Tag Archives: Michele Bachmann

Everybody Talkin’ ‘Bout Heaven Ain’t Goin’ There

Do you know what I’ve discovered?   I have had it with the Tea Party, and the reason is not what you might suspect. Oh, sure, I’m pissed with their attitude of “I’ve got mine, it sucks if you don’ have yours” as they try to bring down the government in their attempt to destroy the black man in the Oval Office and deny health care to millions of people who are without. I’m really furious that this shutdown has been orchestrated since the first minute after President Obama’s reelection by a coalition of conservative activists funded by the Koch Brothers and groups like FreedomWorks, Generation Opportunity, Young Americans for Liberty, and the Tea Party.  These heartless bastards and an arrogant jerk by the name of Ted Cruz have been operating from a “defunding toolkit” that has been wreaking havoc since September to cause the Affordable Care Act to miss its Oct. 1st launch.  (How did that work out for you, Teddy Baby?)

Shutdown I John Cole The Scranton Times Tribune

Used by permission:  John Cole, The Scranton Times Tribune

I’ve especially had it with the people in the aforementioned groups who claim to “love Jesus” and show up in church every Sunday to praise God, pat each other on the back as to their holiness, and claim to be doing God’s will for the American people while they bear false witness against our President through their media megaphones (Fox News, RedState,, The Drudge Report, and Rush Limbaugh, just to name a few haters). But what has really pissed me off is that the Tea Party Repubs’ actions have produced a shutdown of our government causing poor families (9 million women and children at last count) to really take a hit for baby formula, nutritional counseling, healthcare referrals, and Head Start while the Tea Party Congressmen run around showboating by moving gates to Washington monuments for veterans on vacation.  Michelle Bachmann, founder of the Tea Party caucus in the House and head-gate mover (with cameras rolling), was “appalled” that the shutdown had affected our vets, and she planned to come by every day to make sure they remained open. I need to ask the self-professed born-again Christian if she was losing any sleep over babies being deprived of nutrition and learning, but then again she’s probably cool with that because it doesn’t affect her kids. (Remember America, you sent these wackos to Washington—what were you thinking?)  And yet Obamacare still rolled on!

Obamacare keeps on rolling Bill Schorr Cagle Cartoons

Used by permission:  Bill Schorr Cagle Cartoons

What is most unforgiveable is that this government shutdown, which could have been avoided and is probably going to be the destruction of the Republican party, released a bored government employee (who I sleep with) into my work space (writer at work) while I was trying to put the finishing touches on my book.  He behaved himself the first two days, and then on the third day, my husband (WW) turned into a terror. I had already survived the cacophony of “Die Hard III, Star Trek II, and The Avengers” blasting from the man cave through all six speakers and causing my office floor to undulate in thunderous rolls as I (ear plugs entrenched) tried to finish off my edits.  But my desk kept bouncing and my fingers kept misfiring, causing me to type a manuscript page of 3 parts gibberish and 7 parts curses!  All of a sudden it got quiet and stayed that way for a couple of hours.  I assumed WW was asleep, and as I picked up the phone to make a very important call, you-know-who cracked opened my office door that has a sign on it that says “Keep Out! Writer at Work!” and peeked his head in.

WW:     Hey, what you doin’?

MOI:      (Seriously???)  Tryin’ to get ahold of Jesus.

WW:     On the phone?

MOI:      What?  You got a better system of reaching The Almighty?

WW:     No, not really.  Dare I ask why you’re trying to reach Jesus?

MOI:      Originally it was to have him zap your big-screen TV with a lightning bolt into the pit of Hell.  But you have since quieted down, and now I’m calling to tattle on those members of the Republican Congress who boast about being the party of God but who are causing vulnerable people to suffer.  I’m trying to reach God to see if he’ll fricassee their asses and give John Boehner a good smack upside the head to bring this government shutdown to a close.  There are people who live from paycheck to paycheck who are really suffering because of this mess started by Ted Cruz. And not being self-centered, but I need you to go back to work, babe. You’re killing me with your restlessness.

WW:     Well, I got quiet because I left and went to the electronics’ store and bought us a new router so that everything will run three times as fast in my man cave and your office.  And once the cable man shows up, you’ll even be able to see who is calling you while you’re watching TV.  Won’t that be cool? Can you imagine relaxing in front of your favorite show, the phone rings, but without even moving a hair, you’ll know who is on the phone when the TV scrolls:  “Baby-girl is calling!”  And best of all, I saved us $60 per month on expenses.

(Any purchase is wonderful to WW if a deal can be done.)

September 23, 2013

Used by permission:  Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News

MOI:      (Groan)  Noooooo. . .I don’t want that crap interrupting my TV shows—no matter how much money you’ve saved.  And how long will the cable man be putzing around the house and interrupting my writing?  I’m still in my PJs.

WW:     No worries—it won’t be long, I promise.  Be glad I’m home to take care of all these important upgrades.  It’s good to have a man around the house.  But first things first:  get off the phone, shut down your computer, and turn off your phone so the cable man can change it all over to the new modem.  Maybe you should go get a mani-pedi while the cable man and I get everything up to speed.

I got dressed.  I did errands.  I returned.

Nothing worked once the new modem was installed.  It has been three business days and a weekend with WW popping in and out of my office like a jack rabbit.  The cable man couldn’t find the splitter because he was agitated and in a hurry.  He claimed his service calls had quadrupled due to so many furloughed men calling to get cable work done in their man caves.   Our “His and Her” printers were knocked offline by the new equipment and only “his” printer is back up and running, but my manuscripts were due to my beta reading group this weekend.  After much cursing and gnashing of teeth and computer technicians from here to India scratching their heads in perplexity, WW has been clocking nine-hour days trying to restore everything to normal before I completely lose it.  Everything is not back to normal and I have missed oodles of writing time.  Calls were placed to two independent IT people, but they never called back or maybe I missed their names flashing across our fancy TV.   I am desperately trying to get ahold of the Geek Squad or Jesus—whoever comes first.   I need somebody to fix my printer (ASAP) and upend this shutdown (double ASAP) so that I can send my husband back to work before I go insane.

Republican Congress:  I will NEVER forgive you for this!  Not only have you behaved like terrorists and shut down the government, robbing the poor of what they need, but you have robbed me of a week and a half of sanity.  A pox on all your heads!

Tea Party II David Fitzsimmons The Arizona Star

Used by permission:  David Fitzsimmons, The Arizona Star

I am discovering that I’ve been singing the old spiritual “I Got Shoes” for days now as I plot my revenge against the Christian block of the Tea Party (40%) and the Christian voters who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible (67% of population).  This song, like many others during the time of slavery, was a protest song to decry the hypocrisy of the slave owners and/or the ruling class:

I got shoes, you got shoes,

All God’s children got shoes.

When I get to Heav’n gonna put on my shoes,

Gonna walk all over God’s Heav’n, Heav’n, Heav’n,

Everybody talkin’ ‘bout Heav’n ain’t goin’ there,

Heav’n, Heav’n, Heav’n.

Gonna walk all over God’s Heav’n

In actuality, the slaves didn’t have shoes—they were a luxury.  But they knew that in God’s eyes they were equal to all of His other children who had shoes, and that they would assuredly have covering on their feet from a “just God” when they got to Heaven.  They also knew that those who had plenty of shoes on Earth and proclaimed the name of Christ were not necessarily going to Heaven unless they lived according to the dictates of Jesus. Basically, “shoes on Earth” was all the “haves” were going to get because they had failed to “love their neighbor as themselves.”  Be afraid, Tea Party peeps—be very afraid.  I’ve told you before—God don’t like ugly!

obama thinking jesus about dot com


“The lyricist continues, exclaiming that ‘everybody talkin’ ‘bout Heav’n ain’t goin’ there.’ Here, the emphasis is on hypocrisy. The slave master, claiming to be Christian, goes to church every Sunday morning, where he and other congregants talk and sing about Jesus and Heaven. But when he returns to the plantation on Sunday afternoon, he presides over a decidedly un-Heavenly, immoral enterprise, slavery, and participates actively in the un-Heavenly and immoral physical, emotional . . . abuse of other human beings.”The Spirituals Project at the University of Denver

“Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.”—Proverbs 19:17

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,   I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’   Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?  And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?  And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’  And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’”  Matthew 25: 35-40

“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.”—Psalm 82:3

“If your brother becomes poor and cannot maintain himself with you, you shall support him as though he were a stranger and a sojourner, and he shall live with you. Take no interest from him or profit, but fear your God, that your brother may live beside you.”—Leviticus 25:35-36


Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.



Posted by on October 8, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Blush and yellow Hibiscus

A glimpse of E. Tomczyk’s garden | photo by “WW” Tomczyk

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  It is just days before my thirty-forth wedding anniversary when I’ll celebrate being married to the most amazing human being I’ve ever met:  WW (a.k.a. “White and Wonderful”).  So it seems like a good time to take a couple of weeks off and hang out with my man and revel in those gorgeous blue eyes—contemplating how blessed I am to know such a man of integrity, strength, and courage.  I want to celebrate love with a man who has spent our entire married life helping to heal all the wounds my childhood haters inflicted.  To do this, I will need to step away from the news (Farewell, M. Bachmann: there is a God and you just got schooled by him), step away from my blog, and tune out all my trolls.   I plan to sit amongst my flowers with my man, read some books, drink lots of wine, thank God I’m alive, and work on my memoir—especially the love story of WW and me which is the book’s last chapter and rivals anything Nicholas Sparks has ever written (yeah, Baby!).  And then I’ll swing back in a couple of weeks to pick up where I’ve left off and see if my readers have kept out of trouble.    In the meantime, here are a few thoughts on marriage.

Anniversary Interracial Marriage

Cartoonist:  Kevin Siers | The Charlotte Observer

What’s your secret?  That is the most commonly asked question I get when people hear that I’ve been over-the-moon, happily hitched for thirty-four years (plus six dating years) to a white dude.   Anyone who knew me in my youth knew that my mantra was that I would never marry someone who was white, because “there was nothin’ no white man could do for me.”  (Good grief—the arrogance of youth still makes me shudder!)  In previous years when asked what I thought made a successful interracial marriage, I’d say all sorts of cliché bullshit that first popped into my mind without giving it much thought:


“Loving God”

“Weekly date nights”

“Great sex”

“Must have things in common”

“Being each other’s best friends”

“Learning how to pick your battles”

“Being a good listener”

Early on there was also the Herculean task of ignoring the racist naysayers when they tried to thwart our marriage by saying stupid shit like:  “A robin can marry a dolphin, but where will they live and what about the children—they won’t be fish or fowl!”

Loving day wedding bands

The children (ages 29 and 30) did just fine—they neither have flippers nor wings—and WW and I didn’t have to summer in a nest at the top of a tall tree or winter beneath the waves of the Caribbean Sea to survive.  While the list above contains some truths about sustaining a marriage, none of them were ever any guarantee that our marriage would form into the rock that it became.  I’ve known Christian couples who claimed Jesus as their Lord and Savior every other breath, could quote the Bible backwards and forwards, went to church whenever the doors were open, were religious about a date night every Friday, preached against Gay marriage as a sin and a detriment to heterosexual marriage, and yet they were the nastiest piece of work toward each other that I’ve ever had the unfortunate opportunity to witness.

Somehow, being at peace with the concept that one has found the right person who aligns with one’s spiritual and aspirational goals is half the battle.  But making damn sure that one is truly in love with the individual and not “in love with being in love” is the hardest plumb line to adjust to—especially for women.  Between our little girl dress-up fantasies, our Cinderella and Prince Charming fairy tales that we’ve grown up with all our lives, and now the “keeping up with the Joneses” Pinterest, women can get pretty screwed up when it comes to what is real or what would make a great “pinned by______” on the photo-sharing website when it comes to getting married and staying married.

Anniversary marriage thelaughinghousewife dot wordpress dot com

Cartoon from:

I am discovering that I do know (after 33 years) what makes a good marriage go the distance—no matter who you are, and even if you’re a robin who married a dolphin:   It is grace, respect, and a sense of humor.

Grace:  to be able to accept the things about each other that drive us nuts without developing a nervous tic whenever our spouse’s peccadillos emerge.  Grace doesn’t work without forgiveness and therein lays the stumbling block to it—grace takes daily exercise.

Respect:  to never, ever, ever cross the line of contempt, disdain, rage, or abuse when it comes to dealing with our lovers.  Those are flesh-eating zombies and very difficult to survive.  But if it should happen, having the grace to immediately, and genuinely, ask forgiveness, along with the grace to do whatever it takes to never cross those boundaries again.  No amount of love can keep a marriage together without an equal amount of respect.

A sense of humor:  the ability not to take oneself too seriously—about anything!  The ability to laugh uproariously—in the moment—about our own imperfect humanity!

Anniversary humor

Cartoonist:  Walt Handelman|Newsday

“It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”—Friedrich Nietzsche

“Every good relationship, especially marriage, is based on respect. If it’s not based on respect, nothing that appears to be good will last very long.”—Amy Grant

“People always fall in love with the most perfect aspects of each other’s personalities. Who wouldn’t? Anybody can love the most wonderful parts of another person. But that’s not the clever trick. The really clever trick is this:  Can you accept the flaws? Can you look at your partner’s faults honestly and say, ‘I can work around that. I can make something out of it.’? Because the good stuff is always going to be there, and it’s always going to pretty and sparkly, but the crap underneath can ruin you.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace with Marriage

“A wedding anniversary is the celebration of love, trust, partnership, tolerance and tenacity. The order varies for any given year.”—Paul Sweeney


E. and “WW” Tomczyk| Photo: Tomczyk Archives

WW and I:  many anniversary celebrations ago . . . a little more hair, a little less “fluffy-nutter,” but very much in love.

Love Birds

E. and “WW” Tomczyk| Photo: C. Tomczyk

Ebony and Ivory:  34 years and counting . . . a little less hair, a lot more ass, but still very, very much in love.  Thank you Loving v. Virginia (Mildred Jeter, a black woman, and Richard Loving, a white man) for paving the way.  WW and I are eternally grateful to you and I know you cheered us on in that great cloud of witnesses!

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Posted by on June 1, 2013 in Uncategorized


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Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire

Do you know what I’ve discovered?  I’m a terrible liar.  My face is a mirror to my soul, and whatever I’m thinking gets displayed through my eyes like a baby’s first glimpse of Sofia Vergara’s ta-tas when it’s time for
lunch.  Everything I’m thinking plays out through my eyes, and because of that, I will always be undone when it comes to lying, which is probably beneficial to the final outcome of my soul.

Image from

Ever since I can remember I’ve been hyper-sensitive to the concept of lying or being lied to because it seemed to go hand-in-hand with the craziness factor in my family tree.  If the first sin of Adam and Eve was lying to God about having had a play date with the “snake,” then the first sin against me was my mother’s lie about my emergence upon the Earth:

ME:  (said with a British accent) “Mummy, why don’t I have a fawtha, and where was I born?”

THE LIE: “Why baby-girl, you have the father to beat all fathers.  And you were the first Colored baby to be born in the all-white St. Luke’s Hospital in Cleveland years before any Coloreds were allowed to cross over its threshold.  When you came into this world, your white doctor and nurses were so enthralled by you that the doctor named you after his own wife, as well as President Roosevelt’s First Lady, because the hospital staff could just tell by your demeanor that you were going to be a real credit to your race.”

THE TRUTH:  “I, Eleanor Tomczyk, do solemnly swear that I was born in a toilet because my mother was bat-shit crazy, and she lied to everyone that she was not pregnant but had a massive tumor in her belly.  One day Mommy Dearest passed gas while she was doing her business on the toilet and out I popped—doing an ignominious slip-and-slide into the toilet bowl world of my future. Said father had run off long before I made my dramatic entrance.  The doctor, who came to the house a month later to issue a birth certificate by order of the State Human Services Agency, named me “Eleanor”—probably because his wife’s name was the first female name that came to mind since my mother was too catatonic to put a name on the birth certificate for a tumor that had entered the world as a fart and was quickly trying to establish residence on the Earth by kicking and screaming and demanding to be fed.”

“Seemingly grossed out just at the thought of life”||Image courtesy of

But as much as I detest lies, I know that I lie—we all lie—even though I try my hardest not to do so.  But some lying (“white lies”) is the lubricant that keeps our society, our workplace, and our relationships together, or we’d really end up wiping each other off the face of the Earth.  When we tell a child about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, or the Tooth Fairy, it is a lie that feeds their imagination and wonder, but we run the risk of them flushing the concept of God down the toilet, along with the images of Claus, Bunny, and Fairy when growing up reveals the truth about their childhood idols.

If we exaggerate a story to make ourselves look good in the eyes of another person, that is a lie, but we’ll always be haunted by the terror of possibly being exposed.  And no marriage would ever make the long haul if, when a wife asked her husband, “Honey, does my ass look ginormous in these jeans?” and he answered honestly, “Hell yeah, Babe—you could stop a Mac truck with that lady hump—back that thing on up into a tunic before you embarrass yourself!”  Instead, if the dude ever wants to have sex again in this lifetime, he’ll have to say, “. . . Honey, your ass looks as delectable as the day we met—go on with yo’ bad self!”  (And yet . . . and yet, maybe that ass needs to be wearing something more conducive to its shape—I’m just sayin’!)

Ginormous Ass||Image from

I’m a bit gun-shy about “white lies” because sometimes the things you don’t know could make you look like a fool.  Many years ago before I met my husband, when I thought I was going to set the world on fire as the next Ruby Dee or Leontyne Price (whichever came first), I was a starving actress working summer stock in a small country town and having the time of my life.   Clocking in at a cool 200 pounds and counting (I didn’t become skinny and WW’s “hot black wife” until a decade later), I was the physical  image of Mabel King, the actress and singer best known for her role as Evilene in “The Wiz.”

Mabel King (Evilene), the Wicked Witch of the West from “The Wiz”||Image from Wikipedia

I had a friend who was gay in the wardrobe department of that small town theater, and he wanted to be a fashion designer when we all went off to NYC to fulfill our dreams of becoming rich and famous.  In the meantime, my friend (“Lamar”) thought he was fabulous and so did I, which is why I acquiesced to let him make me a winter ensemble for my journey to New York City where I planned to take the town by storm.  Lamar decided my coat and hat must be unique to get me noticed:   a faux fur coat of many colors with a matching WWII, crocheted, bomber hat with its own monkey face and hair on my little fat, brown face!  Forty years later, I frequently ask myself, how is it that I knew the only gay fashion designer in the entire world who had absolutely no fashion sense?  And how is it that I lost my mind and let Lamar convince me that my 5-foot, 200 pound frame would look “fabulous darling” in his “bees’ knees” cutting edge fashion statement?

Now, in 2012, I know how cartoonish I must have looked as I crisscrossed Manhattan from voice lessons to chorus rehearsals for some long defunct opera company.  But back then, being a poor black child from The Cleve, I thought I was the height of New York fashion.  (Girl, I just knew I was hot shit, as I waddled across West 57th Street to the 12th floor of Carnegie Hall, for my weekly voice lessons with Madame Lila!)  When people stopped, turned, and stared in wide-eyed, open-mouthed astonishment at me, I swear I could hear them acclaiming in one accord as they genuflected in homage to my cutting-edge fashion sense:  “Damn, that girl’s got it goin’ on—where can I get me one of those sophisticated faux fur coats with that sassy WWII bomber hat?”  As I winked and nodded while passing them by, I gleefully gave them the answer to the question no one ever, ever asked:  “Oh, this vision of fashion loveliness was brought to you by my dear friend, the up-and-coming designer, Lamar Quincy Johnson, III.”   I wore that coat for a full fall season, winter season, and part of a spring season until it started to molt and some quasi New York stranger finally lost all self-control and hysterically spit out the truth that was obvious to a blind man:  “THAT COULD EASILY BE THE UGLIEST COAT AND HAT I’VE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE!”  Sometimes white lies will keep one in a state of perpetual ignorance for years and only the pinprick of brutal truth can set the captive free.

Crocheted aviator bomber hat so similar to Lamar’s creation that it’s scary||image from

And so in my old age, I know what my moral boundaries are:  I will not lie to hurt someone, or lead them astray, I will not lie to get my own way, or defame another’s character or reputation.  But as I grow older and more grandmotherly (more compassionate?), I find myself lying every once and a while to preserve the feelings of those more vulnerable than I—especially children.   These lies are more “sins of omission” for me (“if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all”) than bald-faced tall tales. 

Too bad Mitt Romney didn’t know my secret about choosing the “sin of omission lie” (keeping one’s mouth shut and smiling graciously when one is in the “home” of another).  I know he thinks he’s all that and a bag of chips, but sometimes when a person is asked, “do you like the way my shit is put together?” while standing in their backyard, the only answer is a gracious lie:  “Looks great!—I applaud your ingenuity during these hard economic times, and I’m looking forward to watching my wife’s horse dance in your fair land!”  But no!  Mitt just had to play the ugly American, and now he has the scorn of the Brits raining down on his head:

“Mitt the Twit” screamed the headline in The Sun.

“Who invited party-pooper Romney?” asked the Daily Mail

“Nowhere Man” declared the Times of London

“Psst. . . yo Mitt:  When ‘telling the truth’ by trying to show off as a fellow Anglo-Saxon to other Anglo-Saxons offends your host country, then you look like you’re not ready for primetime, my brother.  Dude, you hurt the Brits’ feelings, and now they don’t want to play with you anymore!” whispered Eleanor Tomczyk of How the Hell Did I End Up Here?


I am discovering that every culture has its version of a “white lie.”  It is called protocol or manners or just plain shuckin’ and jivin’.  It gives people a softer side in a multi-cultural environment and a global village that helps us avoid embarrassment and awkwardness.   I’ve also discovered that the Journal of Applied Psychology says (and I paraphrase), “The more detached people are from the person (s) they are communicating with or about, the easier it is to lie.”  It is not easy to lie to someone’s face (unless you’re a sociopath).

Lying is one of the most common wrongful acts we do as humans and when we do it via phone, email, online dating sites, tweeting, or texting our moral principles all go to Hell.  Being “detached” from our fellow man for whatever reasons (ideological, political, or religious) makes it easier to “bear false witness against our neighbors” or participate in a collective lie that can cause grievous injury to others.

In my mind, there is no hole deep enough in Hell for the Michele Bachmanns of the world who bore false witness against her Muslim colleagues and “neighbors” (Huma Abedin and Keith Ellison) for political and monetary gain, and no hole in Hell deep enough for the cast of characters who lied to cover the despicable acts of Coach Sandusky at Penn State.  Liars, liars, your freakin’ pants are on fire!


Sylvester the Cat “Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire”||Looney Tunes|Image from


“We tell lies when we are afraid… afraid of what we don’t know, afraid of what others will think, afraid of what will be found out about us.  But every time we tell a lie, the thing that we fear grows stronger.” –Tad Williams

 “A degree of lying – you know, white lies – seems to be inherent in all languages and all forms of communication.”—Matthew Lesko

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Eleanor Tomczyk and “How the Hell Did I End Up Here?” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Posted by on July 28, 2012 in Uncategorized


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