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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

09/03/08 Readers Submitted Comments: New Yorker Article about greenwich

Greenwich is more ephemeral than it appears, and an influx of hedge-fund wealth spurred a speculative-construction boom.

Dear Greenwich Roundup,


The complete Nick Paumgarten article is now available online.

A Greenwich of the Mind

What happens when the downturn goes upmarket?

In the town of Greenwich, Connecticut, it is illegal for a real-estate agent to post a “For Sale” sign in front of a house or a tract of land. For many years, such an ordinance was unnecessary; those who needed to know knew, and those who did not did not. But in the nineteen-eighties, with the arrival in town of national real-estate firms, “For Sale” signs started sprouting up, cluttering the roadways with middleman names and numbers. Many residents found the signs unsightly and crass; some home-town agents, keen to preserve the relationship between their local knowledge and their market share, agreed. The signs’ most persistent opponent was a satellite-television mogul named Rene Anselmo, who lived in a mansion modelled on the Petit Trianon, at Versailles. Patrolling his street in a Bentley convertible, Anselmo uprooted any “For Sale” signs he could find and piled them in the Bentley’s back seat. One day, the police arrested him for spray-painting over a Realtor’s sign near his house. After admitting that he had done this to eight or nine other signs, and remarking that he wished he’d used a chain saw, he became a kind of folk hero, the John Brown of real-estate signage. In time, the town came around and passed a law. It has never been tested in court.....


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09/02/08 Regis Tells Greenwich: "I am out of here !!!"

You Wont Have Regis To Kick Around Anymore

The shell-shocked town—and our infatuated reporter— wrestle with the possibility of a Reeg-less Fairfield County


By Drew Taylor

It started out innocently enough.

On a late July day, Nathan Lane was on daytime talk show Live with Regis & Kelly. During the interview, Regis Philbin let it slip that he was selling his house in Greenwich. At that point Lane, a skilled comedian and actor and longtime Broadway performer (he was also the voice of meerkat Timon in The Lion King), went into a whole routine about how Regis doesn't actually want to live in Connecticut anymore. He even threw in a faux WASP accent to complete the stereotypical package. Regis squirmed.

And yes, I laughed

But then a sort of horror set in. Even though he had mentioned it on Live before, usually in the casual conversation with co-host Kelly Ripa that begins each show, Nathan Lane's joke somehow made it real. Regis Philbin was leaving Greenwich, and I was upset....

...So the prospect of a Regis-less Fairfield County was something I couldn't wrap my mind around. Was he "done with Greenwich" (to paraphrase a quote Martha Stewart delivered to the New York Times Magazine about Westport)? Did Greenwich no longer "work" for him, as Westport no longer "worked" for her?

...Last June, Bankrate.com asked Regis what the most "decadent thing" he's ever bought was. He named his home in Greenwich, formerly owned by CBS sportscaster Warner Wolf. "It's probably the most extravagant thing I ever did," he said.

Extravagant, but maybe not "decadent." According to Architectural Digest, which got in the front door in 2002, Wolf's former house is in "prime John Cheever country—dignified with faint Norman manorisms, including quoins, dormers and a ruddy brick façade. It's as unshowy as the neighboring piles are eye-popping." It does have a tennis court....

During the interview, Regis Philbin let it slip that he was selling his house in Greenwich. At that point Lane, a skilled comedian and actor and longtime ...

...So I went looking for myself.

The first place I went was Valbella!! (exclamation points theirs), an Italian restaurant in Old Greenwich that Regis frequents, according to online reports.

I introduced myself to a very nice, very Italian maître d' who said, "Oh, of course, Regis," almost immediately. When I asked him if he had said anything about where he was moving, he answered me in a more roundabout way.

"Well, I know he sold his house, but maybe he sold his house and bought a new one in the same place?"

Hmmm, mysterious, intriguing.

At that point, I asked for his name, and he became skittish. Then he referred me to his manager (a man named Tony), who was on the phone and too busy for my questions.

The hunt continued, and me stalking around downtown Greenwich didn't get me any more answers. The possibility began to form that maybe he was just moving within Greenwich, or .....

...She still wouldn't tell me. In fact, she tried to encourage me to "minimize" the story, if not cancel it altogether, although she did think it sounded "cute." She kept saying that the details of someone's move, in particular the buying and selling of a house, are an extremely personal matter. He does talk about this stuff on the show, though, to a daily audience of almost four million. It's where the idea for this article came from.

So, where he's moving is still a question mark, but at least he's staying in Connecticut. The only way to really tell if he's moved out of the area is to more finely attune yourself to the psychic wavelengths of the area. Sit very still and see if you can detect if the best tables are being given to nobodies, sensing if the swingin'-est 76-year-old in America is here or elsewhere.

That, or you could probably just watch the show, and see if he spills the beans, his voice raising again in agitated Bronx-bred excitement.


Please send your comments and Regis sightings to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 The Raw Greenwich Business News Feed

Robert B. Goergen And The Robert B. Goergen Hall
At The University Of Rochester

University of Rochester

For more than a decade, the most distinguished teaching awards in the College of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering at the University of Rochester have been presented during the annual fall convocation. This year the namesake for the Goergen Awards—Trustee and alumnus Robert B. Goergen—will be honored with a significant award of his own.
Goergen will receive the Charles Force and Marjorie Force Hutchison Medal, the University's highest alumni award, on Friday, Sept. 5, in recognition of his outstanding career achievements and his service to the University.

"Bob Goergen has lived a life exemplified by our University motto, Meliora," said University President Joel Seligman. "His leadership of the Board of Trustees, his generosity that renewed the College's athletic center and made our biomedical engineering and optics building a reality, and the Goergen Awards for our esteemed faculty, staff, and programs show the breadth of his commitment to excellence," said Seligman.

The Award for Distinguished Achievement and Artistry in Undergraduate Teaching, the Award for Curricular Achievement in Undergraduate Education, and the Award for Distinguished Contributions to Undergraduate Learning all bear the Goergen name. He and his wife Pamela have supported the awards since 1997. The awards' presentation is the centerpiece of the College Convocation that begins the academic year.
A trustee since 1982, including his 12-year tenure as board chair, Robert Goergen is the chairman and CEO of Blyth Inc., of Greenwich, Conn. One of the nation's most highly regarded business executives, he also is recognized as a leading educational philanthropist. A successful entrepreneur, Goergen also is the founder and chairman of The Ropart Group, a private-equity investment firm based in Greenwich.

He has been a key volunteer and a major benefactor of the University for several decades. The Robert B. Goergen Athletic Center and the Robert B. Goergen Hall for Biomedical Engineering and Optics are both named in recognition of his support.

He graduated from the University in 1960 with a degree in physics. He also holds an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
About the University of Rochester

The University of Rochester (http://www.rochester.edu/ ) is one of the nation's leading private universities. Located in Rochester, N.Y., the University gives students exceptional opportunities for interdisciplinary study and close collaboration with faculty through its unique cluster-based curriculum. Its College of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering is complemented by the Eastman School of Music, Simon School of Business, Warner School of Education, Laboratory for Laser Energetics, Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and the Memorial Art Gallery.

Contact: Sharon Dickman

Los Angeles Times

... came across a provocative opinion piece on Mexico by economist Walter Molano of investment bank BCP Securities in Greenwich, Conn. It won't give any comfort to U.S. investors who are having second thoughts about emerging markets in the wake of the ...

$84M Loan Secured for...


... Sheraton Yankee Trader, which officially closed on June 1, is about to undergo a major renovation, inside and out. Greenwich, CT-based Starwood Capital Group Global LLC, which owns the 433-room hotel, has secured an $84 million loan from ING Real ...


"People are expecting Tribeca to be as quiet as a suburban street in Greenwich, Connecticut," [KF owner Jared Hoffman ] added.
Please send your comments, business news reports and press releases to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 Greenwich Home Buyers And Sellers Are Flockng To Ex-Greenwch Post Real Estate Reporter's Blog

Dedicated Real Estate Blogger
Chris Fountain
Keeps His Fingers On The Pulse Of
The Market Everyday
Who Knows
Maybe His Web Traffic Will Surpass
His Former Employers Website Soon.
The Greenwich Post Is Publishing Three
Or Four Press Releases A Day, While
Mr. Fountain Is Producing Fresh And
Original Content Each And Everyday.
Who Knows Maybe Mr. Fountain's Web Traffic Is Higher On Some days. If the Greenwich Post Fails To Update It's Website Tomorrow And Mr. Fountain Provides Five Or Six Original Posts.
Where Do You Think Greenwich Web Surfers Are Going To Go?

25 Birchwood started at $4.188 million back in May, 2007 and didn't sell, even though its price was eventually dropped to $3.685 million. It was withdrawn from the market last month but it reappeared today, now asking $3.995 million.
136 Cat Rock has a somewhat cheerier story, I suppose. Originally listed in January 2006 for $3,750 million it dropped to $1.995 last January and finally went to contract last week for what I presume was a deep discount from its final asking price.
My advice, as always; try to price it right to begin with and if it doesn't move, drop your price severely. Don't increase it - buyers aren't that dumb.

Please send your comments to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 "My whole goal since I was 12 was to make the LPGA. That was my dream, so it was upsetting after playing well and not making it.

Husband and wife Kevin Sprecher and Debbie Doniger juggle a busy professional and family schedule while doing what they love.

(Tania Savayan/The Journal News)

Journal News

Whenever the pace of a conversation begins to pick up, Debbie Doniger and Kevin Sprecher immediately fall into a familiar rhythm. It's often a struggle to keep up while they go back and forth like George and Gracie in golf spikes.

Ask how they met.

Right in the middle of a complicated story with a lot of details about their past lives, intersecting careers and future plans, Doniger and Sprecher launch into the routine without a word of warning.

"She didn't like me then," he said.

"I didn't like him at all," she countered.

"Although everybody thought we'd be good together," he said....

... and Lonnie Knowles (Sunningdale) and Teri Hjelte (Stanwich). Doniger, 38, grew up around the game. The upbeat Greenwich, Conn., native was 12 when she began taking lessons from renowned instructor Jim McLean at Sleepy Hollow. A scholarship to the ...

...Perhaps there will be time for a revised version of the instructional book they co-authored.

"It's been out for two years," Sprecher said.

"Did you not see it on the New York Times Bestseller List?" Doniger asked.

"We self-published it," Sprecher said.

They aren't kidding. It's titled ''How to Help Your Partner Through the Green,'' and is a how-to manual for couples who'd rather play it straight.


Kevin Sprecher

Director of Instruction, Sleepy Hollow Country Club

Age: 39

College: Arizona State

Résumé: Spent three summers assisting Jim McLean at Sleepy Hollow before holding teaching positions at Glen Oaks and Piping Rock. He reunited with McLean at Doral, spending four seasons there before moving on to Atlantic Golf Club. He came back to Sleepy Hollow in 2003. Sprecher has been ranked the 12th Best Golf Teacher in New York by Golf Digest and has worked with former PGA stars Tom Kite and Peter Jacobsen. He is currently working with the LPGA's Kelli Kuehne, and the PGA's Brad Faxon.

Web site: KevinSprecher.com

Debbie Doniger

Director of InstructionGlenArbor Golf Club

Age: 38

College: North Carolina

Résumé: Won the Atlantic Coast Conference individual championship in 1992 and was the low American on the European Tour the following year. Doniger has been recognized as one of the Top 50 Teachers by Golf for Women magazine and was ranked the 10th Best Golf Teacher in New York by Golf Digest. Also worked at Jim McLean golf schools at PGA West and spent two years at Round Hill Club in Greenwich, Conn.

Web site: DebbieDoniger.com
Please send your comments and sports reports to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 Greenwich Post News Links For Tuesday

The Bruce Museum received $750,000 at the Aug. 4 meeting of the State Bond Commission to maintain and expand its art, science and cultural programing.

“The Bruce Museum promotes the understanding and appreciation of art and science to enrich the lives of all people,” Ms. Rell said.

The Sept. 11 Remembrance Committee will hold its 2008 ceremony, as in years past, in front of Town Hall on Sept. 11 to begin at 6:30 p.m. This event is open to the public and all are welcome to attend. The ceremony will include recognition of each of the Greenwich residents that were killed at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Flights UA93, AA77, AA11 and UA175.

The guest speaker for this event will be Rear Admiral Robert Ravitz USN ret., chairman of the USS New York (LPD-21) commissioning committee. The USS New York contains part of the World Trade Center within her hull with a bow that has been forged from steel from the twin towers.

All are welcome to the United Way of Greenwich Septemberfest in Roger Sherman Baldwin Park from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 14.

The afternoon of family activities and entertainment immediately follows the VivaPop Great American Soap Box Derby being held in honor of — and to benefit — the United Way as it begins to celebrate its 75th anniversary.
A large crowd is anticipated. The event is free and takes place rain or shine.

The VivaPop All American Soap Box Derby awards presentations take place at 12:30, followed by festivities to mark the start of the United Way’s 75th anniversary.

The musical group Roadtrip will perform at noon. The five piece cover band, led by Greenwich native and vocalist Milo Fuscaldo plays popular classic rock, Motown, and blues. The band includes Chris D’Ambrozio on guitar, Al Epstein on keyboard and vocals, Frank Carr on bass and Bobby Sandler on drums.

Barbara Holly Ornstein, 80, an editor and longtime Connecticut resident, died at Rosenthal Hospice Residences on Saturday, Aug. 16, following a three-month struggle with leukemia.


Please send your comments, news tips and press releases to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 WGCH Owner Michael Metter Using His Business Talk Radio Network To Promote SpongeTech

SPNG,SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems, Inc. CEO Interviewed Live on Steve Crowley’s American Scene Radio Show/CRWE.OB

Tuesday, September 2, 2008 9:10 AM EDT SpongeTech(R)’s CEO Interview Aired Today on American Scene Radio Show

NEW YORK, Sept 02, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ — SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems, Inc. (SPNG) is pleased to announce that its CEO and President, Michael Metter, will be interviewed today on Steve Crowley’s American Scene Radio Show at 11:34 a.m. EDT. The interview can be heard live on BusinessTalkRadioNetwork(R) affiliate radio stations streamed on its website, . You can find local radio stations by accessing the website, as well. Mr. Metter will be scheduled for future interviews on American Scene, where he will keep listeners updated on SpongeTech(R)’s products and developments.

For more information, please contact Investor Relations at 1-877-SPONGE-T, and/or visit the Company’s website
About SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems, Inc.

SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems is a development stage company, which designs, produces, and markets a unique line of reusable cleaning products for household use. These sponge-based products utilize SpongeTech(R)’s proprietary, patent (and patent-pending) technologies involving hydrophilic (liquid absorbing) foam and polyurethane matrices. The Company’s sponges are specially configured with an outer contact layer and an inner matrix, the latter of which comes pre-loaded with specially formulated soaps and wax that are released when the sponge is wetted and applied to a surface with minimal pressure. The Company’s current product line is designed for Car Care and Pet Care, however, SpongeTech(R) is currently exploring additional applications for its technology including an anti-bacterial, kitchen and bath cleaner, as well as a unique ‘foaming’ bath sponge for children.

“Safe Harbor Statement” Under The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: The statements in the press release that relate to the Company’s expectations with regard to the future impact on the Company’s results from new products in development are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The results anticipated by any or all of these forward-looking statements may not occur. Additional risks and uncertainties are set forth in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-KSB for the year ended December 31, 2005, the Company’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-QSB for the first quarter ended March 31, 2006. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly release the result of any revisions to these forward-looking statements that may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events or changes in the Company’s plans or expectations.


SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems, Inc.
Investor Relations:
Bill Young, 1-877-776-6438
wayoung55@aol.com or info@spongetech.com

The Investor Relations Group

Investor Relations: Rachel Colgate or Michael Crawford
Media Relations: Steven Melfi / Lynn Granito

SOURCE SpongeTech(R) Delivery Systems, Inc.

Please send your comments, news tips and press releases to GreenwichRoundup@gmail.com

09/02/08 Your Tax Dollars At Work: Please Enjoy A Little Music From General Miggs - A Post-Punk Band Playing "Operator" (Live On Arch Street)

09/02/08 Greenwich Time News Links For Tuesday

Red Cross heads South

With the lessons of Hurricane Katrina ever-present, especially on this the third anniversary of the devastating storm, three volunteers from the Greenwich chapter of the American Red Cross are on the ground in the Gulf coast region helping evacuees from Hurricane Gustav....

Police blotter

Myles Scherr, 47, of 1078 Cove Road, Stamford, was arrested last Tuesday for assaulting a sanitation worker on St. Claire Avenue in Old Greenwich, according to a police report.

He was charged with second-degree reckless endangerment, breach of peace and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended driver's license.
Scherr, apparently upset that the sanitation truck was parked on the side of the road, yelled and cursed at its driver, the report said.

He entered the truck, removed its keys and threw them onto the lawn of a nearby property, according to the report, which also said he drove his car at the driver and punched him in the face.

It was unclear whether the victim of the assault works for the town or a private carting company.

Scherr was released on $10,000 bond and is scheduled for arraignment today in state Superior Court in Stamford.


A 17-year-old from Greenwich turned himself in to police Aug. 26 after learning of an outstanding warrant for his arrest for breach of peace and third-degree criminal mischief, stemming from a June 19 fight at Wilbur Peck Court, according to a police report.

Police withheld the 17-year-old's name because of his age.

Released on his own recognizance, he is scheduled to appear Wednesday in state Superior Court in Stamford.


Daniel Wall, 28, of 36 Sheephill Road, Riverside, was arrested by warrant Thursday for his involvement in a June 1 domestic dispute in town,

according to a police report. was charged with threatening and is scheduled for arraignment Thursday in state Superior Court in Stamford.

Wall was already being held at the state-run Willard-Cybulski Correction Institution in Enfield on unrelated charges and was taken into custody by judicial marshals.


Ashleigh Singer, 23, of 51 Forest Ave., Old Greenwich, turned herself in to police Friday night after learning of a warrant for her arrest stemming from her use of a stolen credit card of a co-worker at a local restaurant, according to a police report.

She was charged with receiving stolen goods with a credit card, third-degree larceny, two counts of credit card theft, two counts of automatic teller machine fraud and illegal use of a credit card.

Singer stole the wallet of a co-worker at an Old Greenwich restaurant in May and used it to purchase goods, the police report said.

She was released on $1,000 bond and is scheduled to appear Friday in state Superior Court in Stamford.

A New York City real estate company is under contract to buy the RBS Greenwich Capital building at 600 Steamboat Road in Greenwich for about $200 million, or $1,000 per square foot, which would be the highest gross price ever paid for an office building in town....

With guilty pleas in a federal trash-hauling probe nearing 100 percent of the 30-odd indicted, it's apparent that Connecticut lawmakers should be motivated to restart efforts to regulate the industry - and get the job done this time. State officials have been patently aware of problems at least since 2005, but have allowed proposals for tightening up oversight of the industry to languish, seemingly unconcerned about costs to individuals and businesses from criminal activities. ...

...The likelihood that Connecticut is paying a "crime tax" on trash hauling cannot be ignored. The guilty pleas of all those people collared by the feds speak for themselves. State lawmakers would do well to listen.

My wife and I are among the many who are not going anywhere this summer because it costs too much to travel. (And, no, we are not taking a "staycation." We¹re just staying home.) Like many, the idea has been to spend time visiting with family....

To the Greenwich Time editor:

The lack of signs indicating speed limit, of speed bumps and of sufficient stop signs in the Havemeyer Park neighborhood of Old Greenwich has forced its residents to step out into the streets and control traffic.
On Marshall Street and Halsey Drive, residents have purchased "Please Drive Slow" signs to display on lawns. These signs have had little effect on those routinely speeding up and down our streets.

As mothers, we often ask drivers to slow down with a show of hands as they barrel past our children, opening ourselves up to the ire of drivers. Drivers: We ask you to slow down to protect just not our children but your safety as well.

Some simple words of ad-vice for folks rushing through Havemeyer Park:
Please slow down when you see children on or near the street.

If a parent asks you to slow down, please do not yell, curse or gesture at him or her in front of children or - as in the case on a recent morning with a dark blue Hummer with vanity plates - follow, heckle and try to intimidate by honking your horn.

We call the police routinely on Marshall Street to report speeding, with car descriptions and plate numbers when visible, and the Greenwich police do respond.

If caught, your brush with the law will pale in comparison to the punishment you receive if you actually do hit a child. An overbearing mother will be the least of your problems.

At that point, the two minutes you saved won't matter.

All of our lives will be collectively ruined.

Sreemoee Mukherjee
Old Greenwich


By Debra Friedman
Staff Writer
Article Launched: 09/02/2008 08:07:18

Dr. Seuss characters will be popping into town this September to mark the Second Congregational Church's annual homecoming festivities, which mark the end of summer vacations and the beginning of full attendance at services. ...

...People are away a lot of the summer in Greenwich so it's a nice way to start the church school year," said Hanson.

Last year the church marked homecoming festivities with Walt Disney-inspired themes. Constantine, who once worked for Walt Disney, also wrote the music for that event.

To reserve a spot at the lunch, or to receive more information about the events, contact the church office manager at (203) 869-9311, ext. 120.

Town settles police lawsuit

By Martin B. Cassidy
Staff Writer
Article Launched: 09/02/2008 08:06:19 AM

The town has settled a lawsuit with a former police officer who lost his leg in the line of duty and three other officers to resolve what they claimed were unlawful cuts of benefits from their pension packages.

Town Attorney John Wayne Fox said that former Police Lt. James Pucci, now of Stamford, agreed to a settlement of $70,000 to compensate for increased premiums for prescription drug coverage he paid after the 2001 raised rates in 2001.

Three other officers who are parties to the suit, Frank M. Creamer, James M. Lunney Jr., and Lawrence Flynn, will receive $15,000 to cover the increased costs they paid after the town raised their premiums.

In return, the four officers will pay the increased premiums until they qualify for Medicare, Fox said.

The lawsuit, filed in 2003, challenged the town's 2001 decision to increase insurance premiums for drug coverage and other insurance, claiming the town had guaranteed the additional drug coverage to the former officers until they became eligible for Medicare at 65.

Pucci, who lost his left leg and nearly died in 1988 after he was struck by a driver who rammed into the back of his police cruiser as he was investigating an accident on Interstate 95, had a specific written retirement package with the town in 1991, Fox said.....

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09/02/09 What Kind Of Moron Would Pay A Thousand Bucks For A Pair Of Shoes???

Footwear News

NEW YORK — Will boots be a boon for department stores this fall?

A number of top retailers think so, citing freshness in the marketplace and cool weather forecasts — two key factors that are expected to drive consumer demand amid a challenging retail environment.“

The biggest opportunity for growth this season is in boots,” said Liz Rodbell, SVP and GMM of women’s footwear at Lord & Taylor. “Our early indications are very positive, and [we] are confident [footwear] will be strong this fall.” She added that Uggs, slouch boots and shoe booties are key looks for the chain.

Boots also are expected to fuel sales at luxury department stores....

...In the high-end men’s arena, Connecticut-based stores Mitchells of Westport and Richards of Greenwich are continuing to see sales for collections priced at $1,000 and up, as well as more trendy denim-inspired lines.

“Everyday loafers and cap toes aren’t selling,” said GMM Dan Farrington. “You have to have something [unique].”“[Overall], our shoe business is very healthy,” Farrington added. “[Footwear] will fare better than other parts of our business this season.”

Indeed, many retailers and analysts predict the category could be a bright spot in a weak retail environment, particularly when compared with apparel. “Footwear has the potential to do better [than apparel],” said Cohen. “Right now, apparel is kind of hanging in there.”


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