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Curious Tuesday: Love

Posted in Inspiration by dendoo on June 15, 2010


kiss

Tell us about your most incredible romance.

Ugh…is it bad that I haven’t had an “incredible romance”?  No it’s not, it just means that I have more life to live and more love to experience.  Sorry yalls, no juicy stories here.

Bonus rounds:
Have you ever been the “other woman” (or “other man”)?  No.  HELL TO THE NAW.
What is the craziest thing you have done in the name of love?  Forgiven someone.
Is there someone who you think of as the one who got away?  No.
Do you believe in true love?  No.
Have you ever experienced love at first sight?  No.

Lol so answering this week’s Curious Tuesday questions got me wondering:  am I super unromantic or am I too realistic when it comes to love?  Maybe that is why I don’t have super long or super successful relationships.  My relationships are filled with love, or whatever love is at that moment, but in the end I always start feeling like I’m moving in another direction and the person isn’t moving in that direction with me.  The relationship ends in a friendly vibe but when I reflect on it I always feel like I was doing love because it’s expected of me.   You know?  It’s expected that you will be in a relationship and be lovey dovey.  Maybe that ISN’T me.

I’m starting to feel like my relationships are too childish for my liking.  So am I on to dating older men?  We’ll see but for now I am back to enjoying being single.  I swear my dears, single is good if you give it a chance.

Do you believe in true love?  Do you have crazy love stories and love connections?  Do you have advice for me??

Oh! I missed the last Curious Tues. so I threw it in.  My answers are much more lengthier than this week’s!

1. Would you ever get cosmetic surgery? If not, why not? If yes, what would you want done?
I think if I got surgery I would die, I have a fear of unnecessary surgery.  But if I got surgery I would probably enhance my booty area…lol.  Black girls know the booty is important!  But on the real note I’d rather fix whatever imperfections I have without surgery.

2. What is “your drink”?
I love mojitos, I love any chocolatey drink but I don’t have a drink.  I drink what is there as long as it doesn’t taste like fruit.

3. What are your five fashion essentials?  My essentials aren’t crazazy cause I think essentials should be essential:

  • Plain coloured tees – they go with EVERYTHING, they make your wardrobe stretch and they’re cheap!
  • A bright, oversized purse – This can double as a weekender, it adds colour to your outfit, and it carries all
  • Black pumps – Tyra tells all wannabe models adding a pair of basic pumps can add oomph to your outfit (so true!)
  • A good (sexy) bra – ladies get fitted, stick to your size and treat yourself to a frilly cute bra.  Instant sex appeal!
  • Sexy pencil skirts – A pencil skirt is so basic, it’s flattering and it always makes me feel sexy.  Try it!

4. Do you have any tattoos? What are they? If not, do you want some? What would you like to get?
I have a square on the inside of my wrist and I plan to get a lot more squares all over my body.

5. What is something most people don’t know about you?
I’m terrified of butterflies.  TERRIFIED.  Have you seen those things?  They’re just disgusting.

much love, dendoo

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Condom use is Sexy

Posted in Inspiration, misc by dendoo on June 14, 2010

Well hello there!
I’ve had quite an adventurous time away but it’s back to the blog and back to sharing and caring.

About two weeks ago I watched a local show here that focuses on issues within my country’s community.  The issue being discussed that night was on the issue of condom use.  Well…let’s just say I didn’t totally agree with what was being said.  I was so disappointed I made a video about it AND wrote the show an email.  Take a look and read!

And this is what I wrote to the show:

Hello,

I watched your show last night dealing with HIV/AIDS within our community.  I am pleased that you highlighted women in your show.  Overall it was okay but there were some points where I was in total disbelief and disagreement with what you and your guests were saying.

On condom use:
This is where I had a huge problem with what you were telling us.  Yes it is true condom use is not popular within the TCI community or the Caribbean community for that matter but I think this was a place where you, as someone who is seen as an educated Black woman with various experiences, have an opportunity to help change that.

I can not recollect the exact term used by you and your guests but it was something along the lines of “it would be wrong of us to ask our partner to use a condom” in the sense that since it is our culture to do without we would be asking so much of our partner, it would be against culture and prat ice to ask our partner to use a condom.

I STRONGLY disagree.  Culture is not always right.  Practices are not always right.  It was practice to throw excrement right outside centuries ago, it was practice to not wash hands before an operation or sterilize instruments before and after operating, but these practices were WRONG.  It is prat ice within our community to not use condoms but that practice is WRONG.

I agree, within the Caribbean women are usually the strong force of a relationship.  I like to believe that women have the power to be movers and shakers.  We can let a man think he is charge but a strong woman knows how to quietly pull the strings.  I will not enter a relationship unless I can use condoms.  I don’t think it’s wrong to present this to my partner, I could care less if it goes against culture because at the end of the day I know culture will not help me if I get a STD or HIV or AIDS.

I don’t think I need to negotiate the use of condoms
.  Instead of encouraging our women to be passive in their womanhood you and your guests should have encouraged woman to take a bold step and look the issue in the eye.  There is nothing wrong with looking a partner in the eye and saying I use condoms and that is what I require in my sex life.  For the woman who does not like the female condom or is more comfortable with the male condom I think it is better to encourage her to be proactive and straightforward with her choices instead of tiptoeing around her man and asking in a submissive way if it’s okay that we use condoms.

If we can start changing our mentality about these things we can start making strides beyond our imagination.  I can’t understand how we can empower women if we’re telling them to be little kittens.  If our men are expecting us to be lionesses in the bedroom let’s start by being a lioness about our sexuality and our sexual life.

I believe culture is dictating too much of a woman’s life.
Actually I touched on this on my blog a bit.  I attacked it from the angle of what is expected of me culturally as a young woman and what I expect for myself.  If you like you can read it here: https://dendoo.wordpress.com/2010/06/01/youre-not-a-traditional-girl/

I think with all the different cultures and backgrounds we have in such a small community a woman, regardless of where she is from and her beliefs, may feel forced to keep up or conform to her partners beliefs.  A lot of people, men and women, living here do not feel it is a problem to have more than one partner AND to have unprotected sex with various partners.  However, if a woman can feel secure in who she is she will not only demand monogamy but she will also demand higher standards in her partner.  So you want to withold money?  Then keep it.  She should demand higher standards within herself.  It is only then a woman can be free from the perceptions, the practices and the unbalanced situations that life is presenting her.

Overall the show was okay but I think the way you presented some ideas could have been stronger.  I’m never going to trick or negotiate a partner into doing something that should be standard for my safety.  Screw culture when it comes to my sexual life.  We need to start educating ourselves at a younger age, don’t you think?  Too often I have asked why aren’t we educating our daughters from the time they are in high school?   Especially when this is the age many are starting to experiment sexually.

I will be blogging about this same issue.  Thanks for giving me something to think about.

What do you think?  In your culture is safe sex the norm and what do you feel about women and the strength of their voice in their sex lives?

Culture….it’s a crazazy thing.

Much love (and respect), dendoo

You’re not a traditional girl

Posted in Inspiration, misc by dendoo on June 1, 2010

pots. yuck.

Tradition.  Customs.  Culture.

As a black girl growing up in the Caribbean I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard my mother say in her cutesy voice “But that’s our culturrrre.”  Yes, she does stress the R in culture and I love her for it.

If you are coming from a background that has a strong culture you can often feel lost because one foot is in the world of the now and the other foot is in the world of the expected.  My culture isn’t as demanding as some but there are some things that I don’t agree with.  I hadn’t even given a thought to what was expected of me as a black Caribbean woman until I recently entered a relationship with a guy from the Caribbean.  I have been known to say I am extremely reluctant to date guys from the Caribbean but after this relationship it is a certified fact.  I gats love for my Caribbean brothas but if they are going to stress me the way my ex was doing then they can keep their love.

So what exactly was going on with my ex?  What are the traditions/culture that I have issue with?

Growing up I often heard I need to learn to cook and clean so I can be a good wife.  I mean honestly I know back in the day that was what was expected of women but thank the Lord I never bought into that.  Sadly I can’t cook to save my life and I have no desire to but I am strongly opposed to the idea that as soon as I become a wife that is what I’m supposed to do.  Or as soon as I become someone’s girlfriend.  Ha!

As I started to learn more about the world around me and as I started to take in experiences that would shape my person I realized I want to be a savvy woman.  I want to be more Sex in the City (as far as my housing choice goes) than traditional housewife (no house with a picket fence thank you!).  I like going to nice restaurants, I like sipping wine in the evenings, I like shopping at nice stores for outrageous purchases, my idea of a nice dinner party does not include cheetos on the menu.  My ex did not appreciate this.  His response to me time and time again was “You are not a traditional Caribbean girl”.

Well duh!

But after hearing this over and over again I stopped finding joy in the statement and started to dread him saying it.  Why?  It felt like for the first time the thing I took pride in was actually bad.

You’re my inspiration!

I appreciate our traditional foods, I appreciate the idea that the man should be the leader of his household, I like our traditional music and holidays but that’s about as much as I need when it comes to tradition and culture.   I respect the most important things to me and what I didn’t agree with I worked hard to find something that fit me.  So imagine my surprise when I was getting rowed for not wanting to make him a sandwich in his own house or clean his room for him…or his house for that matter!  And not just getting the bad vibes from him but his father as well.  His own father would ask me why I wouldn’t clean or make food. I’m like whaaa?

So it made me wonder:  Is that all you expect your woman to be?  A cooking, cleaning, sex machine?

Ever since meeting my ex I started to meet more and more guys with those same expectations.  They want a meek girl who can cook them a meal, make sure the house is in top shape, sex them up good and ignore the fact that they are sleeping with someone on the side.  You can’t have a strong voice, you can’t be an independent thinker, you can’t want more than what your man needs you to want.

Wow.

Was that what I was buying into?

Granted, my ex had some wonderful qualities:  he is crazy optimistic, he’s very kind, he’s a good listener and he tries to do his best no matter what…but he couldn’t escape his culture and his expectations.  So we didn’t work.

So what do I do?  Do I stay a woman who appreciates certain parts of her culture and what is expected of her or do I transform myself into a 1950’s robot whose only mission is to make master happy?  Or…do I shun it all and be the nomad I wish to be, live in an apartment with a foreign view, date a guy with blue hair and piercings who cooks, and have rooftop dinner parties that don’t include cheetos?

Maybe I’ll give a Caribbean brotha another try but if he can’t appreciate my uniqueness then what’s the point?

Would you settle, would you give up?  Would you even care?
How is culture shaping your life?

Much love, dendoo

Dress up your iphone!

Posted in dendoo art, dendoo news by dendoo on May 28, 2010

It is so exciting!  I have skins for your iphone and ipod available for sale at the low price of $15.00.  Here are the skins that are currently available.  Clicking each photo will take you to the purchase page.

More skins will be coming soon, but don’t wait get something for your phone today!

Much love, dendoo!

My Life Worth Living List

Posted in Inspiration, misc by dendoo on May 26, 2010


cute cupcakes via clevercupcakes

Well sometime last month I turned 25.  Yes I turned 25!

It’s hard to believe I have spent 25 years on this earth but it’s true.

I AM 25!

So since turning 25 I have been thinking super hard about my life and where it’s going and hopefully where it will go.  I have found semi success with my artwork, I have a wonderful family, sadly I suffered and still suffer from depression (it’s not something that just magically vanishes, it’s a part of you) but I am proud to say I have great and awesome goals for my 25 year old kind of life.

I’ve heard of a bucket list, it’s a list of all the crazazy awesome things you want to do before you die.  I had a bucket list before I even knew it was a bucket list but since celebrating the big two five I decided to really focus on creating a list that is perfect for me.

Now ya’lls know I can’t give it some lame as hell name as “bucket list”.  No way!  I had to name my list something soooo me.  So I thought why not name it “My Life Worth Living List”

So here are some items from my list in no particular order (and some of these might be a shocker)

Have a Baby:
Okay I know those who really know me are about to flip out.  I am anti children hardcore.  But I’ve been thinking lately that maybe, juuuuuust maybe, I would make a really cool momma.  I don’t picture myself having a traditional family (mommy, daddy, children and dog) but I do see myself being a fierce single mother.  I’d really like to look into this in my future possibly around age 30.  I’d love to adopt or if that is not possible I do have a few backup guys who have agreed to help me have a baby no strings attached.  Is that idea a touchy one?  Well it’s just like going to a sperm bank.


cute baby stuff by amy b

I am against having children because I never saw it in my lifestyle, I never saw me being a mommy but I would love to save a child from a difficult situation and raise that child with love.  Sadly, I see so many children with parents who should hardly be called that; seeing these children with crazy parents hurts my heart.  I’d love to have a little girl who can carry on the movement of radical self love or a little boy so I can help the next generation of brothas be sweet and edumacated.  It would be nice to give a child in a dire situation a good stable environment.  So this is an area that will have a lot of praying/meditation.  Right now I’m leaning towards adoption but if the Lord wants me to have my own lil bundle of dendoo I’ll have my very own.

Have a fashion show:
This isn’t terribly difficult but it can be.  I love designing clothes but I can’t sew.  Sigh.  I can’t sew…

Well I’m not going to let that stop me from doing something I’ve always dreamed of doing.  One way or another I am going to have a fashion show AND it’s going to be awesome.  I envision girls flouncing down the catwalk in crazy shapes and colours, bold and vibrant designs and lots of ethnic models (yep all you black, latina, and asian models will have a job with me!).  Then I can see tiny me skipping down the catwalk at the very end of the show looking uber cute.  You can’t deny it.  You want to buy it.  lol.

Have an over the top vacation:
When you check in at a hotel that caters to regular as well as posh clients have you ever felt boring because you know you’re getting the standard room, the standard stay, the standard vacation.  Yep.  Boring.


The Screen Boutique Hotel


Spending a week on the yacht….

Here’s the proposition:  a luxe room at a swankadocious hotel, going out every night, insane shopping, beautiful views, dancing till the early morn, soaking up the sun by the pool in my couture bathing suit.  Room service (my mother never let my order it growing up).  I’m talking about fine dining, plush bedding, exquisite interiors and so much more.  An over the top vacation!  Oh, and a spa day that leaves me looking a puddle of relaxation.  Gotta throw that in the mix.  I’m still trying to decide exactly where I want to go but I know it’s going to be killer dude.

Make a CD:
This one is a work in progress actually!  I am making my own little CD chock full of crazy sounds, crazy songs and head bobbing madness.  No, all the songs are not about love me love me love me please (don’t you just hate when you buy a CD and every single song is about love?) There is a song that tells a girl “He don’t love you”, a song about “riding in my car”, a song about “war and drugs” a song about “prostitution”, one about “why I can’t open up to you” and so much more.  So it’s crazy cool and it’s fun to make up my songs and then sing em.  It’s not professional or anything but it’s fun!

Host a motivational seminar for young women:
I mentioned in another post that I had once gone to a seminar for women and women who were at least 20 years older than me were just as confused as a woman my age.  I felt like some of the issues these women were raising were issues that were supposed to be tackled already.  This got me thinking:  I’ve been through a lot and I’m still learning but wouldn’t it be awesome if I could host some sort of retreat for young women and motivate these women?   I’d love to tackle certain issues now so when we’re in our 40’s, 50’s and 60’s we don’t have to shell out $100 bucks for some watered down advice.  So this is def something I want to do.  I’d love us women to take over the world!

Well these are just a few things that I wanted to share.  Some are serious and some are playful.  I have all sorts of wants and wishes but even if I don’t cross everything off my list I think it’s wonderful to have something to work towards.

What’s on your list?
Maybe you should include meeting dendoo!

Much love, dendoo

I’ll follow you until you….

Posted in dendoo art, dendoo news by dendoo on May 6, 2010


artwork by dendoo

This morning I was just clickin around on the web and I came across this awesome project based in England.  These guys are giving artists a voice to be a voice for the people.  We’re expressing how we feel about government, politics, etc.

The idea behind my submission is we expect the government to fulfill their promises.  We follow them because they shower us with what we want to hear.  We’ll follow them in the hopes that they’ll fulfill, that they’ll love us.
Maybe it’s time we loved ourselves.

This will be plasterd all over London.

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Curious Tuesday…on a Tuesday

Posted in misc by dendoo on May 4, 2010

1. What are you most excited for RIGHT NOW?

To move to JAPAN this summer.  I’m excited beyond words.  Why can’t it be August?

2. Who is your style icon? What inspires your look?

I love, love, love Erykah Badu.  Can’t you just see it?  We’re united.  Look:




ME

On the real tip I enjoy finding my own influences, many people an things influence my me but at the end of the day it’s about the vibe I’m feeling and the energy that is flowing within in me.  But if I had to pick someone who captured everything I could never say it would be Erykah Badu.  Cause she baaaad.

3. If you could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would you invite?

I’d probably have dinner with My great grandmother and ask her a bunch of questions.  I never met her but I would like to.

4. What did you dress up as for your first Halloween?

Well the first Halloween I can remember I dressed up as Smurfette.  I mean come on…who else was I going to be?  I think she’s awesome cause she’s blue and not a lot of people can pull that colour.

5. What are you improving?

Trying to improve my:  Japanese, my anger, my need to procrastinate, my eyebrows, my hatred of taking baths and wearing the same undies up to three days in a row (yeah yeah like you’ve never done it) and my worrying.

Radical Self Love for the Black Girl

Posted in Inspiration by dendoo on May 4, 2010

There’s a movement going on in this universe called RADICAL SELF LOVE.



Before anyone thinks I am hating on the movement or the creator please understand: I totally believe in Radical Self Love.  If I weren’t addicted to squares (I have a tattoo of a square) I’d probably tattoo it on my wrist.  So don’t start thinking “My word!  She’s against the movement.”  It’s nothing like that.  And I know that RSL is about being in love with yourself but I’m approaching this from a different angle which I hope will be apparent as you continue reading.

So what is it like?

It’s like this:  Radical Self Love already was, already had been, and will always be so snap out of your stupid bubbles and just accept the realness that is you, your awesomness and the life that will change dramatically once you do. I’m mad that more women are not accepting this movement but I’m even more upset that it has to be a movement to begin with because YOU are radical, YOU are yourself and YOU deserve your love.

Where is this anger coming from?

It’s coming from this: I was out last week running some errands and I had on a typical “me” outfit plus my afro.  The afro is what I think started this entire conversation.  This young woman about my age start laughing when I went into the store.  So I look at her like “and what” and keep browsing.  So she comes up to me and asks “You ain’t scared aye?” (don’t forget we’re island people so we have our own talks) and I’m asking her scared of what “scared of what everyone thinks of you”.  I tell her plainly and bluntly no.  I ask her why should I be scared.  She lists some stupid reasons and then I laugh.  I tell her if anything I’m scared to become like her.

She looks shocked and I smile a secret smile.  So she asks “What’s so wrong about me?”

Nothing is wrong about her but what fun is it to be just like everyone else?  What is so fun about fitting in because it’s what’s expected?  This opens up a discussion.  In the end she admits there are things she wants to do, wants to be but she feels she can’t be.  Okay, you know me.  Even if the dream will never come true I still need to have the dream.  So I share this with her and she tells me “But that’s what white folks do.  You white aye?” (yep white people I’m sorry but us black people do say that sometimes.)

So I shake my head vigorously.  NO.  LIFE IS NOT JUST FOR WHITE PEOPLE.

Then I realized I’m getting mad…and I am getting mad because this woman does not have her own foundation of radical self love.  True, it didn’t come to me like that but I knew at that moment there wasn’t enough trust in herself, knowledge about herself and about her worth in her and that’s why she was making such crazazy statements.

Look, I don’t have anything against people but I know about the black way of life so it’s something I can talk about in-depth.  I know we (black people) constantly say “That’s for white folks to do”.  Well at least in my country that’s what a lot of black people say.

Saving money for retirement, buying a condo, traveling the world, eating caviar, hiking, holding a dinner party…LIVING is for white people.  When I realized what this woman is telling me along with what I’ve heard countless times I suddenly got it: we’re clouding our horizons.  We can’t ever expect to get on with the movement.  Then I realized we can NEVER accept radical self love because we put ourselves in a bubble of “blackness” and we can’t get out.


me accepting my crazazy hair…

So I am saying today that anything she can do we can do too.  I’m not even going to say we can do better because first we have to believe that we can even do it.  To me, RSL (I’m tired of writing it all out) is about accepting who you are and then taking that person and pushing it past your boundaries.  But if you can’t even accept who you are and where you belong in this world then how can you push past anything? The most you can do is push your trolley past the little old lady in the Supermarket!

The movement was created to be in love with yourself and not have to be dependent on a man for the love you are so worthy of as Valentine’s day moved closer but to me it was more about saying “I don’t need a man to make me happy”.  It was about discovering every inner truth, every desire, every fear, and every worry that was you.  So maybe you think this girl does have her own RSL thing going on…cause she comfortable being a part of the pack, right?

WRONG.

I think the fact that she asked if I’m not scared, the fact that she admitted some dreams that she wants to have but doesn’t even have the courage to hold onto, and the fact that she hasn’t discovered who she is outside of the pack (IMO) all point to her not being down with Radical Self Love.

And I told her.  I TOLD HER!  Well I didn’t say she needs to learn about RSL but I did say

You can’t be afraid to be who you want to be even if it means you’re never popular and people make fun of you.  You can’t be afraid to have your wants and desires.  That my dear is radical.

You can’t be afraid to be in tune with your energies, your harmonies, your you.  That my dear is self.

You can’t be afraid to have an open heart and open mind for everything that comes along.  You don’t have to accept everything but you do have to accept that there is more than you out there.  You have to accept the you that you’re in tune with.  Isn’t that love?


let’s melt away our fears and start loving

So I’m on a mission to bring Radical Self Love to the Black Girl in my country because I’m starting to see ain’t enough of that stuff floating around.  If I offended you I’m sorry but I live in a place where I witnessed grown as hell 30, 40 and 50-year-old women pay $100 to have some stupid broad answer questions like “How to win my man back from a prostitute?” and “Is it okay to date a white man?” (I’m not joking).  I have to do my part to nip it in the bud.  I can’t wait till I’m 50 and then try to go out and help a sister.  NO!

Radical Self Love means a lot of things to a lot of people but if you can’t even start with the simplest thing…what’s the point?

Keep Moving On

Posted in dendoo art, Inspiration by dendoo on April 30, 2010

artwork by dendoo

keep moving on
even if you got scuffs on your new shoes keep stepping on
even if he says your boots were made for walking keep walking on
even if you only have your bare feet keep keeping on
no matter what you have to do
keep moving on
cause you’re a woman and that’s what we do
let’s move along

much love, dendoo

The Ultimate Mother’s Day Gift Guide

Posted in Inspiration by dendoo on April 29, 2010

It’s that time of year again when you shower Mommy Dearest with loads of gifts in an attempt to somehow show her a fraction of how much you adore and love her.

This year might be a little difficult because HELLO everyone, including moi, is going through a recession.  They’re talking bout this thing is over and we’re heading into recovery… Um…okay…well some of us didn’t get the memo because let’s face it: things are hard.

So I started searching the internets and racking my mind in hopes of finding some fabu gift and gift ideas for you recessionistas out there.  dendoo’s got you covered.  Let’s go!

1. Plan a picnic,  2. Call your mom, 3.  Buy a card,  4. Make a card,  5.  Go for a walk with your mommy,  6.  Have tea with your mom,  7.  Write your mom a letter,  8. Sing mom her favourite song,  9. Make breakfast in bed 10. Have lunch at an affordable restaurant,  11. Help a new mom or mom to be document the life of their new bundle of joy with The First 1000 Days: A Baby Journal12. Buy mom a signature scent, 13. Roses or her favourite flower will surely brighten up the day,  14.  Bring the spa home,  15.  Book a photo session for the two of you   16. Mom should carry it all in style, don’t you think?  17. Watches are a classic, 18.  Go on a helicopter ride,  19.  Full day spa treatments (oh how I wish I could afford thee) sound nice,  20. Go on a trip somewhere exotic (my mum wants to go to China) 21. Offer to baby sit for the mom that is over stressed   22.  Dads and kids clean up the house   23.  Buy mom a star   24.  Plant a tree in honor of a mom that’s not here 25.  Take an elderly mom a good hot meal  26.  Read old mother’s day cards with your mommy   27.  Got a frumpy mom?  give her a fab makeover!  she can spring into summer…..  28.  Know a totally rad mom?  she can sport this tee   29.  Concert tickets would be sweeeeet!!   30.  Just tell mom i love you.

There are so many more ideas but this mother day, whatever you do, don’t forget to tell your momma that you love her!

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