Beanie level: Errand boy

Dear Beanies,
I cannot stay silent when I see how graceful and witty and fun you are when faced with adversity. Those who answer insult by grabbing the hurtful words hurled and waving them as a banner in honor of passionate and respectful discussion. Those who have been scorned as ‘pressed’ who leave me totally im-pressed. The combination of word-play, good fun and… Well the best of Beanies are such a gift.
So thank you, dear Beanies.

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When I was little, Valentine’s were cards you gave to all of your classmates. We decorated shoe boxes and left them on our desks. Everyone had a box. It wasn’t supposed to be a competition, but even when I was little, it felt like others must have gotten more cards. Better cards.
Someone’s mom brought cupcakes and we had a little party. For Valentine’s day. I liked the cupcakes.
As I got older, valentine giving was only supposed to be for ‘sweethearts’. Too bad, I made my own. Lopsided and very repititious, all in red and white, for people who I appreciated. For Florence, neighbor who always had cookies and loved to listen to my chatter. For Mrs. Dermit, whose family used to farm the land on which our bit of suburbia was built. For my mom’s best friends, who were like aunts for me. For that boy I liked, but couldn’t say so (too scary!). For my family, as messy as they come.
And later yet, I just skipped Valentine’s Day. It didn’t speak to me. I would bake something and give it away if I had too many emotions to deal with, thank you very much.
When I met my Love, it was a revelation. Someone who thought of ME on February 14th. But strangely, his mom did too. Hmm.
We often celebrate by not celebrating. Just by being together. This year is no different. And that’s my joy.
Love, February

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No words today.
Wordless.
Silent.
Shhh.
&
That’s
Okay
Too
O
K
2

Love, February

This morning I took out the chocolate that I had prepared. When you can’t find chocolate chips in the supermarket, you buy ‘chocolat patissier’, put it in a zip lock bag and hit it with a hammer until it is the appropriate size. Then I hid the mess in our bedroom and shut the door tidied the living room.
It was too late to go get more brown sugar, so I washed my face and decided that it wouldn’t matter.
Soon after, my friends came to visit. I had offered to teach my non-baking friends children how to make cookies. (am I a bit crazy? The only answer possible is yes)
I found a big tablecloth for our table in the living room, (have I mentioned that our kitchen is the size of an envelope?) and asked children of various sizes to carry things into the living room to put on the table.
I started a kettle and asked hopefully if anyone else wanted tea. The children poured most of the apple juice in their glasses and our critter enjoyed the rest. Armed with tea, I opened my e-book reader to my favorite sweet recipes and decided that the children could read the instructions. It is educational to read. We measured butter and margarine and sugar (oh well, it’s just going to be white sugar today!) and vanilla sugar into the bowl.
Creaming ingredients together was a new concept, I think they got it after everything became runny. Then two separate children added an egg each. Who knew it was so exciting to break an egg?
When everything was thoroughly mixed up, the older kids wanted to add the chocolate. I told them that we were following THE RECIPE. So we added the flour and spices and then folded the oatmeal in.
Finally they added the chocolate. Their anticipation was at fever pitch. I definitely needed more tea. My friends sat next to each other and kept telling me how great I was to do this. (where’s my tea…?)
I set the children to putting blobs of dough that were smaller than their hands, smaller than their ears, about the size of 3 macadamia nuts smushed together…
(perhaps my instructions could be clearer?) on the cookie sheets. Okay, I never use those, on the silicon thingamajig sheets.
Oups! We turned on the oven. And waited with 3 sheets of oven ready cookie dough.
Finally we started cooking them. Success!
Thank goodness for timers on phones.
I lost interest and one of my friends took over. I knew I loved her for a good reason.
As we all tasted the cookies and complimented the children on a job well done, I finally started to relax.
It was fun to see my friends. Critter loved the children. The kids enjoyed exploring our house living room.
When they left, I gave them all the cookies and made myself some more tea.
Happy baking,
Love, February

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I\’m off work next week. I really need this break.
I\’m hoping to see some friends, sleep, read, sleep, watch some dramas, sleep and sleep.
It\’s a pretty ambitious program, but I think I\’m up to it.
Love, February

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He met her at a company picnic. She was flirting with another man, but her sense of humor appealed to him. She was smart. She could argue a point and debate with the other reporters. She wrote a story about gardening, even though she had never really been much of a gardener herself. She learned about it so that her articles would be better written. She was always able to master the skills she needed to earn enough to take care of herself and her little boy.
He was mesmerized, but she hardly gave him the time of day.
She moved to another city for a better job (two columns to write!) and started to receive weekly missives. There was always a little drawing and a story for her little boy. The adventures of the jackalope. Monkeys at sea. The drawings and the stories were so creative. He came to visit. Multiple times. They went to amusement parks, for picnics in the mountains and rented sail boats to skim over great lake.
She became fond of him and he loved her dearly. She finally gave him her heart.
The honeymoon was short as they were poor, but they went back to that place every year to celebrate again.
My father and mother weren\’t always happy, but they were truly well met.
Love, February

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Our critter…

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    Critter is a conflicted being. She wanted to be a cat, but was born a dog. It’s pretty adorable the way she is always trying to do cat stuff. She even does dog purring…

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An ode to Critter

You came to us as a little ball of fluff. I could hold you in one hand. So tiny that we marveled at every move you made. When you first ran it was more of a hop.
We learned quickly about taking care of you and our home still has traces of chewed up book spines and corner tables that were too fun to leave alone.
You dug up and ate ALL the bulb flowers in our garden and we just kept planting more. Hyacinths are your favorites.
You hide under our bed when it\’s bath time. Any good things that fall on the ground are gone in nanoseconds. You are goofy and funny and always ready to PLAY!
When we put on our shoes, you dance with joy in hopes that we will take you for a walk. It\’s easy to please you and just watching you skitter around the house makes us laugh. You play with your squeaky toy when we aren\’t paying attention, silly us.
You are getting old now, but are no less playful. Your disdain for the little dogs next door is palpable.
We know that you always thought you should be a cat, unfortunately the neighborhood cats disagreed.
When I\’m trying to concentrate or am on the phone, you want to curl up on my lap. My job is to pet you and scratch the right places.
You make me smile every day and you love us more than we can ever know.
I\’m so glad you are our critter. The bestest one of all for me.
Love, February

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A lazy morning, the sun is hiding behind the rain. Fresh coffee smell fills the house. Maybe I should make those cinnamon date rolls?
After lingering in bed until I\’m pretty fully awake I get up and wander out of the room. You are reading the news while waiting for bread to turn into crisp toast. The jam and butter sit brightly on the table, ready for your feast.
The hot kettle is simmering and ready for my tea. Maybe I should make banana nut bread?
I take some bread and whatever else strikes my fancy for breakfast.
We sit in companionable silence eating peacefully. You mention an article, I refer to a book, we remember librairies and books our children loved.
Our critter keeps our feet warm and hopes for some tidbit.
Sunday morning bliss.
Love, February

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I\’m on paid leave. I\’m supposed to be on vacation. But as a world class worryer, I wanted to go into work this morning to finish the last few tasks I couldn\’t get done on Friday before I left…
So I went in this morning. It\’s always nice when there are no distractions. I figured I would finish in less than an hour and go meet my family for lunch.
But it is so much more professional to have an automatic reply to emails when you are away from the office. This was my thought. Instead of actually doing the one or five things I had planned, I figured I could set up the automatic reply first.
Bad move. Within seconds I received 500+ emails and who knows how many were sent. My email account shut down and I can\’t even access this mess on my phone anymore. I deleted what I had done and left work without having done anything useful.
When I told my son (the computer guy) about it, he laughed and suggested that maybe I just let it go.
His laughter made me see how absurd this whole situation was. He helped me to start having a real vacation. The kind where you spend time with people you love, who love you and are more than ready to tease you gently.
Exactly what I needed.
Love, February

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Coming home late, a bit tired, no expectations, I walk through the door.
Our critter comes to say hello, because she thinks you and I are beyond wonderful. Especially if we scratch that certain spot.
I put down my things and take off my earrings, grab a glass of water and sit down to relax.
That\’s when I notice. You were thinking of me. You made the bed. You washed the dishes. There\’s a note on the table. You signed with love.
I love you too,
Love, February

Too tired, but I still
Love, February

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Sometimes getting out of bed is a challenge.
Warm covers, relaxed breathing, a lovely comfy feeling. Thoughts that flit and wander like a butterfly in a field of flowers. Possibilities unending that beckon and beguile, but promise nothing.

Turning on the light, ouch. Forcing myself to sit up and start getting dressed instead of dreaming. Going quickly through my morning routine. A routine needed to wrench myself from the dream world that calls me back to sleep every single day.

But the reward is tremendous. I can see the sky and feel the fresh air. Hot tea to warm me up again. So many things to do. I look for the little joys and think of you and realize what a gift today is.

Love, February

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    Love you Ru 💙💛💜♥️
    Have a great February morning/day

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Little gifts that keep me going (in no particular order…):

Clean clothes after a quick shower.
A freshly made salad with lots of different veggies.
Frost that makes a pattern and melts in the sun.
Dog who likes to sleep on my lap the best.
Crisp air and warm hands.
Friends who talk about what they love.
That first cup of tea in the morning.
The second cup of tea in the morning.
Okay, every single cup of tea, ever…
Long walks, especially if the possibility of crunching on autumn leaves is involved.
Chocolate eaten when no one is looking (I swear it tastes better if it\’s eaten in secret!)
A life-changing operation that gave me back my life.
Earrings that bring back memories sweet and sour.
Daffodils and tulips and crocus and snowdrops…
A warm bed at night.
Family, my treasure.
A book that engulfs me.
A friend who listens and then says, \’Enough about you, it\’s my turn…\’

How can my heart not sing?

Love, February

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Today is my brother\’s birthday,
one year older,
and further away.

He was always the eldest,
not an easy job.

He made some mistakes, who hasn\’t?
He worked hard and made it through.

But somehow
without moving an inch
he went far away and then
farther.

A sentimental soul
who started
protecting himself until there were
no cracks to get through.

I miss my brother.

Alone in his fortress.

Love, February

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NO MORE HIDING!!!
I\’M AN ERRAND RUNNER!!!
Yes!

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Just a little something to help Uri @mary to work off stress after fighting bots all day…

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    So many bots, so little time.

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    Bots are on a roll, huh! 😀

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    I forgot to thank you for this ♥

    It’s kinda weird because my sis and I used to visit this kiddie playground in the mall that had this exact game, just to play it.

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@natzillagorilla, I have only found some sad brown leaves so far. They were still crackly though…
💕

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The Vegetarian by Han Kang

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    Thank you, @kerouregan, for recommending this book to me.
    I’m about halfway through and am impressed by the dynamics at work here.
    Disgust is the first word, but also the idea of ownership and individual freedom…
    I am sure it will stay with me for a very long time…. and make me stronger.

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      That’s why I keep it in the toilet, because otherwise I would do something… The husband’s first description of his wife got me so angry and I was like “so that’s what really some guys are thinking…?!” I don’t eat meat and it’s quite complicated for some society to accept but it never went to this extent. What are Buddhist monks considered like, when they don’t touch the most beloved dishes and don’t drink alcohol in korean society?

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        This goes so much farther than meat or no meat for me.

        My first thought was about gay or lesbian or queer kids who are put into indoctrination programs to make them straight.

        This story is about anyone who is a little different and the group mentality that feels it is only right and good to force (beat, rape, coerce, bully, emotionally blackmail…) them into being just like everyone else (according to the same arbiters of social standards).

        One of my brothers has a serious mental illness. He’s my favorite brother because he has such a kind heart.

        I get more than a little upset (okay, I’ll be honest, I get extremely angry) about the kind of behavior this book is dealing with.

        But apparently some people can just say ‘lalalala’ and not hear a thing. They can avert their eyes and not see anything. They would never rock the boat to say anything.

        They are probably really nice.

        I don’t want to be nice. I want to be kind.

        Sorry. End of rant.

        I’ll probably finish the book this evening. It is horrifying and riveting and I want to become a militant of some sort while I am reading it.
        I will be militantly kind. 💕

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          Maybe we’re little puppets in the hands of god’s like in greek mythology… Sometimes it looks like that, it’s so sad and then comes my depression 😉 Didn’t have it for a while, I’ll fight it , can’t think too much otherwise it could hunt me for a while.

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            I understand that things can be too difficult to deal with. I get that. But sometimes we make things worse when we don’t confront the issue which is bothering us. This happens a lot in our beloved k-dramas, doesn’t it?
            I am the same. I do this too. But I find that I feel much better when I am actively trying to be part a positive, constructive response to the things that I dislike. Usually I know that I will have little real impact. It doesn’t matter. I think that every little bit helps. Perhaps the only one I’m saving in the end is me. But hopefully We are all saving each other… someday…
            🤔

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        I also come out in hives at the way that she is never treated as a person. She is only an object that men can hang their wishes, desires, weirdness onto.
        How come no one tries to listen to her or understand her or just respect her choices ??

        This is an important book. I can understand why it won a literary prize.

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          It is an important book and I was surprised it didn’t shake korean society too much. All cultures have different standards and you shouldn’t cross them if you would like to go with a flow, like robots. I watched the movie version of Little Prince with my little son not long time ago and it was wonderfully made. There was the same message but softly put: If you’re different you’re something bad, not normal. Me and my sister were all the time very revolutionary in my family and sometimes I do to myself more harm than good but I don’t like the uniform society and try to fight against the wooden mills like Don Quixote. It’s hard to read this tiny big novel for me as well, because we have empathy and certain experience but for somebody it can be boring because he/she thinks the same as the unjust society well pictured in there.

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            I am so grateful that you suggested it to me!!!

            I hope that when a writer sheds light on an issue with as deft a hand as has been done here, it helps to tip the balance. The choice of telling her story from the the perspective of those around her is BRILLIANT.

            I better get back to the book. I’m wondering where the story will go. Wondering and dreading…

            [Quick question: I am reading the English translation, which is wonderful. Do you think that it is as good in French? Have you read both versions? Should I read it in French before suggesting it to my acquaintances? Also, have you read the other book that has been translated by this author??]

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          I would buy it in english when I’ll go to Ireland or UK, I’ve read only some passages in english, that’s why I ordered it in my nearest bookstore. Because I’m living in France and it was first translated to french I think, but not too recognised, I’m reading it in french. I don’t know why but the syntax of translated books into french is more easy to go through as the ones of french writers.

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            I also live in France!
            I bought it in English through the kobo store for my e-book reader.
            *this is not ppl for e-book readers or distributors!*
            It is often too expensive to buy proper books in English (unless they were written by Paul Auster, JK Rowling or Ken Follett…). *sigh*

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          It reminds me of lot of other books dealing with simmilar issues and one of the classics ones would be Idiot by Dostoevsky or Boule de Suif by Guy de Maupassant.

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            Yes, it is very similar to the Idiot in some ways isn’t it?

            I don’t know why, but I’m not crazy about Maupassant. His writing is gorgeous, but I don’t really like him. Am I missing the point, perhaps?
            *sigh* I’ll have to try reading him again….

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          I’ve read Maupassant in my language when I was like 17 and it made my day at that time. It was very well translated. Oh,17! I would like to come back sometimes to that time. Would change some unwise decisions and would read again Tolstoy’s War and Peace with such appetite as back then 🤧 .

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      Have a good night! It was pleasure for me too. Bisous

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    I started it and am having a hard time getting through it, even though the reviews are good. The writing is excellent, however! Maybe I’ll take it up again.

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    I haven’t read the book, but i did see the movie.
    The movie was disturbing enough, am not sure I want to read it. Let us know how it goes.

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    sigh…that’s such a beautiful poster

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      shhh… *whispers ( I knicked it from the goodreads website…)
      I think it is exactly right for this novel. Thank you!

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Oh dear! I was so busy worrying about being smelly that I haven\’t properly prepared to be a wrongly accused fugitive!!
My list of things to do:
Black cap ☑
Face mask ☑
Map of surveillance cameras ☑

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    What else do I need..?

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    Your local Serial-Killers-Us store will have all your fugitive needs in stock. They are very helpful in outfitting Killers, Errand Boys, and Fugitives. I suspect even Idols use their services for fairly priced incognito disguises needed to move through airports safely.

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    Congrats on levelling up!
    You also need a mode of transportation. I recommend a motorcycle. Just be sure to watch out for Trucks of Doom!

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    That was fast! Congratulations and goodluck! ^^

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    Seems kind of fishy too me how you “jumped” so many levels so suddenly. Perhaps a little Goblin magic was involved.

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      NOTE: No underpants, Goblin or otherwise, were harmed in writing the above post.

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      This is not the first time I’ve seen someone pondering why they seem stuck at a level only to suddenly find themselves promoted. The summoning of Mary may be the key here.

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        I would love to meet Mary. She created the manhole bopping game and trope bingo which are both genius!! 💗 💖 ❤️!!!

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          It is wonderful how things get magically fixed. Someone special must be looking out for us. Thank you for your hard work.
          cc: @mary

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          For the record, there was no bug. I didn’t do anything to bump your profile. Also my replies doesn’t add special points or anything. 🙂

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            Your response seems insensitive for someone sending you a sincere thank you. Was it necessary to assume that I wanted “special points”, whatever those are. My thank was sincerely meant take it as you see fit.

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            @caeparius My reply was to rukia. And it was in reference to her comment in an Open Thread that she sometimes wonders if getting me to reply would add points. I’m sorry if you thought it was insensitive to not accept her thanks, but I don’t like getting credit for things I didn’t do.

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            @mary,
            I guess that is why pencils have erasers.

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          Thank you, @mary.
          I prefer it this way. I’d much rather share notes on dramas we’re watching anyway.
          And I love, love, love your great sense of humor (manhole bopping, trope bingo…)!! 💗

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            Thank you for understanding! ♥ I remembered you saying a month or so back that you were starting work. I figured that explains the slowdown in activity and points. 🙂

            I miss our Jakdoo days too. It seems we’ve gotten real-life-busy around the same time. I haven’t started any new weekend shows yet. Hopefully things settle down by the next batch and we can squee about a mountain man (or some new version) again.

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            Oh @mary, I miss Jak-doo. I could use a soft-hearted, vest wearing, mountain man about now. Robots and serial killers are fun too, but once in awhile character comes along that just grabs you by the squeeish side of your heart.

            P.S. I was just teasing about the summoning, I know you wouldn’t game the system.

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            @egads we have to promise to alert each other if we spot a bumbling squishable ajusshi in any of the shows we’re watching!

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            @mary I promise to send the Squishable Ajusshi Alert Signal as soon as I spot one.

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            @mary! @egads!
            JAK-DOO!!!
            Please include me if you encounter a gem like him again.
            I’m still one of the ahjumma trio because of the huge heart in that drama.
            ❤❤❤❤!!!

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      Shhh!

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    Congrats! 🎉🎊

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    Congrats!

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      Thank you!!

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      Your avatar is kind of neat, it looks like one of those foldable fans. What an awesome coincidence since your alias contains the word “fan”. It is almost like a visual pun.

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        Thanks! It is a foldable fan! The visual just kind of worked out with the name because, well, I’m a fan! 😊

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    Hurray! Do you have some good running shoes and money for food?

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    Congrats…

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