Saturday, January 29, 2011

The King's Speech it is

Now I know why it garnered all the awards and nominations.
The plot is quite simple- It was the dawn of the radio, and there was a new expectation for the hidden monarchy –  public speaking! But England's new King was ill prepared for that ordeal. His interminably long paused speeches due to an impediment embarrassed the nation but it was a thousand times worse for the stammer-er himself and something had to be done. The movie then led us into the speechless and lonely world of a royal stammer-er.

It was a typical period drama. All the bowing and kissing and courtesies, ‘your majesties’ and what not. There was no running or swinging from planes; but you felt as anxious for its leading actor Bertie like you would for the action hero that is jumping high rises, chased by a posse of Russian spies.
Or is it the royal snubs, (given both in look and words) that are as painful as an uppercut or slap? I do love the English!

Colin Firth gave a most superb performance as the King. Faultless if I might say. Geoffery Rush as the speech therapist Logue gave as good as he got too. Such wit and obstinacy! If a supporting actor is one whose character and performance can stand in its own stead and yet let the lead shine then that was Rush epitomized. 
Helena Bonheim-Carter - the King’s wife was terrific too. She was the silent martyr suffering his frustrations with him. You can feel the tension in her whenever they are in public even at home with the kids. You can’t also help but appreciate the support she gave him; the perfect wife.
I haven’t seen the movies of the ladies she is up against to compare her probability of winning, but I do acknowledge that these three had a synergistic energy that cannot be ignored.
Anyway, it was a beautiful movie even funny at times and TOTALLY in accord with the kind of movies chosen by Academy award judges - realistic, meditative,  gloomy and long winded thankfully not in this case.
So if you are still wondering why you should watch this, if maybe it’s all hype, trust me, it isn’t.

Ginger scores it 9/10

This film made me appreciate the beauty of having a voice that can speak at will. Stammering I believe is still stigmatized even now and we are reminded of how unsettling it is to listen to one. But, I also wonder if it will be such a big issue if it happens in this day and age?
E.g. Public figure that would most affected: ANY President of the USA... US presidents give the most speeches (in number and length) in the world.
Solutions: A public speaking clone of the Prez would be made or he could lip-sync to a pre-recorded voice or he could just give up on public speeches and FB/Tweet!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Have you seen the Joys of Teen Sex?

Channel 4 on British TV started  a new series called the Joys of teen sex this January. It is fronted by a Dr Rachel Jones, Ruth - a social worker and Joanna - the resident sex coach. The idea behind its creation was to explore the dirty mind of teenagers  the love and sex lives of today’s teenagers and present solutions to the emotional and physical problems that many of them experience.
 What they have succeeded in is airing soft porn at 10pm. Or what would you call a programme which
  • Shows a lot of nude bouncy teenage breasts
  • Teaches a 15-16 year old couple(urghhh) how to spice up their sex life with a little bondage and whipping?
  • Demonstrates to another 15-16 year old couple how to pleasure each other orally. I kid you not there was a video of another biracial couple (yeah they love that black kin/white skin combo) going down on each other 69, 39 heck, I saw some moves I didn’t even know existed.
  • To help a young girl who had low breast esteem cause of her inverted nipples, she had a professional photo shoot out wearing only pants so she can get to feel cool and sexy.
  • For another 15 yr old who had low vaginal self esteem, a mould was made of her vulva and this was compared with other vulva moulds to convince her she is normal.
  • Another who had low pubic hair esteem was given a Brazilian. In full camera view.
  • For the young man who says he is gay but is not yet comfortable enough to have anal sex, he got a demonstration – a finger (or was it a dildo) dipped in lubricant and a model’s ass to practice on.
 I am not writing this to titillate. I am hoping you all are as scandalized as I am. I am hoping we find this as morally  reprehensible as I did. Why in the world are we teaching kids how to have great sex??  When did we lower the bar of adulthood to 16?
Yes, I know they are having sex even much earlier but I still think it is a sweeping generalization. Not ALL the kids are having sex. And even if they are, that doesn’t make it normal. Nor should it make us now give tacit approval. That my son secretly smokes doesn’t mean I should buy him cartons of cigs and say 'Son, smoke some more'. What responsible parents do is to discuss the pros and cons of your habit and leave booklets about ‘how to stop smoking’, ‘smoking kills’ lying in strategic areas in the house.

Teaching kids sex education I thought was all about giving information. Teaching them about safe sex was the silent acknowledgment that “We know you are or are thinking of having sex and since we dont want you to ruin your future, we'll attempt to make it STD, AIDS and pregnancy free’.  But from there I guess it’s not easy to draw the line anymore. So yes, lets teach them how to enjoy sex as well so they don’t grow up into repressed, miserable and non sexual functioning adults.

At no point in this programme were these teens reminded that stds like syphilis can be passed by genito-oral contact.
At no point did Dr. Jones discuss or attempt to find out the real self esteem issues the 16 yr old girl who was asking how to give a blow job had (during their chat, she revealed that she has slept with 9 guys, and has had an std and abortion before). Yet the moderator thought her biggest problem was her failure to be a better Monica Lewinsky?!
At no point were the teens who were scared or uncomfortable with the idea of anal or oral sex told that it is okay to be uncomfortable. That they should take their time and think it over. No, the message was ‘learn to do it or be square’.

People are saying that the teens on TV are adult models, I sincerely hope so because I don’t want to believe a right thinking parent thought it was cool for her kid to be on TV showing off her boobs and genitals. Self esteem or not. 
This brings me back to my post about taking responsibility. When do we stop saying it’s their life and begin to speak some home truths no matter how unpopular it is? I am yet to see a huge outcry in the papers or online about this programme. I shall assume then that most parents or guardians think it’s alright. Or they can’t be bothered. Or they assume that if the TV censors have given it approval then it should be alright.
No it isn’t and No you shouldn’t stick your heads in the sand and let media moguls (who are in it for the ratings) train your kids for you.

There was a reason we thought sixteen was sweet. It wasn’t for this.
I miss a Sarah Palin in Parliament.

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

My lecturer's broad chest...

While preparing for one of my new courses this term, I checked out the module tutor’s profile. And found out he had a blog. Omg, how progressive is that.
So I go check out the blog which for privacy and 'expulsion' reasons I shall not reveal.

Now the blogs were mainly academic matter, written in a contemporary and quirky style except for one of the recent posts in which he put up a picture of himself topless.

I saw my lecturer’s hot trunk yay! (Now you understand why I am making a blog post about this). Well, I was generally tripped. Looked forward to meeting him in person and wondered if I would have an opportunity to throw in something fun and flirty about his body in class.

Well, Stats is not a courses designed to make you feel all sexy and funny. I was in over my head with the rows and columns I had to fill.
But I gotta say his appearance IRL helped throw me off balance. He was well turned out. I ‘ve gotten used to male lecturers in shirts and trousers (throw in a homely cardigan that looks like the dog has been playing with it ...joking) who look like this -  
Well, this blogger had a great pair of fitted jeans on, white shirt with a charcoal grey cardigan over it, a glimpse of a fluorescent green tie betwixt the shirt and cardigan matched by fluorescent green shoe laces. Nice belt and a dark blue suede/velvet jacket.
Plus a hat and neckerscarf on the table next to him.

I'm in love!! Can't wait for the next edition of Sir GQ as I live and breathe. (He looks a lot like Adrien Brody here).
p.s. Authentic rumor has it that he’s not into women. Awww. whatta waste.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Oscars and Raspberries

So ‘my great love’ for Jennifer Aniston (Bounty Hunter), Kirsten Stewart(Twilight) acting capabilities has been vindicated by the judges of the Golden Raspberry Awards a.k.a Razzies and about 600 voters hehehe. They both got nominated for worst actresses for the year 2010. SATC girls shared a nomination for worst actresses too. We do agree that SATC II wasn’t wonderful. The fact is, it shouldn’t have been produced at all. But what the heck! Isn’t it wonderful when good friends can share both good times and bad times?? A nomination shared is a nomination quartered :).

In the male category, the twilight men in the buff, dear Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner were both nominated worst leading men. So also Jack Black of Gulliver’s travel (I never bothered with that movie. I loved the book Gulliver’s Story and couldn’t stand to see it turned into a comedy).
Ashton Kutcher also got a Razzie nomination for Killers. Did you see it? I did. And it was the most forgettable, uninspiring action movie I had seen in a while. Katherine Heigl didn’t do herself any favours by leading with him. Luckily for her she escaped a nomination.

The movie Last Airbender garnered 9 nominations including Worst Director/Movie/ Screen play/Remake/Screen Couple/Ensemble and a brand new Category: Worst Eye-Gouging Mis-use of 3-D. lols. I am definitely never watching it. Unless I am tied to the sofa, with a crane holding my head/neck in position, a tube transporting some cold sweet creamy delight to my mouth, and a maaseuse doing wonderful things to my back and a trip to Paris after the ‘painful’ process.

On the other hand, we have the just announced Oscar nominations, for the movies, actors, actresses, directors, music directors that made our movie watching experience a memorable one. Sadly, I can’t really make much comment on it (what kind of movie reviewer am I anyway???) Seems I have been watching crap movies all this while cause I have only seen 2 out of the 10 best picture nominations! (Black Swan and Inception). Winter bone, King’s speech, Toy Story, The Fighter, Social Network, True Grit, The Kids are alright and 127 hours are still awaiting my royal viewing.
Happily, Inception is up for all the categories I predicted and hoped it will be nominated for Original Screenplay, Original score, Cinematography, Best movie(though it won’t win). It also got some extras nominations thrown in like Art direction, Sound mixing, Sound editing, Visual Effects, all except a nomination for Christian Nolan as best director. Guess he will be well compensated with at least 4 wins from the above??
The King’s speech got the juiciest nominations though; Best movie, Leading actor, Supporting actress, Supporting actor, Original screen play, Art direction, Cinematography, Sound mixing, Original score, Film editing and Costume. Gotta gotta see this movie soonest!!

Ah well, may the best/worst movie win.

p.s. For five seconds, I thought Na Wewe a nominee for live action short film was a Nigerian movie. That would have been a real plus for Nollywood, a metonymy for Nigeria’s movie industry. Oh well, we can always wish…

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Black Swan

This review is hot form the oven. I just spent a tense 120 minutes watching Black Swan. The original movie length is 115  iutes. The extra was all the times I paused the movie so I could exchange chitchat with Mom and Madge. The suspense was killing me and I needed to cool off.
Plot: Black Swan is a psychological thriller about Nina, a beautiful young ballet dancer who wanted more than anything to lead the musical production of Swan Lake as the Swan Queen. A role which required her to play two persons – a the sweet and pure White Swan vs the Sensual and not so pure Black Swan. She got her wish but it plunged her into a terrifying emotional and mental depth she wasn’t ill-prepared for.

Natalie gave a taut performance. She was practically luminescent literally and figuratively. Boy! did she lose some weight to look like that! Mila Kunis her frenemy in the movie still had a pert buttom so I know she didn’t lose as much weight. I loved Mila in Forgetting Sarah Marshall and was happy to see her give a terrific performance here. She’s got the friendliest smile I know.
Natalie, I admired greatly in V for Vendetta. She’s one actress I know who embodies her roles and makes the necessary sacrifice; be it shaving off her hair (in V for Vendatta) or the insane weight she must have lost to play this.
Vincent Cassel, was superb as the ballet director Leroy. There was that brooding-sexual-teacher/best student- tension between him and Nina that lit up their scenes together. I loved studying his face and body language to see if he’s happy with Nina’s dancing. You could feel him battle with the urge to kiss or shake her ‘frigidity off. Reminds me of watching Simon Cowell.
Enough praise has been heaped on Darren Aronofsky, the movie director. I shant add more. Well, maybe ‘thank you’.

I can’t tell you more, go watch. I do know I haven’t seen anything like it this past year.

Ginger scores it 8.5/10
Almost perfect Nina
 p.s. I noticed male reviews kept harping on the masturbation scene/ss. I did think one was enough..(the first one) but I guess we have to titillate the men to make them watch a movie about ballet dancers don’t we?

p.p.s After watching those leg and feet movements, I know no daughter of mine is going to ballet school. Kudos to Sandra who does.

p.p.p.s  Just found out Natalie Portman played Novalee Nation in the film, ‘where the heart is’ based on the book of same name. I loved that book!! Bought it, lent it to someone who lost it and I promptly replaced it. Gotta look for that movie. That will be quite a different role for Natalie.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Death at a Funereal a la Hollywood

Plot: When a man threatens to expose a dark secret about a deceased patriarch at his funereal, chaos ensues as the dysfunctional family try to keep family secrets intact.
So I have seen recently the two versions of Death at a Funereal – 2007 vs 2010, British vs American. The British version was the earlier and funny version. The American version was like diluted coke. No taste, no fizz.
Maybe I’m biased cause I live in these parts, but I have always loved British Humor; it’s either manic or grossly understated. You have to listen to the lines. You need a bit of intelligence too. They also love countryside humor and class clashes - the uppity class and the servants.

Now American humor is cool too. The sitcoms are contemporary and laugh out funny. But in comedy movies, they tend to hit you over the head and bash your face in it for good measure or maybe its just the noir movies.
Anyway that’s what they did to Death at a Funereal Hollywood version. I still don’t understand why they had to remake a great comedy especially so soon after its original release. I could understand if the original was 1960 and you want to make a more modern version. (Is it still another attempt to dumb down for American viewers? That would be sad. Less words and more act?)
A breakdown of my worst bits
**I think Chris Rock is cute. I think he’s a great comedian. I also think he’s got one of the best set of dental plates. Golly his teeth shine. So when you have him acting the somber, troubled elder bro in the Hollywood version, I can’t help but expect him to break out in a toothsome smile each minute. Which generally ruins the scene for me. To be honest, he gave a good performance but British Matthew Macfayden who did not have a ready to smile face stole my heart.
**The role of widow and haughty upperclass Mater, was done classlessly by Loretta Devine. I don’t know what an uppity black woman acts like (Michelle Obama??) but Loretta’s version (flounces and rolling eyeballs) was not inspired.
**Tracy Morgan of 30 rock acted as silly-ly as I knew he was capable of. He was alright I guess, just not a personal favourite.
**Martin Lawrence as the famous brother and author did not cut it with me. He had this smarmy manner which I did not connect with. And what was with the bling bling??
**Handicapped and Belligerent Uncle Alfie acted by Peter Vaughan was a belly of laughs. Danny Glover wasn’t.
**Peter Dinklage flawlessly played the same role in the remake across two continents. Which makes me wonder; is there a shortage of short actors? It must be cool to have such a unique selling point. Lol.
The only actor I thoroughly enjoyed was James Marsden as Oscar – Elaine’ fiance who was mistakenly given a hallucinogenic. If possible, he was better than the first Oscar by Alan Tudyk or maybe I am biased cause he also has a pert tush (James).

Anyway, if you’ve not seen this movie, get the British version from Netflix and laugh your heart out.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Taking responsibility

I am a big proponent of ‘each man taking responsibility for the direction of their life’. Not for me the whiners who cry ‘my momma made me do it’, 'My life sucks because I wasn't loved as  a child'. okay these are valid reasons too but should never justify messing up one's future or another's.
This saying reminds us that raising healthy - mental, emotional, physically, spiritually fit adults is the work of everyone in the young adult's life/community.

Where am I heading? With the skyrocketing statistics of increased smoking, obesity, drug addiction, what are parents, siblings, partners doing about it? Can we really fold our hands and say ‘Oh no, s/he ‘s an adult. ‘It’s his choice to do so so and so’. Okay, even if you want to take that attitude to an adult, what about a child? (0-17) I look around and I see a society that doesn't care anymore. Everyone is trying so hard to mind their own business and not have to feel some blame or guilt cause that would mean responsibility.

I see news like this:
A 4 year old puffing his life away
I see pictures of kids who look like this:
Or a wife/girlfriend who looks like this? 
And I wonder – Do you (Mom, Dad, Sister, Brother, Husband, Wife) really love this person???

Where is the tough love? Where were you before it got to this point? Cause these bad habits practices didn’t start overnight.
2 bottles become 3 bottles then 20 bottles a night.
3 cigarettes becomes 10 then 15 packs a day.
A snack after lunch becomes a snack every hour and a fridge full of junkfood.
There are always signs. The question is are we willing to be the unpopular person that says ‘HEY, YOU REALLY NEED TO WATCH THIS OR...’.
My Aunt’s hubby is a ‘heart attack waiting to happen’. And yet she happily prepares all his favorite high carbohydrate and fatty meals cause ‘that’s what he likes’. Almost makes me wonder..does she want him dead?

I read the story of a widow in her fifties who was scammed by some guy from Nigeria (no, no, no). They had met online and the guy courted her eagerly with sweet words and chat. Her daughter who lives with her suspected it was a scam and warned her severally to no avail. Her mom ended up loosing all her savings and eventually their home (cause she had mortgaged it to help her ‘yet to be met’ fiancée!). 
You know who I blamed? Her daughter.
I know I am being harsh here but I know If that were my mom, respect be damned. I would have seized her laptop/phone, emailed, called the guy and threatened his life. Hack her email and/or his. Block his mails. Send a virus to his system. Report him to Cyber crime watchdogs. Whatever. Scammers don’t like trouble and that guy would have fled to find other fish. But she had stood aside and let her mom do 'what makes her happy'.
Choices which are costing the family now. Fiddlesticks!

So when next she asks, 'Does my butt look fat in this?' 
My reply: Yes love. We really need to join a gym….

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Tourist

 I am a sucker for Johnny Depp's good looks and acting skills and will happily watch him paint a fence. Then he teams up with sexy Angelina Jolie and I am salivating, eagerly awaiting the combustion. Alas, I waited in vain......
Plot: The French police are on the lookout for Alexander Pearce a millionaire man wanted by Scotland yard for tax evasion and by a gangster Shaw who wants his stolen money back. They both think Elise (Angelina Jolie) Alexander’s lover will lead them to him based on a note he sends her.
In the note, Alexander tells Elise to get on a named train and latch herself onto the nearest guy that looks like him to deceive the detectives.
Shy and diffident Frank (Johnny Depp), an American tourist unwittingly became entangled in the spy chase when Elise chose to sit next to him.

I have never seen Johnny Depp look so handsome and Angelina so bloodless (well, except her pouty red lips).
The plot was interesting enough and Johnny Depp's performance was all I expected, with a good mesh of romance and action. I especially loved the suspense of the last 30 minutes…….all except Angelina’s clichéd role. I almost walked out of the cinema when she was revealed to be a secret British agent. Must she be a spy/detective/supersleuth in all her movies?? In this film, her role as secret agent added little or no bearing to the story. Except maybe they wanted to justify why she was good at managing a speed boat??.

My question is ‘has that woman forgotten how to be ‘womanly’ in a role?’ The last movie I thought of Jolie as womanly and sexy was Original sin.
I could totally understand why Antonio Banderas gave his heart and wealth to her. She reminded me of what it must have been to be Helen of Troy. But since then she has become this ‘sexy siren’ that’s untouchable and bloodless and automated. Her now almost gaunt outline and heavy make-up does not help matters.

To cut a long rant short, she was the only thing I didn’t like about The Tourist. I know many of you might not agree with me heck, she got a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress because of this same role. I really don’t get why. To each their own I guess.

Angelina, please add some meat to those bones and enough of the spy movies. You are getting stereotyped.

Stylish and Versatile Bloggers

An award for Stylish and Versatile Blogger is going round blogville. Thank you Lily Johnson, LucidLilith and Mamuje for passing it on to me!!
To fulfill the conditions of the award I must tell Blogfam 7 things about me and pass it on to others. 
Here goes:
1. Breakfast is my absolute favourite meal of the day!! I love all things breakfast - bread, chocolate, milk, muffins, custard, sausages, eggs, pancakes, get my drift.
2. I love to love. (Does that make sense??)
3. I love warmth. Be it bodily warmth from cuddling, or tucked under my duvet or tucked in my snuggie from Mom.

4. I have a deadly streak of revenge reserved for people that willfully hurt me.Watch out!!
5. I am not good at lying and I hope never to be. I will confess my 'sins' at the mildest of nudges. Ask and I shall tell.
6. My nose is my most erogenous zone. I will get to first base with you faster if you smell good; naturally or with Calvin Klein's help.
7. I suffer obsessive plate washing disorder (OPWD). I fear its a legacy of being a last child - you get to do the least appealing house chores and become good at it:). So if you need someone to help you with the dishes after a dinner party just make sure I am one of the guests. I'll still look cute in my sexy heels and apron.

I am passing on the award to these Stylish and Versatile Bloggers:

Do remember to pass the love on.....(click here for the link of the award pix)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

SATC again!

I have written an ode to Sex and the city before haven’t I? Weeell, do permit me to write about its awesomeness again!!
I have been an avid watcher of Sex and the city since I discovered it (here)and like most fans shed a tear or two when that silly shameless Big ran off on Carrie AGAIN!!
But I have also just realized that I never seen the last season of Sex and the city, you know, the one where Big finally decided to marry Carrie.
Thanks to Comedy Central on Sky TV, I have been updated.
They had been showing reruns over the yuletide period and it was really cool remembering my old friends. Going through Cancer with Samantha, Adoption with Charlotte, Senile mother in law with Miranda and watching the budding romance between Carrie and the Russian guy Alexandra.

Damn! Darren Star (the creator of the series)must have lived inside enough women's head to come up with all those over the top (and some under the covers) scenes cause the original book by Candance Bushnell is nothing like the series.
I had half-fallen for Alexandra’s olde worlde courting of Carrie; playing the piano for her, writing her poetry, serving pancakes in bed sigh, buying her exquisite jewelry and clothes to wear for a date!! Then my dear Darren just had to turn him into a monster in that last episode to make way for the break-up and Big’s comeback. But I love Big and I have always loved the chemistry between him and Carrie so she’s forgiven :).

Anyway, what I took away from that episode was Carrie’s break up speech to Alexandra where she told him (trying to paraphrase here) “that she wants a love that is unconditional, crazy, comfortable, silly, unconventional”, but the word that struck me most was ‘inconvenient’.
It conjured up images of me calling for help at 1am and knowing he’ll be there, being sick on his shirt, crashing his new car, losing the expensive ring he bought me. You know all those ‘irregular’ events. I’m sure some of us are blessed with partners who might just sigh and say ‘aint that just like you’ or  the kind who will hug you and say its alright. But some of us have the partner that will go ape crazy ‘wtf where you thinking??!!’
 So yeah, a man that appreciates ‘Inconvenient love’ is definitely a yes for me, cause I am one inconvenient girl when I love.

In other news about Sex and the City, I saw the delectable Kim Cattrall (Samantha) in an old movie Mannequin. Boy!! that chic has always been fabulous and brunette! lol!

Monday, January 10, 2011

A little prayer

This holiday is sooo over. What a damn shame. I don't want to go back to school.
I am screaming and kicking and crying waaaa waaaaaaaa
Now I know why them kiddos cry on their first day to school.
You’re leaving all that is warm and familiar and unregimented to tutors, timed classes, assignments, friends and tormentors alike.

Welcome to being an adult. And I’m not even working yet. I really need to make a move on that asap. This all consuming laziness is not me!!

So how has the past 10 days into the new year been?
Did you make resolutions? Are you keeping them so far?

I didn’t make any so nothing to keep J.

My birthday is tomorrow.

And I’m too skint to have a party or even go on a solo spending spree. (Another heartfelt sigh).
Am I expecting surprises..nope. Plenty of facebook messages and calls from home that I’m sure of.
Any other thing is up in the air!

A friend was angry with me cause he got to know about my upcoming birthday through a facebook alert yesterday. And the question was ‘Why didn’t you tell me?’ and my answer was ‘Why should I?’ Paradoxically, I love and yet ‘don’t love’ being made a fuss of on my birthday.

If you get to know (even if its at the 11th hour literally speaking) OR remember and want to make a fuss especially surprise blow your mind moves, I would cherish it.
The key word though is surprise. Cos if you tell me before hand that you want to make a fuss, I would prolly become a shrinking violet and dissuade you.
Yeah I am self effacing and boring like that.

I am just thankful. Thankful to be where I am now.
Thankful to be in good health – mental, physical, spiritual, emotional.
I am also thankful that I have a new year to be a better person, daughter, sister, friend, student, blogger, worker and citizen of this big, big world.

What do I want from you, Blogfamily? – A little prayer for me For focus. For happiness in my career. For a healthy bank balance. For a shining beacon of light at the end of this lonely love tunnel. Amen.


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