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Old 27.01.2012, 01:10
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Come on now there is no way I was poking fun at people with a genuine need for such a cart and indeed up until recently they did constitute the vast majority of users. But on more recent (particularly the past 3 years) trips to the US I see them regularly used at supermarkets and at places such as Disneyland, by the morbidly obese and the terminally lazy. I am not making this up and I am not the only person to have noticed. I am all for these devices being used by those with genuine need - which makes the site of people who really would benefit from walking using them quite sickening.

No Switzerland ain't perfect but neither is the US of A.
Maybe you should stop and think about how annoyingly judgemental you are? Maybe you'd be a lot less 'sickened' if you worked on that.
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Old 27.01.2012, 01:15
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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I won't comment on the market layout part vs. the U.S. because I've only been to a Migros a few times during visits and haven't really had any problems finding items, but the fat carts?

Seeing these on a regular basis here in the U.S., I can tell you that nine times out of ten, the person in the fat cart is indeed morbidly obese. It is without a doubt a shocking commentary on the state of decline of American society, and I see them way more often than I would like.. saw one yesterday at Ralph's. I also see them each and every time I visit Costco..

I really like the name fat cart as the name fits perfectly, and will henceforth now use the term fat cart rather than motorized wheelchair to describe them. Thanks, EF!

While we're on the subject of U.S. markets, I thought I might point out that it is very difficult to buy foods in a regular U.S. supermarket that do not have disgusting high-fructose corn syrup as an ingredient rather than sugar because the U.S. government subsidizes it and puts artificially high tariffs on sugar.

For example, I have to buy the French brand "Bonne Maman" jam at a higher expense because it is literally the only brand on the shelf that does not have HFCS in it! Corn syrup by the way has been shown in quite a few studies to cause obesity much faster than normal refined sugar. It is made of corn soaked in acid to extract the fructose.. disgusting. If you haven't seen the excellent documentary "King Corn" you should go online and check it out: http://www.solarmovie.eu/movie/playlink/id/437946/ to learn more about this wonderful substance that is incredibly difficult to avoid as an American.

The U.S. also has MUCH less regulatory oversight of food products than the EU and Switzerland. As one example, genetically modified plants and animals are still banned in Switzerland whereas the U.S. government has not only fought *against* GM food restrictions here, but have also refused to sign any international agreement restricting them.

I could go on and on, but I'll step off my soapbox and just let you know that I'd prefer a market that is a bit disorganized to a market that is full of foods of questionable origin and composition. l.i.b., you sound like you love the U.S. a lot more than Switzerland... I'm really looking forward to trading places with you!

What does anything in this post have to do with the actual content of the thread?

Conspiracy theories and judgment about other people... is this simply a "new" forum name for Hoppy?
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  #43  
Old 27.01.2012, 01:16
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Maybe you should stop and think about how annoyingly judgemental you are? Maybe you'd be a lot less 'sickened' if you worked on that.
In a thread where I see many Americans belittling the Swiss retail culture why is it so annoying that I lift a mirror back on life in the States? A little perspective can be useful in appreciating the benefits of life here, and that not all that is Swiss is inferior.

The problem I refer to of the lazy and indulgent giving up and using carts is real. Many Americans are fed up with the victim culture where someone can decide to give up, gouge on fatty foods, gain a disabled parking space and then use the carts at retail outlets, depriving precisely the genuine victims of disabilities you referred to in your earlier post of those precious facilities. Perhaps a little more judgement might be a good thing. The huge obesity problem in America should neither be a source of pride nor swept under the carpet no matter how many millions the food corporations throw at DC.
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Old 27.01.2012, 01:24
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Coop and Migros actually make some sense to me. You should take a stroll through Kaufland one day. Now THAT is completely random organisation... clothes irons next to the dairy section, pots and pans in two separate locations, automotive next to the bread....
I remember finding the secret extra bonus food section which is hidden behind the kitchen cleaning stuff and bicycles on the upstairs of Marktkauf in Weil for the first time. I've never seen anyone else there.

It was just like discovering the hidden cave of golden coins in Super Mario. Except where the coins are jars of Sauerbraten and gherkins.
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Old 27.01.2012, 01:25
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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In a thread where I see many Americans belittling the Swiss retail culture why is it so annoying that I lift a mirror back on life in the States? A little perspective can be useful in appreciating the benefits of life here, and that not all that is Swiss is inferior.

The problem I refer to of the lazy and indulgent giving up and using carts is real. Many Americans are fed up with the victim culture where someone can decide to give up, gouge on fatty foods, gain a disabled parking space and then use the carts at retail outlets, depriving precisely the genuine victims of disabilities you referred to in your earlier post of those precious facilities. Perhaps a little more judgement might be a good thing. The huge obesity problem in America should neither be a source of pride nor swept under the carpet no matter how many millions the food corporations throw at DC.

Be that as it may, it has nothing to do with the layout of stores here - nor anyone's displeasure with such.
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Old 27.01.2012, 01:28
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Be that as it may, it has nothing to do with the layout of stores here - nor anyone's displeasure with such.
Quite - I was simply pointing out that whilst the stores here suffer from a lack of variety (and some quite mind boggling layout choices) one positive that folks from over the pond might choose to appreciate is that at least they are not battling in the aisles with the aforementioned misused carts.

The thread went off track when my comments were misconstrued - I just wanted to clear the record and would not accept the reinterpretation of my comments criticising those without genuine need using disability carts as an attack on the infirm which I felt was quite unjustified and nasty. Goodnight to all!
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Old 27.01.2012, 08:22
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Please pardon the following comment and I don't mean to insult you..but your path of reasoning is aboout as logical as the Swiss store layout. So Swiss stores are set to Soviet 70s style because Swiss peopple like it that way? Wake up Abfab and smell the coffee...this place is stuck in the 70s. If you give customers options, don't you think they'd appreciate them? If you pop over to France, they have special lines for pregnant women and hearing/walking impaired people....is that something Swiss people don't like either? Or the free parking? This must be the only place on earth, where you have to pay to park your car in order to spend your hard earned cash. As I said before, there is the right way of doing things and there is the Swiss way. The fact that this place completely lack competition simply exemplfies, that stores do whatever they want to do with their customers as forcefully, they don't have any other choice but simply shop from worse to worse. Again, this is not what pleases Americans but rather what pleases the general populace (in every country). True, there are people who like to shop from small independant stores etc. but the general public would appreciate a more sensible store layout, so that shoe cream is not by the airfresheners but where the shoes are and replacement heads for eectrical toothbrushes are not by vacum cleaner bags etc.


What if you were elderly or walking impaired...wouldn't you appreciate the "fat cart"?
Embolden points:

It's because Switzerland in many ways is in the 1970s, that I and many other like it so much. Actually I could go for the 1960s.

Parking charges are nothing to do with supermarkets. It is local authorities and the anti-car/pro public transport who enforce this.

I never mentioned 'fat carts', but were I elderly or infirm motorised disabled transport would be good. But this is not to help the morbidly obese and is hardly the responsibility of retailers, but medical suppliers, hospitals, specialist suppliers and local authorities so it can be used everywhere not just one retailer.

How do American know what pleases the "general populace" of the rest of the world?? Only an American could make such a statement. I guess you'll be stopping Asia using chopsticks as you know they would really prefer an knife and folk.

The lack of competition to the Coop-Migros duopoly is clear and unhealthy. But this is Switzerland and the town of Zurich's population is less than that of Wichita, Kansas...
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Old 27.01.2012, 08:58
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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I guess you'll be stopping Asia using chopsticks as you know they would really prefer an knife and folk.
I see what you did there.
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:06
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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I remember finding the secret extra bonus food section which is hidden behind the kitchen cleaning stuff and bicycles on the upstairs of Marktkauf in Weil for the first time. I've never seen anyone else there.

It was just like discovering the hidden cave of golden coins in Super Mario. Except where the coins are jars of Sauerbraten and gherkins.
hmmm, (my bolding), there could be a reason why you never see anyone else there
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:29
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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If you pop over to France, they have special lines for pregnant women
I've seen special parking for pregnant women. I think that is absurd. I see pregnant women that could pop at any minute doing hard-core step aerobics and/or jogging down the road with their iPhone earbuds in. Pregnancy isn't a disease, but it's so hilarious that it's treated like a handicap.

I've also seen special parking for ordinary women. WTF is that about? Is having a vagina a handicap also?

And then there's the special parking for women with children. WTF??? Dads with children don't have the same hassles and ordeals of loading and unloading and carrying basinettes and loading and unloading prams?

Seriously. So many aspects of privilege are just too wonderfully sexist that it boggles the mind.

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What if you were elderly or walking impaired...wouldn't you appreciate the "fat cart"?
I have admittedly used a "fat cart," while shopping at Wal-Mart. This was after a knee surgery when I lived in Kentucky. You see... they don't give you a handicapped placard or a special parking place for being temporarily a gimp in the US. This means that, even though you've lost the use of one leg, you still have to park in the back 40 acres of the parking lot and walk your way in.

So I went to the Super Wal-Mart one morning to buy groceries, parking in the back 40 of the parking lot, I was already tired. Rather than try to push a cart and support myself on crutches, I used the "fat cart."

I know most normal people who've just had surgery would stay home with their codeine and send someone out to do this for them... but not everyone has a spouse or a teenager with a driver's license living at home. So staying off the codeine, driving to Wally World and using the "fat cart" it is. And I'm not ashamed of having used it. It got me some vittles for the house and some grotesque stairs from people who thought they needed it more than me... but so what.

The only hard part came with carrying groceries back into the house when I got home... with crutches and no "fat cart". God that sucked.
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:39
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

Any truth that they're making an updated Ben Hur "The Fat Chariots Strike Back"?

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Old 27.01.2012, 09:43
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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I've also seen special parking for ordinary women. WTF is that about? Is having a vagina a handicap also?


Seriously. So many aspects of privilege are just too wonderfully sexist that it boggles the mind.

.
Seen them parking spaces, they are the 5 x 10 meter ones.
But is that not woman wanted and got?
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:46
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

Always spend half the day do all my shopping. For beer you need to go to Denner or Coop, for product X to Migros, product Y you go to Migros City, for product Z you need to go to Coop. So friggin annoying. Why not just sell the same products in all supermarkets :|
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:47
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Embolden points:

It's because Switzerland in many ways is in the 1970s, that I and many other like it so much. Actually I could go for the 1960s.

Parking charges are nothing to do with supermarkets. It is local authorities and the anti-car/pro public transport who enforce this.

I never mentioned 'fat carts', but were I elderly or infirm motorised disabled transport would be good. But this is not to help the morbidly obese and is hardly the responsibility of retailers, but medical suppliers, hospitals, specialist suppliers and local authorities so it can be used everywhere not just one retailer.

How do American know what pleases the "general populace" of the rest of the world?? Only an American could make such a statement. I guess you'll be stopping Asia using chopsticks as you know they would really prefer an knife and folk.

The lack of competition to the Coop-Migros duopoly is clear and unhealthy. But this is Switzerland and the town of Zurich's population is less than that of Wichita, Kansas...


Such bias against Americans - what is your problem exactly?

AFAIK, LiB has traveled outside of US AND Switzerland (including Asia), and given his previously stated job duties, I'd expect that he'd probably know a good deal more about what sorts of things "general populace" of the world prefer when shopping than most of the rest of us do.

S'ok though sugar, you can stick your fingers in your ears and "lalala" all you want, just because he's American. Bless your heart...
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:48
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Embolden points:

It's because Switzerland in many ways is in the 1970s, that I and many other like it so much. Actually I could go for the 1960s.

Parking charges are nothing to do with supermarkets. It is local authorities and the anti-car/pro public transport who enforce this.

I never mentioned 'fat carts', but were I elderly or infirm motorised disabled transport would be good. But this is not to help the morbidly obese and is hardly the responsibility of retailers, but medical suppliers, hospitals, specialist suppliers and local authorities so it can be used everywhere not just one retailer.

How do American know what pleases the "general populace" of the rest of the world?? Only an American could make such a statement. I guess you'll be stopping Asia using chopsticks as you know they would really prefer an knife and folk.

The lack of competition to the Coop-Migros duopoly is clear and unhealthy. But this is Switzerland and the town of Zurich's population is less than that of Wichita, Kansas...
Companies spend millions on research in order to make shopping more pleasant for everybody in order to increase revenue...this concept is copied and adapted to local structures around the world. Meaning, this is not about how do Americans know what pleases people around the world...it's about increasing revenue in a systematic manner. The fact that you like it being like the 60s and 70s only displays your oh so common Swiss stubborn attitude which only leads this country down the drain, by thinking "oh, we're number one...it's so friggin nice here". Switzerland hardly leads anything...and lately it's mediocre achievement in every possible segment makes it rather laughable, to even consider this a 1st world country.
Coop and Migros are some of the biggest employers in this country and if they wanted to have free parking, they could easily obtain it. They could even bring it to the people to vote...but I'd assume, that the lethargic, "yeah, we're so friggin awesome" population might even vote against it. To shop here, you need coins to park your car and coins to get a shopping cart. Despite this being minor nuissances, they are nuissances nevertheless and not to be seen in North America, China, Jamaica etc. How do you justify this idiocy?
Zurich being a small town, doesn't mean it has to be complicated and monopolistic. There are ample equal sized cities around the world, whichs trive exactly because of their size. They are small, well organized, competitive and attractive for families.
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:48
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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Seen them parking spaces, they are the 5 x 10 meter ones.
But is that not woman wanted and got?
No... the idea was that especially in dark indoor parkings the ladies are scared at night and therefore should be allowed to park close to the well lit doors. I have seen more than one place in Switzerland where they then turned some of the handicapped places into women parking places. Giving women a parking place twice the size of a normal one is IMHO easily as sexist as asking for a gender specific place in the first place.
On the "women with children" sings: I am pretty sure that a single dad with kids can use those just as well... it was some gender stereotyping by the sign artist. But to be honest: All those PC discussions if family parking signs need to be gender neutral is the exact thing Switzerland does not need. And another nice example that it is sometimes a good thing to be a bit stuck in the 70s.
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Old 27.01.2012, 09:56
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

I'm really pissed too. In America, I have a choice of 60 types of cereals. In fact, there's a whole aisle for me to choose from. I leisurely walk up and down the aisle, (which I consider part of my exercise routine) until I finally pick one out that strikes my fancy.

At my local Migros, I only have 10 to choose from. However I shouldn't be complaining. Five years ago, there were only 5 cereals to choose from. Kellog's is making headway. I even saw Fruit Loops last time I went shopping. I'm still waiting for my oreo cookies cereal with artifical sweeteners.*

*joke

PS: Can someone add "fat carts" to the tags. It's a fascinating topic in itself.
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Old 27.01.2012, 10:00
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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No... the idea was that especially in dark indoor parkings the ladies are scared at night
Which is somewhat ironic, since most places close by 7:30pm...
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Old 27.01.2012, 10:03
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

I have found shopping in Switzerland considerably easier than the UK - yes, easier - there are simple reasons for that:

- You can find a supermarket with an ACCEPTABLE level of produce at reasonable prices anywhere - and you don't have to walk/drive miles to get there.

- Every supermarket is capable of covering all your food needs - I know the small places won't stock 4 types of chillis, pak-choi or 138 different jams - but I'll be able to buy everything I need to make a few meals.

- The big places only offer more of the limited range - if you go to the big Coop at Dietlikon (the old Carrefour) it has no greater range of food products than the one in Kusnacht (for example)

- You don't have to drive (did I mention that already)

- Excellent quality bags - ok they cost 30rpn - but they have done for the last 7 years - and who doesn't take their own??

I can shop quicker in Switzerland - it doesn't take as long because you don't have to walk as far past lines and lines of products you don't need. It is all rather "nice".

That doesn't mean shopping here is perfect - you can't get good Tofu in any of the major supermarkets - or good asian ingredients - but that is minor complaint - I couldn't get the same in the UK. They also don't necessarily stock a great range of "Health" products - but then I just head to a specialist (as I would in the UK).

If the experience of shopping grates so much - add it to the pile of things you don't like about Switzerland - once that pile is greater than the pile of things you like about Switzerland - you can bugger off back to where you came from.
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Old 27.01.2012, 10:03
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Re: Swiss Grocery Shopping - Horrible Aisle Layout

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I'm sorry, Peg, but a HECK of a lot of stuff in the US makes NO sense to us. Like having to label toasters with "do not insert metal objects" or people being pushed around in wheelchairs the moment they enter a hospital.
300 million people and a busted tort system means you're gonna have your share of idiots that team up with ambulance-chasing shark lawyers to sue, so companies have to put silly disclaimers on toasters to protect themselves from the Idiocracy.

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Or having juice in gallon containers.
I'll be honest- I used to buy OJ in the gallon-size, and I would drink it all in a few days (or sometimes less ). Now, I am totally content with the 2L Prix Garantie OJ in the fridge, and it lasts me about a week. There's a lot of 'overeating types' in the US, and Americans, in general, are much more wasteful of the things they buy at a grocery store.

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The shop layout makes perfect sense to us Helvetians and, as many a post on EF suggests, we are not generally known as the out and about brain surgeons of public life.
It doesn't always make sense to me, but I can be honest and say that I'm new here. Overcoming the unfamiliarity was really easy for me- I simply walk up and down every aisle, and pick up items for my grocery list as I go. Do I sometimes have to go back an aisle? Yup. But its no big deal, and I get the job done in a fair amount of time.

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There is no alcohol in Migros, although a common Swiss insult is to tell someone to go and get wine at Migros.
But doesn't Migros own Denner? Beer and wine is about 90% of what I buy from Denner. (Unless they have laundry detergent 1/2 off, and then I horde )
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aisle layout, fat cart, minotauraurus nuts, rant, shopping




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