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Thread: Boogie Boarding

  1. #1
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    Boogie Boarding

    I've been hanging around Santa Cruz a bit. Suits me so much better than Monterey. Studying the surfing at Pleasure Point. Made some friends that surf there, dating one of them, very cool scene. So I'm telling them I want to move to Hawaii next summer and devote.

    And they are saying I should spend my first season with a boogie board and fins and just staying in the foam, like a little kid. When they were little they just played in the white water and got their wave sense. Surfing "closeouts". What is a closeout?

    I grew up playing in the surf on the gulf coast, but with no gear whatsoever, so I can kinda see where they're coming from. Be able to ride a lot of little waves easily, close enough to a good break to watch and learn every day, get to know people but stay the fack out of their way, etc.

    There's no rush for me to get on a big wave, if ever. I want to enjoy every step of the journey, wherever it leads. So I wanted to hear maggoty thoughts on the subject. Sounds like a reasonable plan?

    I was planning to get in the water here starting in August, but I have a case of poison oak right now from riding singletrack. Or maybe from looking for my lost disc. Anyway, it's pretty brutal and there's no way I'm putting on a wetsuit right now.

    Oh yeah, one thing I think I've noticed that I wanted to ask about. It seems like the best of the surfers hardly paddle and hardly pop. One or two little strokes and they're in the perfect spot on the wave and the board just seems to drop from under them making room for their legs to stand up. Looks completely effortless if you're clever enough. Not a lot of muscling through the water. Am I seeing that right? What is going on there?

    Thanks, guys.
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    a closeout is a wave that does not peel, just dumps over all at once. no fun. skip the boogie board. it doesn't help you on the progression to surfing. get a small longboard (or "funshape", basically a big shortboard) and find a mellow break and learn how paddle around, stand up, and get your first rides. don't get something too big as it will be a lot of board to handle and manuever around to catch waves. and don't get something too short as it won't have enough float for you.

    regarding paddling in, it's a matter of timing. it takes a lot of practice and familiarity with the break. when you get it right you are not so much pushing yourself up to get on the board as you are pushing the board away (down) from you and getting it under your feet.

    /advice from a guy who hasn't surfed in years

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    Agreed, boogie boarding doesn't help your surfing skill set, but if you have no wave sense, can't see the rip tides, and aren't used to taking a trip through the washing machine, boogie boarding is a less scary transition since you're not going out as far or as deep. Everything is generally smaller and easier, but you'll outgrow it quickly.

    If you do take on boogie boarding to get your ocean sense, stay away from the lineup. Your takeoff point is further inside and you don't want to get run over.
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    Contrary to the above comments, I started boogie boarding about 4 years before I took up surfing. The benefits are what your friends mentioned, foremost being, conditioning, however surfing is a paddling sport so you should also be in a pool swimming a lot, getting a feel for how waves come at you, getting a feel for the ocean, currents, tides, etc. I know there is more, but I am not talking about boogie boarding with kids in the shore break, but swimming out to the biggest shit the surfers are doing. You can take off later, on way gnarlier drops than a stand up surfer can. I had (still have it) a fiberglass body board that is fucking unreal. Stand up surfing rulz, but boogie boarding can be great in the beginning. Once you get your conditioning together, Buy a used longboard that is at least 3 feet taller than you stand. You will pick surfing up quick. Have fun.

    Quote Originally Posted by SheRa View Post
    Oh yeah, one thing I think I've noticed that I wanted to ask about. It seems like the best of the surfers hardly paddle and hardly pop. One or two little strokes and they're in the perfect spot on the wave and the board just seems to drop from under them making room for their legs to stand up. Looks completely effortless if you're clever enough. Not a lot of muscling through the water. Am I seeing that right? What is going on there?

    Thanks, guys.
    On the above observation, this takes years of conditioning / time in the line up to master and quit frankly normally starting very young is a prerequisite. Older guys that have surfed daily forever can still do this, if very fit, but as soon as your packing an extra 20+lbs, forgetaboutit. Starting at our age, you will never do it on a short board, but may get close with many years in the water on a regular basis on a LB.
    Quote Originally Posted by leroy jenkins View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheRa View Post
    Oh yeah, one thing I think I've noticed that I wanted to ask about. It seems like the best of the surfers hardly paddle and hardly pop. One or two little strokes and they're in the perfect spot on the wave and the board just seems to drop from under them making room for their legs to stand up. Looks completely effortless if you're clever enough. Not a lot of muscling through the water. Am I seeing that right? What is going on there?

    Thanks, guys.
    This takes years of surfing. People that surf that way, have incredible wave sense, and amazing muscle memory. They are physically and mentally in sync with the ocean. I have not seen many, if any, people who start at an advanced age get that way. It takes starting young, and really absorbing both the ocean sense, and the physical awareness to surf this way. Most older people just won't ever develop that way. I started when I went to college, and I know exactly what you are seeing, it really seems very simple, but it's not. I don't know anyone who started the way I did who is in sync that way, you just have to start very young.

    That is not meant to discourage you. Surfing is truly awesome, even for someone mediocre like me. Just throw yourself into it, and see what you can do.

    I should add, that I agree about going directly to surfing. If you were 8, I would say start with a boogie board.
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    ^I'm mediocre at surfing and I agree with LDD, it's rare for someone to start later in life and still dial it in. I wouldn't say impossible but top few % of the people in the world have that ability.

    You also need time logged in the water and for most working adults, it's tough because surfing is very tide, wind and swell sensitive. Even if you have a ton of free time to surf, it doesn't mean you will actually have quality waves to practice on.

    Surfing is also a rare sport in that you might actually be standing on a wave measured in seconds, so maybe you have a total of 2-3 minutes per surf session of actually standing up to practice turns, beating sections, making late drops, reading the lineup and other basic things needed to be a competent surfer. Other sports you can log hours of practice per day, like skiing you could lap the mountain all day where as surfing you might be stuck in the rip the entire time and catch 1 wave. Your practice time in surfing is reduced like no other sport that I can think of.

    The dudes that can regularly do the 1-2 stroke paddle in every time are dialed in. Surfing is like walking to them. A lot of surfers can do that every once in a while or pretty regularly but the guys that do it over and over every wave are usually sponsored for a reason. Most normal surfers that are in over their head trying to make a late drop will try to slide in sideways to avoid getting pitched at the peak of the wave (easy to dive your nose if you drop straight), those guys usually paddle just under the lip on purpose about halfway down and then just stand up directly under the barrel. Places like Puerto make this skill a must. Hence the average guy wants nothing to do with big Puerto, it takes consistent skill or beat downs happen when you don't make it and get pitched.
    Last edited by Piggity; 08-02-2011 at 02:25 PM.

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    Mir is stronger than 95% of women (she actually has guns, from doing real actual work, not lifting a phone all day). She will pick up surfing no problem.

    Mir:

    Go to Bolinas and rent a longboard for the day. Seriously. Super mellow waves that can be ridden a long ways. Awesome funky town in a beautiful setting. DO IT.

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    I really don't think guns have shit to do with it. However, I agree with the point about Bolinas. Very good place to get wet the first time. I will say that the man in the grey suit is a problem, but otherwise a perfect beginner break. Brush up on etiquette before heading out.
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    if you want to boogeyboard, buy a boogeyboard. if you want to surf, buy a surfboard.

    as per the effortless pop up, watch how they dunk the tail of their board, to propel them forward into the face, to assist in the takeoff. very effective on a shortboard for an experienced surfer, not something you'll look to master on your longboard in the whitewash though.

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    Piggity Pow said it perfectly.

    I drive to Mammoth 2-3 times a month all winter, and I ski Baldy when I don't go to Mammoth. Because of that, and the fact that it gets dark early in the winter, surfing is now a summer thing for me. I get out about 3 times a week, with usually 1 evening session, and surfing Saturday and Sunday. It really is tough with how fickle surfing is. I can sometimes leave the office early to surf, particularly if I come in early and it is Thurs or Fri, so If I see a pulse for late in the week I will plan things out and get in a nice Thurs or Fri uppers/cottons session. I live in Newport, so I can also get the 6-8 evening session there sometimes. It is tough to be an office monkey and get in enough water time. I would like to get more, but I am happy with what I have. Orange County is so consistent in the summer that I do get a fair number of days. I would like to get out 5 times a week but that just ain't in the cards. I live 5 minutes from the beach, and while that sounds close, getting in evening sessions everyday after work would require living right on the beach. You need to be able to watch it, then sprint out when the wind starts to die.

    I would also agree about the actual time spent riding a wave. We really don't spend much time actually surfing, so it is tough to get enough practice at actuallly riding a wave.

    The surfing/walking thing is accurate too. Those guys just have a physical and mental comfort level that is awesome. I remember some of my buddies at UCSB who were like that. They were really encouraging, and I remember my senior year getting a piece of advice: They told me 'you have gotten so much better, you're really getting it, but the one thing that would really help is to just relax.' It's great advice, but tough to implement. Being able to relax comes from having that comfort level. I'm afraid I will always be stiff.

    But it is still awesome. I feel lucky everyday that I live the way I do. It sounds beyond corny, but we are all lucky to be surfers.
    "Have you ever seen a monk get wildly fucked by a bunch of teenage girls?" "No" "Then forget the monastery."


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    the ocean is a pretty amazing place, especially in the surf zone. being moved by and playing with such powerful energy is pretty cool.

    i recommend spending as much time as possible in the waves. sponge, nada, surfboard, whatever - all the above.... gaining comfort in the surf is a huge thing that mainly comes with watertime. learning to read the waves takes time and is the first big hurdle. imo, you'll 'get it' more easily on a sponge than a surfboard. for those just learning, surfboards are pretty awkward to move around when paddling, especially longboards. you should have a higher wave count on a sponge than a board and that really helps with the 'getting it' of reading the water and catching waves. ime, the only adjults that i've seen easily pick up reading the water are experienced creek boaters. the recommendation about relaxing is key, especially in the spin cycle. when you're in water that doesn't have a lot of crap (i.e. poop, sand, sediment, vegetation/algae) in it, open your eyes when you are underwater. it's pretty awesome and a whole new world.

    when and if you get there, then you'll have a good idea about the quiver of fun ocean toys you'll want.

    the recommendation for bolinas.... i wouldn't go out of your way to go there unless you're in that area for other reasons. it's a hell of a drive from santa cruz. you could be spending hours in the water near your current home in the time that you'd be sitting on a car to get to bolinas.

    have fun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJSapp View Post
    Agreed, boogie boarding doesn't help your surfing skill set, but if you have no wave sense, can't see the rip tides, and aren't used to taking a trip through the washing machine, boogie boarding is a less scary transition since you're not going out as far or as deep. Everything is generally smaller and easier, but you'll outgrow it quickly.

    If you do take on boogie boarding to get your ocean sense, stay away from the lineup. Your takeoff point is further inside and you don't want to get run over.
    How does a riptide look? One day this girl was standing on the shore, way down at seaside with her board under her arm. Her boyfriend was in the water and she said she didn't want to go because it looked "rippy". I couldn't see anything different at all, just a mess of random waves. I asked her if she couldn't just use the rip to help her get out. Can't you do that?

    D@mn the washing machine. Every time I try on a "real wave" this happens and shuts me down. Makes me get out of the water and just go sit on the beach shaking my head and not just to get the water out. Should I just relax in there so I don't get beat up so much, try to swim out later? I have beatered a million times skiing and don't mind it, well in the park it hurts, but other than that I don't care. It's part of the program and I just relax as I go down and then start focusing on getting my skis below me. No biggee.

    That reminds me of another question - can you practice holding your breath and get better at it, like an exercise?

    This "geometry" of the wave and the lineup is something I need to learn. I have no clue. I'll stay away from other people til I understand it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Long duc dong View Post
    They are physically and mentally in sync with the ocean.
    That is beautiful.

    Quote Originally Posted by Piggity POW View Post
    You also need time logged in the water and for most working adults, it's tough because surfing is very tide, wind and swell sensitive. Even if you have a ton of free time to surf, it doesn't mean you will actually have quality waves to practice on.
    Yeah, I gave myself over to skiing, I know what that's about. I spend hours and hours getting to places to ski one single line. I do not miss powder days. I ski any kind of snow. I do not put the almighty dollar first in my life. Surfing will get the time and attention it deserves and I guess I'll receive its gifts in return. All this talk has put me in mind of the complete joy of my childhood days spent where the land meets the sea, the edge of the world. I want it back so badly, have for years now and the urge just gets stronger. California doesn't do it for me, need warm water.

    The break at pleasure point does sometimes step around the corner and give a longer ride. Not everyone milks it like that though, they just step off.

    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    Mir is stronger than 95% of women (she actually has guns, from doing real actual work, not lifting a phone all day). She will pick up surfing no problem.

    Mir:

    Go to Bolinas and rent a longboard for the day. Seriously. Super mellow waves that can be ridden a long ways. Awesome funky town in a beautiful setting. DO IT.
    Would you please just change your name back to Phish? Thank you.

    I'll go if you'll meet me there!

    Yeah, you know I like to be outside. In the real world. I have whatever strength comes from that. I'll get surfing strength by surfing every day. I'm riding my mountain bike about 100 miles/week this summer. I feel like I can go anywhere. So fun.

    Speaking of places to surf, a guy asked me to go down to baja to a place called scorpion bay, looks so cool. Camping. Warm water. Sandy break. Long rides. Fresh fish.

    Maybe sometime. But I'm sticking around here right now. Having a blast.

    Quote Originally Posted by BCJC View Post
    as per the effortless pop up, watch how they dunk the tail of their board, to propel them forward into the face, to assist in the takeoff. very effective on a shortboard for an experienced surfer, not something you'll look to master on your longboard in the whitewash though.
    Now I'm completely confused. I thought you drop the nose to go faster. Mostly because I am retarded slow and try to catch up to the wave by shoving down and it seems to work pretty well on the little stuff I've played on. But mostly my nose catches and that's what puts me in the washing machine on a decent wave. I haven't fooled with this often enough, need to learn.

    Quote Originally Posted by bodywhomper View Post
    the ocean is a pretty amazing place, especially in the surf zone. being moved by and playing with such powerful energy is pretty cool.

    i recommend spending as much time as possible in the waves. sponge, nada, surfboard, whatever - all the above.... gaining comfort in the surf is a huge thing that mainly comes with watertime. learning to read the waves takes time and is the first big hurdle. imo, you'll 'get it' more easily on a sponge than a surfboard. for those just learning, surfboards are pretty awkward to move around when paddling, especially longboards. you should have a higher wave count on a sponge than a board and that really helps with the 'getting it' of reading the water and catching waves. ime, the only adjults that i've seen easily pick up reading the water are experienced creek boaters. the recommendation about relaxing is key, especially in the spin cycle. when you're in water that doesn't have a lot of crap (i.e. poop, sand, sediment, vegetation/algae) in it, open your eyes when you are underwater. it's pretty awesome and a whole new world.

    when and if you get there, then you'll have a good idea about the quiver of fun ocean toys you'll want.

    have fun.
    I love this post. The ocean IS the planet. And the fringe is where life belongs, has always belonged. And the feeling when a swell lifts and carries you, it's like the whole planet is spinning just for you. As sweet as what gravity gives us skiing.

    I'll try to relax, thanks for that advice. And I'll try opening my eyes, hopefully they won't sting from it. Pleasure point has clear water and kelp and rocks, should be interesting. If I ever get myself out in it. I'm pretty sure I can get hooked up with a boogie board and fins in the next couple of weeks. Not sure yet.

    So the quiver/progression I'm seeing is boogie board just for a few times this fall to costco foam in Hawaii next year to funshape. Good? Not so excited about longboard with the handling. I have to think about what I can bike around with as well as what I can manage in the water. That's got me thinking about a bike trailer. Next year I'll worry about that.

    Anyway, you guys are all awesome. Thank you so much for support and advice. I feel like I'm mucking up this forum with all this gaper talk and I've got a million more questions. What surf forum do you recommend where I can lurk and learn?
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
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    think like pushing the board down underwater, tail first, so that it's buoyancy pops it back up and now has momentum. but instead of "down" underwater, it's effective when the wave has walled up and your in the takeoff. so, when the board's buoyancy shoots it back out of the water, it's headed forward and down the face. get it?

    don't trip on it too much, you don't need to know this, just helps explain why some peeps make the takeoff look effortless.

    edit: if you really want to be able to surf at a somewhat comfortable non kooky level, you have to get out there and surf everyday, non of this few times till next year stuff. the term "progress" will be non existent. if you are interested in "trying" surfing, sure, but it takes incredible sacrifice and commitment to actually become just a semblance of a real surfer.
    just a heads up, good luck.
    Last edited by BCJC; 08-03-2011 at 09:05 AM.

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    Like pumping it, or something. I'll keep that in mind and try to see it, never occurred to me. ty

    I've been "trying" surfing for several years, so I feel you. I'll surf every day starting next summer, in Maui. So excited.

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    Learn to surf now. Cause learning in Maui, there can be a price to be paid on the reef and it happens to just about everyone, it seems, especially those who are learning.

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    Quote Originally Posted by splat View Post
    Learn to surf now. Cause learning in Maui, there can be a price to be paid on the reef and it happens to just about everyone, it seems, especially those who are learning.
    I doubt I'll be ready for the pipeline in a couple of months.

    So sorry I missed you in Santa Cruz. Are you coming back out?
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
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  17. #17
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    The reef is almost anywhere a good break is. You'll be able to see it through the foot or two of water you'll be riding over it on. I was a body surfer mostly. Unlike most surfing beginners, I started out learning to surf at the harbor at low tide and about shit my shorts when I wound up on the reef with my skag dragging and the wana everywhere. I was running 20 miles a day back then and I needed every bit of the lung capacity I built up running for hanging out in the washing machine. Sometimes a weird wave can hold you down for what seems far more than an eternity. Watch Blue Crush and you'll be all dialed in.

    No more SC this summer. But I'd recommend a trip up the Coast to Bonny Dune Beach and further up to Gazos Creek for lunch at the little restaurant there. Love that stretch of coastline.

  18. #18
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    How does a riptide look? One day this girl was standing on the shore, way down at seaside with her board under her arm. Her boyfriend was in the water and she said she didn't want to go because it looked "rippy". I couldn't see anything different at all, just a mess of random waves. I asked her if she couldn't just use the rip to help her get out. Can't you do that?
    Yes, you can use the rip to get out. Just make sure you exit the escalator before you're taken too far. Big rips can be dangerous and very hard to exit. A prime example of riding a rip out to the break is when you surf a jetty, usually the best place to paddle out is right next to the jetty. You ride the escalator out to the lineup since the rip will form directly between the jetty and the peak of the wave.

    Long shore currents can sometimes be as dangerous as rips. Especially if you're surfing a place where there are limited spots to exit the water, you can get swept past your exit spot. Not good if the next spot to exit is half mile down the coast and it's getting dark. Talk about solitude

    I'm sure there are better pics out there but I found this one on a quick google search. Usually rips will be appear choppy, unorganized, sometimes they appear like a sandstorm beneath the surface. They can be easy to spot or pretty difficult, it really depends on the day

    Last edited by Piggity; 08-03-2011 at 10:38 PM.

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    Not to be a dick but, why don't you ask the surf dude you're dating these questions?
    I think you have me confused with someone who is far less awesome.

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    advres, do you surf?
    Last edited by SheRa; 08-04-2011 at 05:58 AM.
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
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    Quote Originally Posted by splat View Post
    The reef is almost anywhere a good break is. You'll be able to see it through the foot or two of water you'll be riding over it on. I was a body surfer mostly. Unlike most surfing beginners, I started out learning to surf at the harbor at low tide and about shit my shorts when I wound up on the reef with my skag dragging and the wana everywhere. I was running 20 miles a day back then and I needed every bit of the lung capacity I built up running for hanging out in the washing machine. Sometimes a weird wave can hold you down for what seems far more than an eternity.
    Aw that sounds awful. Pobresito. I got bruised up pretty bad boogie boarding on Kauai years ago, but no laceration. Actually been studying the tide reports for that very reason, looks like you get about two extra feet of water above the reef at high. Pleasure point is all rocks too as I'm sure you know, so I just have to deal.

    So I've been looking at Launiopoko Park for my first break, have you been over there? How was that? I don't want to surf the harbor every day, seems like Ocean Beach in San Diego, crowded and maybe polluted.
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Piggity POW View Post
    ...
    Usually rips will be appear choppy, unorganized, sometimes they appear like a sandstorm beneath the surface. They can be easy to spot or pretty difficult, it really depends on the day
    ...
    Mahalo
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by advres View Post
    Not to be a dick but, why don't you ask the surf dude you're dating these questions?
    Have you ever tried to teach your sig. o. how to ski/snowboard/climb/bike/anything and had it work out well? If you answered yes, you're luckier than most.
    Putting the "core" in corporate, one turn at a time.

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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheRa View Post
    Mahalo
    He mea iki

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    Quote Originally Posted by SheRa View Post
    advres, do you surf?
    Not well but I've been know to get out a few times a year around here.

    Quote Originally Posted by hop View Post
    Have you ever tried to teach your sig. o. how to ski/snowboard/climb/bike/anything and had it work out well? If you answered yes, you're luckier than most.
    The main reason for my question is the lingo. She said she was told to spend time in closeouts and then asks us what closeouts are. So I asked why she didn't immediately upon hearing a word from her friends she did not understand and just ask them instead of wait and ask us intartards.
    I think you have me confused with someone who is far less awesome.

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