ERDNASE

Discuss general aspects of Genii.
Bill Mullins
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Re: Erdnase

Postby Bill Mullins » March 23rd, 2011, 12:20 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote: That the printer sent someone to meet the artist to demonstrate some sleights for the first section.


But what about the illustrations for the magic section(s)? Did the printer send someone else to demonstrate those (not supported by Smith's recollections)? Or did the same person model for those illustrations as well? (If so, then he was competent in gambling sleights as well as conjuring -- therefore why couldn't that person have been able to write competently both the gambling and conjuring sections of the book?)

Magic Fred
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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 12:21 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Magic Fred wrote:
Jonathan Townsend wrote:My recent posts are about treating the text as something assembled by the printer. That the printer sent someone to meet the artist to demonstrate some sleights for the first section.


flights of fancy...


yes, I will review to see if that could have been the printer himself.


Perhaps the illustrator was a plant, and his recollections were purposely obfuscated. Seems to comply with your application of Occam's Razor, and your reasoning in general.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Bill Mullins » March 23rd, 2011, 12:23 pm

Geno Munari wrote: Yet there are no drawings on the sections on mentalism, i.e. the set-up deck (Eight Kings). Maybe because the writing was completed after the first section was finished by a different writer? It just doesnt follow. Non sequitur.


There are no drawings on the section of mentalism/8K because the topic (mentalism) is one that doesn't lend itself to explanation via artwork.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 12:24 pm

Billfred,

Do you believe the magic section is of a piece with the advantage play section? A graduate course? The entire calendar of options set before the advanced student?

Jon


Bill - I'm likely in agreement about illustrations not being needed in the mentalism section. I'm in the middle of a huge reading of Clarke for the "magic/technology" item but will review that in in the erdnase text.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 1:24 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Billfred,

Do you believe the magic section is of a piece with the advantage play section? A graduate course? The entire calendar of options set before the advanced student?

Jon


Again your logic is flawed. The Legerdemain section probably isn't, and probably wasn't intended to be, a "post-graduate" course. Nor was it intended to present "the entire calendar... " Or maybe it was. Either way, so what?

This no more suggests multiple authors than it suggests one author who was a gambler with an interest in magic.

If you are suggesting the magic section indicates a less accomplished author... then I'd suggest that this no more indicates multiple authors than a single author who knew more about gambling than he did about magic.

At face value, the book was written by a gambler who had some sort of interest in card tricks. I have yet to see a shred of even mildly persuasive evidence to suggest anything to the contrary.

Analysing the language, tone and attitudes, I find both sections to be convincingly consistent. Overwhelmingly so.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 1:41 pm

Still conflating the arguments.

I posted that IMHO the tricks section does not justify inclusion or a pseudonym and that it felt out of place given the nature of the introduction.

One might argue that a book which was congruent to the introduction would describe the observed hows and their tells rather than offer instruction on how-to or why.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 1:47 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Still conflating the arguments.

I posted that IMHO the tricks section does not justify inclusion or a pseudonym and that it felt out of place given the nature of the introduction.



Yes, and even were this verifiably true, how would it suggest multiple authors more than it would suggest a gambler who knew more about cheating than he did about magic? Or a gambler who thought that adding a section on card tricks might help increase sales?

I just don't see how any of this increases the probability of there being multiple authors over a single author.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 2:03 pm

You still haven't substantiated any of your reasoning. You have given a number of points and made a leap in each case to the assertion that the case for multiple authors has been advanced.

I posed some questions in a previous message, which you completely ignored.

Lets break it down then. One of your unintelligible arguments was regarding the use of a pseudonym.

" ...put in question by the use of a fairly obvious fiction in place of the author's name ... "

Please explain how this furthers the case for multiple authorship.

I don't believe it does, and I don't believe you would argue that it does. I can only guess that you are suggesting that the use of such an obvious pseudonym indicates that it wasn't used in order to hide anybody's identity. If that is the case, then please clarify and we can move on to your other claims of evidence for multiple authorship.

P.S. I think the pseudonym tells us absolutely nothing. In the absence of further evidence we just don't know why someone would decide on such a thing. Of course, he (if it was a single author) would not be so naive to think that nobody would crack his code... but maybe he was more concerned about his name coming up in searchable indexes or something like that? The simple reversal would be adequate to relieve such concerns. But we don't even need a logical reason... maybe he just wanted to, maybe he was paying homage to a favourite author in some other discipline who published under a reversed name.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 2:19 pm

maybe that's just more fantasy, Fred.

If we stick to the facts - what is simpler than a printer cobbling together a manuscript and selling it?
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 2:26 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:maybe that's just more fantasy, Fred.

If we stick to the facts - what is simpler than a printer cobbling together a manuscript and selling it?


Dear god. Given the contents of the book, almost anything is simpler...

Sticking to the facts, what on earth would cause you to jump to that assumption?

How's this for simpler: a gambler wrote a book on cheating and added a section of card tricks to help increase sales.

Keep digging my friend, keep digging.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 2:38 pm

Let's go with the gambler hypothesis. A few games winnings with those hard won skills compared to what one might gain in royalties on a book - so, IMHO not an advantage player.

That puts two further hypotheses to the test as well- from which you may conclude...
1) hard won skills tested how?
2) introduction is to be taken at face value?

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 3:34 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Let's go with the gambler hypothesis. A few games winnings with those hard won skills compared to what one might gain in royalties on a book - so, IMHO not an advantage player.

That puts two further hypotheses to the test as well- from which you may conclude...
1) hard won skills tested how?
2) introduction is to be taken at face value?


Still avoiding all previous questions.

You are basing this whole thing on the assumption that a real gambler couldn't possibly "need the money."

A pretty flimsy case, that needs no refutation from me! Others, if they have the patience and will, may knock down this assumption for you. For now, I'm happy to rest my case. I think the decision will be unanimous...

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 3:52 pm

I'm not pleading a case Magic Fred. Just exploring a simple hypothesis - what if the printer did it. No magic unfound expert named "erdnase". The hook of a reversed name rejected as bait for the "clever" spat out and "Andrews" left as "whatever" to be addressed later as detail rather than central mystery. Free to examine the text and untangle its mysteries wherever they lead.

My issues with the text are simply about the text as a whole. IMHO it's cobbled together. The introduction does not relate to the approach of the advantage section or justify the inclusion of the tricks section IMHO.

Add into the situation that there's no direct evidence for an author (beyond what appears to some as a reversed name on the page once) - I'm fine with my hypothesis.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 23rd, 2011, 4:06 pm

Fair enough, then let's move on to: what if Edwin Sachs did it?

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 23rd, 2011, 5:45 pm

Interesting idea about other magicians. I expect to explore that area after the Clarke project. If folks have Sachs's work in text form they can try out that program and see what sort of textual statistical match it comes up with. My plan on that is to start with random snippets of various sizes from the erdnase text and look at what it finds in comparison to get a base measure of within text variance. Similarly for other known texts. Then if meaningful within text measures are evident I would go for between text measures and between author measures.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 24th, 2011, 3:20 am

What if Houdini did it?

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 24th, 2011, 6:18 am

Jonathan Townsend wrote:maybe that's just more fantasy, Fred.

If we stick to the facts - what is simpler than a printer cobbling together a manuscript and selling it?


If you had any understanding of the work at all, you'd appreciate that it is absolutely impossible for it to have been "cobbled" together.

There is woven an elegant thread of consistent and profoundly inspired thinking throughout the book.

The author establishes sound objectives in both the art and the science of handling playing cards. Not only is the language consistent throughout the work, but the philosophy and the scientific engineering of moves are equally persistent.

Analyze the introductory remarks of each of the two sections. The language is consistently distinctive, elegant and accomplished.

Explain to me the specific objectives and solutions evident in the engineering of the Erdnase one handed shift (card table artifice) and the S.W.E. shift (legerdemain) and explain how these can possibly be the work of two different authors.

Master the material in the book. Then you may understand. There is absolutely nothing "cobbled" about it.

The evidence is extremely convincing. The book is the work of a single author. The author had extensive experience in gambling and cheating. He was interested in magic at least to the extent that he was familiar with some texts of the time, and his comments regarding the back palm practically prove that he had seen an elegant manipulation act, or performed one himself (I favor the former).

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 24th, 2011, 7:52 am

There is no evidence "Magic Fred". And that's the start of the mystery.

"S. W. Erdnase" is IMHO just a bit of bait for those who imagine themselves clever, a red herring, a literary playbow or an invitation down a cognitive rabbithole.

When I'm done with the Clarke thing I will re-re-re-re-re-reread the erdnase text and continue my explorations there. In the mean time - the ECT project remains, IMHO, still doable but more difficult now with Chosse gone - and remains a much more productive effort for this community. Again IMHO.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 24th, 2011, 7:55 am

Jonathan Townsend wrote:There is no evidence "Magic Fred". And that's the start of the mystery.


Funny man.

Plenty of evidence throughout the pages.

What you mean to say, is that there is no proof.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 24th, 2011, 8:32 am

Thanks, I do prefer to amuse rather than to confront or denigrate.

"Evidence" requires both a chain of custody and provinence - otherwise it's just an artifact of some sort. All we have is a text, a printing house and a couple of reported interviews. Basically two or three tales told by the self-interested and a book sold by a printing house that failed.

Till magic has a much better track record of recovering lost history than the Robert-Houdin and Hofzinser and ECT works demonstrate it's really not worth asking for trust or respect on those matters IMHO.

Again, findings from the text and actual documents from real people in context are welcome additions to the project of solving this mystery. With the "erdnose" scan in google finding we are, IMHO, also very close to pranksters adding specious items into the mix. Let's hope the lazy on the \b\tard side are slower than those who waited so very long to get serious about finding the origins of the erdnase text.
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Magic Fred
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Re: Erdnase

Postby Magic Fred » March 24th, 2011, 8:56 am

Check your dictionary.

You are on your own when you suggest there is no evidence to be found within the pages of the book.

Never before have I encountered such a consistently low ratio of "substance to gibberish" from a single person.

Seriously, it's a struggle to stop the eyes glazing over.

I'm happy to concede though, that it might be a result of my own shortcomings. Perhaps you are a literary genius and I am just not up to appreciating the clarity with which you make your points.

I'll bow out now, because I simply and honestly can't extract anything meaningful from your excessively extravagant prose.

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Re: Erdnase

Postby Jonathan Townsend » March 24th, 2011, 9:07 am

Magic Fred wrote:What if Houdini did it?


Himself - that would be quite a surprise. Anyone got anything from him that shows signs such writing? IMHO it would be more likely that any involvement would be by way of having the work done than as author himself.

Still that is a provokative thought. What else would have to be true for him to be the author of that text? Big smile here for the suggestion as avenue to consider even if only as a flight of fancy. :)

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby richardmagic101 » April 1st, 2011, 6:53 pm

The name sw erdnase is acctually a sudonym for E S Andrews spelled backwards.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Gordolini » April 1st, 2011, 7:25 pm

and decoding the name using a polyalphabetic substitution Cryptograph it spells April Fools Day....

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Jonathan Townsend » April 1st, 2011, 7:40 pm

When I type Erdnase into the quick reply box the spell checker flags it and offers me Eridanus, Eraser, Ordinance and Erase. Yet I don't entirely trust using the Firefox spell checker as a magic oracle to find true names from specious text.

The possibility that the pseudonym used on the title page of the book refers to a person named Andrews is IMHO too obvious and even so we have yet to find a suitable person with that name whose writing, reputation or artifacts link them to the text of the book.

Still a fine piece of writing and well worth the effort to study.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Bill Mullins » April 1st, 2011, 8:40 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:The possibility that the pseudonym used on the title page of the book refers to a person named Andrews is IMHO too obvious


If the author's name wasn't Andrews, what was it? And if it was something other than E. S. Andrews, why would the author use a pseudonym which leads so obviously to "E. S. Andrews"? These are questions which need to be answered before rejecting "E. S. Andrews" (or, possibly, anagrams of it) as the name of the author.

and even so we have yet to find a suitable person with that name whose writing, reputation or artifacts link them to the text of the book.
And we have yet to find a suitable person whose name is not E. S. Andrews whose writing, reputation or artifacts link them to the text of the book. That being the case, it makes some sense to focus on the smaller set of potential candidates -- the one named "E. S. Andrews".

Jonathan, several times you have mentioned a desire for artifacts, diaries, or some other hard physical proof. It's unrealistic to expect to find them, and unrealistic to reject any evidence that isn't based on them. All of us who are interested in the identity of the author would welcome such unequivocal evidence, but it isn't currently known, likely doesn't exist, and probably won't ever be found. In the meantime, we settle for best circumstantial evidence.

This is a "preponderance of the evidence" search, not a "beyond reasonable doubt" search.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Jonathan Townsend » April 1st, 2011, 9:28 pm

:) it's okay Bill, most likely where we disagree is about proceeding from the name on the page. I just happen to feel drawn to treat that as a detail rather than a great clue. Outside of that wrinkle (still feels like a too obvious/perfect/trap to me) I'm all for following any avenue that looks hopeful toward finding the origins of the text and maybe even a single talented author.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Richard Hatch » April 4th, 2011, 6:05 pm

Erdnase presentations schedules at the upcoming MCA weekend:

http://magicol.wordpress.com/2011/04/04 ... -yadrutas/

Roger M.
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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Roger M. » April 5th, 2011, 10:25 am

I'm choked I can't attend this.

Does the MCA put out any sort of "post show" documentation, books or catalogs on the events that took place?

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Richard Kaufman » April 5th, 2011, 10:50 am

Roger, join the MCA and you will receive Magicol. That will dampen your disappointment.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby David Ben » April 5th, 2011, 12:27 pm

We are starting to put some of the conference-related material in the pages of Magicol. For those interested in Erdnase, you will be pleased to know that the August issue of Magicol will feature several articles related to the book. It will be a very special issue. It will only be made available, however, to subscribers of Magicol.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Roger M. » April 6th, 2011, 10:23 am

I shall be subscribing (which I'm guessing is also joining) the MCA forthwith!

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby John Bodine » April 6th, 2011, 7:35 pm

i for one would love to see discussions and lectures of this nature put online for all to see, follow the TED model. i suspect attendance would not decrease, but instead the interest in subscriptions would in fact increase. At any rate, as one of a short list of Erdnase collectors i am very sad i won't be able to attend.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby magicam » April 7th, 2011, 8:14 am

John, I hear ya, but it costs money to get this stuff created and printed. Do you subscribe to Magicol? If not, I can tell you that $40/year for 4 issues (about 340 to 400 pages per year) chock full of very interesting articles of collecting and historical interest, and well designed to boot by the talented Michael Albright, is a bargain. Other than the writing of one regular contributor (who's a certified bibliomaniac and just won't shut the hell up about books) I devour every word of every issue and learn tons of stuff.

See http://www.magicana.com/mca/membership.php?vSec=mem.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby David Ben » April 7th, 2011, 10:46 am

John, I don't believe that the TED model is a good or fair model for the MCW. I have spoken at IdeaCity, based on the TED model, and have agreed to the copyright common for my presentation to be posted on the TED website. (My presentation, by the way, was on the Riffle Cull.) TED presentations are basically focused on ideas, ideas and subjects that are presented in 18 minutes or less. Generally, much less. They are meant to be conversation starters, initially for the delegates who attend, and now theoretically, for a much wider audience. The people who attend the TED conference, which number in the 1000s, pay up to $3,750 for the privilege of attending, and the conference receives hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more, in the way of corporate sponsorship. None of the speakers are paid, and they are not meant to be reimbursed even for their hotel or travel expenses. The primary purpose of TED is networking.

As for online viewing, people pay around $500 for live-streaming of the presentations. Only afterward, and sometimes much afterward, are a portion of the presentations made available to the general public online.

So, to have the Magic Collector Weekend Conference presented on the TED model, we would have to charge thousands of dollars for people to attend, not reimburse anyone for their hotel or transportation charges, pay absolutely nothing for talent, restrict the length of presentation to 18 minutes or less, and charge for the online streaming of the event, and then consider releasing a portion of the programming for the general populace.

I understand that your probably meant that, by the TED model, access was free to those on the internet, but my argument is that it is not free, that someone has to paid for it. Magicians have been spoiled by the quality of conferences and conventions, and the price point to attend them, particularly when compared to what other non-magic associations or forums charge for business-related conferences. I do not believe they will pay for much more. Also, I don't believe the bump you imagine in attendance or subscriptions will be sufficient.

If you are really interested in Erdnase, you will consider subscribing to Magicol to receive the Erdnase-related issue or acquire a copy on the secondary market. The magazine is bargain, as Clay Shelvin has suggested, because it is heavily subsidized like most magic magazines, by the many people donating time and talent to make each issue happen.

I'm not trying to single you out so please do not take offense. I have just heard so much about the "TED model" over the past few years and, having participated in it, wanted to bring some clarity to what it is - and isn't - at least from my experience.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby John Bodine » April 7th, 2011, 12:30 pm

Hi David and Clay,

i immediately subscribed to Magicol when i heard about the article. i have no problem whatsoever supporting magazines of this nature, creators, and contributors, authors, publishers, etc.

i would love to continue the discussion on the TED model but don't feel it is appropriate in this message thread. Another day for certain.

johnbodine

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Roger M. » April 7th, 2011, 2:45 pm

Off Topic:

Richard.....how about a MCA/Magicol forum here on Genii?

A place to discuss Magicol articles, MCA conferences, etc.

I think some of the value of the TED model (at least the ones that appeal to some folks) is the ability to not only access the source material, but also the ability to continue to develop and discuss those ideas somewhere else beyond the TED conference.

The Magic Cafe has half a dozen (or more) forums that focus on outside organizations.......I can see a Magicol forum here on Genii as being very well received, likely becoming the place for scholarly discussion related to the history of magic and related crafts.

I don't know how David feels about such an idea, but now that I'm a member of the MCA, it would certainly work for me!

Anyway, just a thought.

BTW, I didn't know Magicol was designed by Michael Albright until Clay pointed it out above. To me, that's a huge selling point in addition to the contents of the magazine itself.....as MA's an absolute genius when it comes to design.
I also didn't realize that each issue was so big. I was an MCA member many moons ago, and the issues were (at that time) rather tiny.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Richard Kaufman » April 7th, 2011, 3:20 pm

I'll leave it Mr. Ben--but I like the idea.
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Re: ERDNASE

Postby Bill Mullins » April 7th, 2011, 6:31 pm

Magicol is a much better journal than it used to be (and that's not a slam on the old version).

Rather than the "TED model", I'd like to see more magic events use the Essential Magic Conference model -- make DVDs of panels available after the fact.

I can't make it to the LA Conference on Magic History, the Yankee Gathering, MCA Weekend, 51 Faces North, etc. (at least, I can't make it to all of them) -- but I'd be willing to buy DVDs of the panels and discussions (and lectures and performances, if the magicians involved wanted to disseminate their material).

Likewise special events at the Magic Castle. Several weeks back, wasn't there a Magic History week? I hope that it was recorded for posterity.

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Re: ERDNASE

Postby 2424 » April 8th, 2011, 7:42 am

Thank you very much.
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