Moms and Maids

FMIL B-Listing Vent

Not really a question, just a vent... FMIL is suuuuuuper unhappy that we won't "B-list" some additional guests since we've recently found out a few of our invited guests won't be attending.  To be fair, we haven't actually sent out invites yet, we just had three different couples happen to mention to FMIL they wouldn't be able to make it... and so, after much drama even getting her to come around on our smaller guest list in the first place, she obviously calls us up and has several people she wants to invite in light of this new information.  I don't know if this really technically constitutes B-listing since all of this is taking place before invitations have been mailed, but to me it's B-listing in spirit and best and at worst a really dumb idea because the couples who are planning on not coming right now are perfectly within their rights to still change their minds when they do get their invites!  

But anyway, FMIL is now crying to FI, complaining that "we're not the ones who are going to have to deal with the awkwardness" of not inviting said guests that she suddenly wants to invite, and just being generally difficult and manipulative.  FI is standing firm, but I can tell it's hard on him when his mom is literally on the phone crying over this.

Sidenote: my parents very generously offered to pay for the entirety of our wedding as long as we kept it below a certain number of guests, which was actually a way bigger number than what FI and I came up with when we made our initial guest list of who we felt we must include.  Cut to today and we are at nearly double the number that FI and I came up with, and also significantly over the number initially specified by my parents (though not so much so that they didn't still insist they would be able to cover it).  The thing that annoys the begeezus out of me is that FILs have constantly tried to add more guests based on the logic that "they'll cover the plate" for every additional person they want to invite.  Am I the only one that thinks this is SO RUDE?  For one thing, the cost of a guest is significantly more than the cost of their plate, and for another thing, even if they were completely covering the entire cost of adding that guest, I just find it to be in bad taste to divide up paying for a wedding this way (as in, basically we'll just pay for the people we want to be there).  Maybe that part is just me.  UGH.  Vent over.

Re: FMIL B-Listing Vent

  • Glad you got that vent out of your system, way better than getting an ulcer over it.  Yes, you are right and your FMIL is wrong, but the hard part will be sticking to your guns.  And...for heaven's sake, why didn't she offer up any money prior to wanting to add guests?  That's just a shot at bribery, plain and simple, because her emotional antics are not working on her son.  B-listing, in any manner is rude and hurtful and people know that they are on the B list.  
    MairePoppyLadyLawliet95
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I'd just keep reminding her that the guest list is closed and that yes, the awkwardness of not inviting said guests is not your problem because you did not indicate to them that they would be invited in the first place.
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Not really a question, just a vent... FMIL is suuuuuuper unhappy that we won't "B-list" some additional guests since we've recently found out a few of our invited guests won't be attending.  To be fair, we haven't actually sent out invites yet, we just had three different couples happen to mention to FMIL they wouldn't be able to make it... and so, after much drama even getting her to come around on our smaller guest list in the first place, she obviously calls us up and has several people she wants to invite in light of this new information.  I don't know if this really technically constitutes B-listing since all of this is taking place before invitations have been mailed, but to me it's B-listing in spirit and best and at worst a really dumb idea because the couples who are planning on not coming right now are perfectly within their rights to still change their minds when they do get their invites!  

    But anyway, FMIL is now crying to FI, complaining that "we're not the ones who are going to have to deal with the awkwardness" of not inviting said guests that she suddenly wants to invite, and just being generally difficult and manipulative.  FI is standing firm, but I can tell it's hard on him when his mom is literally on the phone crying over this.

    Sidenote: my parents very generously offered to pay for the entirety of our wedding as long as we kept it below a certain number of guests, which was actually a way bigger number than what FI and I came up with when we made our initial guest list of who we felt we must include.  Cut to today and we are at nearly double the number that FI and I came up with, and also significantly over the number initially specified by my parents (though not so much so that they didn't still insist they would be able to cover it).  The thing that annoys the begeezus out of me is that FILs have constantly tried to add more guests based on the logic that "they'll cover the plate" for every additional person they want to invite.  Am I the only one that thinks this is SO RUDE?  For one thing, the cost of a guest is significantly more than the cost of their plate, and for another thing, even if they were completely covering the entire cost of adding that guest, I just find it to be in bad taste to divide up paying for a wedding this way (as in, basically we'll just pay for the people we want to be there).  Maybe that part is just me.  UGH.  Vent over.

    Ditto PPs.  Give your FI some lines to tell his mom when she starts crying about the guest list again.  Also, encourage him to hang up when she starts talking about the guest list and your FI has had enough.  "Mom, the guest list to our wedding has been closed and will not be altered any further.  I love you and I'm sorry that you don't agree with the guest list, but its the guest list that FI and I want.  Goodbye."  Then hang up the phone or leave the room.  She will soon come to realize that trying to talk about the guest list will get her no where.
    [Deleted User]MairePoppy
  • My FILs are doing the opposite they are saying not to invite people because either they won't come so "Save your dollar for the stamp" or why would you invite them "You won't get back the plate".
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • My FILs are doing the opposite they are saying not to invite people because either they won't come so "Save your dollar for the stamp" or why would you invite them "You won't get back the plate".
    Ugh. That's a crappy attitude, too. So they only want to invite people who will "get back the plate"? 
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  • scribe95 said:
    Also the cover the plate thing doesn't make any sense. After all, your parents are paying but not getting the gifts. Two separate entities.
    I took "cover their plate" to mean that FMIL is saying she will pay for the extra people she wants to invite, not that gifts would cover those costs.  

  • scribe95 said:

    Also the cover the plate thing doesn't make any sense. After all, your parents are paying but not getting the gifts. Two separate entities.

    I took "cover their plate" to mean that FMIL is saying she will pay for the extra people she wants to invite, not that gifts would cover those costs.  

    Yes, so sorry if this was unclear- I meant cover the cost of their dinner, i.e. cover their (dinner) plate. Which is like, $50 tops... no mention of covering the cost of their open bar, extra capacity for the venue, favors etc. Ughhhhh.

    Here's my question- she says these guests that she wants to add (extended family and distant family friends) will simply NOT understand the concept of us having a small wedding- FI is in his second year of dental school and I am a first year teacher so to me if I were looking at anyone else in our situation I would be surprised if they were doing anything but a small wedding! Maybe she's right and people really do feel more entitled to an invitation than I realize... but that's still not my problem.
    southernbelle0915
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    scribe95 said:
    Also the cover the plate thing doesn't make any sense. After all, your parents are paying but not getting the gifts. Two separate entities.
    Here's my question- she says these guests that she wants to add (extended family and distant family friends) will simply NOT understand the concept of us having a small wedding
    That's their problem. What they do or don't understand doesn't obligate you to invite them even if she offers to pay for them.
  • Girl, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

    My fiancé and I are paying for the wedding on our own.  We are sending out 140 invitations with the 75% rule in mind which puts us at approximately 105.  Then our wedding party is 25, so we want to keep things around 130.  We said that upfront, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it.  My FMIL freaked out because she alone has 45 first cousins.  (I mean what?!? That's just insane, and my fiancé hasn't even met all of them, much less their children, or their children's children.)  So the breakdown we gave her for invites was 80 for fiancé's family and family friends, 20 for my family and family friends, and 40 for our mutual friends which equals 140 invited - hopefully 105ish "yes"replies.  THAT'S IT!  If she wants to throw a few grand into the budget, I'd considering upping the guest list to 150 total, but I have extreme anxiety and panic disorder.  I don't want to be meeting people for the first time on my wedding day!  And I say a few grand because that changes the size of tent we need to rent, the size of the cake, the bar tab, the rentals for chairs, tables, linens, more centerpieces, more favors, more plates and silverware either bought or rented - we haven't decided yet, larger dance floor, more invitations... the list goes ON AND ON.  It isn't simply the cost of adding an extra number to the catering count.

    She has decided she is going to throw a "second reception" and invite whoever she wants because we are being so offensive by not inviting EVERYONE on her list.  So we said go for it.  Plan your own party.  We will be there.  It isn't worth the fight.

    It is your wedding and since your family is paying, the guest list is ultimately only up to you, fiancé, and your parents.  She gets her allotted amount of people, and that's that.  Maybe I sound bitter, but I think OP fully understands my saltiness.  Weddings bring out all the crazy!  Good luck!
  • scribe95 said:
    Also the cover the plate thing doesn't make any sense. After all, your parents are paying but not getting the gifts. Two separate entities.
    I took "cover their plate" to mean that FMIL is saying she will pay for the extra people she wants to invite, not that gifts would cover those costs.  
    Yes, so sorry if this was unclear- I meant cover the cost of their dinner, i.e. cover their (dinner) plate. Which is like, $50 tops... no mention of covering the cost of their open bar, extra capacity for the venue, favors etc. Ughhhhh. Here's my question- she says these guests that she wants to add (extended family and distant family friends) will simply NOT understand the concept of us having a small wedding- FI is in his second year of dental school and I am a first year teacher so to me if I were looking at anyone else in our situation I would be surprised if they were doing anything but a small wedding! Maybe she's right and people really do feel more entitled to an invitation than I realize... but that's still not my problem.
    I believe it was SouthernBelle who said it sounded like she told them they were invited already. I agree on this & if so it's her problem. If you want to help her save face, tell her that she needs to tell her people who, according to her, lack the sense to realize you are not REQUIRED to be invited to every wedding & people DO choose to have smaller weddings, that she can simply explain to them that while you'd enjoy their company, the venue won't allow for more people due to space.
  • edited September 2014
    eshaney said:
    Girl, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

    My fiancé and I are paying for the wedding on our own.  We are sending out 140 invitations with the 75% rule in mind which puts us at approximately 105.  Then our wedding party is 25, so we want to keep things around 130.  We said that upfront, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it.  My FMIL freaked out because she alone has 45 first cousins.  (I mean what?!? That's just insane, and my fiancé hasn't even met all of them, much less their children, or their children's children.)  So the breakdown we gave her for invites was 80 for fiancé's family and family friends, 20 for my family and family friends, and 40 for our mutual friends which equals 140 invited - hopefully 105ish "yes"replies.  THAT'S IT!  If she wants to throw a few grand into the budget, I'd considering upping the guest list to 150 total, but I have extreme anxiety and panic disorder.  I don't want to be meeting people for the first time on my wedding day!  And I say a few grand because that changes the size of tent we need to rent, the size of the cake, the bar tab, the rentals for chairs, tables, linens, more centerpieces, more favors, more plates and silverware either bought or rented - we haven't decided yet, larger dance floor, more invitations... the list goes ON AND ON.  It isn't simply the cost of adding an extra number to the catering count.

    She has decided she is going to throw a "second reception" and invite whoever she wants because we are being so offensive by not inviting EVERYONE on her list.  So we said go for it.  Plan your own party.  We will be there.  It isn't worth the fight.

    It is your wedding and since your family is paying, the guest list is ultimately only up to you, fiancé, and your parents.  She gets her allotted amount of people, and that's that.  Maybe I sound bitter, but I think OP fully understands my saltiness.  Weddings bring out all the crazy!  Good luck!







    ETF: broken boxes

    This could backfire horribly. I hope you can fit those extras in your venue and afford them all if you get 80, 90, or 100% attendance. It's happened to brides before.
    image
    southernbelle0915
  • So the cover your plate rule--I am actually doing that with my parents and it's working well. I told them I was paying $5K towards my wedding, and my guest list was ~30 people since that's all we could afford. Dress, caterer and venue, hair makeup, and all the rest came out to the price I set. 

    If my parents wanted to up the guest list by 100 people by inviting my entire enormous extended family, and have it at a nicer venue, they could...but they were paying the difference. I would meet them part way and cut my plans from open bar to beer/wine plus a signature drink and do my best to find other cost savings. If this wouldn't work for them,  my fiance and I were taking the money we planned to spend on our wedding and using it to elope on an exotic beach somewhere.

    What helps is both my fiance and I are stubborn, independent adults, and have to pulled this type of stuff before, so it wasn't an idle threat. Plus my parents aren't totally crazy. That helps too...
  • erinemm said:
    So the cover your plate rule--I am actually doing that with my parents and it's working well. I told them I was paying $5K towards my wedding, and my guest list was ~30 people since that's all we could afford. Dress, caterer and venue, hair makeup, and all the rest came out to the price I set. 

    If my parents wanted to up the guest list by 100 people by inviting my entire enormous extended family, and have it at a nicer venue, they could...but they were paying the difference. I would meet them part way and cut my plans from open bar to beer/wine plus a signature drink and do my best to find other cost savings. If this wouldn't work for them,  my fiance and I were taking the money we planned to spend on our wedding and using it to elope on an exotic beach somewhere.

    What helps is both my fiance and I are stubborn, independent adults, and have to pulled this type of stuff before, so it wasn't an idle threat. Plus my parents aren't totally crazy. That helps too...


    SITB

    Keep in mind that those extra hundred people don't just need their plates covered, they need linens, drinks,  centerpieces, favors, cake, invitations, postage, and don't forget the gratuities on the meals either - that is probably another 20% or so.
  • erinemm said:
    So the cover your plate rule--I am actually doing that with my parents and it's working well. I told them I was paying $5K towards my wedding, and my guest list was ~30 people since that's all we could afford. Dress, caterer and venue, hair makeup, and all the rest came out to the price I set. 

    If my parents wanted to up the guest list by 100 people by inviting my entire enormous extended family, and have it at a nicer venue, they could...but they were paying the difference. I would meet them part way and cut my plans from open bar to beer/wine plus a signature drink and do my best to find other cost savings. If this wouldn't work for them,  my fiance and I were taking the money we planned to spend on our wedding and using it to elope on an exotic beach somewhere.

    What helps is both my fiance and I are stubborn, independent adults, and have to pulled this type of stuff before, so it wasn't an idle threat. Plus my parents aren't totally crazy. That helps too...
    This isn't the cover your plate rule....

    The cover your plate rule is when a guest gives a wedding gift (generally cash) large enough to cover the cost of their meal/expenses at the wedding. 

    It's against etiquette for a B&G to expect that guests will "cover their plates" in the form of a gift. And from the guest perspective, you never really know how much was spent on you so it's a crap shoot even if you try. It's basically a rude, stupid thing that needs to die.
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  • marie2785marie2785 member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited September 2014
    scribe and southernbelle--interesting, as in my social group and family "cover your plate" actually refers to when parents or others cover the plate of the people they invite (e.g. an uncle paid for his daughter's date's plate at a cousin's wedding recently where he felt strongly the date should attend). I think it can mean more than one thing depending on the context, and since people demanding to bring others is an issue at ALOT of weddings at my friend/family group, we use this definition. But if in this board it only has the one definition, I'll use that one going forward. kmmssg: thats why setting the top line you're paying ahead of time is the way to go, vs having parents only cover the food/drinks of the people. By setting a $5K limit, even if those extra 100 people have other indirect costs like cake, tables, etc, it's falling on my parents and FI's parents to pay for. We figured out the wedding we could afford (30 person backyard bbq with caterers at our house!),and proposed we do that. Since that wasn't acceptable to my parents, anything above and beyond (aka the 150-200 person wedding at a fancy country club) is not our problem to pay for as long as we chip in our $5K.
  • Yeah it must be something that varies regionally or in certain circles, because I definitely have only heard it used in terms of "cover the cost of that persons dinner", but the alternate meaning (guests are expected to give gifts that equal the cost of their dinner) makes sense too... and both are just a bad way to think about your wedding guests, in my opinion. To conclude this story, so as many people suggested we just tried to stand firm and repeat OVER AND OVER that we're sorry but the guest list is not up for discussion anymore. As I suspected would happen, she would not drop it until FI basically came down hard on her about it- as in, we are not going to talk to you anymore from now until the wedding if you can't control yourself from bringing this up anymore. More tears, melodramatic statements like "So are your father and I even invited? Is your sister still invited" (just generally acting like we were being heartless and unreasonable in not inviting the people she wanted us to), but we haven't heard about it since so I guess the tough-love approach worked! Sad side note: one group of people FMIL and FFIL were just horrified we weren't inviting was a group of FI's high school best friends, who we see 1-2 times a year now and are no longer close with. I can't remember if I posted about this in a different thread, but long story short, these guys visit with FI's parents somewhat frequently and were apparently always saying things like how they are so excited for the wedding- assuming they were invited when we were never even considering including them. I know you aren't supposed to straight-up tell people they aren't invited to something, but it was putting FMIL and FFIL in a bad position with those guys going over there talking about the wedding and them not knowing how to respond once they learned we were not planning on inviting them, so we decided the best thing to do was have FI reach out and say something to spare FMIL and FFIL from having to do it when they didn't even agree with us not inviting them. FI messaged all of the guys and basically said, "Hey- my parents tell me you are really excited about MostHappy and I getting married, and that means a lot to us. We're basically just having a very small, family-only wedding but we'd love to go out with you some night when you're in town for drinks or dinner and celebrate together." FI has not heard a word from any of them since, and one of them even unfriended me on FB. Sooooo moral of the story, I guess FMIL IS right on some level that random people will feel ridiculously entitled to be invited to your wedding and make it very awkward if you don't. Which is really dumb in my opinion.
  • I feel for you. I had to put my foot down over and over again with FMIL. She kept b-listing people, but she over-invited in the first place after we told her the final amount we could invite, so when she sent out b-list invites without asking us it meant she kept the number ballooned over the amount our venue could hold. 

    We had to tell her many times before it finally stuck. It wasn't easy. 
  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    eshaney said:
    Girl, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

    My fiancé and I are paying for the wedding on our own.  We are sending out 140 invitations with the 75% rule in mind which puts us at approximately 105.  Then our wedding party is 25, so we want to keep things around 130.  We said that upfront, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it.  My FMIL freaked out because she alone has 45 first cousins.  (I mean what?!? That's just insane, and my fiancé hasn't even met all of them, much less their children, or their children's children.)  So the breakdown we gave her for invites was 80 for fiancé's family and family friends, 20 for my family and family friends, and 40 for our mutual friends which equals 140 invited - hopefully 105ish "yes"replies.  THAT'S IT!  If she wants to throw a few grand into the budget, I'd considering upping the guest list to 150 total, but I have extreme anxiety and panic disorder.  I don't want to be meeting people for the first time on my wedding day!  And I say a few grand because that changes the size of tent we need to rent, the size of the cake, the bar tab, the rentals for chairs, tables, linens, more centerpieces, more favors, more plates and silverware either bought or rented - we haven't decided yet, larger dance floor, more invitations... the list goes ON AND ON.  It isn't simply the cost of adding an extra number to the catering count.

    She has decided she is going to throw a "second reception" and invite whoever she wants because we are being so offensive by not inviting EVERYONE on her list.  So we said go for it.  Plan your own party.  We will be there.  It isn't worth the fight.

    It is your wedding and since your family is paying, the guest list is ultimately only up to you, fiancé, and your parents.  She gets her allotted amount of people, and that's that.  Maybe I sound bitter, but I think OP fully understands my saltiness.  Weddings bring out all the crazy!  Good luck!
    There is no 75% rule.  People can and do have 95-100% attendance at their weddings all the time.  You need to be prepared to host every single person that you invite if necessary - prepared both financially and in terms of space at your venue.



    [Deleted User]
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Viczaesar said:
    eshaney said:
    Girl, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

    My fiancé and I are paying for the wedding on our own.  We are sending out 140 invitations with the 75% rule in mind which puts us at approximately 105.  Then our wedding party is 25, so we want to keep things around 130.  We said that upfront, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it.  My FMIL freaked out because she alone has 45 first cousins.  (I mean what?!? That's just insane, and my fiancé hasn't even met all of them, much less their children, or their children's children.)  So the breakdown we gave her for invites was 80 for fiancé's family and family friends, 20 for my family and family friends, and 40 for our mutual friends which equals 140 invited - hopefully 105ish "yes"replies.  THAT'S IT!  If she wants to throw a few grand into the budget, I'd considering upping the guest list to 150 total, but I have extreme anxiety and panic disorder.  I don't want to be meeting people for the first time on my wedding day!  And I say a few grand because that changes the size of tent we need to rent, the size of the cake, the bar tab, the rentals for chairs, tables, linens, more centerpieces, more favors, more plates and silverware either bought or rented - we haven't decided yet, larger dance floor, more invitations... the list goes ON AND ON.  It isn't simply the cost of adding an extra number to the catering count.

    She has decided she is going to throw a "second reception" and invite whoever she wants because we are being so offensive by not inviting EVERYONE on her list.  So we said go for it.  Plan your own party.  We will be there.  It isn't worth the fight.

    It is your wedding and since your family is paying, the guest list is ultimately only up to you, fiancé, and your parents.  She gets her allotted amount of people, and that's that.  Maybe I sound bitter, but I think OP fully understands my saltiness.  Weddings bring out all the crazy!  Good luck!
    There is no 75% rule.  People can and do have 95-100% attendance at their weddings all the time.  You need to be prepared to host every single person that you invite if necessary - prepared both financially and in terms of space at your venue.

    Viczaesar said:
    eshaney said:
    Girl, I FEEL YOUR PAIN!

    My fiancé and I are paying for the wedding on our own.  We are sending out 140 invitations with the 75% rule in mind which puts us at approximately 105.  Then our wedding party is 25, so we want to keep things around 130.  We said that upfront, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it.  My FMIL freaked out because she alone has 45 first cousins.  (I mean what?!? That's just insane, and my fiancé hasn't even met all of them, much less their children, or their children's children.)  So the breakdown we gave her for invites was 80 for fiancé's family and family friends, 20 for my family and family friends, and 40 for our mutual friends which equals 140 invited - hopefully 105ish "yes"replies.  THAT'S IT!  If she wants to throw a few grand into the budget, I'd considering upping the guest list to 150 total, but I have extreme anxiety and panic disorder.  I don't want to be meeting people for the first time on my wedding day!  And I say a few grand because that changes the size of tent we need to rent, the size of the cake, the bar tab, the rentals for chairs, tables, linens, more centerpieces, more favors, more plates and silverware either bought or rented - we haven't decided yet, larger dance floor, more invitations... the list goes ON AND ON.  It isn't simply the cost of adding an extra number to the catering count.

    She has decided she is going to throw a "second reception" and invite whoever she wants because we are being so offensive by not inviting EVERYONE on her list.  So we said go for it.  Plan your own party.  We will be there.  It isn't worth the fight.

    It is your wedding and since your family is paying, the guest list is ultimately only up to you, fiancé, and your parents.  She gets her allotted amount of people, and that's that.  Maybe I sound bitter, but I think OP fully understands my saltiness.  Weddings bring out all the crazy!  Good luck!
    There is no 75% rule.  People can and do have 95-100% attendance at their weddings all the time.  You need to be prepared to host every single person that you invite if necessary - prepared both financially and in terms of space at your venue.
    We had a 96% attendance at our wedding so if we had planned according to the 75% rule we would have been fucked!

    [Deleted User]Viczaesarkmmssg
  • regarding the alleged "75% rule": at our wedding, 90% of the invited guests were OOT...like VERY OOT, like "had to fly or drive 8+ hours to get here, and stay at a hotel all weekend" OOT.  We STILL had 80% acceptance.  NEVER EVER assume that 25% of your invited guests will decline...they probably won't, especially if most of them are local.  make sure you can afford and accomodate 100% of your guest list before you send invites, just to be safe.
    [Deleted User]southernbelle0915
  • My FMIL wants to do this as well. We are inviting 100% capacity right now - 200 people. We know a lot of their family will not be attending via verbal declines once STDs went out, so FMIL immediately started with "Are you going to send out more invitations if people decline?" and I just laugh and tell her my father would be very pleased if we had declines, and that no we don't seriously intend to send out a second round of invites. She has asked a couple times, and we know she has some friends she wants to invite just cause "it would be so fun!" but we give her the same response. Stand your ground!
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