Fri. July 31, 2020 – more than half way through the year

Hot and humid, maybe some rain.

Yesterday was hot.  Humid too, although less than previous.  Stuff actually dried in the driveway.

As expected I spend all afternoon driving around doing pickups.  I did get preps as well as home decor…  some web gear, some airsoft and BB stuff, some knives…

I bid on a bunch of ammo last night but it all went for more than I was willing to pay.   It wasn’t crazy, but it was more than Ammoseek listings.  Oddly, Foodsaver bags and rolls sold for pretty much retail, or maybe a bit higher.  Didn’t think they were in short supply.

One of my pickups also sells surplus and salvage direct to the public.  It’s mostly clothes, but there is always some food.  I grabbed 11 bottles (8oz) of pure USA and Canadian maple syrup for $1 each.  Also 9 pounds of ground coffee for $1 /lb.  I’ll count that as a score.  We eat a lot of maple syrup.

Daughter’s room is finally done.  We have to hang a couple more pictures when she decides, but the big stuff is all in place.  Not counting the bed and rug, pretty much everything else came from an auction over the last year.

We’ll be doing something to update Daughter 2’s room soon I’m sure.

The kids, especially the younger one, are showing the strain of not seeing their friends in person, and of staying home.  Changing their rooms up is an attempt to give them something new to focus on, and to change things up a bit.  My wife has also booked us a rental in Galveston for a couple of days in a week or so.  The change of scenery should do everyone good.  The kids will get some beach and swim time in too.

The whole week was eaten up by auction stuff and some minor work in the garage.  Wife is happy though and ‘that ain’t nuthin’…

Today I’ve got another pickup in the afternoon, and I’ll do some more in the garage.  I’m hoping to see my buddy at the gun store, just to touch base.  Maybe it’s time to sell my very expensive safe queen…

I’m sure something else will jump up and demand my attention and time.

I really need to get some stuff done.  Stuff isn’t going to stack itself…

 

nick

 

Author: Nick Flandrey

Mid 50s, stay at home dad, with two elementary school age girls. Love my family and my life.

51 thoughts on “Fri. July 31, 2020 – more than half way through the year”

  1. The maple syrup is an amazing find. Good for you!

    Galveston was a favorite vacation for us when we were kids. My grandparents liked going there… one year even our great grandmother went with us. The tour of the Bishop’s Palace was a highlight I remember.

    Next weekend Aug. 7 – 9, 2020 is the Texas back to school Tax Free holiday for most clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks (sold for less than $100). t applies to internet orders too. It does not apply to “pre-orders”.

    They always have another one in April, which I always forget and thus always miss, for Emergency Preparedness stuff, which includes generators, hurricane shutters, batteries, fire extinguishers, coolers & ice, etc.

  2. I miss Drudge’s weather pron. He always had the latest cyclone cone. Sometimes two or three.

    People misinterpret the cones, and the National Hurricane Center, currently located on the grounds of University of Miami’s Coral Gables campus, plays politics just like any other Federal bureaucracy. Why put grant money in someone else’s pocket?

    Plus, with The Weather Channel ownership split between Universal (TV) and IBM (actual forecasting work), the Drudge Report runs the risk of looking “me too” hyping any storm. The media desperately want another Harvey, and I’m IBM is still looking for something legitimate for Watson to do.

  3. Keith Koffler’s “Cut to the News” is a daily email digest of the most significant stories. It’s very readable. He covers more & different stories in the email than he does on his White House Dossier blog, so definitely worth subscribing:
    https://www.whitehousedossier.com/cut-news/

  4. New switcher arrived. I think I have remapped the buttons and the inputs to match what I need. I will not install until Monday as I don’t need to introduce any problem this close to the Sunday broadcast.

    This is the new connection diagram. It does not include the routing that takes place in the matrix switch. Most of that is just moving inputs to multiple outputs, a big SDI distribution amplifier and that is fairly straight forward.

    This new switcher also provides audio level indicators on the left side of each monitor window. There are 10 monitor windows on one screen (a TV). Two big windows for preview and program. Eight smaller windows which can be selected by the user. Audio levels can be turned off, or on, for each window.

    I did have to add an up/down converter to downscale the HD output to SD for the broadcast. Fairly slick little box. It determines the input, the output type, resolution, frame rate and interlacing is specified by dip switches. It will scale up, or down, just about any video signal.

  5. @ray:

    For me, the only improvement to that converter would be to optionally determine the desired output format from the reference you give it, e.g US SD, give it 525 NTSC black-and-burst, and out comes NTSC.

    But if I were to be nasty, I’d give it 625 SECAM colour black, and see what it made of it.

    G.

  6. Another unexpected consequence….

    what do you think the ‘back to school’ sales are going to look like? That is normally a big boost to clothing as well as school supplies. I’m thinking ‘disappointing sales numbers’.

    n


  7. what do you think the ‘back to school’ sales are going to look like?

    Picked up sweat pants and pajamas for the kid and a case of wine for myself. Easiest back-to-school shopping ever.

  8. Those of you who might be paying attention may have noticed a new menu entry up there on the menu bar – “Search”.

    That page will allow you to search this site content (posts and comments). The results will display posts that have the search term in the contents or comments. Note that it won’t display the actual text area that has the search term; all you get is the excerpt of the posts.

    So if you are searching for FLASHLIGHTS, the result will be post excerpts of any post that contain FLASHLIGHTS in the post and/or comments. You won’t see the actual comment that mentions the word, just the post excerpt.

    The plugin doesn’t have the option to specify the how the results page looks (I think) – so haven’t seen a way to show the actual comment that contains the search word. But still poking around in the plugin.

    So, this might be useful. Or might not.

  9. Another unexpected consequence….

    what do you think the ‘back to school’ sales are going to look like? That is normally a big boost to clothing as well as school supplies. I’m thinking ‘disappointing sales numbers’.

    Depends on the deals at the stores. When Burlington Coat Factory reopened near us in late May, they had 50% off on all the Winter/Spring clothing, and the line was around the block.

    Next weekend will be big in Texas because of the sales tax holiday. Florida does something similar twice a year, once for hurricane prep and again for back-to-school.

  10. I’m sure something else will jump up and demand my attention and time.

    I really need to get some stuff done. Stuff isn’t going to stack itself…

    Dude, just reading your intro makes me tired. This passing into elderhood is for the birds.

    And I really need to get some programming done. The natives are prodding me for more features that they do not want to pay extra for as usual.

  11. The lovely Maxine Waters on Herman Cain:

    “happened to have been at the rally in Tulsa on June 20th with no mask on, with a group of people around him with no mask on, and he’s dead. He died.”

    Another crone who needs to die.

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  12. This is the new connection diagram. It does not include the routing that takes place in the matrix switch. Most of that is just moving inputs to multiple outputs, a big SDI distribution amplifier and that is fairly straight forward.
    http://www.raymondthompsonphotography.com/Video.jpg

    Nice drawing ! Visio ?

    I almost moved our software to using Visio as our front end back in 2000 or so. Some days I regret that decision, most days I don’t. When Microsoft bought Visio, their developer interface dropped in priority.

  13. Another unexpected consequence….

    what do you think the ‘back to school’ sales are going to look like? That is normally a big boost to clothing as well as school supplies. I’m thinking ‘disappointing sales numbers’.

    More pajamas, less jeans.

  14. @Rick, THANKS!! I did not notice, but when you called attention to it, I tried it. Works great, wish it had been here long ago. Many thanks. Did I forget to thank you?

    OK, enough.

    I will point out that quotes work, and maybe some other things I haven’t tried yet. As a test, I searched for Visio, because I knew it was in one of Ray’s posts a couple of days ago, and it is a seldom used term here. My first search was for “visio” without the quotes. Of course, I got many hits on that character string, mostly the word “vision”. So, I searched for ” visio “, and got only that string. Perfect. Works as needed. Thanks again.

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  15. I almost moved out software to using Visio as our front end back in 2000 or so. Some days I regret that decision, most days I don’t. When Microsoft bought Visio, their developer interface dropped in priority.

    The Office products were a career dead end in Redmond twenty years ago and probably still are in Hyderabad or wherever the work takes place now.

    Prior to Bush 43 taking office and ending the anti-trust case, the expectation in Redmond was OS and languages would be separated from IE and Office into a separate company to the point that Microsoft purchased the property in Issaquah Heights and embarked on a master development project with the new campus at the center of the community, around the corner from the (then) Egghead Discount Ponzi Scheme -er- Software complex and Costco’s HQ.

    Issaquah Heights still happened, but Microsoft finally sold off all of the “HQ2” land around the time I lived up there.

    I’m guessing Gates would have been up in The Heights with OS and languages. The plateau has a commanding view of Seattle and Downtown in particular, and, IMHO, a split Microsoft would have been much more powerful and influential than the single corporate entity is currently.

  16. Oh, @Rick, I have been noticing the slight delay in seeing the POST COMMENT button after a refresh. This is the perfect solution. Before, I never knew how long to pause. Now, it is obvious. Thanks for keeping this site the best.

  17. “Appeals court schedules do-over for Flynn case”
    https://www.wnd.com/2020/07/appeals-court-schedules-flynn-case/

    “Trial court judge opposing prosecutors who want charges dropped”

    “The Gateway Pundit blog summarized: “Gen. Michael Flynn was lied to, set up multiple times before and after the Trump inauguration, excessively and to the point of illegally unmasked, targeted, ambushed in the White House, falsely accused, threatened with his son being indicted, provided corrupt legal counsel (the same firm where corrupt Obama former AG Eric Holder works), harassed for 3 years, belittled, slandered, besmirched by the judge, harassed by the judge, and then the attorneys going after him were the same attorneys who represented the corrupt Sally Yates who lied and told President Trump General Flynn lied.””

    OK, this is absolutely crazy. General Flynn was forced to plead guilty to baseless charges by crooked prosecutors on Mueller’s staff. Those same prosecutors have now quit or been fired by the DOJ. The new DOJ have dropped the charges. The judge is refusing to accept the new DOJ drop of the charges. And the entire DC circuit court wants a new hearing without prosecutors so the judge becomes the prosecutor. The judge is supposed to be impartial, so much for that.

    Hat tip to:
    https://thelibertydaily.com/

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  18. I’m guessing Gates would have been up in The Heights with OS and languages. The plateau has a commanding view of Seattle and Downtown in particular, and, IMHO, a split Microsoft would have been much more powerful and influential than the single corporate entity is currently.

    Gates should have split Microsoft himself. He would have doubled his wealth and made more of the rest of the investors millionaires also. Instead he let Office linger and become less important over time.

  19. “July to end with a cold front? Really?”
    https://spacecityweather.com/july-to-end-with-a-cold-front-really/

    “In summertime, few things are coveted more in Houston than a cold front, and as we flip the calendar from July to August, we’re going to get just that. Now, don’t get too excited. It is not really going to translate into opening the windows and letting the gloriousness flow.”

    “It’s not going to feel quite this nice this weekend, unfortunately. Rather, this will probably bring us some rain chances, perhaps some strong storms today, and maybe a tinge less humidity than we’ve had late this week. But beyond that? Not much. We never really, truly cool off. Let’s go through the details”

    More rain, no !

    I made the mistake of praying for rain three weeks ago. I have gotten 14 or 15 inches of rain at my house since then. The front pond at the office is full (picked up over two feet). The back pond at the office picked up over a foot.

    This reminds me of that old Steve Martin movie where he plays a traveling bus preacher. “People, don’t pray for rain. Pray for it to STOP.”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leap_of_Faith_(film)

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  20. Gates should have split Microsoft himself. He would have doubled his wealth and made more of the rest of the investors millionaires also. Instead he let Office linger and become less important over time.

    My long-standing theory about Gates antics is that he is self conscious that his wealth is not the end result of a singular intellectual achievement on his part. The closest he’s come was the “turn the company on a dime” decision, supposedly during a “reading weekend” (cough), to focus the company on the browser in the 90s, and splitting the company in 2000 would have put the dubious achievement of IE dominance running at the admin level in Windows in jeopardy if Microsoft Applications had been free to work with Mozilla and Apple browsers on Windows which ran as normal applications.

    Also, go back to 2000, and Apple was still making noises about updating the Yellow Box technology which allowed NeXT Step binaries to run on Windows unmodified. A Microsoft Applications would have been free to pursue different development technologies, and my Apple exec friend told me once that some of the best Apple developers work in Redmond.

    Imagine a unified Office binary that ran on both Windows and Mac OS X. Sure, OS X Office sucked for a while due to p*ss poor management, but that’s a completely different timeline if Yellow Box had survived.

    Imagine Linux Office. Or a Microsoft Applications distribution of Linux. Both may yet happen, but crippled like Windows Linux subsystem.

    Think I’m full of it? Name a single Gates accomplishment in tech or science which is his alone. No Paul Allen, early Albuquerque Microsoft employees, or Seattle Computer Products (DOS).

    Plus, credit Mary Gates’ sharp elbows for the DOS deal, putting BillG in the right place at the right time when Gary Kildall elected to blow off IBM.

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  21. Think I’m full of it? Name a single Gates accomplishment in tech or science which is his alone. No Paul Allen, early Albuquerque Microsoft employees, or Seattle Computer Products (DOS).

    Microsoft Basic running on the Altair 8080 in 4K of ram. He hand coded it to have a 2K ram footprint in assembly language, leaving 2K of ram for the Basic program.

  22. “How Many Oil Jobs Did Texas Lose in 1H? ”
    https://www.rigzone.com/news/how_many_oil_jobs_did_texas_lose_in_1h-30-jul-2020-162868-article/

    “The report outlined that 321,455 Texans were directly employed by the oil and gas sector in 1H and revealed that this figure represented a decrease of approximately 39,514 net jobs over the previous year. Of the 39,514 job loss figure, 19,696 job cuts were registered in the support activities for oil and gas operations sector. The sector with the second highest job losses was shown to be oil and gas well drilling at 8,847 and the third was oil and gas field machinery and equipment manufacturing, which posted 6,002 job cuts.”

    The indirect jobs in the oil patch are reputed 5X the number of direct jobs.

    Lots of layoffs going on out there and way more to come.

  23. Microsoft Basic running on the Altair 8080 in 4K of ram. He hand coded it to have a 2K ram footprint in assembly language, leaving 2K of ram for the Basic program.

    Without Paul Allen’s involvement?

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  24. “Details emerging about fatal shooting of BLM ‘protester’ in Austin, TX are stunning”
    https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2020/07/details_emerging_about_fatal_shooting_of_blm_protester_in_austin_tx_are_stunning.html

    “Daniel Perry is an active duty sergeant with the United States Army. He is a former Eagle Scout from the North Texas area and served our country proudly for the past eight years. Sgt. Perry served a tour in Afghanistan and has been the recipient of numerous army awards and commendations.”

    “On the evening of July 25, 2020, Sgt. Perry was in Austin, Texas driving for a ride share company in order to earn extra money. He had dropped his client off in the vicinity of Congress Avenue. He was then going to proceed to a “hot spot” in order to wait on notification to pick up another client or to pick up food for delivery. Sgt. Perry made a right onto Congress Avenue from Fourth Street and encountered a throng of people in the street. Prior to arriving at the corner of Fourth Street and Congress Avenue, Sgt. Perry did not know that a demonstration was taking place.”

    Don’t point a gun at an armed man. Especially in Texas.

    Assume that all men are armed in Texas. And most women.

  25. Microsoft Basic running on the Altair 8080 in 4K of ram. He hand coded it to have a 2K ram footprint in assembly language, leaving 2K of ram for the Basic program.

    Without Paul Allen’s involvement?

    If I remember correctly. Which, is highly doubtful nowadays.

  26. Supper tonight might be weird. I’m going to spin the recipe on a can of Cream of Chicken soup.

    Brown the chicken breasts. Ok, tenders. Set aside.
    Brown some garlic, add 3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, the soup, some water, and mix.
    Add half a cup of chopped tomatoes and some oregano, etc. Kalamata olives if you have them.
    Add the chicken and simmer it all until the chicken is cooked. Serve over orzo.

    Easy.

    I’m winging it. Leave out the water and olives. Brown the chicken and set aside, brown some jarred garlic, add soup, a can of diced tomatoes with juice and then maybe some water because I’m going to toss in a handfull of macaroni after adding the chicken.

    It’ll be fine.

  27. Home from my pickup. I got a couple of small gub related things, and some stuff for the kids. Tomorrow I pick up about 50 bottles of wine and liquor. I paid about 13$/ bottle. With liquor at 20-30$/bottle, and even cheap wine at $10, I think I took care of my liquor needs for a long time. I should say ‘wife and guests’ needs as I gave it up over a decade ago. I’m pretty sure you don’t store $10 bottles of wine in a $3000 eurocave cooler, so I think the wife’s gonna be happy.

    It had rained on the south side, and I could see several rain cells, but we’ve been dry so far here at the house. Weather station is showing 106F in the sun in the driveway with 47%RH. Oppressive is an understatement.

    n


  28. He was then going to proceed to a “hot spot”

    So much for the confident assertion that no one would be in that area if he wasn’t looking for trouble.

    some jarred garlic

    How did you jar the garlic? Tell it some uncomfortable truths?

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  29. More rain, no !
    I made the mistake of praying for rain three weeks ago.

    Careful what you wish for comes to mind. 🙂


  30. Subcontinent made it to the nomination for our Congressional district.

    I think I will donate to her campaign.

    I will use a credit card, donate $0.01. The credit card minimum fee of $0.40 will cost her money.

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  31. He was then going to proceed to a “hot spot”

    So much for the confident assertion that no one would be in that area if he wasn’t looking for trouble.

    A “hot spot” is a designated waiting area by Uber for drivers to wait in their car for their next fare. They use a predictive algorithm to position the drivers closer to the next probable fare. They also have drivers orbiting a high usage area.

    So it was Uber’s fault that Sgt. Perry drove into the demonstration and that the idiot pointed a rifle at Sgt. Perry.

  32. Cr*p. Subcontinent made it to the nomination for our Congressional district.

    My wife joked about going to vote against her in the runoff. I voted in the primary, but not my spouse.

    https://www.votefordonna.com/

    Good night, she ran in the GOP primary ? Is there any liberal platform item that she is not for ?

    ADD: Nope, she ran in the dumbocrat primary. And the R is picked to win the district.
    https://ballotpedia.org/Donna_Imam

    And she has a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Purdue ? Well, another school sucks.

  33. “Sheila Jackson Lee Seeks to Replace RACIST White House w/ New Residence”
    https://headlineusa.com/sheila-jackson-lee-new-white-house/

    “Race-baiting congresswoman has been uncharacteristically quiet about the bill, which has zero cosponsors…”

    Shelia Jackson Lee and Maxine Waters are in a constant race to see who is the dumbest congress-person. They are usually neck and neck for the last place in congress. Of course, they have both gotten wealthy while in congress.

    Hat tip to:
    https://thelibertydaily.com/

  34. Good night, she ran in the GOP primary ? Is there any liberal platform item that she is not for ?

    ADD: Nope, she ran in the dumbocrat primary. And the R is picked to win the district.

    And she has a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Purdue ? Well, another school sucks.

    My wife was eligible to vote in the runoff because she didn’t vote in the primaries. Your party affiliation upon registration doesn’t matter, but, in Texas, the party affiliation locks for the year when you vote in the first primary.

    We had Subcontinent in the GOP primary, but he was an obvious RINO who snagged maybe a couple of hundred votes out of more than 50,000. Still, I didn’t want to take any chances so I voted as Republican in March.

    I won’t flog the expired equine, but Masters degrees in computer related fields are rackets for schools and some employers anymore. Very lucrative since a two year visa gets stapled to the diploma upon graduation, and Subcontinent families will pay big money for the opportunity for Number One Son … or Daughter.

    Cedar Park PO Box for the campaign. Bet she lives in that private airport development which is popular with Indians just for the square footage of the houses.


  35. A “hot spot” is a designated waiting area

    Understood. I was too aggressive in trimming what I quoted. My point was that he was just driving from point A to point B and had not, contra assertion, been in the area looking for trouble.

    Shelia Jackson Lee and Maxine Waters are in a constant race to see who is the dumbest congress-person.

    Hey, now, there’s also Francesca Stupidhat and Hank Johnson.


  36. Masters degrees in computer related fields are rackets

    Yah. Speaking as a guy who’s worked with a bunch of programmers and who’s interviewed a whole stinking pile of programmers and hired a tiny fraction, I can firmly state that there is almost no correlation between having a CS/SE/IT degree and being a useful programmer in a commercial setting.

    It’s worse because so many managers are not programmers or at least haven’t programmed in decades and haven’t kept up, so they’re easily bamboozled by lies and a stream of buzzwords. And it’s more worse because handbooks of how to answer technical questions are passed around between members of a certain subcontinent, so they can state that they have three years’ experience with Java 5 and Struts 3 (the subject of one of the handbooks I happened to see) and be able to answer questions about the control flow of a request or various configuration options.

    Once I discovered that, I got more aggressive in pushing for demonstrations of skills: Here’s a Spring configuration file. What’s wrong with it? OK, you’ve told us that you’ve set up a number of SQL database schemas. Write the DDL to create two tables with a foreign key constraint. I don’t worry about minor syntax errors when they’re whiteboarding the solutions, but only a fraction even know how to get started.

    If nothing else, this demonstrates that recruiting departments are worthless when it comes to screening candidates for tech positions. (It was a source of constant tension with Recruiting. I’d tell them to send me all of the applications, I would screen them, and then I’d pass successes back to them for whatever they did. Yes, it was more work for me, but considering that I threw out 90% of the candidates and they threw out only a few percent, it was less work overall. But they didn’t see it that way. Recruiters had to justify their positions and salaries.)

  37. If nothing else, this demonstrates that recruiting departments are worthless when it comes to screening candidates for tech positions.

    We have lousy lawyers, but the upside is that they’re clueless about the H1B process.

    We try to tell the recruiters not to pass us anyone requiring sponsorship, but Subcontinent lies. We just recently spent a bunch of time with a girl who wasn’t up front about her status until management moved to make an offer.


  38. We have lousy lawyers, but the upside is that they’re clueless about the H1B process.

    Ha! When life hands you lawyers, make lawyerade.

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  39. but Subcontinent lies

    Quoted for truth.

    So do mainland Chinese. Maybe not as bad as Indians, but bad.

  40. “Dr. Alveda King Calls Out Obama for Political Remarks at John Lewis’ Funeral”
    https://www.charismanews.com/us/82094-dr-alveda-king-calls-out-obama-for-political-remarks-at-john-lewis-funeral

    “Former President Barack Obama chose to turn Thursday’s four-hour funeral service for Congressman John Lewis into a political moment yesterday when he launched into a tirade against what he called “the attacks on democracy” our country is experiencing. But Alveda King, pro-life activist and niece of Martin Luther King, said in an interview on Fox & Friends that Obama’s words reveal how the Left will “grab at any opportunity” to push its agenda forward.”

    Obama strikes me as a man who is desperate to protect his failing legacy. Whatever that legacy is.

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  41. “Party Like It’s 1799: Cops Bust Up an Amish Barn Bash for Violating Ohio’s Stay-at-Home Order”
    https://www.redstate.com/alexparker/2020/04/23/824073/

    “Over the weekend, Northeastern Ohio cops had to bust up a large, illegal late-night party.”

    “The sizable shindig violated Geauga County’s coronavirus social-distancing rules, and the gregarious group had already been warned.”

    “In the township of Huntsburg, police raided a bash by that bunch known for its rage against the machine, that rough and radical faction of rugged rebels.”

    “They work hard, they play hard, and they don’t mind doing everything else hard, too.”

    “I’m speaking, of course, of the Amish.”


  42. Don’t point a gun at an armed man. Especially in Texas.

    Assume that all men are armed in Texas. And most women.

    A bumper sticker seen here: “Texas women shoot their own snakes”

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