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Julieg

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Reply with quote  #1 
I just returned from KAR nationals in Las Vegas a few days ago and this incident is still on my mind.  Let me start by saying that I attended KAR nationals last year so I went into this years competition expecting the same rudeness and craziness from a couple of other studios that had also attended last year.  I was pleasantly surprised that other than one studio thinking they owned the place and saving dozens of seats that went unused every day it was not too bad.  Until the Grand Finals.  For the Grand Finals, they empty the convention center and everyone lines up to get the seats they want.  I lined up as did most everyone else.  I was able to get a seat in the second row.  Most of our studio occupied the rest of the first, second, and third rows.  KAR made announcements that there was no seat saving.  They also reminded the audience to only enter and exit between numbers not only so you wouldn't ruin the video but to also ensure everybody could see.  Everything was going great.  People came and went.  Nobody was saving seats for any amount of time longer than it would take to use the restroom which is why right as our team was taking the stage two seats were available in the second row.  Just then three people, two adults and a kid about 8 or 9 showed up and stood in front of the seats.  One of the moms politely asked them to sit down.  This was a big moment for our team.  This dance had three graduating seniors, mine included, and one very lovely younger girl who was dancing in her last competition because her family has had some financial set backs and can no longer afford it.  The two adults sat down in the first few moments of the dance.  The girl continued to stand between the two adults with her back to the stage pestering the adults. Unfortunately, she was blocking the view of one of the graduating senior's parents.  A different mom asked the girl to sit down several times but she didn't.  At the end of the dance, I turned around and asked the parents if they were able to see any of their daughter's last dance ever and they said no.  Those two "ladies" replied with, "Too bad. You could have watched the screen."  They then sat there grumbling different excuses as to why what they did was OK because there's no seat saving.  I was pretty angry but said nothing more.  They kept giving me dirty looks when I would cheer for our team or the other dances that I liked.  There was another person between me and them so they had to lean way forward in their seat and look in the opposite direction of the stage to do so.  It was pretty obvious what they were doing but I wasn't going to let them ruin my good time.  The reason why I am so upset is that I waited in a line for almost an hour before they opened the doors.  I got my seat and I stayed in it from the beginning of the finals until the very end.  I didn't stand up and block other people and I can assure you that if I did have to leave, it would have been between numbers.  What those people took from my friends was a big deal.  Even beginning dance moms know that something is lost between the stage and the screen.  Colors aren't quite as bright, jewels sparkle a little less, and you lose a lot of facial expression.  I know my friends were really sad that they couldn't enjoy their daughter's last performance but they are nice people and kept it classy.  I know for fact that our studio owner would not tolerate that kind of behavior from us.  I also know that the studio owner from our cross-town rival studio would also not tolerate it.  But, what do you think?  If you were the studio owner would you want to know about this?  Would your studio owner be cool with parents behaving like this? Would you address your group and remind them of proper audience conduct? I am appalled that anyone would even need to do that but it seemed to be an ongoing theme to our season this year.  It was a really disappointing way to end our season.
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Julieg

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Reply with quote  #2 
I forgot to add that a different lady from the same studio rolled in half way through the finals.  She and a larger child sat in the chair next to my friend who was on the other side of me.  The child didn't sit in the lady's lap.  They sat side by side so the lady was fully pressed up against my friend.  That's pretty rude all on it's own but they had just come from the pool so they were soaking wet and got my friend soaking wet.  Maybe people are just ruder where they come from.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #3 
Honestly.. I'd just leave well enough alone.  I understand your frustration but what's done is done. Even if you did say something it becomes he said she said.... an SO can't act on the claims of a stranger.  How do they know you aren't blowing it out of proportion (not saying you are, just that they don't know).  Unfortunately, these types of people walk amongst us.  Saying something may make you feel better but it won't have any real impact.  Why?  Because these are adults... they knew what they were doing and chose to do it anyway.  You can't fix stupid.
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prancer

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Reply with quote  #4 
Sorry but it can't be undone now. If it was my daughter's last dance, and the kids didn't sit when I told them too, I would have half stood tall enough to see over them. Being able to see that dance was most important to those from your studio, and especially to those dancers' families.

Some people are rude and I'm sorry some were in front of you. Honestly, I try to be a polite audience member, but I am not willing to sacrifice my ability to see my child because of someone else's bad behavior. If I couldn't see my dancer, especially in her last dance, I would have adjusted myself so I could see. Some moments are more valuable than being a polite audience member.
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joriebelle

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Reply with quote  #5 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459
Honestly.. I'd just leave well enough alone.  I understand your frustration but what's done is done. Even if you did say something it becomes he said she said.... an SO can't act on the claims of a stranger.  How do they know you aren't blowing it out of proportion (not saying you are, just that they don't know).  Unfortunately, these types of people walk amongst us.  Saying something may make you feel better but it won't have any real impact.  Why?  Because these are adults... they knew what they were doing and chose to do it anyway.  You can't fix stupid.


I agree with this.  Saying something isn't going to fix anything and it's over now.
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ballerinamom13

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Reply with quote  #6 
You could always do a Yelp or FB review of the studio. You could warn people to consider the rude culture of the studio.....Hope they weren't from Arizona. I know at least one big studio was there.
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NYFamily

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Reply with quote  #7 
I would absolutely say something to the studio and to KAR. I am sure they would not want these parents behavior representing the studio or the competition badly. Even though "it's over" their behavior was still out of line. I always think ignoring it gives them permission to continue. You could potentially start your letter with "Now that I have had time to reflect I want to share a situation..."
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Suzit42

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Reply with quote  #8 
Oh hell no!! As a mom who's daughter just graduated and may not dance in college, I'm going to disagree. Those last dances are ridiculously precious. I pity the fool who would have tried to block my view. But I have never had a problem with hissing "sit down, my kid is onstage" or standing to watch if there is a sudden obstacle (and I know I am not blocking another parent whose kid is onstage view). In this scenario, I would not have sat silent. I would have done what I needed to do to watch my kid dance. Manners aside, we have spent many hours, sweat and dollars to get to this point. I deserve to watch my kid dance. And after the dance, I would have gone up to those blocking the view and said "excuse me, maybe you don't realize that you are blocking the view of other parents. Could you sit down or move to the side please?" Would I say that loud enough for the judges to hear? Absolutely. Their reaction would be my tipping point. If they said, oh so sorry and moved away, then all is good. If they were snarky or did nothing, then I would escalate. The escalation would be an email to the comp director and the studio director. The email would be as factual and devoid of emotion as possible. No different than a courtroom. Would I expect a response, probably not. But at least I did what I could. I believe that studio etiquette is a top down thing. If SO gives out and/or approves the entitlement vibe, then the studio will follow suit. So, possibly, sending an email to the SO AND the Comp director might make a change.

I can tell you that at a few comps, I have seen some amazing dances. Not necessarily the rainbow, double platinum with sprinkles dances, but those that really touched my heart. I have emailed the SO just to tell them how much the dance moved me. And I have always gotten a thanks. So keep emailing. It's all good right?
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2girls

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Reply with quote  #9 
If I was the owner I would want to know.  At our previous studio there were a few moms like the ones you describe. Year after year they were total jerks! It was so embarrassing! I knew they wouldn't listen to me if I said anything. It amazed me that no other studios spoke up. Eventually our SO got wind of their horrible behavior and spoke to them. They continued to be loud and obnoxious, but in the back of the venue.
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lovemykids

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Reply with quote  #10 
Our SO would definitely like to know. But she would also NOT approve of any of her dance moms writing to a comp director to complain or to another SO. Unfortunately there is no changing what happened but if it will make you feel better to take some sort of action, I would talk to your own SO and ask her what she recommends to do.
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amandafarris03

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Reply with quote  #11 
in that situation (and we dealt with some pretty nasty people at our nationals) I would have gotten up from my seat and moved and squat in the aisle to see my child dance.  I would make it be KNOWN that they were being rude.

at one regional we went to - the auditorium was long and the breaks between dances were quick so sometimes it wasn't the persons fault they were still trying (and you could tell they were going as fast as they could) to take a seat.  in those instances I wasn't irritated.  it was the instance that our dance had started on stage and me and a mom sitting next to me had daughters on stage.  a grandpa had come from the back and was standing in the aisle and bending over to talk to his daughter who was sitting a few seats over RIGHT INFRONT OF OUR VIEW. gave him a second squat down.  didn't happen at that point we were irritated and not seeing our kids - had to say "excuse me our daughters are on stage sit down" I admit it wasn't a nice tone but COME ON!  a few songs later someone from their party came to join them and they were whiney about "can you believe someone already yelled at us for not sitting down?" I ALMOST said "oh yes ma'am we spoke to them, I'm sure you can commiserate with us that you would have been annoyed had you not been able to see your daughter take the stage"

at nationals last week we had a blanket down cover about 4-5 seats in one row and another blanket a row in front that covered 3-4 seats.  we had people in and out of the seats - they were just for our studio didn't matter who sat in them and we were over towards the side so not right in the middle.  we had good seating but still out of the way that it shouldn't have mattered.  anyway at one point we had older dancers/moms that were either getting something to eat or they were in the dressing room getting ready.  those seats were not being sat in for about 30 minutes but all day we had people in and out.  I'm sitting there at that point by myself watching purses/bags...and a lady standing a few seats down (I'm in the first row) leans over the seats and says "I'm going to sit over there I can see better" (pointing to the middle of the room) the young teenager sitting behind and a few seats over pointed to the end of our row that had two seats without a blanket on it but had a bag sitting on the floor marking that it was someones seat, and says "oh go sit right there" and she said "oh are all these your seats" he says "no but I just moved this blanket over and sat here" then turn around and say "oh awesome that is our stuff, please don't touch it again." and he got an attitude.  so then I text all my friends and let them know the situation and the minute he got up to leave we put stuff on the seat and made sure there was a person sitting in each of our rows....
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5678StarMom

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Reply with quote  #12 
I don't really care what the excuse is, putting down blankets (or personalized chair covers) and seat saving is rude. I've been stuck in a full auditorium before with no empty seats and there are blankets down. I've also been in a semi empty auditorium before and there are no decent seats left but blankets down. I've literally been trying to sit down in between numbers and scrambling for a seat and found nothing quickly because of seat savers. If you don't want your stuff moved, don't leave it. We all deserve to get a decent view of our kids.

I would have been livid if someone was standing during my daughter's last dance as a senior. I would certainly take it to the next step. My SO, even with her flaws, would email or call the competition director and the other studio owner for me though.
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tappinmom

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5678StarMom
I don't really care what the excuse is, putting down blankets (or personalized chair covers) and seat saving is rude. I've been stuck in a full auditorium before with no empty seats and there are blankets down. I've also been in a semi empty auditorium before and there are no decent seats left but blankets down. I've literally been trying to sit down in between numbers and scrambling for a seat and found nothing quickly because of seat savers. If you don't want your stuff moved, don't leave it. We all deserve to get a decent view of our kids. I would have been livid if someone was standing during my daughter's last dance as a senior. I would certainly take it to the next step. My SO, even with her flaws, would email or call the competition director and the other studio owner for me though.


I have to agree with the bolded.  Our SO would have seizures if she knew anyone at our studio even attempted such a thing.  I have saved a single seat for a mom who has gone to the bathroom and such but to save a whole section with blankets is beyond rude.
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Angel2228

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Reply with quote  #14 
Dd's studio would ask that we approach them first. They would probably take it to the competition to have them talk to the other studio.
Dd's studio would want to know and we would all be getting emails on proper theatre etiquette.
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judie

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Reply with quote  #15 
Yep. Had this happen to me last week. I was not shy about letting the adults and children know that they were being rude. It's ridiculous.
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Suzit42

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Reply with quote  #16 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5678StarMom
I don't really care what the excuse is, putting down blankets (or personalized chair covers) and seat saving is rude. I've been stuck in a full auditorium before with no empty seats and there are blankets down. I've also been in a semi empty auditorium before and there are no decent seats left but blankets down. I've literally been trying to sit down in between numbers and scrambling for a seat and found nothing quickly because of seat savers. If you don't want your stuff moved, don't leave it. We all deserve to get a decent view of our kids.

I would have been livid if someone was standing during my daughter's last dance as a senior. I would certainly take it to the next step. My SO, even with her flaws, would email or call the competition director and the other studio owner for me though.


Agreed!! Seat saving is so rude. Throwing down a blanket does not make them "your studios" seats. It makes you inconsiderate to the other people in the audience who are also there to watch their dancers. Not sure where the sense of entitlement comes from? I have yet to go to a competition that charged an entry fee or assigned seats. That means the seats belong to all attendees, regardless of a blanket on the seat. Last year, I didn't get to see my kid dance once because the auditorium was so packed, including seat savers. I just want you seat savers to know that you need to look past your own nose and realize that the dance competition doesn't revolve around you or your studio.
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #17 
I don't even understand the seat saving thing myself.  People are in and out all day long.... rarely are they interested in watching all of the dancers from studios other than their own. I honestly can't think of a single time in all those years dd competed that there weren't boatloads of seats free.  Even at a Nationals.  Maybe they weren't right up front.. but they were there.   Save a seat for a friend or two who will be right back but beyond that?  I would never.  There's just no need.
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5678StarMom

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Reply with quote  #18 
Quote:
Originally Posted by heidi459
I don't even understand the seat saving thing myself.  People are in and out all day long.... rarely are they interested in watching all of the dancers from studios other than their own. I honestly can't think of a single time in all those years dd competed that there weren't boatloads of seats free.  Even at a Nationals.  Maybe they weren't right up front.. but they were there.   Save a seat for a friend or two who will be right back but beyond that?  I would never.  There's just no need.


I've been at a couple of competitions that there were no decent seats free, other than the blanket "saved" ones. Nothing available where there was an actual view of the stage, just far side back seats where only the monitor was visible. Or seats 15+ people in that are impossible to get to in the 10 seconds between dancers without blocking a view or making people stand during the dance to get to it. Fill in seats when it's that crowded people, lol! Talent on parade, hall of fame, masquerade are a few that come to mind. Giant mega competitions that go on for days, usually set up in convention centers. And there are less and less seats (and parking spots!) during productions, large groups/lines, and showdowns vs solos or duo/trio etc. Plus right before awards everyone packs in. In lots of ways, I'm happy to attend smaller competitions now (but it's a give and take. I like the idea of competing against more studios, too)
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DanceTumbleCheerMom

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Reply with quote  #19 
I know the last dance is extremely important and a milestone, but honestly I wont put up someone blocking my view from any of my kids performing.  And I dont hesitate to make it known that they are being rude.

As for the seat saves,  blankets, coats whatever can get moved and taken to the lost and found.   

As for the situation, talk to your SO and see how she thinks it should be handled.  Unfortunately whats done is done and those parents will never get that moment back but the SO can still give the "talk" to the parents and let them know whats acceptable and whats not. 
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DanceTumbleCheerMom

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Reply with quote  #20 
what always made me lol was it always seemed like the most obnoxious rude parents were the ones who were all decked out in their studio wear.   Not the best advertisement for the studio IMHO
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heidi459

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Reply with quote  #21 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5678StarMom
I've been at a couple of competitions that there were no decent seats free, other than the blanket "saved" ones. Nothing available where there was an actual view of the stage, just far side back seats where only the monitor was visible. Or seats 15+ people in that are impossible to get to in the 10 seconds between dancers without blocking a view or making people stand during the dance to get to it. Fill in seats when it's that crowded people, lol! Talent on parade, hall of fame, masquerade are a few that come to mind. Giant mega competitions that go on for days, usually set up in convention centers. And there are less and less seats (and parking spots!) during productions, large groups/lines, and showdowns vs solos or duo/trio etc. Plus right before awards everyone packs in. In lots of ways, I'm happy to attend smaller competitions now (but it's a give and take. I like the idea of competing against more studios, too)


Neither her nor there but... for the most part I don't think the size of the comp necessarily has anything to do with the availability of seating.  Whether there are 300, 600 or 1000 numbers over the course of the weekend, how many numbers/dancers grace the stage within any given hour remains essentially the same.  So while the number of hours required to go through all of the numbers will differ, the number of people requiring seating in the audience at any given time should be pretty much be the same regardless (with exceptions, of course).       

Maybe it's a regional thing?  Maybe it has to do with the size of the venues in one's particular area?  Or, in a convention center setting, how many seats the venue sets up? IDK.  Seems to me like it should rarely be that much of an issue unless what we're really talking about is people vying for the same seats... which is kinda silly (imo).  But then again, maybe just the general enthusiasm for comp dance varies from what I experienced here over the years.  Maybe I'm just not familiar with this notion of an afternoon at comp dance being treated as the equivalent as an afternoon of entertainment.. where dance parents come with the expectation that they will sit and watch dancers from all over, all day, for fun.  Making for a chock full audience all day, everyday.  That's certainly a possibility.
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Dancingemu

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Reply with quote  #22 
As peeved as I'd be, I wouldn't do anything after the event. Telling anyone KAR now is more than likely going to be a dead end, I don't see them going to the studio to complain. They want their money for next year. Trying to tell the studio directly after the fact makes you sound petty and will more than likely be met with resistance. Rude people will get what's coming to them eventually. If it happens again. I'd bring it up during the event.
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tappinmom

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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 5678StarMom
I've been at a couple of competitions that there were no decent seats free, other than the blanket "saved" ones. Nothing available where there was an actual view of the stage, just far side back seats where only the monitor was visible. Or seats 15+ people in that are impossible to get to in the 10 seconds between dancers without blocking a view or making people stand during the dance to get to it. Fill in seats when it's that crowded people, lol! Talent on parade, hall of fame, masquerade are a few that come to mind. Giant mega competitions that go on for days, usually set up in convention centers. And there are less and less seats (and parking spots!) during productions, large groups/lines, and showdowns vs solos or duo/trio etc. Plus right before awards everyone packs in. In lots of ways, I'm happy to attend smaller competitions now (but it's a give and take. I like the idea of competing against more studios, too)


All of our comps are 3-4 days long and 99% are in theatres as opposed to convention halls etc so seating can be limited.  Because they are in actual theatres there are always ushers and they will go and tell people to move their blankets, clothes, whatever so other people can sit down.  They will also go and confiscate recording devices when they catch someone taping and they are pretty vigilant about watching the audience.
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disneymom2two

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Reply with quote  #24 
Quote:
Originally Posted by amandafarris03

at nationals last week we had a blanket down cover about 4-5 seats in one row and another blanket a row in front that covered 3-4 seats.  we had people in and out of the seats - they were just for our studio didn't matter who sat in them and we were over towards the side so not right in the middle.  we had good seating but still out of the way that it shouldn't have mattered.  anyway at one point we had older dancers/moms that were either getting something to eat or they were in the dressing room getting ready.  those seats were not being sat in for about 30 minutes but all day we had people in and out.  I'm sitting there at that point by myself watching purses/bags...and a lady standing a few seats down (I'm in the first row) leans over the seats and says "I'm going to sit over there I can see better" (pointing to the middle of the room) the young teenager sitting behind and a few seats over pointed to the end of our row that had two seats without a blanket on it but had a bag sitting on the floor marking that it was someones seat, and says "oh go sit right there" and she said "oh are all these your seats" he says "no but I just moved this blanket over and sat here" then turn around and say "oh awesome that is our stuff, please don't touch it again." and he got an attitude.  so then I text all my friends and let them know the situation and the minute he got up to leave we put stuff on the seat and made sure there was a person sitting in each of our rows....


Our SO would not be happy with us if we did that.  She's very clear on seat saving being rude.  
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burghmom

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Reply with quote  #25 
So sorry that you and your friends missed out on a moment that should have been so special and cherished.  Audience etiquette is one of my biggest issues with the competition circuit.  Sadly, being kind and considerent is not that common anymore.  I try to believe that most people aren't that rude and obnoxious, just clueless.  But your situation shows that isn't the case.  I would not address the SO.  I am sure they know what kind of people they have at their studio. 

What I believe in is KARMA.  Although you won't be there to witness it, know in your heart that those people will get theirs someday and it will probably be huge. 
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