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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:16 pm 
Smeric
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Linguistic tidbit on 'bành mi': it appears to come from the French 'pain de mie' (white bread). So even the name comes from the colonial period.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:19 pm 
Sanno
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Salmoneus wrote:
It turns out: Britain really is the exception. There are way more Vietnamese migrants in the Czech Republic than in Britain! Poland, too. It's weird, because in general Britain has huge East Asian populations, and there are obvious migration routes from Vietnam to Britain (via Hong Kong or Malaysia/Singapore). Were they all avoiding Britain for some reason? What was drawing them all to Central Europe, I wonder?

Hans-Werner explained that: Communist solidarity. The same reason so many Africans and Indians ended up studying in Moscow instead of someplace with colonial ties.

Salmoneus wrote:
Common misconception. It's true that our colonisation attempts (from the early 18th century onward) were small-scale and unsuccesful - we certainly never attempted a colonisation on the scale you tried!

India was "small scale"?

Salmoneus wrote:
Yes, I'd heard that about the Hmong especially.

With the Hmong specifically, a concerted effort was made to spread them out across the country so that they wouldn't form ethnic enclaves. It was only partly successful: One of the locations chosen, St Paul, Minnesota, is now home to half of all the Hmong in the USA. (It was probably a combination of the generous state social services and the relatively central location that encouraged them to consolidate there, since it sure as hell wasn't the climate.)

Salmoneus wrote:
My local chinese restaurant is run by Malaysian chinese. More interestingly, I once lived somewhere where the local chinese was "Hakka" - i.e. migrants from the Mumbai Chinatown. Which I hadn't previously even been aware of...

I don't understand what the "i.e." is doing there. Mumbai's Chinatown was founded by migrants from Guangdong. One of the remaining native place association buildings is named See Yup Goon, which indicates that many came from the Four Counties which were also the source of much early migration to the USA. (At one point, something like 40% of the Chinese in California could trace their origins to just one of the Four Counties, Taishan/Toisan.) There were certainly Hakka communities in the Four Counties, so presumably some settled in Mazgaon as well, but the majority were Cantonese-speakers (locally known as "Punti").


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:38 pm 
Sanno
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jmcd wrote:
Linguistic tidbit on 'bành mi': it appears to come from the French 'pain de mie' (white bread). So even the name comes from the colonial period.

Popular etymology. Bánh [note tone; bành is a different word entirely, e.g. bành trướng "expand, spread") is attested before the colonial period as a Nôm reading of 餅 (Sino-Vietnamese bính, Cantonese béng; cf. Thai แป้ง paeng "powder, flour, starch".) Most bánh bear no resemblance at all to Western baked goods. In my experience, the most common ones are nearly identical to Southern Chinese júng being made from sticky rice steamed in banana leaves. means "wheat" or "wheat noodle". So the name simply means "some kind of a cake made from wheat".


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:03 pm 
Smeric
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linguoboy wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:
Common misconception. It's true that our colonisation attempts (from the early 18th century onward) were small-scale and unsuccesful - we certainly never attempted a colonisation on the scale you tried!
India was "small scale"?

I think Sal is referring specifically to colonisation attempts in Vietnam here.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 5:31 pm 
Sanno
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linguoboy wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:
It turns out: Britain really is the exception. There are way more Vietnamese migrants in the Czech Republic than in Britain! Poland, too. It's weird, because in general Britain has huge East Asian populations, and there are obvious migration routes from Vietnam to Britain (via Hong Kong or Malaysia/Singapore). Were they all avoiding Britain for some reason? What was drawing them all to Central Europe, I wonder?

Hans-Werner explained that: Communist solidarity. The same reason so many Africans and Indians ended up studying in Moscow instead of someplace with colonial ties.

OK. Though your analogy is a little flawed, as vastly more Africans and Indians moved to the UK than ever moved to the USSR.
Quote:
Salmoneus wrote:
Common misconception. It's true that our colonisation attempts (from the early 18th century onward) were small-scale and unsuccesful - we certainly never attempted a colonisation on the scale you tried!

India was "small scale"?

As Hans-Werner says, I was obviously talking specifically about our countries' relative involvement in Vietnam specifically. Although I guess India was small-scale compared to British colonisation of Africa...
Quote:
Salmoneus wrote:
Yes, I'd heard that about the Hmong especially.

With the Hmong specifically, a concerted effort was made to spread them out across the country so that they wouldn't form ethnic enclaves. It was only partly successful: One of the locations chosen, St Paul, Minnesota, is now home to half of all the Hmong in the USA. (It was probably a combination of the generous state social services and the relatively central location that encouraged them to consolidate there, since it sure as hell wasn't the climate.)

Yeah, I was reading about the Hmong in Minnesota not long ago, though I can't remember why. Although I thought there were more in California?

Yeah, looking it up, there's 260,000 Hmong Americans, of whom around 90,000 live in California, and just over 60,000 live in Minnesota, with under 30,000 actually in St Paul. Although maybe it's different if you were talkign specifically abotu first-generation?
Quote:
Salmoneus wrote:
My local chinese restaurant is run by Malaysian chinese. More interestingly, I once lived somewhere where the local chinese was "Hakka" - i.e. migrants from the Mumbai Chinatown. Which I hadn't previously even been aware of...

I don't understand what the "i.e." is doing there. Mumbai's Chinatown was founded by migrants from Guangdong. One of the remaining native place association buildings is named See Yup Goon, which indicates that many came from the Four Counties which were also the source of much early migration to the USA. (At one point, something like 40% of the Chinese in California could trace their origins to just one of the Four Counties, Taishan/Toisan.) There were certainly Hakka communities in the Four Counties, so presumably some settled in Mazgaon as well, but the majority were Cantonese-speakers (locally known as "Punti").


"Hakka" in the context of Chinese restaurants in the west generally refers to the cuisine the refugees who fled Mumbai and Kolkata in the 1960s. Chinese in India spoke many languages, but generally identified as "Hakka", probably because Hakka were the earliest major wave of migration to india, in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. I was indeed surprised - this restaurant had helpful information about 'the Hakka' on its menus, talking about the Hakka culture and the worldwide community of Hakka, with absolutely no reference to the Hakka of China, in the normal sense of the word. Apparently Hakka cuisine in the Indian sense is not particularly associated with traditional Hakka cuisine in the Chinese sense - the word has simply been repurposed.

[see the wikipedia articles on 'chinese people in india' or 'hakka cuisine' (subsection 'hakka cuisine in india') and particularly "Indian Chinese cuisine" for independent confirmation that i'm not just talking nonsense. The "Indian Chinese cuisine" article literally begins: "Indo-Chinese cuisine, or 'Hakka Chinese', is..."]

And actually, looking it up, I was wrong: the specific restaurant I knew is the Kolkata version, though there are also Mumbai and Kolkata-Mumbai fusion versions in London. [then again, the one I knew is now "under new management", so it may be that a mumbai family has been replaced by a kolkata family. I did think it was mumbai...]

Anyway: if you go to somewhere advertising itself as "Hakka" in the UK, expecting to find the cuisine of the Hakka ethnic group in China, you will be sorely disappointed. Here, it's a synonym for Indo-Chinese, specifically from the established indo-chinese communities of Kolkata and Mumbai, which claim (rightly or wrongly) descent from Hakka migrants to India.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:24 pm 
Smeric
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vampireshark wrote:
– Then, after rolling for a while, we got stopped for about an hour between Jemelle and Libramont because a train in front of us had caught fire.

Was it the train in front of you that you would have been on if the Tube hadn't made you late? :-P

linguoboy wrote:
Maybe it's a Saigonese thing?
It's interesting because I have heard the name banh mi through the internet somehow, maybe mostly from America, but in my experience Vietnamese restaurants in Australia and Germany are pretty similar. I was just thinking the other night that a well made pho gà tastes pretty much identical at any restaurant. Not even Fanta is the same in Australia (ridiculous fluoro orange chemicals) and Germany (yellow, tastes like it might actually have oranges in it somewhere in the sugar and sparkles). Google-image-searching banh mi shows me, like, hmm, looks like something you'd get at a burger joint. Definitely not something I'd find normal at a Vietnamese place.

Here are the menus of a couple of restaurants near me in Berlin. My favourite one's website has been hacked, so I can't show you the menu, but two others I know:

- Stock-standard slightly soulless restaurant with cool weird-looking goldfish in a big tank. Food is only average. Some great bad translations/typos in here!
- Classier feel, usually full and not typical of what I think of as typical for vietnamese restaurants Vietnamese restaurant. Good food but I'd feel a bit weird walking in an having a pho on my own.

- Here's one in Brisbane. My favourite one in Brisbane closed down just when I left Australia. The one I linked here ^ also does Chinese stuff and the menu is huge (and also expensive, but that's just because Australia is expensive).

Brits always complain that they can never find good Indian food here (it exists, but I guess not like in England), Americans complain that they can't find Mexican food and what I miss from Australia is good Thai food ... you can only find Thai in Thai/Vietnamese restaurants basically and it's not great ... also, Thai people in Australia make specifically "Australianised" Thai food that I really miss ... I could just eat coconut rice and nothing else for a meal, but I've never seen it here and apparently it doesn't really exist in Thailand either. Vietnamese food seems about as plentiful and roughly as good here as in Australia, depending on the ingredients. Apparently in Vietnam, people mostly have pho at breakfast time, so it's not like anything is necessarily that authentic. It's yum yum yum though!

Salmoneus wrote:
HWH: how interesting. I think of France as having a large Vietnamese population, but I'd never before thought of Germany that way.
In East Berlin, there's a large Vietnamese population. I always go to Vietnamese hairdressers in a big Vietnamese Supermarket/Outlet place in the east. I started going there because it's the cheapest haircut I know of in Berlin and when I was dirt poor, I used to walk an hour and a half to get there, have a haircut, walk an hour and a half home. (Or I'd shave my head myself.) Now I like it, even though I never know if I'm going to have a good hairdresser or a bad one. Aside from the hairdressers, there are a few restaurants and a whole lot of cheap outlet shops and everything smells like cheap plastic ... and a man yelled at me in a thick Russian accent for having the audacity to try on gloves in his store (apparently only for wholesale although no signage to indicate that ... the retail gloves they had were at the front and all stupid, expensive and didn't fit). It's quite an interesting place. A friend of mine is going to Vietnam soon and she didn't know about the Dong Xuan Center here and then we were joking that she should just cancel her trip and go to the Dong Xuan Center.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:38 am 
Sanno
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Salmoneus wrote:
OK. Though your analogy is a little flawed, as vastly more Africans and Indians moved to the UK than ever moved to the USSR.

Number of English colonial states in Africa: 22
Number of Russian colonial states in Africa: 0

Under those conditions, it's surprising any Africans chose to study and live behind the Iron Curtain rather than in Western Europe.

Salmoneus wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:
Yes, I'd heard that about the Hmong especially.

With the Hmong specifically, a concerted effort was made to spread them out across the country so that they wouldn't form ethnic enclaves. It was only partly successful: One of the locations chosen, St Paul, Minnesota, is now home to half of all the Hmong in the USA. (It was probably a combination of the generous state social services and the relatively central location that encouraged them to consolidate there, since it sure as hell wasn't the climate.)

Yeah, I was reading about the Hmong in Minnesota not long ago, though I can't remember why. Although I thought there were more in California?

Yeah, looking it up, there's 260,000 Hmong Americans, of whom around 90,000 live in California, and just over 60,000 live in Minnesota, with under 30,000 actually in St Paul. Although maybe it's different if you were talkign specifically abotu first-generation?

Not specifically, but I was relying on two decade-old figures, so the percentage of first generation immigrants would have been much higher.

IIRC, San Jose was also a settlement location for Hmong.

Salmoneus wrote:
"Hakka" in the context of Chinese restaurants in the westUK generally refers to the cuisine the refugees who fled Mumbai and Kolkata in the 1960s.

FTFY. In the USA, "Hakka" means, well, Hakka. As in ethnically Hakka.

Where I live the most common moniker for these types of restaurants seems to be "Indo-Chinese".


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:29 pm 
Smeric
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linguoboy wrote:
jmcd wrote:
Linguistic tidbit on 'bành mi': it appears to come from the French 'pain de mie' (white bread). So even the name comes from the colonial period.

Popular etymology. Bánh [note tone; bành is a different word entirely, e.g. bành trướng "expand, spread") is attested before the colonial period as a Nôm reading of 餅 (Sino-Vietnamese bính, Cantonese béng; cf. Thai แป้ง paeng "powder, flour, starch".) Most bánh bear no resemblance at all to Western baked goods. In my experience, the most common ones are nearly identical to Southern Chinese júng being made from sticky rice steamed in banana leaves. means "wheat" or "wheat noodle". So the name simply means "some kind of a cake made from wheat".
Oh cool thanks. I don't anything much about Vietnamese. My idea was more of a hypothesis than anything else. I suppose I could have couched it in more cautious terms.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:52 pm 
Sanno
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Active shooter hoax on campus today. Less than a week before exams.

On the good side, police didn't injure anyone in responding (sadly, not a given in these situations), our response was very well-coordinated, and we got the all-clear in a little over an hour.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:59 pm 
Smeric
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linguoboy wrote:
Where I live the most common moniker for these types of restaurants seems to be "Indo-Chinese".

I kind of hope it isn't the Indian version of Chinese food, which makes me think of chili chicken and gobhi Manchurian. Although I actually like gobhi Manchurian and maybe don't even mind chili chicken, which my dad hates; IIRC, he said this is because it has bell peppers instead of real chilis.

EDIT: Okay, maybe it is.


Last edited by Vijay on Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:01 pm 
Sanno
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Vijay wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Where I live the most common moniker for these types of restaurants seems to be "Indo-Chinese".

I kind of hope it isn't the Indian version of Chinese food

That's exactly what it is! They even feature "Hakka noodles".


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:16 pm 
Smeric
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linguoboy wrote:
Vijay wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Where I live the most common moniker for these types of restaurants seems to be "Indo-Chinese".

I kind of hope it isn't the Indian version of Chinese food

That's exactly what it is! They even feature "Hakka noodles".

Apparently, one of the most famous Hakka songs there is in Chinese pop culture is "Cau Mian":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_FLLNsyr7M


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:14 am 
Sanno
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Vijay wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Where I live the most common moniker for these types of restaurants seems to be "Indo-Chinese".

I kind of hope it isn't the Indian version of Chinese food, which makes me think of chili chicken and gobhi Manchurian. Although I actually like gobhi Manchurian and maybe don't even mind chili chicken, which my dad hates; IIRC, he said this is because it has bell peppers instead of real chilis.

EDIT: Okay, maybe it is.


It's a type of Indian version of Chinese food. It's Hakka cuisine from China, adapted to 19th century Indian cuisine, with later additions from other migrants from around china, adapted to 20th century indian cuisine, and then in most cases exiled from india in the anti-china scare of the 1960s and since then adapted to the cuisine of the western host country. I'm given to understand it might not always be the same as the 'chinese' food of recent chinese migrants to india (just as in the UK there's a difference between the 'Indian' food that we've been adapting since the 19th century, and the various cuisines of more recent Indian migrants).

(Looking up a couple in London, yes, they all serve 'chilli chicken'; one place describes it as 'legend', and another calls it "India's most infamous chicken dish".)

(Interestingly, the London ones I can find all seem pretty up-market. I'm guessing that's not the case in India?)

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:26 am 
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Salmoneus wrote:
(Interestingly, the London ones I can find all seem pretty up-market. I'm guessing that's not the case in India?)

Yeah, that struck me about the American restaurants, too. I guess here they can spin it as "fusion cuisine" and demand a premium.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:58 am 
Smeric
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Why get a pedigree breed dog when you can get a mongrel fusion pupper!!

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:35 am 
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If I ever realise my dream of opening a restaurant dedicated to traditional Midwestern food I will promote it as "EuroAmerican fusion".


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:21 pm 
Avisaru
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fusion is just a cheap tactic to make weak cuisines stronger

EDIT: no seriously though I love fusion restaurants

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 4:24 pm 
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alynnidalar wrote:
fusion is just a cheap tactic to make weak cuisines stronger

EDIT: no seriously though I love fusion restaurants

I love them best when they don't call themselves that.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 4:41 pm 
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Thankfully this buzzword "fusion" doesn't seem to be much of a thing here, but every second restaurant aggressively uses the English word "bowl" as if it's really fucking cool.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 4:48 pm 
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I remember fusion cooking being the hot trend here in Germany about 10 years ago. There still are fusion restaurants or places that call themselves that way, but my impression is that the hype has passed.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:06 pm 
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I actively don't care what a restaurant calls itself, as long as the food is good. I'm not particularly fancy when it comes to food, I'm afraid. If it's tasty, I'm happy to eat it, and I enjoy eating from a variety of cuisines. If such a restaurant calls itself "fusion", neat-o. If it doesn't, that's fine too. It'd be a tragedy for me to miss out on good food because I don't like the words a restaurant uses to describe itself.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:18 pm 
Smeric
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Most restaurants in Austin are shit, fusion or otherwise, but if it markets itself as "fusion," that's almost a sure sign that it's shit. If my mom's friends try it and like it, then you know it's shit. Luckily for all these shitty restaurants, plenty of Austinites are willing to pay them top dollar anyway because they truly have no clue what good food is.
Salmoneus wrote:
It's a type of Indian version of Chinese food. [...] I'm given to understand it might not always be the same as the 'chinese' food of recent chinese migrants to india (just as in the UK there's a difference between the 'Indian' food that we've been adapting since the 19th century, and the various cuisines of more recent Indian migrants).

o_O That's a really strange comparison to make. The Chinese population in India is tiny and dwindling, and most recent migration from China to India is temporary and lasts only two or three years. It's not remotely similar to Indian migration to the UK.
Quote:
(Interestingly, the London ones I can find all seem pretty up-market. I'm guessing that's not the case in India?)

I don't think it's expensive per se in India, but it definitely strikes me as what modern Indians would consider trendy and exotic because it's the sort of thing you'd only get at restaurants and some hotels, plus the vast majority of Indians don't know anything about China. I strongly doubt most Indians are familiar with any kind of (pseudo-)Chinese food.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2018 7:51 am 
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Vijay wrote:
Salmoneus wrote:
It's a type of Indian version of Chinese food. [...] I'm given to understand it might not always be the same as the 'chinese' food of recent chinese migrants to india (just as in the UK there's a difference between the 'Indian' food that we've been adapting since the 19th century, and the various cuisines of more recent Indian migrants).

o_O That's a really strange comparison to make. The Chinese population in India is tiny and dwindling, and most recent migration from China to India is temporary and lasts only two or three years. It's not remotely similar to Indian migration to the UK.

...did I say anything about the size of the community, or its patterns of locality? I don't think so.

The point was that in both cases there's a relocated community that's been in the country for around two centuries with a distinct subcultural identity even if no great size (and the Chinese population in India was obviously much larger before the persecutions began), adapting substantially to the local culture, and then a modern migrant community directly from the home country.
I guess I could have compared it to the Somali community, say, but I'm not (and I suspect you're not) as aware of the distinctions within Anglo-Somali cuisine, so the analogy would have been somewhat lost on both of us.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2018 8:57 am 
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2018 4:35 pm 
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