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  #31 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 12:18 PM
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Would not bother me if you banned political and religious threads. I seldom if ever post in any like that, mainly becasue they can and ususally do get to be an arguement.
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  #32 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 12:27 PM
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I run a mental health message board, so I understand that you are on tricky ground here. It's a tightrope of letting people express their opinions without things devolving into personal attacks. I have few rules on my board as lot of people who join have been places where any type of self expression was not allowed. One of my few rules, and the one that is enforced to the extreme is that you don't go down the personal attack road at all. I don't put up with hating and disrespect at all. We generally steer clear of religion and politics although we generally know how we all feel on the subjects. This is, however, a very established board, and it might be difficult to switch gears at this late date. I wish you luck with whatever you decide.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 12:40 PM
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Queen of Oakville...

I agree this is one of the better message boards - but I am still not satisfied. I want to be the best.

You just summed up exactly what we see as the ideal message board approach, and one which we tried to live by for many years, however times have changed and people are much more incendiary about all kinds of topics these days.

If we could always get people to take the high road we wouldn't have a problem, but some people quite honestly don't want that restriction, they want to lash out at people they don't like. Forums can be a little bit like driving in traffic - you feel somewhat anonymous behind your screen and so you do things to people you wouldn't do in normal life.

The problem is this - like most drivers, when people get caught breaking the rules they are very quick to say "I am NOT that kind of person," but they were acting like that kind of person and we can't tell the difference or control your actions for you.

Even grade school playgrounds have the rule "no fighting, it doesn't matter who started it," and we are adults here. We know adults know how to exercise restraint, but sometimes they choose not to.

The main ideas we need to impart here is are:

1. Posting here is a privilege, not a right.

2. It is the reader's responsibility to know the rules, it is not our responsibility to walk behind everyone cleaning up their messes.

3. Everyone's privileges and restrictions here are the same. We don't play favorites.

I cannot tell you how many times I have written the "be the bigger man" letter to people trying to justify to me their unkind words to someone else. It's really draining to try to respectfully tell adults how they should act and I have come to the conclusion that adults KNOW better, so nothing we say really matters.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 12:45 PM
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Moraine....

Quote:
One of my few rules, and the one that is enforced to the extreme is that you don't go down the personal attack road at all.
This has always been our bedrock rule as well - and it still is. But we still see fights breaking out. I am thinking we would be better off widening this scope a little bit to say "no derogatory comments about other people (personal or otherwise) at all."

I think people would be surprised to see that they can still post any idea they want - but things won't become as incendiary as some threads have become.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 12:49 PM
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I'd really hate to see this board turn into one like CC. Personally, I think it's a mess over there and all the fun people left. Or got thrown out by impatient and unfair moderators.
It's sometimes a fine line. When someone posts, it's hard to catch the tone sometimes, and misunderstandings occur.
Unfortunate, but true.
  #36 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 12:59 PM
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I know the rule sounds overly limiting - and as moderators we can choose to have flexibility, but in fact the two topics; politics and religion, are not as widely discussed here as you might think. I don't think you would miss them.

I think we would then have more discussions that are interesting to more people rather than the discussions you just want to skip over.

Plus, I think we can then have discussions about the economy, the world situation, pirates, etc. that are fact based, instead of having them turn into ideological tirades.
  #37 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:05 PM
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in·cen·di·ar·y   /ɪnˈsɛndiˌɛri/ Show Spelled
[in-sen-dee-er-ee] Show IPA
adjective, noun, plural -ar·ies.
–adjective
1. used or adapted for setting property on fire: incendiary bombs.
2. of or pertaining to the criminal setting on fire of property.
3. tending to arouse strife, sedition, etc.; inflammatory: incendiary speeches.
4. tending to inflame the senses: an incendiary extravaganza of music and dance.


(just in case I was the only one!) - thanks Paul - I learned a new word today!




I'm fine with whatever decision you make. I just think its difficult to ban an entire subject. What about when elections roll around; will politics be off-topic then too? Most obviously have a great deal of respect for one another and we can all learn from each other's opinions. This is a great venue for exchange of information, ideas etc. What about other controversial topics such as abortion, capital punishment, scandals ..... you can't make every topic off limit (well, of course YOU can do whatever you want).

I see Kuki's point too. I come from a message board where the "report this post" button was over-used. What if rather than a "notification" to the member, the mods just have the ability to delete posts (without warning/explanation). You could cover this in the TOS.

So if religion were banned; would I be prevented from the following:
-saying in a daily thread that I went to a place of worship, or that (for example, we were celebrating my daughter's first communion which might lead to questions about my religion).
-saying in the kindle thread, that I had read a great book about world relligions, and then possibly fielding questions about said book
-saying in the red meat thread that my religion does not permit me to eat red meat (I'm Catholic, it doesn't )
-in the music that moves you thread, would I be permitted to say that How Great THou Art moves me to tears EVERY time I hear it.
-in the thread on the largest cathedral - entering into a discussion on papal history?


Just random examples, of how religion could be part of our every day discussion here. The thread on hostages, shows how military backgrounds and political opinions can/should be part of our discussion here. I didn't post on that thread because I had nothing to contribute; but I enjoyed reading about other's opinions.

Like I said, these topics aren't particularly important to me, but once a subject is banned per se; it limits our ability to have meaningful discussions should the need/desire arise.
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  #38 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:05 PM
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Suse....

I agree, it takes having the right moderators to make this work. I think our moderators are very fair and know right from wrong.

From what I understand the problem at CC is entirely different - posts get yanked because they criticize cruise lines. That isn't what I am talking about at all. We have never done that.
  #39 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:07 PM
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Hey Paul, looks like we posted at the same time; I just wanted to alert you to my post above yours!
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  #40 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter View Post
I welcome all input...

Rev: the thing is that with this "no politics or religion" stipulation it is still possible to discuss facts without crossing over into opinion. That is where we always get into trouble, if you notice, is that someone strongly disagrees with someone else's opinion and they feel the need to comment on it.

Henry - being perfectly honest, as much as I would like to send a PM everytime I have to moderate, if I did that I spend every day doing nothing but justifying my actions to people.

There is a reason why policemen are known to say "Tell it to the judge" - because both jobs; policemen and judges, are full-time jobs.

I just figure that if you see something moderated you will have a pretty good idea why it is so.

However - we could also use a "point" system where a person who has to be moderated gets an "infraction" point - and so many points add up to being banned for a few days, more points = longer bannings. I have seen boards where this helps people understand the consequences of their actions.
How many posts /threads do you remove a day ? Not many ,I would think .It would take 2 minutes to PM or e-mail a person and say you are removing a post/thread because you do not feel it belongs on the board .

You could also add a TOS to this board and ask people to agree to same before they post .The majority of internet message boards have that .
  #41 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
You could also add a TOS to this board and ask people to agree to same before they post .The majority of internet message boards have that .
We do have TOS posted. Paul is talking about adjusting them a bit.
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  #42 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:41 PM
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Quote:
I see Kuki's point too. I come from a message board where the "report this post" button was over-used. What if rather than a "notification" to the member, the mods just have the ability to delete posts (without warning/explanation). You could cover this in the TOS.
Exactly - I don't think we should have to explain everything. It is obvious that if it gets deleted we had a good reason.

Quote:
So if religion were banned; would I be prevented from the following:
-saying in a daily thread that I went to a place of worship, or that (for example, we were celebrating my daughter's first communion which might lead to questions about my religion).
It is important to understand THESE concepts.
  1. The rules are there so we can stop and delete threads that have already devolved into unfriendly places where people are fighting over ideology. As long as everyone is having a good time we have no reason to stop them.
  2. Having the rules will make less likely to write unkind things in the first place, so the chance that such as post as you propose will devolve is less likely.
It is a fine line - admittedly.

If you are discussing factual history that is different. But the goal is to make people understand that one can discuss topics like religion and politics in ways where you do not offend other people. My goal is to make people try a lot harder to do that.
  #43 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:42 PM
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I believe a warning system was mentioned. Some software allows for that, and it is a possible idea if fights break out. Of course, some offenses need an immediate ban. You have to fine tune a formal warning system though, which is a pain.
  #44 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:44 PM
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If I were to post something controversial (I'd probably have a good idea before I hit post) and I came back to see that it was deleted, I'd probably have to assume that what I did was against TOS, even if I didn't receive an email.

I'd probably try to re-post with a modified wording to express my sentiment. If that got deleted again - I'd just give up. On most message boards, you say a statement to the effect of ..... "This post has been deleted by the Moderators for violating the TOS". You could send out an auto-notification; but I don't think you even need to do that. If someone cares about what they've posted; they will come back to see if there were any replies.

What is the saying, "Attack the post, not the poster?". This is far from a debate board by any means ..... I think we generally behave like a community, which well we should.

Besides, if we ban topics of substance, I will have no choice but to inundate you will with posts about reality TV
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  #45 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kuki View Post

We do have TOS posted. Paul is talking about adjusting them a bit.

There are threads on this board started by CM employees that IMHO would be removed by Paul based on this new criteria.

"Whats good for the goose should be good for the gander"
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Old February 25th, 2011, 01:46 PM
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Thanks Paul. Some really funny and nice people got tossed overboard over there, and it just seemed unfair. Mods acted inconsistently and let some really rule the roost and others were constantly given warnings.
No rhyme or reason to most of us.
  #47 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry43 View Post
How many posts /threads do you remove a day ? Not many ,I would think .It would take 2 minutes to PM or e-mail a person and say you are removing a post/thread because you do not feel it belongs on the board .
Henry - you are one of my favorite posters, but you have NO idea about this. I have had moderation arguments run three days or longer, and take up several hours each of those days. I have already spent three hours on this thread today (just as an example).

But that is not my main concern. My main concern is bringing up the level of societal respect in this forum. Stopping the controversial posts before they happen.

In fact, I am looking for input here. Maybe "religion" is not as big a concern. I am more concerned about politics, frankly. I am also very concerned about moving beyond "personal attacks" to saying "no derogatory characterizations about any one group of people." And Henry I think you see my point there.

Take the Papal question above. Can you write a thread that discusses papal history without going into religion? Yes. These rules would lead people to phrase things in ways that do not offend people (including the unseen lurkers). The fact is that some people could get offended by Papal history; and I am not going to list them, although I certainly could, because that might lead to people feeling singled out and defensive. Hence my point.

With these rules people will become far more careful about how they say things - but readers will still get the point of your post. It just shows more respect to err on the side of caution and it leads to fewer confrontational threads for us to worry about.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter View Post
Exactly - I don't think we should have to explain everything. It is obvious that if it gets deleted we had a good reason.



It is important to understand THESE concepts.
  1. The rules are there so we can stop and delete threads that have already devolved into unfriendly places where people are fighting over ideology. As long as everyone is having a good time we have no reason to stop them.
  2. Having the rules will make less likely to write unkind things in the first place, so the chance that such as post as you propose will devolve is less likely.
It is a fine line - admittedly.

If you are discussing factual history that is different. But the goal is to make people understand that one can discuss topics like religion and politics in ways where you do not offend other people. My goal is to make people try a lot harder to do that.

So rather than an outright BAN on topics of substance; how about a general rule that we are free to discuss ANY topic; and as long as the topic remains civil and respectful, then the discussion will be allowed. However, as soon as civil and respectful discussion ceases, the thread will be pulled. I've seen some message boards where a thread will be locked from further posting rather than pulled. Other threads, may receive a warning by a mod; to say that the thread is starting to border on violating the TOS and will be pulled if abusive posting continues.
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  #49 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moiraine View Post
I believe a warning system was mentioned. Some software allows for that, and it is a possible idea if fights break out. Of course, some offenses need an immediate ban. You have to fine tune a formal warning system though, which is a pain.
We do already have that ability in this system - we can give infractions and send a notice to people fairly easily. Of course it is up to us to decide how to implement and it would take some fine tuning.

And of course some posts do require immediate action to ban.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 02:05 PM
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Queen...

If anything we have been too forgiving with our moderation in these boards. I think we should be locking more threads.

Can I just say this, though.... I know the thought of an outright ban of these topics seem like a big deal, but I believe that once it was in place those topics would be replaced by several kinder and gentler topics which are just as much (if not more) fun to read.

Life is tough enough - do we really need to bring politics and religion here, too?
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Old February 25th, 2011, 02:06 PM
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Hi Paul,

Sorry to belabour the point, but I am enjoying this discussion (in a respectful way, of course).

If your concern is to increase the overall level of respect in the forum; I think has little do with controversial subjects. I've seen threads on dress code go awry.

It has more do with posting respectfully than what we can/can't post about.

QOO
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  #52 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Motter View Post
Henry - you are one of my favorite posters, but you have NO idea about this. I have had moderation arguments run three days or longer, and take up several hours each of those days. I have already spent three hours on this thread today (just as an example).

But that is not my main concern. My main concern is bringing up the level of societal respect in this forum. Stopping the controversial posts before they happen.

In fact, I am looking for input here. Maybe "religion" is not as big a concern. I am more concerned about politics, frankly. I am also very concerned about moving beyond "personal attacks" to saying "no derogatory characterizations about any one group of people." And Henry I think you see my point there.

Take the Papal question above. Can you write a thread that discusses papal history without going into religion? Yes. These rules would lead people to phrase things in ways that do not offend people (including the unseen lurkers). The fact is that some people could get offended by Papal history; and I am not going to list them, although I certainly could, because that might lead to people feeling singled out and defensive. Hence my point.

With these rules people will become far more careful about how they say things - but readers will still get the point of your post. It just shows more respect to err on the side of caution and it leads to fewer confrontational threads for us to worry about.

I'm not well versed into religions other than my own and I do not believe I've ever posted with regard to religion. I do admit that some of my other posts (not necessarily threads) have caused perhaps argumentative discussion but I shall refrain from doing so from now on .

I've said in the past that I've started threads that I feel will generate discussion and that has been my only reason to do so.

I e-mail with 5 CM regulars all of whom have told me that they like the discussions I tend to start on the boards although they have differing opinion .
To me a message board is an extention of a conversation but since this is primarily a cruise board ,I will adhere to what you believe I should be posting .

This is ,as I often say ,the best cruise board on the internet ,with wonderful people.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Sorry to belabour the point, but I am enjoying this discussion (in a respectful way, of course).

If your concern is to increase the overall level of respect in the forum; I think has little do with controversial subjects. I've seen threads on dress code go awry.

It has more do with posting respectfully than what we can/can't post about.
Yes - but we already have rules to cover those topics. The problem is that our rules don't have real meat. Hence the possible point system.

But also - I have to disagree, the most incendiary topics have almost always had a political or societal element. Not so much religion (as I said I am not that concerned there).

And I never said we have to just stick to cruise topics - there are TONS of topics we can discuss here; music, how to save for retirement, the best colleges, what to say to your boss, best cities to live in, cats dogs & kids,.... I mean the list goes on & on.

Where is Louann? I feel she is very good barometer when it comes to sensitivity. Also Donna Nye is especially gifted at never offending anyone.

On the other hand, as Henry notes, some of the moderators here, including me, have been guilty of going too far in the past. I admit it, which is why I also see the value in what we are discussing.
  #54 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 02:39 PM
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I guess my point is that "any" topic can go off-kilter.

Taking your example of "best colleges": So I might post to say that I went to the University of Western Ontario. And then somone might ask, were you there when Professor Phillip Rushton was there? He's a very contraversial researcher and then thread could go off-topic into his contraversial work.

I once belonged to a message board that deleted your post (and eventually the poster) if ANY topic went off kilter. Posting off-topic was not allowed. The forum was run with such an iron first that I eventually left. Threads should flow just like real conversation does.

I affirm that my point is not to regulate what we post; but to give moderators more control to delete or pull a post or an entire thread when the conversation gets out of control.

okay, i've said my peace
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Old February 25th, 2011, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
I guess my point is that "any" topic can go off-kilter.
While that is true, it is pretty rare when "any" topic goes off-kilter (meaning people are showing real animousity) unless you have some uncaring posters who start it.

And that is exactly my point - IF we make it well known that going off-kilter (into controversial territory) is not allowed and that posts will be deleted and people reprimanded then we will have FEWER posts going that direction and ultimately that is my goal.

Crime prevails when you have no laws. When you restore law and order then people choose to comply and are usually happier for it. There is a real group psychology component.

As I said - considering the usual negative results, is it really necessary that WE provide yet another outlet for controversial topics like politics?

I mean do you really enjoy the political discussions here? I don't really. I feel like we mostly just go over the same territory over and over.

And next election is going to be SO controversial - it will be hard to keep peace here. And I don't want a board where one side comes to dominate and other people don't feel welcome - this is ultimately a cruise board after all.
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Old February 25th, 2011, 03:41 PM
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The worst topics included smoking! Haha! I ALWAYS get in trouble there!
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Old February 25th, 2011, 03:56 PM
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I know I said I said my peace ....

.... but if you ban controversy .... then you have a boring board (speaking of Chit Chat here) which is of no substance at all. If you restrict topics to posting about crusing, then surely all posts can go into another area of this site.

If the purpose of Chit Chit is to be community building and build comeraderie, then we should be abel to speak about controversial topics, as long as we do so respectfully. If you give the Mods the abillity to deal with those who violate the TOS, then there should be no issue. I believe this last sentence is at the crux of your issue.


Its kind of funny (to me) that I have so many opinions on this, becasue I mostly post on the fluffy threads. While I don't often post on the threads of substance; I do enjoy reading and learning from what others have to say.
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  #58 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2011, 04:08 PM
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I have had a lot of good input here...

Maybe someone could help me clarify what the new rule should be.

I want to expand on the "no personal attacks" theme to include "no __ism" meaning no perjorative or inflammatory words for any groups of people, such as:

ethnic origin
national origin
state of residence
weight
race (should go without saying)
politics
religion
height
age
consumption practices (smoking, eating, drinking)

You can ertainly comment on them, just be sure not to use inflammatory words that generally imply "name calling"
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Old February 25th, 2011, 04:31 PM
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My Mom has as one of her favorite sayings..'it's not what you say, it's how you say it"..the challenge becomes when it is in writing it may not have the intent that the original poster meant which could lead to misunderstandings, hard feelings etc...

however, our board represents a 'snapshot" of society as a whole...this is a cruise information/enjoyment board, but the fact is that racists, bigots,religous zealots, members of hate groups, tea party members, left, right, lovers of Fox/MSNBC news, haters/supporters of our current POTUS love to cruise also and may come to this board for some cruise information, but notice the free form format and from time to time take advantage of our freedom of expression to expouse their views without regards to the feelings of those that do not agree with them..go visit the online edition of the USA Today and read the postings on almost any topic and be prepared for some shameful sick rhetoric

I think we have to be dependent on our moderators to stay on top of these boards and make sure we have a moderator on the 'grave yard shift' (when alot of the mean spirited postings are made) to delete before the majority of the posters utilize the board..
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Old February 25th, 2011, 07:43 PM
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Well, all I know is that I need a cruise. I am exhausted reading all of this.
xo
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