Everyone has gaps in their knowledge. It's only human! There are some occasions when you discover that someone in your circle has a gap that is a little bit of a head scratcher, though. Here, people share the most ridiculous things they've had to explain to another adult, and the answers are oh-so-hilarious. Enjoy!
If you would like to read more of these stories, check out the source on the last page. Comments have been edited for clarity.
Let me set the scene: on top of a mountain in Maui with a tour group, watching the sunset, and I hear the guy behind me telling his kids that "the sun sets in the west so that's the Pacific ocean, so that side over there is the Atlantic." I laugh and turn around and acknowledge his hilarious joke. He was not joking, to which I reply, "You know this is all the Pacific ocean, 360 degrees around." He then rolled his eyes and kept talking to his kids. Poor things don't stand a chance.
"Why doesn't the kite just fly away?"
Um, the string?
I had to tell a guy that his false advertisement suit vs Time Warner wouldn't hold up, because they're not the ones that told him he was the millionth viewer to a website and promised him a prize.
I had to explain to someone on our flight that there wasn't another littler plane trailing us with our luggage when they looked out the window looking for said little plane.
One of my best friends was 21, gorgeous girl, not new to the dating scene at all. One day she was complaining about her boyfriend to me.
Her: "I really like him, but he keeps pressuring me for doggy and I'm just not ready for that."
Me: "Doggy? What's wrong with doggy? Doggy style is great."
Her: "You've done DOGGY?!"
Me: ".... yeah, I'm not sure what the big deal is."
Her: "You let him stick it up your...???"
And that's the day I had to explain to my best friend that doggy style is not anal. I don't let her forget.
I had a renter who was 19 and it was her first time living on her own. She didn't understand that when you send a letter in the mail, you had to put stamps on the letter. It came back due to no postage...
I basically had to confirm to her that she had to do this. Her response: "It must be a Canada thing because I never had to do that back home"...She is Canadian, from Quebec, but her parents sheltered her so much that she couldn't function on her own and thought Quebec and Canada were 2 different countries.
I was twenty years old, and covering the reception desk at a mid-sized law firm on maybe the 14th or 15th floor of a high-rise building. This attorney was apparently good at her job (from what I understood of her reputation; I didnt know her well), but this story often makes me wonder about smart and smart. On this day, as she exited the elevator on her return from lunch, she decided to voice what seemed to be a puzzle that stumped her for a very long time. I dont understand this building. Why is it, when I enter the elevator facing away from the lobby, I exit facing the lobby on the floor above? Its like the elevator turns around!
I stared at her for a few seconds, contemplating time, space, creation, and the giant salary differential between our two positions, before I spoke the last words Id ever say to her. Maam, you turn around to face the doors once you get into the elevator. Youre facing the lobby when the elevator starts to move.
She went out of her way to avoid me after that.
I had to explain that you should not wear your eclipse glasses while driving around during the solar eclipse.
How a loan works. Customers are sitting in my office trying to buy a vehicle and can't understand why their 120 payments of X add up to more than the cost of the vehicle. It took about an hour to get them through it. They had bought things before: cars, a house, and somehow in their mid-50s had no idea how interest worked.
I have repeatedly tried and failed to explain to my coworker to not eat rotting meat.
She'll a) leave chicken out on the counter all day to defrost.
b) cook the chicken and then leave the cooked chicken out on the counter for a week and "pick at it" here and there.
She is out with food poisoning at least once a week. I've never met someone who throws up as much as her and wasn't suffering from a serious medical condition. She will eat her breakfast at 4pm after it's sitting on her desk all day. Eggs with cheese and mayo that she picked up at 7 in the morning. Then she'll call in sick the next day. I have shown her youtube videos of bacteria growing, sent her articles about the dangers of ecoli. She won't listen. She ate potato salad that was sitting in a hot trunk for 24 hours. She said it was liquidy and tasted weird but she doesn't like how refrigerated foods taste. One day, when she is paralyzed from botulism, I guess I can say I told you so?
I had to explain that human babies aren't born with their eyes stuck shut like kittens. He asked me if my 3-week-old daughter's eyes had opened yet.
To an office junior post-graduate in Engineering, after checking his work:
Me: "In the English language, if a word starts with a 'Q', it is almost always followed with a 'U'."
Him: "Oh yeah?!......What about Croissant?!!!" (Defiant smug stare)
I had to explain that, contrary to her belief, islands are in fact not floating like big Rubber boats (she was asking how with the wind and currents the islands still maintained their position without roaming the Oceans like rocky Icebergs.)
How a telephone works.
Customer "Hey, I need this, this and this"
Me "You need what?"
Customer "This thing right here, this thing here and here"
Me "Excuse me, do you have a part #"
Customer "Man, Im staring right at it, the part "
Me "Sir, I can't see what you're seeing..."
My boss hired an assistant for me from a gentlemen's club he had attended the previous weekend. He told her that she needed to pay attention to everything I did and then he would replace me with her. The things I had to explain/show her how to do: address an envelope, write a business email, read a contract before signing it, stay for the entirety of a client event, show up to work on time, not drink at work, not gossip at work, not have her boyfriend hang out at work all day, and more. Finally she became so upset at how much work my job entailed (and she hadn't touched the surface) that she quit.
I had to explain to my MATHS teacher that you use 'both' when referring to 2 things. If she was talking about a hundred things she would say 'both of them' and wouldn't take no for an answer.
That hurricanes are not named according to whether they are male or female, it is just an arbitrary name, HURRICANES DO NOT HAVE A GENDER IDENTITY!
There was this girl in my French class. I had to explain that France no longer has a monarchy, that England and France are different countries, and that England and France do not share a land border.
A couple of bonus stories about her: One time I was sick and missed school for a couple of days. When I came back she asked if I had the zombie flu. She tried to convince me zombies are real and that it is spread through the flu vaccine. Her "evidence" was a theory about the walking dead. Another time she said she wanted to be a heart surgeon. I asked her if she was taking biology, because our school offers college level bio. She did not know what biology was.
I had to explain to a lady how sliced bread works.
I used to work in a bakery that pretty much only did bread and a lady came in and this conversation happened:
Her: points at a bread Do you have that but like...in a bag of slices?
Me: trying to be polite Oh yeah..we slice the bread...
Her: Oh okay. But do you have it in a bag of slices??
Me: Um...yes we bag it after we slice it..
Her: Okay, but I really need this in a bag of slices...
Me: We put the bread in a machine that cuts it into slices and then we put those slices in a bag.
Her: Okay but do you sell this same bread in a bag of slices?
Me: ... Let me show you.
I take the bread and slice it for her and bring the sliced bagged bread back to her. She looked so excited you'd think she'd never seen sliced bread before.
Her: Yes! That's exactly what I wanted!
I had to explain that if you want baby chicks, your hens will need to get together with a rooster.
This guy was married with one child, I thought he would have figured some things out.
That if they eat a large quantity of fast food it's not unreasonable for them to feel full and bloated and that this doesn't constitute a medical complaint requiring a doctors review.
Back in college, my girlfriend said, "I don't understand how you can find me so sexy first thing in the morning."
I asked, "What do you mean?"
"Well, whenever you wake up next to me, you're so... you know... down there..."
Apparently she had no idea what morning wood was, or that it had nothing to do with her.
That "natural" medicines and supplements are not necessarily safe or healthy, especially in huge quantities. Rattlesnake venom is natural, anthrax is natural, e-coli is natural, bubonic plague is natural...
That Tanzania and Tasmania are separate places and that our native Tasmanian Devils don't actually look like Taz from Looney Tunes.
Sort of twisted on its head, but my husband had to explain to me relatively recently that South Africa is not, in fact, just the South of Africa. It's a whole other country by itself.
I call it my awakening.
Steve Jobs did not single-highhandedly invent the home computer, GUI, the iPod, iPhone and iPad--he had Steve Wozniak, Xerox and teams of engineers do that for him.
I lived in Asia for a while. There were multiple people in both Asia and the US who thought that the Western and Eastern hemispheres experience opposite seasons (like the Northern and Southern hemispheres do). More than once, I've grabbed the nearest round object and started saying "Pretend this grapefruit is the earth and this lamp is the sun...."
My friend: "What is Mick Jagger's first name?
Me: "... Mick"
Friend: "His name is Mick McJagger?"
Mom: What's happening?
Me: The movies starting. *5 minutes into movie
Mom: Who is that?
Me: I don't know mom, he never said anything yet.
Mom: I don't like this movie, I don't get it.
The concept of progressive taxes. The number of people repeating that meme of "you get taxed more if you make more, so it's better to earn less" is frightening.
Yeah, I acknowledge the welfare argument, I'm referring to the false idea that if you make more, the entirety of your income is taxed at a higher percentage when it's only the amount made past the previous bracket cutoff. And yeah, marginal tax rates, I get it. While it's not a "progressive tax," it can still be considered progressive by the dictionary definition in the sense that it's not flat.
My casually racist mother asked why a Black family in line ahead of us didn't go to "their Starbucks?"
I had to explain to her, slowly and quietly, that this was their Starbucks. They live here. We're working on it...
That a 1000 metre high mountain wasn't man made. This guy legitimately believed that people piled up all this dirt and rock for no reason, just because the mountain is nicknamed the pyramid because of its shape.
The mountain is Walshs Pyramid in Cairns, Australia for those curious as to the scale of this guys ignorance.
You can open the photocopier to get blank paper out of it, you know.
You don't have to keep photocopying that one blank page you keep carrying around with you.
To a 28 yo female native Californian whose first (and only) language is English...
It's a vagina and not a vergina.
We've all said something stupid, let's not lie to ourselves.
It's okay to say something stupid. It showcases the real person on the inside, that we're all flawed, imperfect, and made of cooky combinations of words that don't necessarily line up to make sense. Sometimes we're nervous in a situation, other times we're just hitting 'Quick Reply' in our brains and what comes out doens't work, but whatever the reason, you for sure are going to remember it, late at night, for the rest of your life.
What is the stupidest thing that ever came out of your mouth?
You may not have to change your home address because of these moments, but you should probably reconsider how many public outings you go to afterwards.
Should Probably Never Shop At That Store Again
"When the cashier said "Have a nice day", and I replied with "No, thanks".
"Background: I wasnt thinking straight that day, and thought they said "Do you want a bag"
That's. How. Twins. Work?
"Her: the twins are 3 years old"
"Me: Both of them?"
"Oh no this unearthed a memory i had buried from kindergarten lmao"
"We had a set of twins in our classroom and once on their birthday party I said "your brother got such a cool party, i hope yours is nice like this too" to one of them and he was like "yeah, this one"
"4 year old me was not a very bright kid"
That's. How. Death. Works...
"Watching the documentary 'The Last Dance' when a Kobe interview pops up -"
"Me: "Wow, they must have filmed this before Kobe died."
"My wife: "Yeah, obviously…."
The cringe comes out of nowhere, and you're not even sure how you were able to ask something so incredibly stupid, but here you are. Lounging in the stupid air.
You Should Have Asked What "Nothing" Tastes Like Next
"In my head I was wondering what one pound of water would look like in terms of volume. What I said out loud however was "How much does a pound of water weigh?"
Keep Up With Me
"A couple of months ago, I got up and drove to work as usual. Later, my girlfriend texted me from home to ask me if she had left her sunglasses in my car. I told her I wasn't sure, but she could grab my spare key and go check."
"In my car."
"Which I had driven to work."
Black Is White, White Is Black
"I don't understand why people place bets on who wins, why not just place bets on who loses?"
"Yeah took me a minute to register what I said..."
And then there's these stories, where the person is probably better off cutting off any human contact henceforth going forward. These are rough to get through, folks.
Should Probably Have A Chat With HR After This
"I was about 4 months into my current job, feeling confident being fresh off the contract-to-hire period, now moved into a coveted full time role. While walking back to my office from the morning kanban I was stopped by my boss, head peeking out of the office:"
"Boss: "Hey TheMediator, do you have a sec?"
"Me: "For you, I've got lots of secs!"
"Boss: wide-eyes, mouth dropped"
"If you're curious why this was incredibly stupid/embarrassing, try saying the phrase "lots of secs" out loud. Preferably, not to your boss though."
You Don't Need College Anymore. Go Home. Bury Your Head In The Sand.
"In my freshman year of college I was dorming next door to a couple cute girls. About a week into the first semester one girl walked from the coed showers to her dorm room in her towel still wet. We were both unlocking our doors to get in our rooms when she looks at me and says…"
"I know I look stunning…(sarcastically)"
"To which I replied, "don't flatter yourself."
"I had to slid a note under her door explaining I was tongue tied as she was beautiful and I meant to say "don't be hard on yourself, you look great." (Or something to that nature). We became good friends."
It's In The Descriptor?
"Chatting to a homeless guy on the street and he told me he was feeling unwell. I told him he should be at home, resting."
"It's been 20 years and the memory of it still brings me out in a cold sweat."
Oh Good Lord...
"Asked my friend how his mom was doing at his moms funeral."
"Jesus Christ this is the worst one on this thread. What was his response?"
"He looked at me and then the casket and kind of smirked. I awkwardly started to try and explain and just said "I'm an idiot. You know I love you. Talk to you in a bit." He makes fun of me now and I can't stop laughing. It's a positive painful memory."
Own up to your mistakes. You'll garner more respect by acknowledging the awkward things you say, however, it's perfectly fine to laugh about it in the moment. That's probably the easiest way to escape the deep, deep shame.
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The advice "fake it til you make it," though often said with at least a hint of sarcasm, does carry quite a bit of wisdom.
By simply putting one foot in front of the other, weathering the chaos of not knowing what's happening as you learn as fast as possible, we can find ourselves further than we expected.
Once we're there, reaping the fruits of all our "faking," we somehow begin to take on a new identity in people's eyes They assume we've always been in control and known what was going on. They defer to us for advice.
But that couldn't be further from the truth. So we keep on faking it.
Redditor espectro11 asked:
"What's your 'I don't know, I didn't think I'd get this far' moment?"
Many Redditors discussed their experiences navigating the intimidating environment of job applications, interviews, and offers.
Oh Right, Getting Paid
"I gave my resume to fancy private school (I'm a teacher, but new to the field) and I didn't expect a call back. But they called me today to ask my expected salary and I said 'I don't know what the average is. Let me Google it.' "
"Ya girl was not prepared."
"When I went for a walk-in interview looking like crap and they hired me on the spot. I get they were hiring for a new store, but they up and said 'if you want the job it's yours, when can you start?' "
"Deada** didn't think I'd make it that far."
Outside the Box
"Years ago I was applying to a bunch of copywriting jobs and feeling frustrated because I wasnt hearing back from any of the places I was applying to."
"It was especially frustrating because I was putting in all this time on cover letters and I felt like nobody was even reading them, so I said, 'Fu** it, I'm gonna write one that is more me.' I thought it was a dumb idea and never imagined that it would work, but somehow it did."
"I applied with this cover letter and the subject line "Copywriter: Will Work for Beer" to a job that I was very underqualified for. It managed to catch the eye of the headhunter for the ad agency and was enough to get me an interview. Shortly after that I was hired and ended up working there for a few years, but I remember thinking on my first day, 'I can't believe that actually worked.' "
Just Not the Right Fit
"An interview at Google. The 20 years younger than me was describing the peer review system."
"I responded with 'Jesus, that sounds awful.' "
"I did not get the job."
Others also shared experiences that centered on their working lives. But these stories weren't about being hired or interviewed.
These were accounts of long-developing success stories that they never would have predicted.
A Winding Road
"My entire legal career"
"I have four degrees and a 10 year career in commerical litigation. I just wrapped up a $200mil trusts lawsuit."
"I started at uni doing theatre and stand up comedy. I have no fu**ing idea where I turned to get here."
"Started at a very small company doing sales straight out of college. I went about messaging big corporate players (who obviously would never do business with us since our size) and was laughed at by my new colleagues for even trying."
"2 weeks later My boss was asking me what we (a team of 6) should say on the conference call with Toshiba Buyers."
Putting Fires Out
"Me at work. I feel like every issue that comes up has me unprepared. But I am always praised for my good work."
"So, I assume I have imposter syndrome and keep doing what I am doing."
So next time you find yourself ruling a possibility out completely, maybe take just a few seconds to imagine it actually occurred and prepare.
You just never know.
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I'm going to be perfectly honest––I'm a city boy. I'm not a huge fan of hiking or camping. I happen to be a huge fan of running water. Have you heard of it? It's great. Highly recommended.
I've also, on a more humorous note, watched far too many horror films over the years and don't particularly like idea of running off into the woods only to piss off some demon that was perfectly fine until I arrived. I also have immense respect for our friendly neighborhood serial killers and demonstrate this regularly by staying out of their territory.
Those who love the great outdoors had plenty to share after Redditor Your_Normal_Loser asked the online community, "
Hikers of Reddit, what is the weirdest or creepiest thing you've come across while hiking?"
"The only reason..."
"When we were exploring the Australian Outback as university students, my friend and I found an old, tightly wrapped plastic bag with five or six damaged wallets along shrubbery at the base of a cliff.
The only reason we opened it up was because we were so remote - hundreds of kilometres from any town or tourist attraction - that it was strange to see garbage out there. All the cards were in female names and birthdates placed them in their late teens to early 20s. Some lived in the Northern Territory but one was in Sydney and another from Queensland. At the time we figured rock climbers must have stored their valuables in the bag and then lost track of it. I'll never forget the strange look the police officer gave us when we handed them in."
You see... this is why I wouldn't go mess around in the Australian Outback.
I also may or may not have watched Wolf Creek one too many times.
"A recliner on a small hill with a hole dug out in the middle and water bottles all over the place."
"A trashed campsite..."
"A trashed campsite complete with the tent cut open...
...do you report these things, or what?"
Or maybe not... you might want to turn back.
"The walls were completely plastered..."
"I was walking in a thick forest and came across an opening. In the center there was a shack made of lumber, with a bench built into it that was slightly leaned back.
The walls were completely plastered in porn."
Well... that's one way to get off.
"The man stopped talking..."
"I was backpacking with a few friends. A few days in the middle of nowhere, a man approached our camp as we were cooking dinner to say hi. We talked about our routes for a few minutes. Out of nowhere, he told us that he had had a vasectomy in his 30s after his 2nd child. Then somehow his wife had gotten pregnant with his 3rd child. He didn't believe this was possible, so he demanded a DNA test to see if he was actually the father. He was. Still, he explained that he had his doubts and thought that his wife must have fixed the DNA test.
My friends and I were in our 20s and had no idea why this guy was telling us this. We all just nodded and smiled.
The man stopped talking and then just walked away into the night."
"I stepped in..."
"I stepped in and fell over a cow carcass on a night hike. It was a bright moonlit night but I didn't see it in the shadows. Thankfully it was mostly dry."
"We still have no idea..."
"I was in the woods with three friends at night. A friend's house was nearby and I was getting hungry so I went inside to find some food. Another friend came inside with me. Two friends were still outside.
Later on, one of the two who outside came in and sees the indoor friend on the couch next to me. They panic and immediately run back outside.
I poke my head out the door asking what's going on, only to hear them yell as loudly as they can, "THAT'S NOT KEVIN"
Everyone comes inside and calms down a bit, and the story comes out. They thought the friend who was indoors with me (Kevin) had been outside with them this entire time. Why? Because in the darkness of the woods they saw a silhouette about the same height walking alongside them silently, then at some point it ran away and they were chasing it thinking Kevin was running off for some reason. The reason my friend yelled, "That's not Kevin" was to stop the last outdoor friend from chasing whoever was out there deeper into the woods.
We still have no idea who that was or why they didn't even speak."
This story sent a chill running down my spine.
Who was that?!
Perhaps figuring it out would be even scarier.
"Went hiking with my dad..."
"Went hiking with my dad one day over a ridge. A girl from the group in front of us tripped and slid down one side and was just able to hold on to the tiniest branch from the only tree around. Had she slid down all the way she certainly would be dead or massively injured!"
"I was trying to make my way across..."
"I was hiking in Washington sometime in December. I was trying to make my way across a river but the bridge was out. I was walking along the shore looking for a shallow spot but couldn't find one. I saw some footprints leading down the bank, my thought was that someone was trying to do what I was doing and decided to track the prints to see if they crossed. It was not easy but I followed the prints for about a mile. As I approached what looked like a crossing I heard a loud BANG like a stick hitting a tree. I froze for a few seconds and heard no other noises. I just slowly back up keeping my eyes on the other side of the river. Could not shake the feeling that I was being watched. Got the hell out of there quick as I could."
There are few feelings creepier than the feeling of being watched. It makes you feel like you've been violated in some way.
Thankfully you got out of there!
"I thought it was a magical, beautiful moment..."
"I was hiking with some friends, and I saw a cluster of butterflies on the ground. I thought it was a magical, beautiful moment until I realized they were congregating on a pool of blood. It turns out that someone had been hiking on the bluffs above earlier that day, and had fallen off and died."
Sooo... still want to go hiking or camping? None of this changed your mind? None of it?
It was nice knowing you. I'll stick with my running water.
Have some creepy stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
Have some experiences of your own? Have you also survived the hospitality industry? Feel free to tell us about it in the comments below!
Time is of the essence. And time is not definable. Those are lessons we learn as we get older; as times passes and fluctuates in front of us.
Time is always fleeting yet always catches up to us. I find myself shocked when I wake up on certain days and realize I'm a particular age of my parent that sticks out for me.
Like, how did that happen? I guess I should just be thankful I'm still here to witness it all.
Redditor u/TW1103 wanted to discuss the meaning... of time and all of its affects by asking:
What fact really puts the scale of time into an insane perspective?
Ok, who is watching the clock? Those seconds aren't going to count themselves. The only way to understand time is to be its witness. Although that can get depressing. Let's focus on the light and cool.
History...Calculate Figure It Out GIF by OriginalsGiphy
"If you are an 80-year-old American, you have lived through approximately 1/3 of our nation's entire history."
"The 80s were 40 years ago."
"This is what messes me up because I was born in 82 and graduated high school in 2000 so for some reason my brain is stuck on the 80's being twenty years ago. The 70's thirty years ago etc etc. I have to stop and realize sometimes that my concept of how long ago things happened is way off."
Time goes by...
"We observe that light travels at 186,000 miles a second, but given the vast size of the observable universe, that's a snail's pace. But from the point of view of a particle of light, time doesn't even exist."
"Time slows down as you approach the speed of light, and theoretically stops completely when you reach the speed of light."
Years Gone By...
"MLK Jr. and Anne Frank were born in the same year."
"Betty White was born in 1922. Automatically pre-sliced packaged bread loaves became commercially available in 1928. Betty White is six years older than sliced bread."
Long Live the Queen!queen elizabeth images GIFGiphy
"The queen and Marilyn Monroe would've been the same age."
I swear Liz is going to outlive dirt. Wait, I believe she already has. Well she won't be alone, she'll have Betty White. At least she better have Betty. Time is nothing without Queen Betty.
TV TimeSeason 2 Omg GIF by Paramount+Giphy
"Happy Days was a TV show made in the 1970s-80s about teenagers in the 1950s. Similarly, That 70s Show was made in the 90s-00s about teenagers in the 70s. If a similar show were to be made today, it would be about teenagers in the 2000s."
"If a T-Rex imagined a creature as ancient as the T-Rex is to us, it would be a Stegosaurus. If that Stegosaurus imagined a creature as ancient as the Stegosaurus is to us, it would be a Crocodile. If that Crocodile imagined a creature as ancient as that Crocodile is to us, it would be a Shark."
On the Clock
"On a twenty four hour clock the amount of time that humans have been on the earth would total around five seconds."
"How about this one: If Homo Habilus first appeared at midnight, 24 hours ago, that means the first Homo Sapiens appeared at 9:25 PM, or about 2 and a half hours ago. The first human civilization, in lower Mesopotamia, appeared at 11:57 PM, or about 3 minutes ago."
"The Western Roman Empire fell at 11:59 PM, or 1 minute ago. Everything that has happened since - the Crusades, the Plague, the discovery of the New World, the world wars, all of it - has happened in the last minute of human existence."
And that's just OUR Sun...
"The span of our lives are so insignificantly small that our Sun will last another 5 billion years. That's 9 zeros people. Our eldest live to around 100 in the best places. That's 50,000,000 (50 million) times longer than any person can reasonably expect to live. And that's just OUR Sun. The universe as a whole has probably existed for magnitudes longer than that already and will continue to exist until the end of time as we know it."
Tell Me a Storywilliam shakespeare GIF by will herringGiphy
"We know what a good storyteller Shakespeare was but there were Greek playwrights who wrote shows nearly 2,000 years earlier that are pretty good, too."
I hate time. Only because I'm petty and irritated of the amount I squandered. That's neither here nor there though. Time marches on and continues to amaze. I'll keep watching.
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