BJ Shea

 BJ Shea
Posts from July 2014


BJ'S BLOG 07/28/14 "Strange Days and Punks for Salvation"

Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders.

My mind sometimes befuddles me. I don't know why I think the things I do, but I think them anyway. Here are a few from the past week.

In 1980, poet and punk musician Jim Carroll wrote "People Who Died," which was on his album Catholic Boy. Ironically, the song could have been titled "People Who Died in July," including punk rocker Tommy Ramone, who wrote a song called "Too Tough To Die." It still bothers me, as I said in last week's blog, that his death went largely unnoticed, as did the passing of Johnny Winter and Muddy Waters.

As the list grows on, here's another name for you: Dick Jones. You probably wouldn't know him if he were sitting next to you, but you have heard his voice many times. Dick Jones was the voice of Pinocchio, and he died on July 7. James Garner, the "Tall Dark Stranger" named Maverick, died July 19.

Under "Man, is that a strange day, indeed," we can post that a pine tree, planted near L.A.'s Griffith Observatory in 2004 in honor of George Harrison, was killed by his band's namesake insect. The Beatle's memorial tree was killed by beetles! Harrison's pine had grown to more than 10 feet tall by 2013, and the good news is the tree will be replaced, time and place to be announced.

In other bizarre and unexplained news, Russia seems to be sinking. Russian scientists conducted a primary examination of a giant sinkhole in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District. There was no dangerous radiation detected on the site, and the scientists, who arrived to examine the sinkhole on the instructions of the regional governor, said it appeared "as a result of a natural phenomenon, the nature of which is impossible to establish yet."
Personally, I'm expecting the four horseman of the apocalypse to burst out of there in a frenzy of flaming glory and head directly to the Westboro Baptist Church, consisting of a collection of hate-mongering protesters who have targeted everyone from the singer Lorde to Brad Paisley, of all people. Recently this bunch of ghoulish protesters met their match with a bunch of punks. They planned on protesting at a "Panic! At The Disco" concert, announcing plans to picket the pop-punk band's Sunday night show in Kansas City, Missouri, but Brendon Urie of the group retaliated. He said that for every member of the Westboro church who showed up he would donate $20 to the Human Rights Campaign, America's largest civil rights organization, working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender equality at home, at work, and in the community. Brendon said, "This is pretty much the perfect way to render the protesters' hateful intentions useless" and would actually be useful and raise money for a good cause.

In the podcast, you'll hear a few minutes about Ted Nugent as well as other topics. Come on shore and give a listen.

http://dbsanders.podbean.com/e/punks-for-salavation/
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BJ'S BLOG 07/25/14 "My BFF Had An Affair With My Brother"

Happy Friday, gang! Before you head out for the weekend, we could sure use some help over here in Group Therapy!

A Rock-A-Holic named Nicole is looking for some advice. It seems that her best friend and her brother had an affair, and even worse – Nicole's sister-in-law caught them! Nicole's brother and his wife eventually reconciled, but that recovery came with the condition that Nicole's BFF had to be cut out of everyone's life altogether.

This isn't just a casual stipulation: Anyone who is still in contact with Nicole's friend is regarded as no longer being a friend of the couple, and is not allowed in their home. This includes Nicole, of course, and even though she doesn't condone the affair, she's feeling pretty upset about the whole situation.

Nicole can't call or email her old friend; if she does, she will be cut off completely from her brother and his family – that includes their kids, too – and the sister-in-law is actually angry that Nicole still misses her friend.

I can understand the brother's wife insisting that her husband avoid the woman he had an affair with, but declaring it a law for everyone else seems pretty harsh. Did the couple go to counseling? Sounds like a "no" to me, because I can't imagine a professional counselor would ever dispense this kind of advice, or even go along with it.

Infidelity is a huge thing, and I don't think you can sort out the damage without therapy of some kind. There's a lack of perspective between the two parties in that situation, and you can't fully unpack that mess without a thoughtful, impartial third party.

Maybe it's just me, but I think it sounds like the situation is out of control. Let's hear it from you, folks! What advice do you have for Nicole?
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BJ'S BLOG 07/24/14 "Can you re-wear a wedding Dress?"

It's Group Therapy time once again, Rock-A-Holics! Let's walk down the aisle and see what we find, be it new or slightly used.

We're trying to help Rachel today: she got divorced after 5 years, and plans to marry a new guy this fall. Like everyone in the world, she's trying to save a little bit of money…and she wants to know if it's okay to re-wear the wedding dress from her first wedding.

Rachel hasn't said anything to her husband-to-be yet, but she has sought the advice of the people around her. She says her family believes the dress is jinxed, and they're a little horrified by the idea. Likewise, some of her friends think that wearing the dress again is disrespectful to the new groom.

I'm handing this one off to the good people who read my blog. I have my own beliefs about second (and third, fourth, fifth) weddings, but I've only been married once. So, I don't know if I really have much of a perspective here. I do find it curious that a groom traditionally rents a tuxedo that's been used by countless men before him, but a wedding dress seems a little more sacred.

Give Rachel your best advice, folks! Maybe you can teach me something in the process…
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BJ'S BLOG 07/23/13 "Sex Spreadsheet"

As you probably know, Reddit is a very popular "fun" site to visit on the internet…but it can definitely backfire on you.

Recently, a woman posted something that her 26-year-old husband sent to her before he left town on a business trip. It was a spreadsheet of all the times she has turned him down for sex, and the reasons she gave for the rejections.

This chart didn't exactly paint a picture of productive intimacy. From June 3rd to July 16th, they had sex just 3 times…but she turned him down 25 times. Yes, you read that correctly: 25 (twenty-five) times.

The wife offered up every stereotypical excuse, including these classics:
She has to wake up early
Tired
Sick
Watching a show (it was a rerun of "Friends")
Just got home from gym, and feeling gross
Too drunk, and ate too much

She posted this spreadsheet on Reddit, for reasons that escape me. It seems she was trying to make her husband the bad guy, but this document went viral, and the whole thing sort of backfired on her.

Look, nobody should be forced to have sex if they don't want to. That's not even open for debate. However, I do have to wonder about a situation like this. When you're in a committed relationship, monogamy is expected; on the other hand, we never talk about the expectation of sex within the marriage itself.

Prenuptial agreements aren't very romantic, but how many relationships are damaged when the sex life falls into a rut, or vanishes almost completely? How can a couple reach an understanding about the needs and desires they're bringing into a marriage?

Let's hear it from you, good people. Bonus Honesty Points if you'd like to share your own spreadsheet numbers for the last month or two…
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BJ'S BLOG 07/22/14 "Baby in the Pit?!"

Sigh.

Here's another Terminal Case of Stupid, gang…

30-year-old Megan Christopherson has been in the news lately, and it's not because she's contributing positively to society.

Megan brought her 4-month-old daughter to a Brad Paisley concert, and was completely shocked and outraged when police wouldn't let her bring the baby (and her other, slightly-older daughter) into the pit!

Police asked her to leave the pit, pointing out the obvious risks to the well-being of her children. She claims that they made her leave for breast-feeding, which she had apparently been asked to stop earlier during the event.

Megan posted video of the incident and tried to claim police harassed her, but the recording does nothing but show how patient and polite they were. Unbelievably, they had to repeatedly explain how her actions were bordering on child endangerment – exposing tiny eardrums to loud music, not to mention the potential physical harm of having the kids in a tightly-populated group of excited fans.

Megan's arguments were outrageously stupid, but even worse - she has apparently done this before! I don't know why I'm shocked, but this one just makes me mad. Megan left the show, rejecting the very kind offer of proper seats located further back, but she ran to YouTube to make her case against the police and concert security. Sadly, this has become national news, but Brad Paisley himself has publicly confirmed that he's in complete support of the police officers' decision, because bringing young kids to a concert like that is just a bad idea.

The entire video is posted below, so take a look, and let me know what you think of this mother's judgment!


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People : Brad PaisleyMegan Christopherson




 

BJ'S BLOG 07/21/14 "Tommy Ramone and Other Punks (Also More Rock and Roll)"

Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders.

On Friday July 11, Tommy Ramone died. Born Tamás Erdélyi, he was the drummer and last survivor of the Ramones, whose members adopted the last name used by Paul McCartney to reserve hotel rooms as a Beatle.

The Ramones were not known as great musicians, but the band has been acknowledged by many as the inventors of punk rock. They began life in Forest Hills, Queens, about the same time I was growing up on Staten Island.

In 2002, the Ramones were ranked the second-greatest band of all time by Spinmagazine, trailing only the Beatles. On March 18, 2002, the Ramones—the founders and drummer Marky Ramone, who succeeded Tommy when he left the band—were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2011, the group was awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Ramones performed 2,263 concerts, touring virtually nonstop for 22 years. In 1996, after a tour with the Lollapalooza music festival, the band played a farewell concert and disbanded. Among the Ramones best-known songs was "I Wanna Be Sedated," a song I still sing to me-self, especially after watching the evening news or for that matter the morning news and the mid-day news. I don't like the term rest in peace, so I'll just say rock on, Tommy, rock on!

Another group, associated with but not totally affiliated with punk rock of the 1970's, was Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers. I say not totally punk rock because they were what is known as proto-punk, which is the music from the mid-1960's to mid-1970's that influenced punk rock and is not a distinct musical genre, covering a wide range of musical backgrounds and styles including garage rock. Boston can claim the Modern Lovers as our own even though Richman moved to California in 1975. He recorded a few tunes, came to his senses, and moved back to Boston and formed a new version of the Modern Lovers in 1976.

Oddly enough, according to a survey taken by voters on the punk forum at musicianforums.com, neither the Ramones nor the Modern Lovers made the top 100, but Boston's own Dropkick Murphys came in at number 16.

From country to punk, I still believe that those in my age group grew up in the best of all musical times with artists like Jonathan Richmond and the Modern Lovers, the Ramones, The Cars, Pink Floyd, Queen, the Rolling Stones, The Who, The Doors, Jimmy Hendrix, of course Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, the Eagles, Creedence Clearwater Revival…. Sorry, kids, you can't touch this.

There's more on music and other topics on the shores of Rambling Harbor. Give a listen.


http://dbsanders.podbean.com/e/tommy-ramone-and-other-punks/
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BJ'S BLOG 07/17/14 "Should I Tell My Neighbor I Destroyed Their Property?"

Howdy, neighbors! Let's have a Group Therapy Block Party!

We heard from Mary, who is having a crisis of conscience. She and her husband live next to a single older man, who is the proverbial Neighbor from Hell: he complains about everything, calls the police about anything he considers suspicious, and once tried to sue a neighbor over tree branches.

The mean neighbor probably wouldn't be too happy to find out that Mary recently backed into his mailbox, destroying it. This was no ordinary mailbox; it was obviously handcrafted, and Mary says it's very nice. Mary's husband says it was an honest mistake, and told her not to say anything!

The neighbor has gone door-to-door around the neighborhood, asking who did the deed. As it turns out, the mailbox has considerable sentimental value to the man, because it was made by his wife before she passed away. Needless to say, Mary feels terrible…but her husband still insists that she should keep the secret, because he's sure the neighbor will make their life a living hell if he finds out the truth.

This whole mess is really fascinating to me, because it says a lot about the current state of our society. This man has created an impression in the minds of Mary and her husband (and probably the rest of the neighborhood), and that impression may never change, but they'll never know if they don't give him a chance. You wrecked his mailbox, Mary…so who's the bad neighbor in this particular scenario?

This situation could have a ripple effect in the relationship, too. Women have a strong moral compass, and this might be something that Mary can't easily shake off. I think it's better to risk the neighbor's unhappiness by doing the right thing, rather than keeping the mistake a secret for what could be many years to come.

Set an example for the people around you, Mary. If you're lucky, maybe the act of being a good person will rub off on your mean old neighbor, too.

Are you with me,
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BJ'S BLOG 07/16/14 "Snooping on my Boyfriend's Computer"

It's time for another Group Therapy session, my friends!

Let's start off with an old saying that still holds true: "Seek and ye shall find."

That's a lesson that Kate learned recently: she was snooping around on her boyfriend's computer when – surprise, surprise – she found naked pictures and video of his ex-girlfriend! (Note: we strongly prefer to have some physical evidence in a case like this, but Kate didn't pass any along with her email. It's a shame, really.)

These pictures date back to the time of the relationship (a couple of years ago) so Kate isn't worried that he's still involved with this girl. Kate says she doesn't mind him having regular pictures of the ex-girlfriend, but she's not too happy about this particular path down Memory Lane. The boyfriend doesn't know that she found the photos and video, and she's afraid he'll freak out about her snooping if she confronts him.

Let me share some advice with you, Kate: snooping is a breach of trust, too. Honesty is a two-way street! You're not even sure if your boyfriend kept those pictures on purpose…but even if he did, you found them because you were looking for something. That tells me that you have a deeper issue going on in your head, and maybe you should uncover the truth about THAT.

What say you, Rock-A-Holics?
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BJ'S BLOG 07/15/14 "Sex-cuses"

When the weather gets hot, it's important to use protection.

WHAT? I'm talking about sunscreen! Get your minds out of the gutter! Jeez, you people are a bunch of perverts.

And now, let's talk about a recent survey conducted by Durex condoms. (No, this is not a sponsored blog entry; we're just a bit surprised by the results of this little fact-finding exercise.)

Apparently, men are making enough excuses for not having sex that Durex came up with a Top Ten list. Let's go over that one more time, folks: there are MEN out there who are coming up with reasons to NOT HAVE SEX.

I…uh…what? I can barely comprehend this. In my entire life, I don't think I've made an excuse to have less sex. I've put in a lot of work making the case for MORE sex, but this is a whole new idea for me.

Check out some of these reasons:
"I want to watch sports"
"I have a bad back"
"I've got a headache"
"I've been working late"
"I'm too drunk"
"I'm willing, but let's wait until later"

These may be the documented excuses, but I can't imagine they're difficult to overcome, if the other party is persistent. If a woman says she's not interested, then it's very likely not happening, no matter how hard we try. Guys are far easier to trigger into physical readiness. We're simple like that.

GUYS! Are you making these excuses? GIRLS! Are you hearing them? Give us the lowdown!


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BJ'S BLOG 07/14/14 "Rock and Roll and Kanye West"

Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders.
My buddy Kanye West got me thinking last week. See, it seems the mouth that bores got booed off the stage in London. It's not unusual lately for the gonzo-gone West to deliver rants and preach on stage. Kanye lamented this time on everything from his frustrations with fashion houses to his own fame. Gone West ranted about Louis Vuitton and Gucci, feeling they might discriminate against him because he's black. But what about his Vuitton Tambour Watch in Black Diamonds, which he picked up for $19,900.00? Well, hell, Westy, discrimination would upset me also, but you still bought the watch. Does it keep the correct time? He went on for perhaps twenty minutes, and the crowd booed and mostly went home. He could appeal to his audiences in a better way.
Popular music has often been topical in nature in response to political and social conditions. Many songs were popularized during wartime (unfortunately), including "Yankee Doodle Dandy" from the Revolutionary War (my friend Larry M. will love that one); "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" and "Dixie" from the Civil War; "Over There" from World War I; and "God Bless America" from World War II. In the early 20th century, two American musical traditions played a significant role in social and political commentary, blues and folk music, both roots of rock and roll along with gospel.
On 13 July 1985, an incredible event called "Live Aid," organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure, raised funds for famine relief in Ethiopia. It was billed as a "global jukebox" and was held simultaneously at Wembley Stadium in London, attended by 72,000 people, and at John F. Kennedy Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, attended by about 100,000 people. It was one of the largest-scale satellite link-ups and television broadcasts of all time with an estimated global audience of 1.9 billion across 150 nations.
The Ethiopia famine of 2003 was the worst famine since the mid-1980s. Nearly one-fifth of the population was left without food, and thousands of people died from starvation and malnutrition. Members of the music industry once again came together with Live 8 to raise awareness of global poverty prior to the G8 conference 6-8 July 2005, hosting 10 concerts on 2 July 2005, and one concert on 6 July 2005. On 7 July, G8 leaders pledged to double the funds devoted to helping poor countries to $50 million by 2010, with half of the money earmarked for Africa. Kanye West was one of the Live 8 performers.
The poverty crisis continues today in many countries including ours. So, West Wind, how about a concert to help the approximately 16.1 million, 22% of children in the U.S., who live in poverty and are hungry?
There is more on music and Kanye, as well as thoughts on Rush Limbaugh and the Emmy Awards, on the shores of Rambling Harbor. I hope you'll listen in.
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BJ'S BLOG 07/11/14 "My Girlfriend's Bikini Is A Big Distraction!"

Ah, summer: The weather is warm, the sun is shining, and here we are, as usual…locked inside our tiny little room for another session of Group Therapy!

Peter is looking for some advice from his fellow Rock-A-Holics. His girlfriend has been sunbathing on the front lawn in a bikini, and it's extremely skimpy. Guys walking and driving by are constantly staring at her – people are literally stopping in their tracks to look at her, including other tenants in their apartment complex.

Peter is embarrassed, and he doesn't like other people checking out his girlfriend's body. He wonders if it's a bad move to ask her to stop her sunbathing, because it's just attracting too much attention.

We'd like to help, Peter. Please send us your address, and maybe a few photos of the distracting bikini, and we'll get right on that.

Sorry, but I suddenly can't seem to get my thoughts together. Can you help Peter with his problem, folks?
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BJ'S BLOG 07/10/14 "Dumping a Friend Who Cheated On Their Spouse"

Group Therapy is back in session!

A Rock-A-Holic named Lenny wrote in recently, looking for some advice. He and his wife have been friends with a couple for 6 years, and the couple has been married for the last 3 years. Lenny and his wife were shocked when the couple announced that they would be getting a divorce, but that wasn't the only surprising news…

The female half of the couple revealed to Lenny's wife that the guy had been cheating on her, and she found out, so she's calling it quits with him. Lenny's wife thinks that they should also cut him out of their lives, but Lenny doesn't quite agree.

Lenny was friends with the guy before he met his soon-to-be-ex, and while he doesn't support the cheating, Lenny feels like the decision doesn't affect them, so he thinks there's no reason to cut the friend out.

Cheating sucks. It's wrong, and you have to question the judgment of anyone who makes that kind of mistake in their life. Our man Top Shelf came clean (on the air!) about his own infidelity, and there were people who swore they'd never listen to the show again if we didn't fire him! He had to wear the mark of his decision like a hot brand on his forehead for a long time, and he says that he feels like he may have to live with that stigma for a long time to come.

That's the black-and-white fact of any situation like this, but I do believe that people make mistakes, and you can't always judge a cheater as a terrible person all around. If they do it twice, or wrap their friends up in their deception, that's another story…but a lapse in judgment can happen to anyone. It's what the people do in the wake of their bad decision that will really prove who they are as a person.

What do you think, Rock-A-Holics? Bonus honesty points to any (hopefully reformed) cheaters out there who would like to tell us how their mistake affected their friendships…


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BJ'S BLOG 07/09/14 "A Good Deed...For The Right Reasons?"

Hello again, folks! Here's something that caught my eye, and I'd like to hear your feedback…

Carolina Panthers player DeAngelo Williams gave up his business class seat to a soldier on a recent flight, and has apparently done so on more than one occasion. Williams posted a picture and indicated that a U.S. Marine would be getting a surprise in the form of an unexpected ride in business class. On a side note, we are now hearing that DeAngelo might have been "duped" by a fake marine, which is sickening to hear.

First off, I love to see support and appreciation for our military men and women. On the other hand, I am always a bit suspicious of publicity, since this is starting to become "a thing" with celebrities on flights. Amy Adams recently gave up a first class seat to a soldier, and the news spread like wildfire.

I'm not pointing fingers at anyone, but I would hate to see this become a trend because it earns attention from the public and the press. Maybe it's just a nice gesture, and the generosity on display from Amy Adams and DeAngelo Williams might inspire other celebrities to do the same. At the end of the day, however, public figures get good P.R. when they do things like this, so I hope you'll understand my skeptical instinct.

What do you think, gang? Is this a worthwhile trend, or a path that might be paved with less-than-good intentions?
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People : Amy AdamsDeAngelo Williams




 

BJ'S BLOG 07/07/14 "Facebook and Mood Manipulation"

Today's blog features on of my mentors, Dan Sanders.

I don't know about you, but I am truly starting to feel like a lab rat under a huge Hubble-like microscope. On June 14, 2013, I wrote a blog that started a bit of a tempest on my keyboard. The tempest was caused by my saying things like:

"I have said, and will explain further in the podcast, that I will not change my life one bit if I am being spied on. I will not monitor my words, phone calls, or blogs and podcasts. I will not change one bloody thing because some guy (or hopefully, woman) is sitting in the tree outside watching me take a shower." I couldn't care less about the government's ghoulish voyeurism.

Well, that's all well and good, speaking just for me, but now I am totally ripping mad at Facebook. Facebook has published details of a big-time experiment in which they manipulated 689,000 posted comments, videos, pictures, and web links. Why? In order to influence our moods. They plan on trying to change my mood and make me care, and apparently, according to the press release by Facebook, they are succeeding.
http://money.cnn.com/2014/06/30/technology/facebook-mood-experiment/

What really boils my eggs is they intend to use my friends' emails, etc. to do it and can also use my posts to influence your moods. They are screwing with me and my friends, and I don't take kindly to that. To take this mood alteration experiment a little further, if little Markey Z at Facebook has tried this, what can the government do?

A lot of people were angry with the government for spying. I wonder if Facebook has gotten us so hooked first that we can't get angry. Maybe our moods have already been altered.

There's more on this and other topics at Rambling Harbor. Come ashore and give a listen.

http://dbsanders.podbean.com/e/facebook-and-mood-manipulation/
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BJ'S BLOG 07/01/14 "I Caught My Daughter Having Sex"

Welcome back to Group Therapy, everybody! Let's relax for this session, shall we? Pull up your favorite recliner and lean back all the way. Aaaahhh, doesn't that feel nice? Not a care in the world.

Well…

Ted needs some advice from his fellow Rock-A-Holics. You see, Ted has a 15-year-old daughter that he's raising on his own; the mother's not a part of their lives, and lives in another state, anyway.

Ted says his Daughter is great: she gives him no trouble, does well in school, and is a joy to be around.

Unfortunately, Ted's daughter is growing up a little bit faster than her father would prefer. On Saturday night, Ted walked downstairs to find the daughter and her boyfriend (who is one year older, at 16) having sex on Ted's recliner!

Ted's first reaction was a strong desire to put the hurt on the boyfriend, but he didn't follow through with it. Now, Ted really doesn't know what to do, and he's hoping to hear from you, good people. As disturbed as he is by the discovery, Ted feels like forbidding them to see each other will only make this young romance into a "Romeo and Juliet" situation, and things will just get more complicated.

I know it has to be tough for the single dads. I'm lucky to have a wife, especially with two kids in the house. My daughter, especially, always has a mom to talk to, and that really takes the pressure off me.

Before I turn this over to you, let's have a moment of silence for the silent victim in this situation: Ted's recliner. A man's chair is his royal throne…and I don't think I could ever sit comfortably in mine again if I caught my daughter doing the nasty on it.

What advice do you have for Ted, good people?
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