Discworld Monthly - Issue 32: December 1999
Table of Contents:1. Editorial
3. Readers' Letters
5. Results of Our Clarecraft Competition
6. Cunning Artificer Review and Competition
7. Feature: Main Character Kill Off
8. Review: Nanny Ogg's Cookbook
9. The End
Speaking of the millennium, next year will see the third Discworld Convention named "MillenniCon Hand & Shrimp" which will take place in London from July 28th-31st 2000. More details of the convention can be found at www.lspace.org/fandom/cons/dwcon2k/
Remember the prices for membership go up on 1st Jan 2000 so what better Hogswatch present could you bestow on another Discworld fan?
Jason Anthony (Editor) firstname.lastname@example.org
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Sub-versive Editor)
Isis haven't got many left, so they'd have to be offered on a 'first come, first served' basis. You can get one of these posters for 16.99GBP, which includes postage costs and packaging (rigid card tube), from: Discworld Poster Isis Publishing Ltd 7 Centremead Osney Mead Oxford OX2 0ES
You can also call the FREEPHONE order number with your credit card details, 0800 731 5637.
There are three Discworld calendars for 2000; a wall calendar with illustrations by Paul Kidby, a mini-wall calendar illustrated by Josh Kirby, and the Day-to-Day by Paul Kidby.
If you are having problems tracking down these calendars produced by The Ink Group you should contact Gibson Greetings who now own the Ink Group. To find out where their nearest suppliers are, fans should ring Gibsons at 01952 608333 and ask for Customer Services.
Unfortunately Gibsons have no mail order facilities, and all stocks are now with their customers.
THE LAST HERO will be a large format hardcover book, published by Gollancz, rather like DINOTOPIA in that Paul Kidby will be painting something like 70 full colour pictures to face Terry's text on every double page spread. To sell at about 20GBP. Delivery is scheduled for the end of March 2001, for intended publication in the autumn of that year.
Terry has written the following about it:-
"This was conceived as an illustrated story, so I've made sure there's lots to illustrate -- including the entire voyage of the Discworld's first successful orbital vehicle, and an ascent of Cori Celeste. Paul [Kidby] has already designed the mission patch for the spaceflight... "Carrot, Leonard of Quirm and Rincewind all have starring roles, as does Cohen the Barbarian and his Horde. And one or two new characters, too. I'm not going to give away the plot! "Currently there's a 35,000 word working draft, which will get tinkered with over the next year as Paul's illustrations are finished."
Graham Higgins (who created the original Mort: A Discworld Big Comic) is hard at work on GUARDS! GUARDS! THE BIG COMIC, which is hoped will be published this time next year. He's been working with Steven Briggs on the text which has been based on Steven's playtext.
The next novel THE TRUTH should be finished in late December and its publication date has been pencilled in for November 2000.
Igneous the Troll's All-Night Wholesale Pottery have created three Discworld mugs reproducing Josh Kirby's artwork for WITCHES ABROAD, GUARDS! GUARDS! and REAPER MAN. They sell for 5.99GBP each plus postage and packing (1.60GBP for one, 2.60GBP for two and 3.60GBP for all three mugs.
Orders and payment (cheque or postal orders only - no credit card facilities as yet) should be sent to: The Blue Cat Pottery, 6 Howard Close, Werrington, Stoke on Trent, Staffordshire, ST9 0LX
You can now purchase all three Discworld Mugs from Clarecraft for
www.clarecraft.co.uk/ for more information.
The North American Discworld Society and its associated Klatchian
Foreign Legion has just crossed over the 1000 member line, and both
are continuing to grow at a rapid rate. More information can be
Blackstar (www.blackstar.co.uk) are selling Wyrd Sisters and Soul Music videos for 19.99GBP for the twin tape sets. They also have Soul Music part 1 for 14.99GBP and part 2 for 12.99GBP.
"Wyrd Sisters", playscript adapted by Stephen Briggs, is being performed by Napier University Drama Society on the 15th to the 18th of December at the St. Bride's Centre, Orwell Place, Edinburgh.
Ticket prices 4.50/3.50GBP. The play is suitable for children. Email C.Reynolds@ed.ac.uk for more information. [they don't say if it's suitable for adults - Ed]
Discworld Monthly has created its first reported romance. Huw Powis ( Powis@logica.com ) met Miranda after she placed an ad in the small ads section. Huw says "Thanks for giving me the opportunity to meet the girl of my dreams."
The Burnside Players of Adelaide, South Australia will be performing Wyrd Sisters on 8,9,10,11 and 15,16,17,18 December 1999 beginning at 8PM, at the LITTLE THEATRE, University of Adelaide Cloisters, Victoria Drive, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia .
The nature of the venue means that this cannot be presented in Burnside's usual cabaret style, but refreshments will be available at interval. Tickets are $12 ($9 concession) - with group discounts & fund raiser packages available on request - and can be booked through BASS on 131246,or by calling 83400161.
For further information, or to arrange interviews, photos, etc, please contact Gerard Ryan and Raechel Carroll on 83400161.
"Emma Halford" ( email@example.com ) would like an e-pal, who likes anything, especially Discworld, Due South, X Files and would like anyone between the ages of 14 and 20. She is 15.
"Geofff G Turner" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) would like to get in touch with other Pratchett fans on the Central Cost of Australia. He's in his 30's, with an interest in roleplaying, sci-fi and writing, plus he does a bit of work with a community radio station to stop him from going completely nuts.
"Russell" ( email@example.com ) want to know where you can purchase "Discworld Noir" in the USA.
"Steph Preston" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) is a student in the final year of an English Lit. degree and is doing her dissertation on Terry Pratchett. If you know of any web pages of a more academic nature, please let Steph know.
"Robert Best" ( email@example.com ) has the Discworld limited edition, in perfect condition with certificate of authenticity for sale. Irish bids will receive preference (but don't let that put you off, apparently he just hates travelling).
Robert would also like to know if there are any Discworld fan clubs in Northern Ireland?
"Pete McCann" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) would like anyone (females especially) aged 20+ to email with. He is into Babylon 5, Rugby League and rock music such as Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, Journey, Tyketto, Queensryche, Kiss etc. [maybe he should talk with Oly Brown - Ed]
"Tobias Kestin" ( email@example.com ) is German, seventeen, likes South Park, The Simpsons, Discworld books, soccer and inline hockey. His favourite books are Men at Arms and Soul Music. He says he can talk about everything.
In 3 months time "Kerthio" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) will be beginning the re-creation of a DISCWORLD MUSH ... a roleplay environment in which fans as well as those who are just interested, can interact within the world of Terry Pratchett's imagination.
Kerthio is looking for those who are capable of MUSH administration with skills in coding and descing??? to help out in the re-creation of the Discworld.
The MUSH will open once the city of Ankh-Morpork is completed and other areas of interest will be created after the player base is large enough to warrant such building and administration time.
"Alison" ( Ali1419@aol.com ) is looking for the first two Discworld games for the PC, and is willing to pay a reasonable price and / or swap for "Soul Music" on video.
"Len Heidebrecht" ( email@example.com ) is willing to chat with anyone about the Discworld series. He says he's a re-enactor of WW2, and the War of 1812, a cooper, morris dancer and all round nice guy.
"Jennie" ( Jennie@allfarthing.wandsworth.sch.uk ) is new to the Internet and would like to hear from anyone who's into Discworld, Formula One, heavy metal or Egyptology especially if they are aged between 30 and 40.
"John" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) in New Zealand would like to know of any info about Discworld stuff in New Zealand. And has Discworld 2 if anyone wants to buy it.
"Scott Pierson" ( email@example.com ) is looking for any ladies who would like to chat about anything? He is 19 and lives in Essex and likes Discworld, Horror/Thriller films, Jazz and bands like Catatonia, The Beautiful South and the Cardigans.
"Joanne" ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) would like to chat with other 16-17 year olds.
"Deej" ( email@example.com ) is 26 and would like to get in touch with anyone from anywhere in the world or Discworld who's 27 - 29, likes travelling, X-Files, and acid jazz music, loves Nobby Nobbs and who wants to come visit exotic Malaysia. He works as an English Lecturer and especially wants to seek prospects of employment exchange with anyone from foreign colleges.
We assume any correspondence is eligible for use in the newsletter unless otherwise stated, including the sender's email address. We may also edit your letters to avoid upsetting those with a nervous disposition.
Each month the writer of the month's best letter will receive two Discworld badges with PTerry quotes on them from Snapdragon Gifts. You can contact Snapdragon Gifts at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.snapdragongifts.com. Please mention DWM in any correspondence.
* From: "Samuel Klein, SO What Press." ( email@example.com )
RE: Diskworld The Gathering no longer available.
Dear DWM recipients, fellow Discworld fans, and other assorted sentient creatures. This letter is meant as an open apology to Colin Smythe, Terry Pratchett, and the loyal fans who answered the ad a few weeks back offering a diskworld (NOT Discworld!!) card game based on Magic the Gathering.
But it is also meant to publicly berate several people (who shall remain nameless) who made the situation worse than it had to be. The game is no longer available, nor should it have ever have been.
I made a few mistakes, mainly offering it in the first place. However, a lot a trouble could have been saved if not for the fact that several readers of this newsletter had not claimed to be Colin Smythe requesting, on behalf of Terry Pratchett or themselves, me not to offer it. Mr Smythe was among those people, but since he was the third or fourth person to claim to be himself, his request was met with what could be called outright rudeness, but in reality was much worse, making me look even more like an ass than I already did. I apologize for the disappointment caused by my misjudgment, and to Terry Pratchett and Colin Smythe for the liberty I took with the Discworld and its characters.
JA replies: How can we be sure you are the real Samuel Klein :)
* From: "Joe Bloe" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
I think that it would be a good idea for Discworld plays to tour Australia - I know of LOTS of avid Pratchett fans here who would jump at the chance to see adapted plays.
* From: "Alicia-Anne Wyznik" ( email@example.com )
I've was wondering what it was we Scotts have done to put Terry off coming back to Scotland to sign for his new book. The last time he came to Dundee was for Feet of Clay (The man who got it signed for me is now getting married to me, it's been a LONG time!) I was hoping to get this book signed as I have hardback and paperback of every Pratchett book available and now I'd like to get them signed by the man himself. If you find out the reason why he's not coming to Dundee or anywhere in Scotland please mail me back and put me little mind to rest.
* From: "Andy" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Just to let you know that I don't get any of the problems you mentioned in the game. I run in high res and if I cancel a scene I still get the clues
JA Replies: Lucky you. It's a shame that the game works for some and not for others. I suggest this is down to inadequate beta testing before release. It should also be noted that going back to 256 colour mode doesn't help all people.
* From: "Andy Brigham" ( email@example.com )
I really need YOUR help. My Discworld site is in the construction stages at the moment and one of the sections is a description of characters. Obviously I know a lot of sites have descriptions of some characters but my aim is to do a description of ALL the Discworld characters. (this includes the made up gnomes in The Hogfather e.g verrucca gnome) So could you LOVELY people out there send me e-mails with a description of a character and the book they are in.....? PLEASE. (you will be fully credited on my web page if I use your description)
* From: "Ben Ketteridge" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Last month Michele Mulholland said that Discworld characters should be played by fans, and Terry should do the scripwriting.
PTerry actually said in the interview on the 2 volume version of the Soul Music video (which I think was brilliantly done, IM-nv-HO) that he would not do screen-play writing or script-editing because his medium is books, and he would always want someone else to do the others.
* From: "Kerry" ( ROBERTKERRY@junction69.fsnet.co.uk )
I have got both Wyrd Sisters and Soul Music (from W H Smith in Colwyn Bay) on video. My question is, when will we see any new vids on sale? Are there any plans to make any more? I'd love to see a version of Hogfather or Men at Arms.
* From: "Rincewind The Wizzard" ( email@example.com )
I have been online for about two months now and I believe that the Discworld Monthly is one of the best things I discovered on the net so far. But as I didn't find any reader's letter from a German, even when I read some older issues, I thought I have to tell you that there are some fans of PTerry here, too.
For me, being a German, it's very important to get some information on this way because PTerry is still not very well known. Very few people understand PTerry's British humour here. But yet there is hope. A friend of mine told me that at the Albertinum, a grammar school in Coburg, they are reading Mort in their English course at the moment. So it seems I have chosen the wrong school... But as we are reading Shakespeare at the moment I am allowed to make a report about Shakespeare parodies - and I have chosen Wyrd Sisters.
Unfortunately it seems that PTerry isn't very interested in Germany - or Coburg - either. Or is there a signing tour to the Continent expected?
When I read Jingo I thought that he must have been to our country, because these nationalistic tendencies in "Fliegende Fetzen" (Jingo) are quite typical for the German - Turkish relationship.
WB replies: Surely the Uberwald is a take off of the classic Bavarian / Transylvanian Schwarzwald of the great black and white horror movies? Somewhere in central Europe, anyway. Interestingly, the rampant nationalism of Jingo could be just as true of the British (hence the title), or indeed most other countries, I imagine. Du boeuf, anyone?
* From: "miss hippy chick" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
I was just curious about Gaspode the Wonder Dog. I have not been reading the books in order, and I've just finished Moving Pictures. At the end Gaspode returns to a usual dog, by not being able to speak and seeing in black and white. But in Men at Arms Gaspode is able to talk and, am I wrong in thinking Men at Arms came out after Moving Pictures? If so, is there a book I have missed out in between that tells us of Gaspode getting his speaking back? I loved that little guys attitude!
WB replies: You haven't missed anything crucial. The explanation could be summarized as: PTerry noticed it was too good to waste.
* From: "Netcom jmeyer" ( email@example.com )
There's a footnote in one of the Discworld novels which deals with miracles, pointing out that when a car goes out of control just at the point where the guard rail is missing, that's also a miracle (or something of this nature). It ends by saying something like "Just because it isn't nice doesn't mean it isn't a miracle."
I can't find it. I can't even remember which book it was in. Since it's a point my husband and I have often made to our children, and I was pleased to see someone else with the same opinion, I'd really like to track it down again. Do you think one of your contacts with encyclopedic knowledge of the novels could locate it for me?
(I might possibly get the info from Mr. Pratchett himself -- if he remembers what he wrote so far back -- because he's always so obliging about answering me, but knowing how swamped he is with correspondence, I hate to bother him when I can bother someone else.)
There's no rush, but I'd be extremely grateful for answer in the next six months or so. Thanks loads.
JA replies: Well WE can't place it either, which is serious....
* From: "Joe Johnson" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
In the books the wizard Rincewind is unable to do magic. This has been told to us several times (well, those of us who have read books with him starring in it anyway). But, in the Discworld Companion (the newer one), under the definition of Discworld, its says: "If people believe you can do magic, you're halfway there already." Now, many people in the series believe Rincewind can in fact do magic (Twoflower, a lot of Agatea, some residents of XXXX, and so on.) Now then, if this is true, why can't he do magic? It can't be because of the spell he learned out of the Octavo, since he put it back into the Octavo at the end of The Light Fantastic. Any ideas as to why this is? Another thing I'd like to bring up, it is known that women aren't allowed to join Unseen University (not including the events in Equal Rites). Now, what I was wondering, if this was answered in another book I have yet to read forgive me, but are other species allowed to join? I'm sure they wouldn't let a troll join, just imagine what would happen then! But I can see a dwarf joining.
* From: "Oly Brown" ( email@example.com )
Now look, I wrote in about Terry having a go at heavy metal last issue ... [snip more stuff about METAL]
Once again, no hard feeling to anyone mentioned and thanks for writing to me, but you have to admit, Metal is difficult.
PS, I don't know, DWM team, where will you be on the 3rd December?
DWM team replies: The Astoria, London.
* From: "Jonathan Fowler" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Dear Mr Pickard,
You are quite right that many MODERN hand weapons - specifically, semi-automatic and automatic types of the "locked breech" gas- or recoil-operated design, have the capability to carry "one up the spout", i.e. have an extra live round in the chamber, separate to those held in the magazine. However, this only applies to firearms using self-obturating ammunition (in which the cartridge case provides the breech seal), or some special variants of "caseless" ammunition.
If anyone is interested in books on antique weapons like this, or
more info, please email me on
or have a
DWM replies: We are happy to forward Jonathan's full, very descriptive letter on the gonne to any interested parties. Thanks also to Mountaineer ( email@example.com ) and Benard M. Earp ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) for their contributions on this matter.
* From: "Burkhard" ( email@example.com )
WHAT I DID ON MY HOLIDAYS
I have been trying to read the English originals of our PTerry for some time now. But in my urgent desire to spot even the hidden jokes, I find words and phrases not being explained in any dictionary every so often.
Taking the water buffalo by the horns, I booked a language course in the south of England (Torbay Language Centre in Paignton, Torbay, Devon) this year - at the English Riviera [urinating dog]. I was asked to specify the subject I'd like to work on in my 1:1 lessons in advance and chose the Discworld, of course.
I wasn't at all sure if the school might find a teacher for such an exotic topic, but I was lucky. I got 2 teachers (Carolyn Csonska and Frank Mercer) for the 3 weeks of my course and both were Discworld fans [urinating dog, urinating dog].
They helped me understanding many passages, that I may have spotted before, but never got the hang of. The reason for this is quite often the background that you have to know.
MASKERADE was the book I worked on with Carolyn most of the time. Besides this she helped me a lot with all my questions about "Soul Music" and "Men at Arms". In the last week Frank, the living encyclopedia, and I analyzed "Interesting Times". Frank's knowledge of linguistics, military history and the ancient China and Japan is absolutely amazing [urinating dog, urinating dog, urinating dog].
So all in all I had really interesting times on my holidays this year. And if anyone of you feels like holidaying like this, too: Carolyn and Frank said, they aren't afraid of more Discworld anoraks. The German organizer of these courses is LAL. I don't know who does it in Klatchian regions, but you can contact the school (TLC) itself via firstname.lastname@example.org
JA replies: Burkhard gets this month's Letter Of The Month.
* From: "Colin Woodhouse" ( CWoodhouse@aol.com )
I went to the Friday 5th signing at Dillons (Waterstones) in Birmingham. I started queuing at 3-00pm for the 4-30pm start time. I was fifth in the queue, and with a super bunch of people around. If you were one, thanks for making the time pass so quickly. Terry was an hour late (not his fault - delayed by traffic! Ha! In Birmingham on a wet Friday - I was amazed that he got there at all!) By the time he started, the queue was down the stairs, around the shop, through the door and around the outside of the block, in pouring rain. The man was looking a bit fazed, unsurprisingly, but was as obliging and courteous as ever. The guys selling raffle tickets in aid of the Orang-utan Foundation were doing well on a captive audience. I look forward to receiving my prize!
* From: "Kevin" ( email@example.com )
First let me say I love the Fifth Elephant, one of the best... however... has Terry made an error:
We have to believe that the fifth elephant fell off the back of Great A'tuin, orbited then came crashing down and formed the continents and lots of fat deposits....... but 'Light Fantastic' shows that new star turtles when the are born have four very small elephants on them.... so where does the fifth come from, can it be a rogue comet-like elephant dislodged from another turtle during the 'Big Bang'?
* From: "Anna-Maija Ihander" ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
So, when is PTerry coming to Finland? :) Never, Not in my lifetime or Over his dead body? :) Or maybe some day?
|Cordwiner Smith's "Norstilia" stories.
|Robert Rankin, Tad Williams, Allan Folsom "The Day After Tomorrow"
|John DeChancie, Greg Costikian.
|C.J. Cherry's The Goblin Mirror
|Patricia Wrede, Gordon Korman and Daniel Pinkwater.
|Matt Ruff "Fool on the Hill"
There is also a list of comic-fantasy authors at members.tripod.com/de_29/home.html
How much does Clarecraft's Detritus (DW105) cost?
The correct answer was 34.99GBP, although we accepted 21.99GBP which is the price for the original Detritus. The randomly selected winner of Detritus is Paul Beck and the winner of Cuddy is Lloyd Stirling.
For more information about Clarecraft and their products visit their
web site at
www.artificer.co.uk and his new range of hand made silver jewellery, sculpted by Mark Brayley, we have arranged a new competition.
The prize on offer is from their new range, a silver Death's head pendant. The piece is based on Paul Kidby's Death and measures 45x33mm approximately. It is surprisingly heavy for such a relatively small item. Once again the quality, as you would expect, is excellent. All the people I have shown our sample piece to have been suitably impressed.
The new range includes Death, the Death of Rats, the Librarian and Greebo in various poses. All pieces from the new range will bear the silver assay stamp and Discworld hallmark registered in the Birmingham Assay Office. Bernard will even offer to make any of these pieces from Gold but as he says "it does cost more but we will be happy to quote you for it."
For more information about this impressive new range of jewellery and Bernard's buildings, plates, candles etc. visit the new web site at www.artificer.co.uk/
* Competition *
In order to win a sliver Death's head pendant you need to answer the following question. All answers should be emailed to email@example.com along with your postal address (please), before Monday 20th December 1999. The winners will be randomly selected and announced next month.
Q. What location is depicted in Bernard's latest Discworld Plate? (see their web site for a clue.)
The first few pages of the book include several pieces of entertaining correspondence between the overseer and the publisher on whether the book should be released at all. It is agreed to print the book providing the overseer's wife (who gets most of the double - entendres) reads the script first.
Then there is a preface by Nanny Ogg, a short intro by Terry and Stephen explaining how it was important to modify some of the ingredients and experiment with the measures to ensure all the recipes in the book are edible, taste nice and hopefully won't kill any readers.
The book has around 70 pages of recipes and then finishes with a large section on etiquette, including topics such as "etiquette at the table" and "etiquette with scarecrows".
The book itself comes in the same hardback format as the Discworld diaries. The book costs 12.99GBP and its ISBN is: 0-355-60005-4
You can order the book direct from Amazon.co.uk by following this link: 0385600054/87
We have been given permission to publish one recipe from the book and have chosen C.M.O.T. Dibbler's Sausage Inna Bun.
MAKES ABOUT 30 SAUSAGES
|14kg top-quality pork, minced*
|1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
|1 teaspoon black pepper
|3 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
|buns of your choice
Mix all the sausage ingredients in a bowl. Add enough water to achieve a nice, squidgy texture and fill the sausage skins with the result. Twist into links. Grill or fry and serve hot in freshly baked buns.
* Note from Mr Dibbler: I always use good-quality pork, with about two-thirds lean meat to one-third fat. I insist that any skin, gristle or other dubious parts of the beast are excluded from the mixture. [Author's footnote: This is what he says, and I for one believe it. It is not good etiquette to look at one of his sausages and say 'woof woof!' or 'neighhh!']
firstname.lastname@example.org ) cogitates on which main Discworld character Terry will kill off.
In an interview with PTerry conducted by Amazon.co.uk (as seen on the L-space Web), the Great Author states that in the next few years one of the main characters from the Discworld series will die. He reassures us that it is not one of the 'staple' characters eg Nanny, but someone who 'has featured in the forefront of at least one novel'. He did not elaborate any further, nor offered any ideas as to who the unfortunate person would be.
He also raised another interesting point in regards to his character Rincewind. PTerry regards the wizzard as rather two-dimensional and shallow, making it hard for PTerry to write him into more adventures. A cause for reader concern, maybe?
What I want to know is, who will this character be? Will Death finally come for Rincewind, his most elusive quarry? Judging by PTerry's comments, it could be. (Don't get me wrong, I'd hate to see him die, as Rincewind is my favourite character, after Death). But it seems unlikely, judging by the popularity of the wizzard. PTerry also mentioned the retirement of certain characters - 'How could you kill off Nanny?' was cited by the author.
For my opinion, and I don't wish to upset any fans, but I believe the character to be none other than Twoflower. He has featured at the forefront of TCOM, TLF and IT, and in IT was an aged man with a family. He is a character from way back, and his death would in my view generate the right amount of hype and outcry at his demise, but would be regarded as sympathetic and nostalgic in terms of plot development.
You might disagree or agree with my views. Remember these are only my opinions and speculations. In no way would I wish to see any character die, but it may be inevitable, and perhaps create an interesting story.
So what do YOU think? Should any character be killed off or 'forced' into retirement? If so, who and why? If not, why? I would like to see other people's opinions and thoughts on the subject . It would certainly be an interesting topic of conversation judging by the popularity of the Discworld series.
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