It’s non-stick, but doesn’t give off dangerous fumes. Salt pots I bought in the insect market in Shanghai.

Most unforgettable wine

2012 SC Pannell Bianco from McLaren Vale.

I’m drinking

I need at least three strong coffees in the morning before I am fully functional. I’ve started buying ”bar 6” coffee from Caffe Bianchi (available online). I just drink ordinary black tea occasionally, but probably drink more peppermint. Wine? Kalleske Clarry’s GSM (grenache shiraz mourvedre blend). I also love a Ulithorne white, Corsus Vermentinu 2010, made by McLaren Vale winemaker Rose Kentish at her winery in Corsica.

Saturday night tipple

An Americano cocktail (Campari, sweet vermouth and soda with a slice of orange).


I love Maggie Beer, Nigel Slater, Karen Martini, Jamie Oliver and Matthew Evans, because all of them have a similar earthy approach to cooking. It’s simple with lots of good vegetables, nothing tricky and the ethos of just put it all out on a communal plate and let everyone dig in.

Most memorable meal

It was in a village in Spain on the road between Valladolid and Ciudad Real. It was a boiling hot day and we pulled off the road to a small bar in a dusty town. The bar was dark and cool, a few men were sitting around watching futbol on the telly. The bar had a small refrigerated glass cabinet with a few tapas in it – extremely simple. The one I remember most was half a hard-boiled egg topped with a prawn, maybe some kind of mayo on it somewhere. We had a Spanish beer and the waiter pulled the glasses out of the freezer. It was perfect food for the weather. The place was so invitingly cool, with nothing pretentious or fancy about it at all. One of the best food experiences ever, because it was as much about the country, the weather and the people as what we put in our mouths.

Secret vice

Lindt chilli chocolate.

The staples

My pantry Currants because I put them in everything: salads, tagines, casseroles. Murray River salt. Cobram Estate olive oil because it’s local, as well as Lomondo olive oil from Mudgee for dressings and drizzling. Giuseppe Giusti balsamic vinegar because it is delicious and not too acidic. Patrice Newell’s purple garlic and a giant jar of Dijon mustard.

My fridge The only cheese I always have is parmesan. Pepe Saya butter. Burrawong Gaian pasture-raised chooks, skirt steak and beef brisket on the bone, pasture-raised pork cutlets, all meat from Feather and Bone. Pistachios, pine nuts, almonds for snacking, salads and crumbles.


A chopping board made for me by my brother-in-law, Simon. I use it about five times a day.

Food discovery

Pomegranate honey, which I use in dressings. It’s great on yoghurt and in almost any recipe requiring honey. Just putting pomegranate seeds into honey turns it a lovely deep pink and thins it a bit. I got the recipe from the Nourish Me blog.

I’m cooking

Last dinner at home Skirt steak I’d had sitting in olive oil and rosemary for about five hours before grilling it. I served it with roast pumpkin and a very yummy Maggie Beer recipe for green beans with red onion and preserved lemons.

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Jul 09

Woolies bites the bullet and dumps vibrators

“Diabolical”: Facing a boycott, Woolworths quickly removed the battery-powered product. Photo: Eamonn DuffWoolworths became the first Australian supermarket chain to sell battery-powered sex toys. But the gamble is over after less than a fortnight.

Shoppers were able to purchase their weekly groceries and sex aids under one roof after the retailer unveiled a new Vibrating Bullet ”clitoral stimulator” across 900 stores.

While manufacturer Durex hailed the controversial move as a ”game changer for the industry”, the ”fresh food people” have now performed an extraordinary U-turn, clearing thousands of the products off shelves on Friday after learning, via The Sun Herald, that a leading Christian group had called for a nationwide boycott of its stores.

Roslyn Phillips, research officer with Christian advocacy group FamilyVoice Australia, said sex toys belong in sex shops.

”Society is already suffering massive problems with young children being over-sexualised … this move by Woolies just makes the problem worse,” Ms Phillips said.

”I, personally, would not patronise Woolies while this situation exists and I encourage everyone else to boycott them too. I hope parents will let Woolies know how they feel and I hope they tell them they’ll continue to shop elsewhere until these products are removed.”

While rival Coles stocks a small vibrating ring that slips over a condom, Woolworths decided to boldly go where no supermarket has gone before, by selling battery-powered vibrators. Designed to give ”5 hours of quivering pleasure”, the ”discreet and powerful” device costs $24.95 and was positioned within the existing sexual health section that includes condoms and lubricants.

However, the same aisle features many family-oriented products such as toothpastes, shampoos and shower gels.

In many stores the vibrators themselves sat within arm’s reach of popular children’s products.

The Australian Family Association’s national spokeswoman, Terri Kelleher, said for that reason, and others, the sale of vibrators was ”diabolically wrong”.

”Do we really need to be explaining to our children what a vibrator is whilst walking down the supermarket aisle?” Ms Kelleher said.

”It completely undermines that parental prerogative as to when and how you raise these sorts of things with children.”

Fiona Patten, president of the Australian Sex Party, agrees. She said: ”While I have no problem with anyone selling vibrators, I think they should be sold from an age-restricted area.”

But sexologist Nikki Goldstein argued that grocery stores already promote safe sex through the sale of condoms, ”so why shouldn’t they also promote pleasurable sex through sex toys?

”Why is it so offensive?” she asked. ”We are taught to view such products as dirty, naughty, shameful and outside the boundaries of normality, and that’s wrong. A vibrator is no different to a vitamin in that it does something positive for your body.”

Dr Goldstein believes the introduction of small vibrators should be accepted in supermarkets.

”This is a discreet product that is discreetly packaged. I don’t think it will open the floodgates.”

A spokesman for Woolworths confirmed an email was sent to all store managers on Friday afternoon advising them to withdraw the products immediately. By 6pm the vibrators had vanished from many stores.

”Woolworths has taken the decision to not offer the new Durex vibrator,” the spokesman said.

”This is a product that is more appropriate for pharmacies than supermarkets.”

In 2007, Britain’s high street retailer Boots scrapped its Durex sex toy range after public criticism. Last year, Boots launched a second attempt at introducing the same toys but copped a further backlash after an incident involving a mother who found her two sons playing with a vibrator at the checkout.

Durex said in a statement on Saturday: ”Products that assist Australians to have great sex should be made easily available to consumers through a variety of channels.”

What do you think of Woolworths’ decision to stop selling the vibrators? Read what others had to say and join the conversation in our forum. 

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Jul 09

Gallops identities at BJC lunch

MELBOURNE Cup winning trainer Lee Freedman and top jockey Brett Prebble are among the special guests at this month’s Gallic Club lunch at BendigoJockey Club.

Part of the proceeds from theevent on Tuesday, October 22 will be to support Cystic Fibrosis Victoria and Rotary Bendigo Next Generation.

Also on the guest list is apprentice jockey Harry Coffey, 17, who has had cystic fibrosis since birth and ridden more than 70 winners.

Nick Williams will be at the lunch to provide an update on the Macedon Lodge team’s atack on the spring carnival.

Tickets to the two-course lunch are $70. Payment to be made at time of booking. For tickets, phonethe BJC on 5448 4209 by October 14.

ECSTATIC: Brett Prebble after riding Green Moon to victory in last year’s Melbourne Cup. Picture: GETTY

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Jul 09


In deep: Rooty Hill RSL Youth Swim Club has moved to Emerton Leisure Centre after nearly 40 years at Mount Druitt Pool. The club, which will be taking registrations through October, is open for swimmers 8-18 who can swim 50 metres. Training: Wednesdays, 4.30-5.30pm; Thursdays 5-6pm; time trials on Sundays from 9am (pictured). Membership is $ 80 for the first child and $75 for siblings. Details: Tony, 0419 247 619.■Erskine Park Community Centre: Tuesdays: Yoga for beginners, 9.30am, $6 per class. Wednesdays: Seniors Social Group, 11am-2pm, $8/meeting. Fridays: Sewing group, 10am-12.30pm, $12 per class. Fridays: (in school terms) Youth Drop, 57 Peppertree Drive, Erskine Park, 3-5pm, ages 12-17, fee.

Details: 9834 2708.

■St Clair Youth and Neighbourhood Centre: Mondays: Patchwork Classes 1-3.30pm, $12 per class. Tuesdays: Gentle Exercise class for over 40s, 11.30, $5 a class. Tuesdays (fortnightly): Fab 40s Women’s Social Group, $2 a week, noon, meet fortnightly. Wednesday: Heartmoves Gentle Exercise Class for over 40s, 11.30am, $5 a class. Wednesdays: ESL tutoring for adults 9.30-10.30am, free. Thursdays: Kids’ Arcade, St Clair Youth Centre, 8-12yrs, $5 per child, 3.30-5pm

Details: 9834 2708.

■Learning Lounge: Free after school homework help and tutoring service. St Clair Youth Centre, 97a Cook Parade, every Tuesday afternoon in school terms. High school students: 3.15-4.15pm. Primary school students: (grades 3-6) 4.30-6pm (bookings essential). Starting date: October 15.

Details: 9834 2708 or [email protected]

■Prostate Cancer Support Group: Meets third Monday each month, Lecture Room 1, Learning and Development Unit, Nepean Hospital, 6.30pm. Guest speakers and open forums.

Contact: Alan Moran, 4730 3122.

■Emerton Action Group: Formed for Emerton residents and extended to others. If we can assist you, direct inquiries to secretary Anne on 9628 0864.

■Sustaining the Meadow: Claremont Meadows Gardening Group meets third Thursday each month at Claremont Meadows Community Centre, 10am-noon. Gold coin donation. Topics include growing vegetables from seed, container growing, maintaining fertility, backyard fruit growing, backyard chooks. Details: Jodie, 9673 2169.

■St Marys View Club: Meets fourth Wednesday each month, St Marys RSL. Fun and friendship for women of all ages.

Details: Judith, 8807 7702.

■South Creek (St Marys) Probus Club: Are you looking for an active retirement? Do you enjoy outings? Come to one of our meetings third Wednesday of the month, 10.30am, St Marys RSL, Mamre Road.

Contact: Gary 0414 468 773.

■Op Shops: Emerton Shopping Centre (Jersey Road). Grab a bargain while supporting the WASH House. Weekdays, 9am-4pm, Saturday, 9am-2pm.

Details: Jenny 9628 5570.

■Rooty Hill and District Seniors Computing Club: Classes for beginners, advanced and internet. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

Details: Margaret, 9864 6528.

■Mt Druitt Commuters Improvement Group: Making a difference on transport services and infrastructure in Mt Druitt. Meetings last Saturday each month, 10.30am-12.30pm, West Tradies Meeting Room, 247 Woodstock Avenue, Dharruk.

Details: Angie, 9835 1408.

■Mt Druitt Probus Club: For retirees with active minds who enjoy outings and speakers. Meets third Wednesday each month 10.30am at Rooty Hill RSL.

Details: Tony 0412 416 727, Doug 9628 3698.

■St Clair Youth and Neighbourhood Centre: JP services Monday to Thursday, 9am-2pm, Autumnleaf Neighbourhood Centre.

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Jul 09

Navy centenary to reignite memories of arrival of first Australian fleet into Sydney Harbour

HMAS Sydney when the first Australian fleet sailed into Sydney on October 4, 1914. Charles Andrews formerly of Jannali who was aboard HMAS Sydney when the first Australian fleet sailed into Sydney on October 4, 1914.

The historic photos were supplied by his grandson Peter Gough who is pictured with his daughter Jodi and her two boys, Samuel and Matthew. Picture: Chris Lane

Charles James Andrews was a crew member aboard HMAS Sydney.

AS AUSTRALIA celebrates the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the first Australian naval fleet into Sydney Harbour (October 4-13), it will be a personal milestone for one family from Sutherland Shire.

Peter Gough, 67, of Lilli Pilli will be remembering his grandfather, Charles James Andrews, who was a young crew member on HMAS Sydney when it sailed into the harbour on October 4, 1913.

“My grandfather Charles Andrews (1892-1980) ran away from home at 14 to get away from his stepmother,” Mr Gough said this week.

“He joined the army in 1910 and transferred to the navy, what was then called the fledgling Commonwealth and Naval Forces, although he referred to it as the Imperial Australian Navy.”

In 1911, Charles Andrews served on the HMS Challenger, a British cruiser which trained Australian navy personnel.

“My grandfather and his crewmates arrived in England in 1912 and were trained on British ships to take over the first Australian naval ships being built in Britain.

“He was part of the crew of HMAS Sydney which they brought back to Sydney.

“He was on board when HMAS Sydney engaged and destroyed the German cruiser SMS Emden off the coast of the Cocos-Keeling Islands on November 9, 1914.

“My grandfather was the shipwright of the Sydney; the Germans beached the Emden rather than let it sink.”

Mr Gough still has photographs taken when the Australians boarded the scuttled Emden.

Mr Andrews married Dorothy in 1918 and he left the Royal Australian Navy in 1919.

Their one child was Elva.

“Charles ran his own trucking business, one of the first in the city,” Mr Gough said.

“During World War II the petrol shortages affected his business so he became a tally clerk on the wharfs.

“He retired and lived a comfortable, happy life at Jannali, passing away in 1980 at 88.”

Mr Gough said his grandfather was a loving and gentle man who spoke very little of his navy service.

But he has left many mementoes for his family.

“My grandfather kept an amazing collection of memorabilia of his life in the navy including a handwritten diary,” Mr Gough said.

“It is wonderful that he is recognised for what he and his shipmates did all that time ago; they deserve it.”

Charles Andrews’ daughter, Elva Gough, nee Andrews, died in early September at 91.

Mr Gough was her only child and he has two children, a son David who lives in Brazil, and daughter Jodi at Sylvania.

Mr Gough, his daughter and grandchildren will be recalling their relative and his life during the 100th anniversary celebrations of the naval fleet’s first arrival.

“The navy has sent me invitations to join in the celebrations on the 4th and 5th, so I am pleased to be able to represent my grandfather at this grand event,” Mr Gough said.


More than 50 nations have been invited to send a warship and/or tall ship to take part in the International Fleet Review to be held on October 3-11. On Friday, October 4, the warships will enter Sydney Harbour during the day, accompanied by air displays.



VISITORS to the Royal Australian Navy’s International Fleet Review are reminded trains and buses will be the best way to move around the city.

The celebration, to be attended by Prince Harry, coincides with other major events, including the NRL grand final and One Direction concert.

Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian said anyone planning to enjoy the celebrations should use one of the extra 5000 public transport services as many roads will be closed and extra clearways will be in place in Sydney’s CBD and around the harbour.

‘‘This is going to be the biggest celebration on Sydney Harbour in 100 years and 1.7 million people are expected to participate,’’ Ms Berejiklian said.

Road closures and special event clearways start Thursday and some continue until October 11.

Are you looking forward to the fleet arriving?

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Jul 09

Tablet cuts red tape for police

New technology: Sergeant Daniel Moore from Hurstville police has been using the mobile app. Picture: Jane DysonHURSTVILLE and Sutherland police stations have been trialling a new mobile app that enables officers to issue traffic infringement notices through a tablet device.

The app called “mobile notices” was developed by a small team of frontline police officers and is being used by traffic and general duties officers on 20 Apple iPad mini tablets over four weeks at five sites.

Police Minister Michael Gallacher said the new technology would reduce red tape and eliminate paperwork for officers.

“The trial aims to reduce the excessive time officers will need filling out paperwork at the end of their shifts,” Mr Gallacher said.

“It allows fast, seamless and automated data entry on the side of the road, which is then sent to ‘the cloud’.

“All of the complex tasks including PDF infringement creation, electronic service by email or MMS, and integration with the State Debt Recovery Office are performed automatically.”

Project manager Karen McCarthy said the application was well-liked by officers and the community.

“It increases operational hours and allows police officers to be more productive,” she said.

“Even those who are not very tech savvy find it really easy to use.”

Mr Gallacher said a business case would be developed to gather funding approval if the trial was considered successful.

Do you think the tablets are a good idea?

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Jul 09

Small boxes convey love

Thinking of others: The Kids Club at International Community Fellowship has an early start on Operation Christmas Child. Picture: John VeagePEOPLE at Hurstville last year sent their love to children affected by war, poverty or disaster in shoeboxes — almost 1000 shoeboxes.

This year, the International Community Fellowship at Hurstville has its sights set on on exceeding the 1000 mark.

Work has already started, with kids, families, schools, workmates and community groups filling boxes with goodies as a part of Operation Christmas Child, a worldwide effort organised by Samaritan’s Purse International.

Project co-ordinator Winston Gauder said that last year eight million Christmas gift boxes were distributed in 130 countries.

The idea is to cover an average-size shoebox and lid with colourful paper and fill it with gifts (see ideas below). Because of custom regulations, some items are excluded, such as food, lollies, medicines, vitamins, toothpaste, soft gels or liquids.

Place the boy/girl label on the box and tick the age group of the child. You may include a picture, a drawing or a little message.

If possible, include $9 in a sealed envelope marked “shipping cost”. Drop the boxes at The Community Centre, 91 Queens Road, opposite Hurstville Library, 9am to 1pm on Sundays until November 10.

Details: Dr Gauder, 9773 3812 orhttp://www.icfbetterlife苏州美甲美睫培训/


Something to love: teddy bear, doll, soft toy

Something for school: exercise book, pencil case, pens, pencils, colouring pencils, sharpener, eraser, chalk

Something to wear: T-shirt, shorts, underwear, cap, beanie, sandals, thongs

Something to play with: tennis ball, cars, skipping rope, marbles, musical instrument,

yo-yo, slinky, finger puppets, wind up torch (no battery-operated items)

Something for personal hygiene: soap and face washer, toothbrush, hairbrush, comb, hair-clips, scrunchies (no toothpaste)

Something special: carry bag, sunglasses, bangles, necklaces, craft kits, stickers, note or picture of yourself

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