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I was almost attacked Saturday at the Gas America

Discussion in 'Personal Security Devices & Self-Defense' started by Andy Wayne, Oct 25, 2010.

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  1. Andy Wayne

    Andy Wayne Loaded Pockets

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    Saturday I took my Mom to Anderson to get her hair done. I dropped her off at 2:30, and headed to the local Gas America gas station to get a Dr. Pepper fountain drink. As I pulled into the lot, I noticed there were two open handicapped parking spots on the left side (if you were facing the building) and one regular open spot on the right. I was going to pull up to the regular parking spot, but I noticed it looked kind of tight. I then noticed to the right of that spot (again, if you were facing the building as I was) the car there was backing up. So, I thought I’d set there and wait for them to move, so I could make a wide easy turn to park. I had my cell phone out, because I was going to return a text to my friend Erin Leeson after I had parked. While I was waiting for the other car to slowly back up, I was typing a reply on my phone while I was waiting. In my peripheral vision, I could see that there was another vehicle behind me, also waiting. The car I was waiting on backed up, and I pulled into the parking spot. As I did, I heard the vehicle behind me accelerate fast, then pull into the spot to my right where the other car had been that I was waiting on, breaking hard and aggressively.

    The vehicle was a late-eighties Ford that was kind of jacked up on oversized tires, with gray primer paint. A guy got out, and looked at me with glaring hatred while he was talking and walking to the door. I couldn’t hear what he was saying, but I heard enough to know he was insulting me, and he wanted me to hear it. He looked like a stereotypical white trash prison thug with piercings and tattoos looking for trouble. I quickly searched my back seat for a defensive weapon, hoping to find one of my ASP collapsible police batons, but remembered that mine were in the house and the other truck. He didn’t know that I was carrying my Colt .380 Mustang handgun and Benchmade Griptilitan, but I was looking for a less-lethal alternative that would be compact and discrete to defend myself with if needed without resorting to a deadly weapon. I couldn’t find anything discrete, so I shut the truck door and walked to the entrance hoping he wouldn’t say anything else. As I walked to the door, I saw him glaring at me through the window. He was just inside the door to the right, using the ATM machine.

    As I walked in, he looked at me, and said in a louder than usual voice, “I guess driving isn’t one of your ******* strong points is it?” I said, “Dude, what’s your problem?” He then said something along the lines of: you’re my problem; get off your ******* phone and drive! etc. I tried to rationally explain to him that I was waiting for the other car to move, I was stopped waiting for the car to move while I was on my phone, etc. I quickly saw that he could not be reasoned with, and was looking for trouble and talking very loudly, as I’m sure 6-8 people in the store heard him. As I was trying to rationalize with him, he then escalated the conversation to threats and personal attacks saying things like: “I’ll kick your ******* *** you fat ****, come get some.” Etc… I could see he was trying to escalate the situation, and conversation was going nowhere. I wasn’t going to let him talk to me like that in public in front of everyone and look like a punk and not say something, so I said “**** you!” and gave him the finger and walked off to get my Dr. Pepper.

    He yelled, “Why don’t you step outside, I’m gonna kick your ***.” Etc. Then he said “I’ll be waiting for you outside” and walked out the door. I took my time getting my drink. I hoped he would chill out, and it would give him an opportunity to save face by “getting tired of waiting on me” and leaving.

    I noticed no one in the store said a word about our exchange of words. They acted as if nothing happened. I have noticed this happen twice before in the past when a violent situation erupts in public. Everyone gets this scared look on their face and act like they don’t see what’s going on, they look away. They don’t try to help, call the cops, etc. They don’t want to get involved.

    A side note here for those who don’t know, I have a neurological disease called “essential tremor”. It is commonly mistaken for Parkinson Disease by people who don’t know better. Essential Tremor is what Katharine Hepburn had, and is why she trembled. Why this is important to this story is that the effects of essential tremor are GREATLY increased by stress/anxiety. After we had yelled at each other and he went outside, I noticed how I was greatly weakened and shaky, my legs were starting to feel like Jello.

    I was greatly concerned why this guy who was half my size was acting so angry, violent, and so confidant that he could kick my ***. He was about my height, maybe 200 lbs. I’m 6’1”, 330 lbs. I was concerned that he was not afraid of my size because he might have a hidden weapon. Little did he know, I did have a weapon and was prepared to defend my life if necessary. Had it not been for my tremors, I would have been a lot more obliging to give him an ***-kicking. However, besides the tremors, I don’t do a lot of cardio and can tire easily. I also have borderline high blood pressure, and was recently taken off my BP meds, so my heart beats fast easily. I didn’t want to fight him and have a heart attack or something.

    I walk up to the counter to pay for my Dr. Pepper. No one that works there says anything to me about what just happened, they act like it’s business as usual. I go to pull the money out of my t-shirt pocket, and I’m shaking so bad, I fumble and pull all the cash out of my pocket and spill it all over the floor. I pick it all up, and put it back in my pocket.

    I turn from the register to head to the door, and look out the window and see he’s leaning against his truck, waiting for me. I know he’s had time to prepare while I was inside, and I don’t know what weapons were already on him, or if he grabbed anything from the truck. I reach for my handgun, and flip the safety off so it’s ready if needed, in case my tremors would cause me to fumble with the safety if I had to draw it.

    I walk out the door, and he’s leaning on his truck smoking a cigarette waiting for me. When he sees me, he angrily throws down his cigarette and bounces of his truck, continuing his tirade of threats and insults, saying things like: “I’m gonna kick your *** ************, step around to this side of the truck!” I once again tried to reason with him, and attempted to yet again explain what happened when I was trying to park. He would not listen and kept up his threats and insults.

    I decided that discretion is the better part of valor, and thought it would be best if I just left since he couldn’t be reasoned with. He was saying anything he could to anger me, trying to entice me to fight. I was afraid he had a weapon, and I didn’t want to have to shoot him.

    I got in my truck, and he started yelling things like, “Yeah, that’s what I thought you punk ***** ************!” “Afraid of getting your ******* *** kicked fat boy!” etc. etc. It was difficult to show restraint when I was so angry and he was publicly insulting me like that. However it’s best to avoid violence when possible. I started my truck to leave, and he got in his truck and got behind me. I was concerned that he might try to follow me, in which case I was planning to drive to the police station and call the cops on the way. I pulled out of the parking lot onto the street, and due to traffic he was left behind. When I saw this, I quickly took a right turn, and then took several more turns to lose him in case he attempted to follow me.

    I didn’t see him again, but I was so angry and upset that I was shaking pretty badly the rest of the evening due to my tremors. I had not expected anything like this to ever happen, and it goes to show that you might not even do anything wrong and have some crazy violent person freak out on you when you least expect it, so be aware.

    I considered turning him in to the cops, in case he would flip out on someone else like that, but I didn’t want the hassle of making a police report and filing charges, etc. I realized that since he’d used the ATM, his identity could easily be found by the cops. The police could have cross-referenced the database of who used the ATM during that time frame with the DMV database of vehicle registration to find a match. But, I had no proof of his threats, and doubted anyone at the gas station would volunteer to testify against him.

    I later realized I should have pulled out my phone and started recording video of him for proof. In the heat of the moment, it’s hard to think of things like that though. You kind of get tunnel vision on the situation at hand. Oh well, maybe next time. Stay safe.
     
  2. jeeves3443

    jeeves3443 Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for sharing, I bet it wasn't as easy as you made it seem.

    I'm sure you're still furious about the whole thing, your course of action, the things he said to you with no rebuttal or recourse, the thoughts that he 'got away' with something, the things you thought up after the event that would have been 'awesome' to say; but you did the right thing. You're a smarter man and took the smarter road, be glad in your strength, it's a valuable asset.
    This has happened to me a few times and it doesn't get any easier, or less frightening/nerve-racking. You need to be commended for staying as calm and rational as possible. It's difficult to let stuff like that from a person like that 'go' and not want/feel compelled to take some sort of action.

    After I've had time to cool off, I tend to feel bad or sorry for people who act/react the way you describe. Their heads are so far up their... Into the void... that they can't even ponder why they were mad in the first place. Or take the time to realize that they're freaking out over a delay of 10 seconds, give or take. This guy probably had a recent near miss, or even full blown accident because some other fool on the road was on their cell phone and he took the opportunity to take it out on you. Because they nearly killed him and didn't even realize how close they came to vehicular homicide (I think this has happened to everyone at least once). It's sad that his day is so ruined by stupid stuff like this. Though, I understand how someone could be angered to his degree with someone on a cellphone while driving. Especially texting. I'm not making a jab here, but it's my biggest pet peeve's and probably your assailants as well. Simply because it's SO incredibly dangerous and stupid to do while driving. He probably saw you texting from your reasonably safe 'waiting spot' and assumed that, like so many people today, you were having a full blown conversation/back and forth via text, while driving. It's a shame he was so heated that he only wanted to fight about it. Probably couldn't even really comprehend what you were saying or the point you were trying to get across.

    Thanks again for sharing/posting.
     
  3. nbmaine2007

    nbmaine2007 Loaded Pockets

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    You should have just left in your vehicle and came back later or gone elsewhere. Going into the store was a bad idea and bad ideas can get you killed. Pulling out your phone would have been even a worse idea. Live your life the way you want, but I think you need to be careful. Do you really want to have to kill someone as a result of some stupid road rage incident? Don't let having a firearm get you into places you shouldn't be.
     
  4. Old_Camper

    Old_Camper Loaded Pockets

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    Agreed.

    Also: Why would you opt for a firearm over another, less than lethal means of self defence?

    You had more than enough time to draw a can of OC/StoppaRed/pepper spray depending on your jurisdiction. Are tasers/batons legal in your area? If the answer is yes, then those are options too.

    Do not ever pull your phone out to record someone. First and foremost, it is going to escalate the situation even further. Secondly, you have just lost one of your hands. If you want everything on tape, then carry a spy pen with video and audio function in your top shirt pocket. This is what I do and it works fine. In a heated situation, people aren't going to notice you click the top of your pen.

    Don't carry a gun unless you understand rules of engagement. You can't just shoot someone because they come running at you in a heated situation. More importantly, would you even want to? Guns are a last resort when all other means of self defence have failed (or will fail, because the other guy has a gun too, duh).
     
  5. w5eo

    w5eo Loaded Pockets

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    Unfortunately it's people like you who give ammo to the gun banners. You should have left immediately. What were you thinking? You risked life and limb for a drink!??!!?? The most important weapon you have is your brain: use it.
     
  6. chavez

    chavez Loaded Pockets

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    That situation sounded quite explosive. Obviously the guy has issues. My mom used to tell me this when I was young, "Don't argue with the insane". I tend to be super extra nice whenever I carry my defensive weapon. So, I would have smiled and just said something like, "You are absolutely right, sorry about that" and never said a word after that and left. If it was legal to shoot someone for being an *******, half the nation would be a target. I am glad you are alright though.
     
  7. DaPro

    DaPro Loaded Pockets

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    Honestly you sir went looking for a confrontation. Now more then ever you must be the bigger man and walk away from confrontations.
     
  8. allotabass

    allotabass Loaded Pockets

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    Andy, I've been where you were several times and my heart raced a mile in a second no matter what the situation was or how it ended.
    You have the right to defend yourself and you have the right to enter any establishment for any reason.
    To turn away because some punk wants to confront you is not how you live your life. You stood your ground and controlled yourself that way you wanted and not how that guy expected it to go. If anyone else wants to drive away because someone called them a bad word then so be it. Some people have thinner skin.

    Sure this guy had a hair across his butt and you were the next thing that 'upset' him so why should that make you less competant because you have an ailment, you still conducted yourself better than most people would have.

    Since I began to CCW I've become more aware of everyone and actually more courtious in general. I would have done the same thing you did.
     
  9. panzer

    panzer Loaded Pockets

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    By flipping him off in the store when he confronted you, you took it to the next level and escalated the situation. You had the chance to walk away and really should have taken it. With your condition getting into physical confrontations is not a good idea. There is nothing wrong with walking away and diffusing the situation. These days people are very unpredictable and simple misunderstands can end up with someone dead or in the hospital. It's not worth it. That being said, knowing my temper and the run ins I have had in the past. That dude and I would have been exchanging blows right in the store. But I am not that smart!

    Glad to hear you are ok!
     
  10. nbmaine2007

    nbmaine2007 Loaded Pockets

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    Just because you have the right to do something, doesn't mean you should. You have the right to go into Harlem and yell racial slurs in the air...doesn't mean you should.

    You mention that some people have thinner skin, but it's just the opposite. The people who leave to avoid the unecessary confrontation have the thicker skin. The people who go in looking to escalate it need to take out their aggression in other ways.

    Unfortunately for some, carrying a firearm turns people into fantasy land where they imagine (and sometimes actually seek out) scenarios where they can draw, maybe even kill someone. It's easy beforehand dreaming about what would be "justified" for self-defense, but some ridiculous, needless sitaution like this, you'd get hammered by a jury if you told the story like you've told us.

    A simple tip. If people here (EDC and firearm friendly) think you went too far, you definitely went too far.
     
  11. Wolvee

    Wolvee Loaded Pockets

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    I'm sorry you were put in the situation and I am glad you were not harmed or had to shoot.

    I don't know how it is there in Indiana but in most states, by you going out to your vehicle while you know he is waiting for an altercation, an unscrupulous prosecutor can imply that you had the upper hand and were the aggressor even though you never made any threats. Not to say that will always happen but it is a dangerous enough scenario for me to always just call 911. If there is one thing I've learned from all the national news stories I've seen and read about, if I pull my pistol, it is not a means to end an argument but a last second defense that will ensure someone is going to die and hopefully/luckily it wont be me.

    Please be careful in the future and don't hesitate to call the police at the first sign of trouble. I understand how in that situation, at that moment, that wasn't your first thought but next time please do it.

    Lastly, you are more of a man than that punk was and Humility is a sign of a wise person. By swallowing your pride, taking his insults and public demeaning, you saved his life and gave him another chance to straighten out. Maybe one day he becomes a good citizen, a good son, father or brother. Maybe one day he figures it all out and says,"I was such a punk". ..maybe.

    Thank you Mr. Wayne.
     
  12. HOMELAND SECURITY HAM

    HOMELAND SECURITY HAM Loaded Pockets

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    Andy,

    I am a cop and the first thing I would have done when he opened his mouth and walked into the store was put my truck in reverse and beat feet. You know that could only have landed you in jail. As you saw the witnesses and the clerk were not comming to your aid or even calling 911. Getting out of your car was your first mistake. Walking into the store was your second. Flipping him off in the store was strike 3. Trying to reason with that mind set was suicidal. If that place was full of cameras and the witnesses saw the situation differently it could have really screwed you.

    You should have pressed 911 without pressing send and backed out of the parking space. If he pursued you, then hit send, drive to the police station, and remember your vehicle is also a weapon and if you use your vehicle instead of a gun it looks much better for you. When you are retreating it will usually look more like you are the victim, espically while you are narrating it to the 911 operator.

    As a CCW instructor I also tell my students to carry a can of FOX Labs (key chain size) OC. Forget the baton, the cops will have a field day with you as a wanabe. I have no relationship with FOX Labs, but from my 40 hour chemical agents class, I am aware that they are one of the best. It is a stream, so it is less likely to come back at you. They make it in a break away key chain for EDC last I saw, so you can leave it on a belt loop and in an emergency just give it a tug.

    The Last thing I need to do is shoot some punk and have it ruled excessive or unreasonable force. You need to look up the "reasonable man doctrine" The court might not be allowed to take into consideration your disability when you outweighted him by 130 pounds and had a gun, espically after it was made to look like you pursued him into the store and then exited while he was still there. He could have said you were crazy so he went outside to has car until you were gone. When you couldnt reason with him in the store (mistake) thats when you could have done nothing but request an officer stand by so you could leave and the police would have detained him for a while after you left.

    If you haven't figured it out by now, these type of people are usually great liers also, espically to their lawyers and to the police.

    Being street wise and carring a firearm means YOU need to be aware of your surroundings and YOU need to avoid trouble at all costs, never get involved in a firearms related incident until YOU have no other choice. The worst part that also goes along with this is that when these incidents look the wrong way, it makes all other gun owners look bad.

    PM me and I will give you my cell number and the benefit that my students get from my 35 years in emergency services (police, fire service, EMT Advanced, search and rescue, and even as a professional {dead body} removal specialist) and as a firearms instructor. You never see it all even with all my years and in my area it is not uncommon to hear firearms related calls go out on the radio at least every shift I work!

    Cliff
     
  13. DBR

    DBR Loaded Pockets

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    Get off of the phone. Mistake One.

    You had the presence of mind to do this but not leave. Mistake Two. Do you even know how to use a baton? Have you ever practiced opening it and actually wearing a heavy bag out with it? If not, Mistakes grow rapidly.

    You knew that there was a great possibility that he couldn't be reasoned with or you would not have went hunting for a baton. Mistake, delusional actually, you are lying to yourself.

    But you DID let him talk to you that way in public and you knew it was going to happen because he was a big mouth in the parking lot and you went hunting for a baton. Mistake. Telling him to go jink himself and then throwing him the bone would have probably sunk you in court had you felt the need to shoot him. Mistake. YOU escalated the situation by going into a store for a Dr. Pepper. Had you said this whole thing happened where you had to take your mother to a doctor, everything would have been different.

    You obviously don't have any experience dealing with violent hardheads. You need to learn. Mistake.

    Most people won't get involved, and rightfully so, they don't want to anger this idiot like you did!

    And you really believe that you are going to be able to use a baton on someone with more mobility and who doesn't have a handicap like this? Mistake.

    And you gave him the time to prepare, wonderful. Mistake.

    And if your tremors are that bad, I doubt you would have been able to shoot him effectively while adrenalized unless it was a contact shot in which case you would have been in serious trouble because of your medical and physical condition. Mistake and Mistake.

    What was it that Einstein said? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity?

    Mistake, trying to reason with the unreasonable and trying to be rational with the irrational. What led you to believe he would be a different person when you met him again?

    It seems to me that you were both lucky. He's an idiot and that's that but given your own description of your condition, you might have lost control of the entire situation and got more than you bargained for. He might die in the parking lot, after you shoot him and then he either shoots you with his weapon, takes your's and shoots you or otherwise disarms you and pounds you.

    If you really believed that, you wouldn't have went in the store in the first place! You knew what the deal was! Stop lying to yourself.

    You didn't avoid violence when it was possible, you chose something more important, you went in for a fountain soda.


    The smartest decision you have made in the entire story.

    You need to get off of that cell phone anyway. Given your medical condition, you need to be doing some light weightlifting and walking a couple miles a day instead of getting yourself involved in potentially life threatening situations over a Dr. Pepper, of all things.

    YOU have a RESPONSIBILITY to the People of Indiana and anyone around you and that is to make sure that you can control your firearm in a confrontation. YOU, at this point in time, are in no shape to be making these types of decisions given your admitted track record. If you hit some innocent bystander because of the tremors, what then? Your fault. While you do NOT have to be some Olympic Athlete to defend yourself, and many think you do, being 300 pounds and having the medical issues you do, you need to stop sucking Dr. Pepper and start sucking on some water and dropping some of that baggage which is only going to exacerbate your medical issues, to say the least. Most guys that are 300 and 6'1" I wouldn't want to tangle with! A mountain that usually shrugs off rockheads like you encountered. But I think you are making multiple bad decisions and you're also lying to yourself. If I am fearful of someone arming themselves, I don't give them minutes to do so and formulate a plan of action to implement the weapon...

    Most of the time, people have to have awareness preached to them. You don't need that, you knew everything that was going down and simply ignored it.

    I am 100% Pro-Gun, Pro-Knife, Pro-Impact Weapon, Pro - Self-defense and Concealed Carry of all the aforementioned items. But you need to seriously get honest with yourself and change what needs changed to the best of your ability and learn to listen to the awareness you have.
     
  14. hatchetjack

    hatchetjack EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    Wasn't worth the Dr. Pepper.........had you not been strapped, would you have gone into the store?
     
  15. jag-engr
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    jag-engr Semper Bufo!
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    Andy,

    I'm going to have to agree with all the other posters that say you should have just left. I do realize, though, that sometimes, in stressful situations, the obvious solution doesn't come to mind.

    You acknowledge, though, that you realized there could be a dangerous situation before you went into the store - you were looking for weapons. In particular, consider hatchetjack's question:

    We all make stupid mistakes. Some of the posters who are chastising you have probably made similar mistakes in the passt. What you need to remember from this one is that you should have left and went to a different store. If you remember that lesson, the experience wasn't all futile - the lesson you learned this time could save your life next time.
     
  16. Wstan

    Wstan Loaded Pockets

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    I hope this isn't seen as piling on

    But Andy, you're also the guy in this thread who "cleared" his broken into home (where I recall there were unsecured firearms) and held a burglar at gunpoint instead of waiting for police response.

    Is CCW making you more risk tolerant than you need to be? It's obviously no one's business but your own but you might want to lock away the weaponry for a while and think about these events from a critical perspective.
     
  17. hatchetjack

    hatchetjack EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I also notice you also like to comment on the type/brand of weapons, knives and gear you are carrying.....That does not make the event or actions any more credible.
     
  18. nbmaine2007

    nbmaine2007 Loaded Pockets

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    Also a bit weird how you used the first and last name of the friend you were calling. Just some real odd stuff in the story. I'd really recommend you give Cliff a call, and I think he could provide some real help. Because some of this stuff is just really scary. Take care.
     
  19. DBR

    DBR Loaded Pockets

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    That may or may not be a good idea, it depends on where you live and a dozen other issues. I know it is popular for police officers to tell people not to do this, but they say a lot of things about guns and using them that are too broad in scope, etc.

    I have made my share of stupid mistakes in the past. I also made the...some would say...stupid mistake of having a very dangerous job that I had to do without a firearm. Those mistakes were half my lifetime ago. One of them gives me sinus infections and migraines to this day. I made the mistake of not paying attention and when the guy turned, my life changed forever. I know what it is like to be damaged by someone and to do damage someone that deserves it, legally, morally and ethically. Most of that was on the job. My job was not getting a soda.

    "Andy" has more issues than simply ignoring the information he takes in. He did an accurate threat assessment. He felt so strongly about it, he went for a lesser weapon even though he was armed with a lethal weapon because he thought he might have a problem on his hands. This is an incredible lapse in judgment. That's the point of demarcation in the entire incident. Then it continued one mistake after another, this shows an extreme lack of judgment. On top of that, he needs to work through some of these health issues he has or he is just begging for failure. If he wants to commit suicide by default through not correcting or minimizing these other issues, that's his business, but he places everyone else in public at risk as well.
     
  20. allotabass

    allotabass Loaded Pockets

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    I'm taking back my previous comments after that second story.
     
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