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Friday, November 29, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.29.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Despite a stomach virus that had him up all Wednesday night and taking an IV Thursday morning, Tony Romo was perfect in the second half. No, I mean literally perfect. 12 of 12. So much for the Sports Illustrated jinx.

   *Cowboys 31, Raiders 24: My Top 10 Whitty Observations are over at NBC 5's Blue Star Blog.

   *Blatant, nauseating cheating? Or merely crafty gamesmanship? Saw a couple coaches blurring the lines this week. First was our ol' friend Jason Kidd manufacturing a timeout for his Nets Wednesday night. Out of timeouts but needing a stoppage to draw up a final play, he walked onto the court with a cup of soda, mouthed the words "hit me" and then accidentally-on-purpose collided with Tyshon Taylor to spill his drink on the court. While cleanup ensued, Kidd called his team over to design a play that worked, but Paul Pierce missed the open shot as Brooklyn fell to 4-11. If you don't think it was totally planned, you don't remember Kidd as a Mav once "accidentally" running into Hawks' coach Mike Woodson to draw a technical foul. Kidd was fined $50,000 by the NBA for his soda slip. The NFL should fine the Steelers' Mike Tomlin as well. He stood on the field yesterday while Baltimore's Jacoby Jones returned a kick down the sideline, pretending not to see him and jumping out of the way only at the last second. Sports are better when coaches and managers stay outside the lines.

   *Shane Larkin is quick. He can pass. He can shoot. And he can play in the NBA. In the Mavs' electric win Wednesday win over Golden State he had seven points, two rebounds, six assists and a steal - all in 17 minutes. Of course if you've been reading this blog since its inception you're not surprised.

   *Spent Wednesday night with the family down in JoCoMoFo. And this sentence was actually uttered: "Well Gary, she's a girl, just wandered up from somewhere and then she had a batch of pups and Scratches, he was one of those." Country folk. Country dogs. Nothing like it.

   *The Seattle Seahawks have had 8 players suspended 9 times for drug violations since 2011. During that same time the Cowboys have had ... zero. None. Imagine the criticism that would be heaped upon Jerry Jones' noggin' if his team would've had 8 players suspended in two years.



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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

   I know you guys don't always agree with me and things can get a little testy in here at times. But know this as you prepare to dig Selena Gomez while digging in to your turkey:
   I'm thankful for every last one of you who walk through my virtual doors, engage in my ramblings, and then trudge back here again the next day.
   Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.27.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Because the NFL is serious about safety, the Cowboys tomorrow will wear their road blue jerseys at home for the first time since 1964. Teams can wear throwback uniforms, but they must use their regular - "broken in " - helmets. When the Packers and Bears wore their oldies-but-goodies earlier this year they simply stripped the logos off their existing helmets. The Cowboys' traditional Thanksgiving throwbacks featured a white helmet. No go. Last time the Cowboys wore their road blues at home, I was 1 and the game was played at the Cotton Bowl.

   *The Lakers are just flat-out stupid to overpay Kobe Bryant. And the Hall of Famer is selfish for taking it. Every Republican should go out today and buy a Kobe Fathead poster, because he's cemented his legacy as me-over-team. Would he sign a cheaper contract in order to help his fellow man, otherwise known as his teammates? Negatory. The Lakers took their financial freedom from the departure of Dwight Howard and dumped it all on Kobe, as a reward for past performance. He's 35. He's coming off an Achilles injury. He's eating up 40% of their payroll. Think about it. At 36 Tim Duncan signed a three-year extension for $30 million. Kobe just signed for two years and ... $48 million. Who in their right mind would accept a lower salary in order to help his team sign better players to put around him? Duncan, Tom Brady, Dirk Nowitzki and, yes, even LeBron James, who could've made more money to stay in Cleveland. Kobe is a Laker for life. But it's going to a crappy, mediocre life.

   *I'm saying last Sunday's victory over the Giants was one of Jason Garrett's Top 5 road wins. Is it No. 1? I rank 'em over at NBC 5's Blue Star Blog.

   *If I had a Heisman Trophy vote, I'd cast it for Northern Illinois' quarterback Jordan Lynch. He rushed for 321 yards and three touchdowns in the snow last night, giving him the milestone 20/20 season. 20 scores via arm and 20 more via legs. He's the best, most valuable player in college football. He's got more rushing yards than Alabama running back Mark Ingram had when he won the Heisman in '09. Other recent players to have 20/20 seasons all won the award - Cam Newton, Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel. But no, sadly, I don't think he has a legit shot because Heisman voters are traditionally a stuffy, narrow-minded lot afraid to t think outside the box.

   *Bora Bora in six weeks sounds delightful, but I also dream one day of standing on the north pole. Temperatures in the spring hover around minus-40 and there is nothing - no, not even polar bears - that can live in the desolate climate. The reward? When standing at the "pole" every step you take, regardless of direction, is south. And if you walk in a 5-foot circle, you've traveled through every time zone on Earth. How many folks can put that on their resume?



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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.26.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *If nothing else, your Cowboys are the best team in ... America Texas. The Texans began the season 2-0 and are now 2-9. As for the best college team in the state? Still Baylor. Hey, that means our top two teams have each suffered demoralizing road losses of 49-17 this month. Cowboys to the Saints. Bears to Oklahoma State. Woe is football.

   *Mavs aren't quite there yet. Dominated last night on the boards and in quickness by the Denver Nuggets. First home loss of the season. Not a big deal. But their stubborn reliance upon Vince Carter is a big, bad deal. He was 3 of 13 Monday night, including 0 of 4 on 3-pointers. Every time he shoots a jumper, the Mavs' progress and future gets stunted a little more.

   *As sports - and life - reminds us time and again, it can be a short, swift ride from penthouse to outhouse. Right, Robert Griffin III? Or vice-versa. Right, guy-who-won-the-lottery-and-almost-invested-it-all-with-Bernie-Madoff-but-decided-against-it-at-the-last-minute?

   *From the Dept. of Life Ain't Fair: Derrick Rose is out for the season, again with a knee injury. His other knee. Tore the ACL in his left knee in 2012 and sat out the 2013 season. Now he tears a meniscus in his right knee, undergoes surgery and will miss the rest of 2014. He's one of my favorite players. The NBA is a better league with him in it. With two reconstructed knees, you have a sinking feeling he may never again be the player that won MVP in 2011.

   *There was a time when putting up Christmas lights got me in a festive mood. Put on the holiday music and perhaps don a Santa hat and merrily string lights. But these days I've got such a refined system it only takes an hour. Did it Saturday in the cold and rain - sans music - and, sadly, it just felt like a routine chore more than a scene-setting spirit-lifter. Man, getting old sucks.

   *The Reverend Billy Graham is one of the most righteous, holy, good people on this planet. He's been spreading the gospel for 70 years. But, at 95, the evangelist's health is finally fading. Spent two days in a North Carolina hospital last week with respiratory ailments. If I'm God, I miraculously heal Graham and restore his health to a man aged 25. Allow him to live to be 145, if not older. Then non-believers and/or fence-straddlers would say "Whoa, that's badass! I'm gonna live my life more like him!" Perhaps I'm paraphrasing, but you get the point. Graham's the perfect role model, but his chore of turning hearts, minds and souls toward God becomes a tad more difficult if he's not alive.



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Monday, November 25, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.25.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Score one for Jason Garrett. The Giants did all the talking entering Sunday's game. Antrelle Rolle called it the Giants' Super Bowl. Jason Pierre-Paul promised New York was going to "put it on 'em" and that "blood will be spilled." And cornerback Terrell Thomas guaranteed a victory. Then in pre-game warm-ups the Giants altered their routine, even to the point of having the MetLife Stadium speakers blare dramatic music on cue as they attempted to intimidate the Cowboys at midfield. What did the Cowboys do? They shrugged. They executed. They played better football. And they won. That's why I don't get into identities or want-to or emotion when it comes to sports in general or football in specific. It's about execution. Garrett is calm and collected, and Sunday his team was the better team because of it. And boy does it feel good to shut up folks spewing false bravado.

   *Cowboys 24, Giants 21: My Top 10 Whitty Comments are over at NBC 5's Blue Star Blog.

   *Just as I feared, this "Arctic Blast!" followed perfectly our weatherfolks' blueprint for Overhype 101. They started talking about it a week ago, building interest - if not fear - in an attempt to create TV ratings. Then came the proverbial push-back, the "well, this front is moving slower than we expected." Meaning? The Apocalypse we predicted would arrive on Friday might not get here until Monday, so stay tuned all weekend! Then, of course, comes the Monday morning punch line: Reporters live by highways crowing about "ice forming on these signs!" as cars in the background whiz past at 70 mph. You shouldn't be surprised, but yet another dangerous, epic, newsworthy weather event was, in fact, just a couple days of cold rain.

   *On Sunday I officially became a Tweediot. That is, a person whose desire to talk outweighs the desires of others to hear him. Translation: I've now got more Tweets than Twitter followers. That should be the rule. As soon as you have a Twitter imbalance your account should vaporize. I know we've created this fake environment where we're convinced our every thought and meal and action is of international importance. But, no. If you have 10,742 Tweets but only 137 followers, give it up. No one cares.

   *The Packers and Vikings finished with the same number of points. They say ties are like kissing your sister. Unless your sister is Kate Upton. Then ties are much, much worse than kissing your sister.

   *Sybil mused Saturday night that - because of the cold - she was going to put an extra pair of pants but not an extra pair of shirts. Why are pants plural and a shirt singular, when they both cover two legs and two arms? These days on the bottom we're wearing sweatpants, but on top merely a sweatshirt? At our house these are the conversations that construct pillow talk.



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Friday, November 22, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.22.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Jerry Jones announcing that head coach Jason Garrett will be back in 2014 should surprise no one. Nor should anyone be shocked if he changes his mind. If you don't think the headline-grabbing pronouncement was a planned counter-punch to the Rangers' signing of Prince Fielder, then you don't know Jerry Jones. But before you start making reservations to meet Garrett in Oxnard next summer, just remember that once upon a time - known as 2010 - Jerry claimed that Wade Phillips' job was safe because "I've never changed coaches in the middle of a season, and I never will change coaches in the middle of a season." Two weeks later Phillips was fired. Despite Jerry's ploy on Thursday, Garrett's job should be - and is - on the line in this season's final six weeks.

   *How good has Monta Ellis been for the Mavericks? He's already the best free-agent signing in the Mark Cuban era. In the last three seasons no Mav had a game of at least 32 points and 8 assists. He's done it twice in this season's first 12 games. Ellis and Dirk Nowitzki, by the way, are the NBA's third most prolific duo. I'll give you the details over at NBC 5's Sports Blog.

   *Using next year's "Football Four" college football playoff and this year's teams, we'd be looking at semifinals of Baylor-Alabama in the Rose Bowl and Florida State-Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl, with the winners meeting at AT&T Stadium. Deliciously fake.

   *During a break from watching Sybil emcee an award-winning "What's In Your Pocket?" scavenger hunt at Blue Martini last night, I sneaked a peek at Stars-Rangers. As you know I don't watch a lot of hockey. And I was reminded why. In a 60-minute game there were 63 face-offs. Imagine if there were that many jump-balls in an NBA game.

   *Some self-anointed experts - like somebody at named Adam Schein - predicted a Texans-Falcons Super Bowl this season. Those teams are a combined 4-17. My picks: Broncos-Niners. Still doable.

   *As usual the weatherfolks over-exaggerated this "Arctic Blast!" Expecting to go outside in sub-freezing temps and dig the car out from under a foot of wintry mix, instead I awoke in McKinney to zero precipitation, cloudy and 38 degrees.

   *Lots of right-wingers trying to compare Obamacare to Hurricane Katrina as an "American tragedy." Katrina - and a certain President's slow response to it - killed 1,800 people and did $80 billion worth of damage. Obamacare is good intentions plagued by a bad website. Please stop.



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Thursday, November 21, 2013

WHITT'S END: 11.21.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:


   *A frog for a Prince. In 2010 Ian Kinsler proposed a fantasy baseball trade to Prince Fielder: "Us for him?" Last night there was no "him" - as in Giants' pitcher Tim Lincecum - but there certainly was the reality of "us." The Rangers acquiring Fielder and $30 million in exchange for Kinsler is a complete coup for Texas. Fans in the Metroplex had long tired of Kinsler's pop-ups and he was blocking the progress of Jurickson Profar at second base. Though his power numbers have declined (from 50 homers in '07 all the way down to 25 in '13) and his playoff numbers are abysmal (.196, 1 homer, 3 RBI in 24 games), there's no reason not to think the Rangers' new 1st baseman can't put up 45 homers and 120 RBI whacking away at Rangers Ballpark's short porch in right field. The deal leaves the Rangers with an infield of Fielder, Profar, Elvis Andrus and Adrian Beltre. And the cash means that over the next four years they'll pay Fielder only $4 million more than were going to pay Kinsler. This is a huge win for Jon Daniels.

   *Turned out to be a great night for Metroplex sports, because the Mavs are for real. Down 18 to the Rockets and being bludgeoned by Dwight Howard's post play, they rallied behind the dynamic duo of Dirk Nowitzki and Monta Ellis for a pulsating 123-120 victory. That's as good of an NBA game as you'll ever see in November. Dirk was vintage. Ellis was relentless. And, despite being abused by Howard all game, Samuel Dalembert grabbed the game's key rebound. The Mavs will improve to 9-4 (7-0 at home) when they take care of 1-win Utah Friday night.

   *Like his stats and persona and life, A-Fraud's temper tantrum yesterday was nothing more than a staged, transparent attempt to win public sentiment in his appeal of a 211-game suspension for his role in the Biogenesis PED scandal. How convenient that just 10 minutes after he "stormed" out of the proceedings his representatives sent out a prepared statement. And when he flatly denies taking steroids or attempting to tamper with witnesses or evidence in the case, I flatly think he's lying. As usual. Sorry, A-Fraud, but for most of us your sideshow distraction won't camouflage the fact that you're a cheater, a liar and, yes, a fraud. If A-Fraud really is innocent, why did it take him this long to say so? And why did he do it on a radio show, and not under oath?

   *I said yesterday that the Rangers would miss David Murphy more than Nolan Ryan. Now you know why. Daniels is the organization's baseball brain. And Fielder is the new face of the franchise.

   *Considering she's now suffered major injuries in violent crashes twice in nine months, I've about decided that Lindsey Vonn just isn't a very good skier.



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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Syb's End: 11.20.13

  Howdy. Since Richie's been mailing it in lately, and I just so happen to have a little extra time on my hands, I decided to jump into the DFWSportatorium driver's seat. So grab a coffee/beer/joint, and let's go reading!

  *Ever heard the saying "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me"? That's how I feel about George Zimmerman. To date, he's had multiple domestic violence issues with an ex-fiancee, his estranged wife and current girlfriend. His most recent tangle landed him in jail, where his soon-to-be ex served him with divorce papers. He's out now with an ankle monitor and a restraining order from his current ladyfriend. You would think a guy who got away with murder would settle down and carry out the rest of his days as a law-abiding citizen, cautious not to ruffle any feathers...right, OJ?

 *The old "Are NASCAR drivers athletes?" debate again rears its ugly head. This time it was in the Twitter court room of country superstar Blake Shelton and noted NASCAR writer Jeff Gluck. It started with Gluck's tweet, "I don't think all #NASCAR drivers are athletes, sorry. But Jimmie is." Shelton (longtime friend of driver Clint Bowyer and others) responded, "Just like not all writers have credibility, sorry..." Said Gluck: " if I bought myself a ride in NASCAR, would you guys suddenly say I'm an athlete? C'mon. Just because I buy a guitar doesn't make me a musician." To which BS replied,"Hey @jeff_gluck.. It's over. You lost. Move on." Hate to admit it, but I'm gonna side with the NASCAR expert on this one.

  *Congratulations to hometown girl Kelly Clarkson! She's looked pregnant for years, and now she finally is.

  *The 15-year-old in me can't wait to see Hunger Games: Catching Fire this weekend. I read the books and dragged Richie to last year's trilogy opener. If you too wanna get in the spirit, check out Lorde's remake of Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World", which is featured on the soundtrack. Her haunting rendition is sure to stimulate your senses.

  *Tim Duncan's new sidepiece is a Texas native, which might explain why she rocks Spurs and Rangers gear. Question for you sports purists: Is this allowed? Since San Antonio doesn't have an MLB team, can she borrow ours? Or is that unstable? I think chicks have an advantage when it comes to team allegiance because we can root for whomever and justify it with girl logic. ("My boyfriend is from there", "It's in the same state", "Their QB is hot.") Either way, Vanessa Macias looks good doing it.

  *If you plan to do any holiday shopping on the interwebs this year, might I introduce you to Adopt A Shelter? It's a legit website that allows you to buy from major retailers who sponsor animal charity groups. For example, you go to Adopt A Shelter, search for DFW Rescue Me, and a portion of your proceeds will be donated to DFWRM. It's a free service, and they're linked to big name sites- Amazon, Target, Old Navy, eBay, etc. So please help some local dogs this season with a simple click.



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WHITT'S END: 11.20.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Talked to a Cowboys' source last night and the topic got around to the offensive struggles. Me: "So, ya'll get it fixed during the bye week?" Source: "Yep." Me: "And ... ?" Source: "Get the ball to Dez." Me: "It's really that simple isn't it?" Source: "Yep." I'll be shocked Sunday in New York if Dez Bryant doesn't get 12+ touches. Deep balls. Quick hitches. Even a reverse. Or course it'll work, and the Cowboys will win. And afterward it'll be all palm-to-the-forehead-why-didn't-we-think-of-this-before? But some of us did. Right?

   *As if you didn't know before, you do know: The Rangers' nucleus you thought would win a World Series has officially missed its window. With the news last night that free-agent David Murphy is leaving Texas for the Indians, the Rangers' foundation cracked a little more. In its prime, the hub of Murphy and Michael Young and Josh Hamilton and Nolan Ryan were one infamous non-catch in right field away. Now? They may win, but it won't be with the players that Jon Daniels initially envisioned when the whole rebuilding process began in 2007. Briefly did a radio show with Murphy on 105.3 The Fan in '11. Great guy. Bad loss. The Rangers may be a better team in 2014. But they won't have a better clubhouse.

   *If the Cowboys are going to seriously threaten making the playoffs, one player above all others has to raise his game. Right now. Who that be? I give the answer over at NBC 5's Blue Star Blog.

   *Brother, can you spare a dime Bitcoin? Wait, a what? A Bitcoin. Maybe I'm the last fool on my block to catch on to the craze, but to me Bitcoin sounds like a fake form of currency created by a fake person for use in a fake world. Like the form of "money" Neo would've used in The Matrix. Why does it sound like that? Because that's exactly what it is. Ready to be totally bewildered? Brush up on Bitcoin.

   *I'm sure we'll boo Dwight Howard when his Rockets visit American Airlines Center tonight. After all, he did spurn the Mavs' recruiting last summer and sign with hated Houston. But the Mavs did okay for themselves. Monta Ellis is giving Dallas a totally different dimension on offense. And, don't look now, but turns out consolation center Samuel Dalembert has more than a little left in the tank. Mavs attempting to start 6-0 at home for the first time since the '08 season.

   *I'm already tired of the JFK reflections and we're still two days away from the 50th anniversary. I think I hate it all because we - Dallas - get blamed for shooting Kennedy. But New York didn't kill John Lennon. And Washington, D.C. didn't kill Abraham Lincoln. Why did Dallas kill JFK?

   *Hot. (Adam Levin's fiancee).

   *Not (Adam Levine).

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Canine Corner: Mack

  Mack is a 10-month-old hound pup who's looking for a new place to call home. He's already housebroken and crate-trained, plus he has great manners! He gets along well with other dogs, and he loves to snuggle with people as well.

  Mack is a medium-sized dog, weighing 36 pounds. He's neutered and up-to-date on his shots. He would make a great family member in any home. Just look at those precious eyes! To adopt Mack, please click here.

  (Last week's Canine Corner entry was Patches.) Please help spread the word about these sweet dogs who are available for adoption through DFW Rescue Me. Woof.

WHITT'S END: 11.19.13

      Whether you're at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt's End:

   *Man, I can't wait for these replacement refs to leave and we can get the real ... oh, right. The zebras blew it big time last night on Monday Night Football. Patriots' tight end Rob Gronkowski was bear-hugged in the end zone by Panthers' linebacker Luke Kuechly. That's a penalty. Only question was whether it was holding or pass interference, but the excuse of "uncatchable" isn't applicable. At the very least it was holding, even if the ball was thrown to the corner of the end zone. And, seeing that the receiver was physically impeded from going after the ball, it was pass interference. A textbook case. If that's not pass interference, I don't think it exists. Patriots got ripped off. Now let's all read referee Clete Blakeman's explanation of why the flag was picked up and have our football brains simultaneously combust. What. The. What?!:
There were two officials that came in. One was the umpire and the other one was our side judge and there was a discussion at that point as to the, in essence, the catchability of the ball due to its location. So it was determined at that point in time that when the primary contact occurred on the tight end that the ball, in essence, was coming in underthrown and in essence it was immediate at that point intercepted at the front end of the end zone. So there was a determination that, in essence, uncatchability, that the ball was intercepted at or about the same time the primary contact against the receiver occurred.
   *Horrible weekend for the referees, considering the personal-foul penalty on Ahmad Brooks for his shoulder-neck hit on Drew Brees also cost the 49ers a victory in New Orleans. Some day, some way, we'll eliminate the sacred "human element" out of officiating in all sports. And sports will be a better place.

   *For all you haters convinced Tony Romo is the biggest choker in the NFL, the last two days with Robert Griffin III and Tom Brady prove that bad decisions and horrible throws happen to the best quarterbacks at the worst times.

   *Monta Ellis, take a bow. And, while you're at it, a couple more shots. He was dazzling in the Mavs' ugly win over the Sixers. More importantly, he was efficient. 24 points and 10 assists, on only 14 shots. So far, so great on Dallas' off-season acquisition.

   *Bullying is real. In middle school we had a guy who would walk up to your desk and snap your pencil in half, just to see if you'd react. And my step-son had a couple run-ins with a classmate who would demand his lunch money, or else. But aren't the once-per-week stories of bullying in sports starting to wear thin? I'm prepared to morph into my grandparents and anoint this "video game generation" as a bunch of whiny crybabies. Sorry, in life you have to get off the couch. There is no pause button. There are no secret weapons at your fingertips. And, no, you can't simply erase your mistakes or change your environment with the tap of a re-set button. It's life. A coach might grab your facemask. A boss might dog-cuss you. And, yes, a co-worker might cause you to lose your job. You can bitch and moan, or you can learn and move on. Funny thing is, doesn't every generation think the one after it is soft? And, aren't they all correct?

   *Tell me this is real. Because I want to believe this is real. Either way, I'm closer to being in the holiday spirit.



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