Friday, October 26, 2007

Be proud of who we are

As you may know, I am spending much of my time trying to stay home in California, off the road, after years of living in hotels. I'm only a few months into my break, and I say only because I am enjoying my time away from traveling more than the thought of living out of my suitcase. If you are hearing this for the first time, believe it. That means if you are a "wrestling promoter", I put that in quotes because mostly these are fans trying to run a show, I'm not waiting for or wanting your phone call, but I wish you the best. I've never fit the stereo type and I'm not going to start now by prostituting myself out like the other wrestlers without contracts have to and want to do. Very few situations are worth considering leaving home.

Making an exception for just such a situation, I took Sonya over seas for the last couple weeks for an awesome trip where I appeared at the Armageddon Show. This was a big convention that ran for two days in Melbourne, Australia and then another three days in Auckland, New Zealand.

In Melbourne, I signed at the show with my brother-in-the-business, Sabu, and Jasmine St. Claire. Hopefully, I'll get a pic of us to post. The fans were awesome. We look forward to coming back when the opportunity presents itself.

Funny story-the local wrestlers asked me a few questions, and one was about what I do for my calves (RVD's calves are, like many outstanding qualities, not showcased in the ring) because I wasn't wearing my shin pads that usually cover them. I went on to explain that outside of the gym I also do all kinds of unorthodox shit throughout my day to challenge or train myself. One thing I mentioned was that I flush urinals with my foot. I didn't think they'd understand when I realized every urinal I used over there was automatic, but I heard the next day that a bunch of them went home and tried it on their toilets. Funny.

You've probably even tried standing with your eyes closed and maybe lifting one foot off the ground to test your balance. I walk with my eyes closed a lot, under my shades, when I know I have enough safe room. I challenge myself by going for a number of steps that looks short of a collision. Not that I'm suggesting it, but I even do it on my bike and count seconds. I fell once. I'm sure it looked hilarious. One of my first martial arts teachers, James Williams taught me that kind of training. We would spend a lot of time training the mind. I do recommend that.

So, I signed in New Zealand next to Christy Hemme for three days, and Raven for one. The Kiwi's are very nice people and the weather was just right for the most part. After lots of posing and Q and A sessions, and meeting thousands of very kind locals, Sonya and I stayed a couple days and chilled. We actually went on a real Hobbit Hike with Raven and some friends we made and climbed hills and crossed streams and went through caves to get to black sand beaches. It was crazy! I've never done anything like that and will remember the experience always. They filmed Xena, as well as many other projects there in the magical looking mist coming off the ocean.

We made it home to a very smokey Los Angeles. Don't worry about the Van Dam Casa, we're safe, but fuck- I heard on the news that over 1400 homes have been destroyed!

Try to always remember that there are always consequences. Every action has a reaction. Make good decisions...it's a good idea!

We've been catching up on Dexter( damn, I love that show), Heroes,Two and a Half Men, Robot Chicken, My Name Is Earl, Damages,Californication, and Weeds. Still got The Ultimate Fighter to check out, and I'll give Bionic Woman another look but I didn't think after the second show that it was going to be something for me after all.

Being home doesn't mean I can't leave my house to appear at the Shrine next Sunday, Nov. 4th! Fans in the Los Angeles area, Come see me from 12:00 to 3, I do believe. Los Angeles Comic Book and SciFi Convention. Bring some energy and of course, I expect everyone to tell me they miss my store :(

Sonya's genius brother invented something that may be of interest to you Ipod lovers. It's an add-on for Itunes called MOODSHUFFLE, and it picks music for you based on your moods so you don't have to shuffle around looking for different songs you want to hear, when you want to hear them. Or something like that. Check it out at MoodShuffle - Your music, your mood. Freedom from playlists and an endless ski.

As long as we're plugging, my good friend Shawn Stasiak has a documentary piece you can take a look at here --- Muscular Galore. I doubt many wrestlers or fans got to know Shawn like I got to know him. In fact, I appear in Shawn's film talking to him about spirituality and how we came across and applied what we've learned towards our lives. I haven't seen the whole film yet but it covers a lot of Shawn's motivational path, from Shawn's early days looking up to his famous father, Stan Stasiak to Shawn's current chiropractic career helping others where he can.

I've been talking about this research that Chris Nowinski is doing, concerning concussed athletes and the brain damage consequences. There's that word.
If you want to read an interesting article on it and learn a bit about how Benoit's dad dealt with everything, there's a good story at http://www.macleans.ca/science/health/article.jsp?content=20071022_110256_110256&page=1

My good friend and former high school class mate, Dory Funk Jr., has a new wrestling training center in Florida with all kinds of exciting things happening. Take at look at http://www.dory-funk.com

Well, I just got back and have a lot to catch up on.

What, not deep enough to measure up to RVD Blog standards?

Oh, don't even think I've run out of material. So not the case, ever.

How about we talk about this for a minute? Is pride a good thing or bad? Or maybe both? We grow up wanting to know that our shoes and jeans are better than the other kids' stuff, or at least we'll pretend we think our shit's better when we're arguing. What is that? My dad's job is cooler than your dad's...our house is better...my hair is better than yours....whatever.

I understand the need to like oneself and the problems that arise when this is not so. Okay. Soon it's school pride. Our team is better than your team. Our state is better than your state. My country is better than yours. We all want to cheer for the home town hero or heroes, even if we don't know them. Why is that? Is the person that made it far in life, and happens to be from your town more deserving of life than the guy that was born in Iraq? Is it the same formula of life, on a different scale? I'm just asking here.

I know the Australians want me to like Australian beer. I do. I know the Kiwi's really want me to enjoy their island. I do. Is that because my American endorsement adds value? Is it pride in their culture that they want to share with someone they like? Or is it wondering how they compare to the mighty U.S.A.? I always ask my friends from out of town if they like Los Angeles, because I want them to like it. I guess that's just to share some common emotion? Maybe? I'm just thinking with you...and jet lag! I'm all for "one love" and I am very grateful for experiencing many wonderful cultures.

Is the pride that makes Canadians proud to be north of the border the same thing I promote by telling everyone to embrace their individuality? Is this what eventually causes war? I think it's all good as long as you have balance. I know some people who don't know how to be proud of themselves without looking down at others. Don't be one of them. You don't have to waste time wishing you weren't someone else because you're not. You're you. Don't go looking for a point here, but imagine with me, just for once- What amazing progress we could accomplish if we were all just Earthling's, put here by the same creator, banned together in search of answers.

See ya.

20 Comments:

Blogger Teyegrrlily613 said...

First Comment Yay!! Woot!! Woot!!

Right now most of all I'm glad to hear you are safe.

Rob I was wondering...when I am doing squats on the bosu ball will I gain better balance if I am continually moving doing the squats or if I am staying in the squat position? another thing...how long did it take you before you were able to accomplish the split? I know you used chairs. And one more...when you are doing stretches how long do you hold in the stretch and does it help if you massage the muscle while in the stretch position or is it a bad thing?

Now as for your blog... They are always deep and I love that you get into contraversial(spell check) and motivational speaking. I think too much pride is a bad thing when you let it get out of hand but cheering on your fav team or supporting your hometown is ok as long as you don't gun someone down cause they are on your turf. I mean like I'm a Michigan fan but don't really care for State but I'm not gonna freak out at someone about it.

I am now totally engulfed in Heroes and was wondering if you watch Journeyman too. It's like he goes into the past and helps people and warps when he least expects it. It's a cool show but I don't recomend Prison Break...yawn boring.

Well I've never been to LA but what I've heard it's all good. Sounds like an awesome place to be. Rob my prayers are with you and everyone in California. Damn I was so fucking worried. Talk about being relieved reading your blog today. I am worried about Rey Mysterio's family have you heard anything?

Boy oh boy did I make my sister freak out at bible study when I told her I am not a Christian I have finally realized that what I am is a believer. Because of the other things I do like meditation(not always on God) and...well um...Soul Ripping (my friend from Japan Akane knows what it is) I just can't call myself a Christian and well I don't like being in the category of that stereotype because of what I have seen and heard from some of the Christians I know and I truly appologize for calling you a Christian, again. Man what was I thinking. I guess I needed my eyes opened. Thanks Rob. I like that we all have the same Creator and that we are all Earthlings. And Yeah I have alot of questions for you and others.


T

PS

Hmmmm...I'm thinking any of the custodians reading this are saying..."So that explains the footprints on the handles!!" I'm lovin' it. I know that can't be easy. LMFAO!!

Wow Rob I have walked with my eyes closed many times and the freaky part is sometimes I can feel the energy of what is in front of me and stop. Then I see that it is a ways away.
Please for all of us when you're riding your bike with your eyes closed... DUDE!! STAY OUT OF THE STREET!! LOL!! Just messin' with you! We know you ain't stupid. Try this sometime turn all the lights off and try and get around in the dark. Man it is hard but if you run you hands along the walls you can get around quite well and is a great workout for your sense of touch and at the same time listen to the sounds around you. Hey, I was wondering when I get a little better on the bosu ball should I try closing my eyes?

T

October 28, 2007 at 10:08 PM  
Anonymous Ryan O'Farrell said...

wow Rob, I think thats your longest blog to date. Good read though. I swear you would be a great author man! It kicks ass that your enjoying yourself at home and having a great time. You also forgot one more thing that in a RVD blog. You didn't talk about the good herb lol. Well anyways Im stoped about hearing from ya and cant wait for the next blog. Peace Rob.

October 29, 2007 at 7:38 AM  
Anonymous Brendan said...

Hey Rob,

I was at the Armageddon Expo on the first day in Melbourne and I just wanted to thank you and your buddy Sabu for being so polite and friendly to all the fans, you made mine and my brothers day.


Best wishes

Brendan

October 29, 2007 at 8:02 AM  
Blogger Thorsten Reiter said...

Hey Rob I'm glad that you are doing good man.

The trip to Australia sounds like a lot of fun. The thing with the flush really made me laugh.

It seems to be very interesting to walk with closed eyes. I don't do it very often or intentionally, but I may try it. Sounds cool.

I hope Sabu is doing good aswell. Looking forward to a picture of your trip.

I hope the fires in LA will get weaker in the next days. I can't imagine how all the people have to feel and how hard times they have to go through. They are in our prayers.

I have to say, the iPod thing sounds pretty good. Sonya's brother semms to be very smart.

I'm going to read the article about the head injuries and concussions. Sounds very interesting.

Your comments about pride is great and leads to think about it. I think it is important if your are proud of your country and who you are, but you shouldn't take it to a level where you don't respect other nationalities or kind of people. I often see and hear people talk BS about others who are different. Be it because of a disability, their weight or whatever. That is not right and I think pride is also a part of respect to others. These people that talk BS, can't control their pride. That is very sad and I don't know why people have to be like this. I hope my english is good enough so you can understand, what I am trying to say here.

Thats it for this time Rob. I hope you will have a good time till your next blog and tell us about your thoughts and activities. I thank you very much for everthing.
Much love and respect from Germany to your family, friends and you.

Thorsten Reiter

October 29, 2007 at 4:11 PM  
Anonymous E. Malchiodi said...

An enjoyable blog as usual and it’s good that you’re back in the continental United States, even though everything is turning to ash over in California. Bill Maher was laying the blame on global warming Friday night and his arguments seemed pretty rational (and this is coming from the guy who likes hookers and had to kick out the 9/11 conspiracy theorists last week). I checked out 30 Rock, as you were mentioning it on your blog and I ended up loving it, even though it’s a network show. I don’t think I could do it with the commercials though and I’ll just wait for the DVD sets to come out.

I was thinking about your post and the whole concept of hometown pride and when it goes over the line. I think it goes over the line when the people that control the resources try to use it for a negative reason, like when war crimes are committed for the sake of America. I find it funny when it comes to professional sports teams because almost, if not all, the players aren’t from the town they play for, which makes them hired goons. If the guys that played for the Boston Red Sox were all from Boston I could understand getting behind the team the way people do but considering that they’re only there for the money I don’t get why people get so emotionally involved with it. Here’s a question for you though: when you were overseas in Australia and New Zealand, did you see an overwhelming amount of Australian or New Zealand flags paraded around in the same fashion as Old Glory is here in the States? I was in Japan almost two years ago and I didn’t see any false patriotism and I was wondering if it was just a Japanese thing or if other countries, especially ones that are supporting our bogus wars, are just as openly patriotic? Oh well, maybe I’m looking too far into it.

Look up H.R. 1955, which is a House of Representatives motion that is going to the Senate next that could possibly make free expression become a thing of the past. It’s a tricky document but has all the potential to be dangerous. Are we doing this because we’re running out of resources (which nobody with any authority is telling us) and this is their way of setting things up for when things go sour in the future?

I walk with my eyes closed all the time and try to test myself but I didn’t know that was something people did to train. I thought I was just fucking around and it turns out that my little experiment turned out to be an authentic training tool. Very nice.

Take care and enjoy the California weather, as soon as the smoke clears out. =)

October 29, 2007 at 5:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Two comments:

I've always wondered how people can rationalize killing as long as its in defense of the area of earth you occupy. Where in the bible is that loophole? And how is it that the death of a celebrity has people crying in the street, but the death of thousands of Iraqies barely makes the news?

And my second comment: Dude, you watch Earl and 30 Rock but not The Office? That creative writing Earl was F'n great BTW.

Great blog as always. I look forward to each new one. Here's hoping you get antsy and do a So Cal indy show in the near future. J/k...but not really.

October 30, 2007 at 4:10 PM  
Blogger Jadeinne Sparrow said...

Oh, Thank God, you're safe!

Well, glad I've heard from you again, Mr. Van Dam, and it's nice to know that you're aware of what's with the intercultural dilemma (Hmhmm?).
I do agree in what you said, and it occurs, really, especially when you are an American. Here in the Philippines, most of us were brainwashed that America is the most dominant colony of all-time... EEEEEEEHHH! That was when I was still young.
But anyway, you're right. Showing you their pride leads them to expect your appreciation, but behind that expectation is the phrase "we're better than you". And I just hate being one of those...
Well, I won't be surprised if you're promoting world peace. I do the same, that's why I'm befriending everybody.

And always, hello to teyegrrlily613! Congrats to occupy the first spot in the comments section. Miss y'all!

October 31, 2007 at 2:49 AM  
Blogger Jadeinne Sparrow said...

Oh, and one more thing! Thank you for not mentioning it! (I think you know what I mean!)

October 31, 2007 at 2:53 AM  
Anonymous [Derek] said...

'sup dude? [Derek] here and I was just checking up on ya man. Looks like you're all good down there in California. Good to hear that your home wasn't one of the unfortunate ones that burned down. Hahaha. Uh, anyhow, yeh, good opinion on robot chicken there man. That show is awesome AND hilarious at the same time. Can't get enough of it. Wish it was on every single day. Well, I guess I'll go now. Keep roCking dude! Rob....Van....Dam!

October 31, 2007 at 8:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Rob, great to hear you and the wife are safe and got home safe. They said the fire was started by some kid playing with matches, hint to smokers, stoners or whatever you consider yourself to be, use lighters!!! Anyway, I know you dig good music, Alter Bridge just came out with their new album, one of those bands kinda still trying to break out, but they are hard rockin mother fuckers. They might be hitting the west side so check em out if you can. Personally I'd love to check out L.A, especially if I got to see your favorite wrestler and mine RVD. Well Rob keep chilling because lord knows you deserve it man. Keep kicking it, See ya.

October 31, 2007 at 6:22 PM  
Blogger yankees_cena said...

Rob I Miss You are you going to Come back to WWE or not?


Please answer me back

From,
Your #1fan alex

November 5, 2007 at 2:50 PM  
Blogger yankees_cena said...

Hey It is me Again I am New to this site But I am Glad your Doing Great
I was worried about you with what happend At One Night Stand I was Upset But Glad To Hear That You Are Okay.Are you coming back to WWE it is not the same I mean ECW is less Extreme With out you when i watched it it was great now it isn't the same with out you I miss you I know Why you aren't still with ECW I totally agree with your reasons why you left I understand why you don't like life on the road.Please Reply to My Comment ROB



Your#1Fan
Alex

November 5, 2007 at 2:59 PM  
Blogger Mr. G said...

To: RVD

I stumbled onto this site one day while strolling though the internet. Ive always been a big fan of your wrestling talent and after reading some of your posts I was just mezmerised by some of the deep stuff you were getting into. Its inspired me so much to want to take the time to write to you.

I personally feel that pride is an example of a double edged sword because it can sometimes blind you to so much whats beyond just your own beliefs and conditionings as a human being and can leave you closed off to alternative, even enlightening experiences, but it so beautiful to see someone who is so exited or passionate about whatever they have pride in.

Living in NYC, You can be exposed to so many people who have this kind of pride in their sports teams, history, work even art. Being an artist myself, Ive come to experience how much pride you can have in yourself in what your doing with your life and what you truly love to do, but what people miss out on in whatever they do or have pride in is that the line between passion and arrogance can be misconstruded because we restrict ourselves from seeing the rest of the world. Its that kind of humble subitly that i think we as individuals should be concious of because theres so much that we can learn from each other and the passions that we have for what we love, even if they condradict our own beliefs, it can sometimes teach you or even strengthen your beliefs even more. Its just keeping things real and fluid with how you express your passion for what you have pride in.

Robot Chicken is definatly one of my favorite shows. Claymation will never die! Im also exited for seeing new futurama comming soon. The voice acting and writing alone is just phenominal.

Have you ever just walked through the grass or a wooden trail with just your eyes closed? Its a truly magical experience, at least for me. Its only become even more spiritual since NYC cant offer as much nature as i want, but sometimes ill go to the east river and just breathe.

I actually have to keep working on a project im doing right now...otherwise id type all night, but im definatly checking this out more often. Its sometime im inspired by.

Peace and I hope that everyone out in california is safe.

November 5, 2007 at 11:26 PM  
Anonymous Ryan May said...

I think I like Robb Speaking for himself now. This is quite awesome. Traveling seems good for you, I wonder if it would be good for me as well. I always enjoyed you as a wrestler but I think I enjoy you even better just as a plain role model. You seem to strive to be better just for your own sake. But you don't care to just have a good time and give someone something to think about. Well you take care.

November 7, 2007 at 7:02 AM  
Anonymous CalmMountain said...

Nihao RVD-san –

Welcome back stateside, again! Thanks for letting us know you've returned. Hope the hometown signing on November 4th was fun for you. Hope that everyone involved in that event remembered to set their clocks back the night before.

Oz and NZ... Once you're out of the cities, these countries have amazing energy from what I understand. The experience of being in such vast landscapes... The sense of connecting to something natural, wild and ancient... Can be quite healing. Perhaps for a moment, you brushed against the elusive Dream Time - the crossroads of the multiverse. Or perhaps it was just a preview of heaven.

Glad to know that the home front in Cali is safe. Out here the news made headlines in all forms for a while, so it was difficult to ignore the inconsistencies. The number of dead, injured, missing, acres burned and acres still burning seemed to vary from network to network despite the fact that the live reports were airing simultaneously. I hope that you're correct and that only around 1,400 homes were lost because in our news, close to double that number have been reported as destroyed. Not sure if the media and government drawing comparisons between the fires and Hurricane Katrina is worthwhile. Hurricanes we can predict but not prevent. Fires we can prevent but not predict. Anyway. May the smoke clear and may the ground stay grounded.

Am I the only person in the world who was relieved to hear that at least two of the fires were caused by arson? With the recent Cali quake activity taken into consideration, I'd begun to suspect the fires might be a sign of something much more catastrophic on the horizon.

*smiles* The foot-to-flush is indeed a decent stretch. Advanced as you are, I've no doubt you could do the toe-to-light-switch as well. (Note to beginners: wall switches. Avoid lamps.)

Thanks for the link to the informative article about Mr. Nowinski's work with the Sports Legacy Institute. That's kind of disturbing, that such significant damages in the brain tissue cannot yet be accurately confirmed prior to death. I wonder if sharing data with clinical sleep labs could help pave the way for new diagnosis methods?

Pride is a complex issue. We have to remember that humans are herd animals - social by nature. When we value something, it influences us. And when we take it up a notch and share our influences... That's our way of seeking approval. Some people are more direct than others, of course, but unless I'm completely misguided then we all crave approval on some level. This is normal and natural. The approval of others is necessary to balance out the sometimes harsh self-criticism which many of us inflict on ourselves.

When a person that we value approves of something else that we value then it's a kind of pat on the back, like someone saying "Okay. Good job. You are respected and accepted. Yes, you've just gotten permission to be yourself." So we relax a little more and trust a little more and don't feel like we have to be shy or defensive or compromising to fit in. *shrugs*

Yea. Globalization is changing perceptions but distance continues to play a role in our apathy. If some guy in your hometown makes the news - whether good reason or bad - you'll be more likely to hear about it. You don't have to care about it but the people around you might, so you hear about it. *shrugs* Meanwhile the people on the other side of the globe, they might be the nicest people alive or they might be building atomic weapons under preschools. You're not there, so you really don't know for certain and even when there's information all over the place, it's hard to care when you don't know if you can trust the information. So we end up taking pride in the hometown because it's the place where we have connections. It's the place where we can check the sources and validate our information.

Backing up a step... On the individual scale... For the sake of health, the emphasis should be - as you often point out, RVD-san - on respect and balance. Truly, self-esteem is more a matter of self-respect than of sheer pride. A person with pride is too likely to fall in love with their own ego: they can't admit to being wrong very easily, they get hung up on winning and have trouble asking for help. It can become an addiction of sorts. But a person with self-respect knows better, they have made peace with their flaws and do not automatically feel threatened if someone disagrees with their opinions. And what is inward shines out. A person with respect and patience for the self can learn to find respect and patience for others, as well.

The people who confuse 'pride' with 'esteem'... I am concerned that perhaps these are some of the same people who believe that 'love' and 'lust' are interchangeable concepts.

Nah, RVD-san. Not all of us are - or want to be - heroes. Someone has to stand on the curb and clap as they go by.

As for the causes of war... Envy. Revenge. Pride. Miscommunication. Impatience. Fear. Politics. Survival. And at the root, perhaps... In my own extremely limited and humble estimation... Lies a conflict as old as currency itself and possibly even more ancient. The ongoing (and widespread, even beyond battlefields) debate of profit vs. health. The strange desire we have to discover just what, exactly - in cold hard numbers - a human life is worth in this day and age. Because whatever other reasons for war there may be, there is always at least this: someone, somewhere along the way, found a cause that they deemed worthy of defending to the death. And others, whom history does often not remember fondly, found a cause that they felt justified the slaughtering of the masses to achieve.

Our history is all about civilization choosing profit before health, death before profit. If we can break this cycle then perhaps the future will finally put health before profit on the priority list. *shrugs* I don't know. Humankind, for all our technology and progress, we have some very old bad habits. But yea... There's a chance. Get enough people working together, anything can happen.

*laughs* It's funny you say that. I've introduced myself as being 'from Earth' for many years now. Started as a joke and just kind of stuck.

Had to wait until after the elections to post this reply, so that I could tell you what happened. Wanted to say thanks again for always encouraging people to do our own research. I had no idea how relevant the information would be this year. In a not so distant town, the decriminalization of Medical Marijuana and Industrial Hemp both made it to the ballot. And passed. Just barely. It will be interesting to see how this plays out, since state and federal laws still clearly oppose all forms of the plant.

Hugs to you and yours. Please keep taking care.

Peace.

~CalmMountain

November 7, 2007 at 12:16 PM  
Anonymous lvlonkey420 said...

Damn, this bud's good.

November 9, 2007 at 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please Rob Van Dam, if you read this go back to WWE. I can't stand TNA and now I have no other reason to watch WWE. I have been a huge fan of yours since I was little and was watching WCW when you were wrestling as Robbie V. I have seen every single show and movie you have been in and have all your biography DVDs. When you left WWE I kicked 3 holes in by wall and ripped my mouse out of my computer. I even live in Toledo, OH were you had your first pro match. When I found that out I thought that was the coolest thing in the world. I write reports and biographies of you at school and use you as my role model. I practice stretching and working out every day just to be like you. I have so much of your merchandise that there is one place in my room were I don't see the ying-yang sign. You will always be my role model and fovorite wrestler no matter where you go but if you didn't go back to WWE I would be extremely disipointed. I'm just asking you to go back to WWE so I have something to look forward to at the end of the day.

November 10, 2007 at 9:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

lol People wanna be like you Rob huh? lol urinals. Does it really help?

November 12, 2007 at 12:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what is rvd t.v

November 17, 2007 at 9:00 PM  
Anonymous ssibainom said...

뭐병신아
지랄옆차기하네
영어말고한글로적어썅놈아

December 26, 2007 at 12:07 AM  

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