Forums > Social Discussion > Firespinning - Eco-friendly?

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Neon_Shaolin
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

Neon_Shaolin

hehe, 'Member' huhuh
Location: Behind you. With Jam

Total posts: 6120
Posted:Upon reading Valura's thread out the toxic effects from the fumes from firespinning it got me thinking about other possible negative effects of firespinning. Name the environmental issues.

As well as the toxic fumes that could cause respiratory and other other health problems. There's the issue of whether our beloved pastime causes damage to the environment. Specifically, toxins in the atmosphere and CO and CO2 emissions. I'm a little rusty on my science so I'm not sure how it works so if someone would correct me on the matter if needs be.

Another issue would be that firespinning requires fuel, and with the War in Iraq being almost certainly instigated by the West's need for oil are we adding to an already spiralling problem? One could easily argue that our entire way of life is built on a need for fuel and to be completely eco-friendly and we'd best live in a straw hut with a farm.

I'm probably generalising but it seems that alot of spinners would consider themselves eco-friendly but I am wondering what thoughts people have about reconciling their environmentally-conscious views with our fuel-consuming mutual pastime?


"I used to want to change the world, now I just wanna leave the room with a little dignity..." - Lotus Weinstock

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Neon_Shaolin
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

Neon_Shaolin

hehe, 'Member' huhuh
Location: Behind you. With Jam

Total posts: 6120
Posted:What have I started?

It has been kinda bothering me for a while. Everything I have thought about regarding the matter has been discussed and concluded with either a sense of compromise or resignation.

You could argue that the fire keeps the spinner warm via the heat it generates or the exercise from spinning.

To keep from scorching the ground from building a fire, whether it be on the grass or on the beach, the group could consider investing in a firepit like the one we had at a Manchester Meet (good one Seye!)

Someone argued that if they really did care about being as eco-friendly they wouldn't be living the life they are living. EVERY aspect of their lives affects the environment and it would take a complete overhaul of lifestyle. Even to the extent of becoming an eco-warrior. And nobody seems intent on doing that. The question being - should they need to? Do they care enough about the environment to give up their lives (figuratively and literally) in order to help it?

These are questions that I ask myself constantly and my principals are awash with contradictions and are open to be deemed hypocritical.

At work I'm constantly at war with the dinnerlady to give me a paperplate with my beans but she insists on giving me a polystyrene plate as 'the beans will leak'.
Then again I work in a newspaper publishing company - medium that demands a constant steady supply of paper. Even my side job of designing nightclub flyers requires printing on card. Hmmmm

I find it hard to tidy my room as I'm always wanting to recycle instead of shoving EVERYTHING into one bin. I hate public transport but am too tardy to make it to work on time.

I want to go and do something with Greenpeace or something instead am planning a year-long trip in Australia.

Does 'doing the right thing' mean re-evaluating my entire lifestyle and what SHOULD be my priorities? Even now I don't have an answer as I'm probably too selfish or lazy to change.

But as my signature says 'If nothing I do matters then all that matters is what I do'

Meaning that even if I do change - whether it be recycling more or dedicating my life to become an eco-warrior - and the world is still f**ked regardless, the importangt thing is that I do my bit...


"I used to want to change the world, now I just wanna leave the room with a little dignity..." - Lotus Weinstock

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Mags The Jedi
GOLD Member since May 2004

Mags The Jedi

Fool
Location: Cornwall, UK

Total posts: 2020
Posted:*grouphugs sethis, pele and dave*

Nice thread.

Sethis> Pele makes a very valid point (well, several wink ) about parties. Yer quite right, Falmouth is always really chilled and peaceful, even with the drums and guitars and stuff, but then we always try and get a nice long way away from civilisation, and we ALWAYS clean up after ourselves. Thing is, like it or not, spinning is getting more and more popular, and there will always be groups of people who aren't as concerned with looking after their environment (small e.)

I've seen several free parties/raves where spinners have A) spun recklessly and damaged not just themselves and their audience, but also tents, buildings, trees and other foliage, B) not cleared up AT ALL, even leaving dipping buckets open for people to trip over (spilling fuel everywhere) and C) acted like complete retards.

I know that most of the events organised by HoP spinners are really well run, the shining pinnacle being Play (with Fal close behind of course wink ) but I'm afraid that these are exceptions, rather than the rule, and that a large amount of firespinning is done by people who care very little about their impact on their surroundings, and even less about the wider public's opinion of spinners. And as anyone who saw the grass around the bonfire at Play will attest, even well run events cause ecological damage.

On a more general note, whilst I'm still in a quandary about the ethical issue of burning fossil fuels every night (I actually raised the point with the Eden Project whilst we were spinning for them, and they were stumped for an answer...) I have spent more time wondering what we'll use when the oil runs out.

I think gunpowder could be interesting...

Enough rambling. Peace and love.

devil


"I believe the cost of life is Death and we will all pay that in full. Everything else should be a gift. We paid the cover charge of life, we were born."

Bill Hicks, February 1988

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Igirisujin
SILVER Member since Jul 2005

Igirisujin

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Preston, United Kingdom

Total posts: 2666
Posted: Written by: Brit_Joe



 Written by: Medusa



I am surprised that Fire twirling hasn't been banned when simple things that only cause minute amounts of pollution have been taken away from the public (such as the not so CFC free asthma sprays which were so much better than the newer CFC free ones that don't freaking work!!!! Yes I am asthmatic and quite perturbed about this small change!)





Hold on a minute? They dont work for you? Ive been using CFC free inhalors for a while and they still work for me, allthough they seem to run out quicker...but maybie thats just me thinking that





eek You know I think your right, ive just gotten my second pair of CFC free inhalors this week, my last pair (first time getting CFC free) only lasted two months, one month each. I thought maybie my asthma had been bad because of the cold weather weve just gotten through in england but this pair dont seem to be working as good either, ive gotten through 8 doses this week at least and had to take 3 doses today. I used to be using them maybie 4 or 5 times a month max. Theres also supposed to be 200 doses in each, I dont think my last lot had 200 doses in them at all if I used one a month


Chief adviser to the Pharaoh, in one very snazzy mutli-coloured coat

'Time goes by so slowly for those who wait...' - Whatever Happend To Baby Madonna?

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daize
SILVER Member since Dec 2005

daize

member
Location: Falmouth, Cornwall, England (U...

Total posts: 175
Posted:Pele...



1- Wood is not wood! Most managed forestrys grow a sustainable supply of wood. There are also hard woods and soft woods. Generally soft wood tree would grow to maturity in roughly 10 years. For a hard would it's generally around the 80 year mark. There's a considerable difference!!



2- Noise is noise? Philosphically all music is noise. But there's also the question of considerate, respectful volume.



3- Just because your event is established on private land doesn't mean that you've been respectful to that land, to set up an event. And vice versa. Just because and event is not on a private site, doesn't mean that it hasn't been done respectfully.



All I have to say really....



R, E, S, P, E, C, T...all I lala de doop de


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daize
SILVER Member since Dec 2005

daize

member
Location: Falmouth, Cornwall, England (U...

Total posts: 175
Posted:I forgot to add ...



Neon Shaolin- Whether a paperplate is more eco friendly than a polestyrene one is debatable!



Also there's no problem with using wood and paper/card as long as it's sustainable, and processed in an environmentally conscious manner.



Printing is also a huge problem, but can be resolved with solutions such as vegetable based dyes, etc...



Mags- this list of alternatives to oil, is huuuuuge. It's all a matter of which is the cheapest and easiest to integrate.





tongue oops


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Neon_Shaolin
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

Neon_Shaolin

hehe, 'Member' huhuh
Location: Behind you. With Jam

Total posts: 6120
Posted:Daize, we have recycling bins all around the office and you're more like to be able to recycle paper/card than polystyrene. I should just bring a plate into work but nowhere to store it!

"I used to want to change the world, now I just wanna leave the room with a little dignity..." - Lotus Weinstock

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daize
SILVER Member since Dec 2005

daize

member
Location: Falmouth, Cornwall, England (U...

Total posts: 175
Posted:It's all about the energy that's gone into making each one, it takes nothing to make a polystyrene plate in comparison to the heaps of energy it takes to make and process paper.



It's also a shame that they recycle paper and not polystyrene. As polystyrene is so easy to recycle compared to paper...in terms energy.



Yeah smile maybe you should take in your own plate. Rince it in the bathroom, then pack it in your breifcase. tongue


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daize
SILVER Member since Dec 2005

daize

member
Location: Falmouth, Cornwall, England (U...

Total posts: 175
Posted:How about an edible plate made from corn starch?

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Neon_Shaolin
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

Neon_Shaolin

hehe, 'Member' huhuh
Location: Behind you. With Jam

Total posts: 6120
Posted:Wouldn't be a plate - more like a poppadom.... smile

"I used to want to change the world, now I just wanna leave the room with a little dignity..." - Lotus Weinstock

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Mr Majestik
SILVER Member since Mar 2004

Mr Majestik

coming to a country near you
Location: home of the tiney toothy bear,...

Total posts: 4693
Posted:maybe its just me, but this thread seem to have become very similar to the trying to be a better person thread shrug

"but have you considered there is more to life than your eyelids?"

jointly owned by Fire_Spinning_Angel and Blu_Valley

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Neon_Shaolin
GOLD Member since Jul 2005

Neon_Shaolin

hehe, 'Member' huhuh
Location: Behind you. With Jam

Total posts: 6120
Posted:I'm guessing people are starting to become more introspective...

But this thread is kinda focused more on the entire reason for this website existing whereas the other one delves into all other areas of ethics...


"I used to want to change the world, now I just wanna leave the room with a little dignity..." - Lotus Weinstock

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Daize, please read everything in context. In the scope of this thread and to many eco-warriors, wood is indeed wood...all deserving to be saved. Here we are talking about the bonfires that seem to accompany large gatherings, which are not nearly as discriminating as a wood sculptor and do not care where the wood comes from or if it is birch or pine so long as it can be devoured.

Same thing with noise..in the dead of night when all else should be quiet and the nocturnal animals should be free to go about their business, any foreign sound is noise pollution. Music, no matter the decibel is still noise and contributing. And I have not ever been to a spin gathering where the noise was a nice, soft background noise. That makes it hard to hear to spin to. In the scope of this thread, and indeed the context of my posts, I stand by my statements.

Again, nitpicking is just another form of undue justification in my eyes.

I use fire for many things, therefore I pollute and I am fully honest about it. Moreover, I am okay with that. I drive. Not everywhere, but where I have to. I use electicity...alot..and have a gas stove that I love. I am a modern human. I fully understand that it can not be helped while still utilizing the conveniences of the modern era.

I do clean up after myself. I don't crank any music, and in fact hate it when it is up excessively. I recycle. I attempt to not use excessive amounts of water. I carpool when possible, it is not always and I am okay with that as well. I attempt moderation in most eco-areas and I know I do my part where I can.

I fully realize and understand the damage I inflict upon this earth (and working for the Soil and Water Conservation District as I did for a year taught me alot about that). I choose what I do and what I do not do without any blinders on, and without feeling the need to justify it, or guilt over it.


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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dream
SILVER Member since Jul 2003

dream

currently mending
Location: Bristol, New Zealand

Total posts: 493
Posted: Written by:

I have never once suffered from the complete misgiving that fire spinning is eco-friendly. It's not. It doesn't matter to what degree it is compared to something completely different. It is going to single handedly wipe out the earth? Nope. Does is contribute? Absolutely.



Firespinning contributes to wiping out the Earth???

The Earth is being wiped out???

Do you mean the delicate balance of atmospheric conditions necessary to sustain human - along with much animal and plant life - is being degraded? There's a world of difference between this and what you - along with a number of other people across several threads have been saying. A supernova, or black hole might wipe out the earth. Humanity's carbon emmissions cannot.

The subtext implicit in these statements is that without human society there is no planet Earth. This is exactly the sort of anthropocentricism responsible for the current ecological crisis.

Aside from that there seems to be an opinion that it would be possible for humans to live in a way that leaves no footprint on the Earth... That somehow we can exist 'in harmony with nature' - which is a view based on the romanticised notion of nature cultivated through its presentation as a utopian other of dystopic human culture (your claim that we are wiping out the earth supports this... ) This dualist ontology is nonsense.

Every creature, ants, fir trees, pandas etc leave a footprint on the Earth, be it anthills, generation of oxygen via photosynthesis or removal of large areas of bamboo. Failing to do effect your environment requires an absence of existence as the ecology is composed of everything which exists within a given area - you're setting an impossible target...

Wind turbines, tidal power etc all effect the environment, just not in as destructive a manner as burning fossil fuels...

As far as scale of action goes; burning fossil fuels had been going on for centuries before global warming kicked in - but not at an industrial scale, so its effect was largely negligable. Was it ecologically unfriendly for a caveman to have a fire? And was this any worse than a cow farting (releasing methane - a worse greenhouse gas than CO2)? Without claiming that the cow is natural and somehow therefore an innate good I see little in the way of a distinction.

We don't need to try and prevent humanity from doing anything that effects the environment, we need to focus on preventing and prohibiting the immensely destructive activities which humankind currently indulges in which have threatened the future of our species along with thousands of others.


As an aside... The average American (counting industry which is responsible for double the carbon emmission levels of domestic useage) emits 19 cubic tonnes of Carbon Dioxide a year (just over double that of the average UK resident and 19 times as much as the average Indian). Out of interest does anyone with a maths/chemistry background know how much paraffin you'd need to burn to generate that amount of greenhouse gas???


He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.

Nietzsche

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 1762
Posted: Written by: dream


The average American (counting industry which is responsible for double the carbon emmission levels of domestic useage) emits 19 cubic tonnes of Carbon Dioxide a year (just over double that of the average UK resident and 19 times as much as the average Indian).



Don't forget the 1.4 metric tonnes of waste produced by the average american household, compared to the 0.5 MT of a British household and the 0.3 MT of a European one.

smile


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
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I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Birgit
BRONZE Member since Jan 2005

Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)

Total posts: 4145
Posted: Written by: Sethis


Don't forget the 1.4 metric tonnes of waste produced by the average american household, compared to the 0.5 MT of a British household and the 0.3 MT of a European one.

smile



How on earth does that work??? I mean, recycling is so unimportant still in the UK, that either Americans must buy more things and just throw them out completely, or wrap everything 5 times instead of 3 like most countries...

(sorry, I'm NOT trying to be funny here, just wondering with the amount of rubbish and single-use stuff and readymeals in plastic trays I see in the UK how it could possibly be nearly 3 times as bad)


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted: Written by: dream


The subtext implicit in these statements is that without human society there is no planet Earth. This is exactly the sort of anthropocentricism responsible for the current ecological crisis.

Every creature, ants, fir trees, pandas etc leave a footprint on the Earth, be it anthills, generation of oxygen via photosynthesis or removal of large areas of bamboo. Failing to do effect your environment requires an absence of existence as the ecology is composed of everything which exists within a given area - you're setting an impossible target...




ooh thanks dream, i was trying to write something similar but the words wouldn't work...

As for the average american stats birgit, i do wonder the same thing, but since it's an average, could this difference possibly have something to do with the relative populations:size of household...? Maybe someone whose better at stats than me, and actually has the figures, can work it out, Also probably depends as to what they define as 'waste', total amount before recycling, or just the amount the goes to landfill? stats are hard to figure out of context. smile


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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daize
SILVER Member since Dec 2005

daize

member
Location: Falmouth, Cornwall, England (U...

Total posts: 175
Posted:Pele, you're silly. umm

Dream, that was well said! cool


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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 1762
Posted: Written by: Birgit


How on earth does that work??? I mean, recycling is so unimportant still in the UK, that either Americans must buy more things and just throw them out completely, or wrap everything 5 times instead of 3 like most countries...

(sorry, I'm NOT trying to be funny here, just wondering with the amount of rubbish and single-use stuff and readymeals in plastic trays I see in the UK how it could possibly be nearly 3 times as bad)



It's all the MacDonalds... ubbrollsmile

Not living in America I don't know... How much recycling do Americans do? Is it popular practice? About what percentage of an american's waste is recycled? Any natives want to let us know?

(For comparison, I'd say that about 40% of our waste gets recycled, we have about twice as much waste that gets taken away by the bin men than is recycled by us twice a month)


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
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I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:Or, you could just tell us where you got those figures from.

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 1762
Posted:An environmental science lesson in Sixth Form. Looking back, the European One might have been 0.4 rather than 0.3... but that's about it. I don't know where the figures themselves originated. shrug

stout: How much recycling do you do? I know you're not american, but, y'know... you're on the same continent wink


After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
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I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Stout
SILVER Member since May 2004

Stout

Pooh-Bah
Location: Canada

Total posts: 1872
Posted:We manage to recycle most of our household waste, mainly because we have curbside recycling pickup, and we're organized with it. It's really pretty easy. Our household trash is mainly packaging, and with the exception of styrofoam, most of it's recyclable. We have a compost, so really most of out trash is related to our carnivorous habits.

But now we have disposable diapers, so maybe that 1.4T figure is not that far out of reach wink

We don't do fast food, so mcwrappers aren't a problem, but the occasional pizza box is, recyclers won't take them because they're contaminated by food,,,, but there are ways...

There's nothing eco friendly about fire spinning, it's simply burning fossil fuels for, well, fun. I'm willing to take steps to minimize MY impact on the environment, and encourage others to be mindful too, however I'm still going to light up whenever I want and I expect the planet to bear the consequences. I'm being selfish this way and I can't justify it.

We do leave our spinning area clean at the end of the night, and most of us burn white gas which doesn't leave an oily residue, or stain pavement. The grass in that area of the park is watered daily and the only damage we've noted is scuff marks and singes from dropped staffs , but those heal.

We do what we can...but at the end of the night, all our environmental footprints are a little larger.


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Groovy_Dream
SILVER Member since May 2005

Groovy_Dream

addict
Location: , Australia

Total posts: 449
Posted:Yes it is unsustainable, but it would be sustainable if every firetwirler planted... maybe 10 trees a year to sequester the emissions. Its not that hard.

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dream
SILVER Member since Jul 2003

dream

currently mending
Location: Bristol, New Zealand

Total posts: 493
Posted:Freom the DEFA (Despartment for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs - http://www.defra.gov.uk/)
br>
 Written by:

* The total amount of municipal waste has continued to rise to an estimated 29.3 million tonnes in England in 2002/03 compared to 28.8 million tonnes in 2001/02, an increase of 1.8 per cent.
* In total, 24.8 per cent (7.3 million tonnes) of municipal waste had some sort of value recycling, composting, energy from waste) recovered from it in 2002/03, a rise from 22.4 per cent (6.4 million tonnes) in 2001/02.
* The proportion of municipal waste being recycled or composted increased from 13.6 per cent in 2001/02 to 15.6 per cent in 2002/03. The proportion of waste incinerated with energy recovery has remained roughly constant at just under 9 per cent.
* The proportion of municipal waste being disposed of in landfill has decreased from 77 per cent in 2001/02 to 75 per cent in 2002/03.
* For the first time in recent years the actual tonnage of municipal waste disposed of in landfill has also decreased slightly from 22.3 million tonnes in 2001/02 to 22.0 million tonnes in 2002/03. It is now about the same level it was in 1999/00.




These statistics were published in March 2005 - evidently it takes them a while to compile their data which hopefully means its fairly accurate


He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.

Nietzsche

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Sethis
BRONZE Member since May 2005

Sethis

Pooh-Bah
Location: York University, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 1762
Posted:While it's encouraging that the amount of recycling is getting bigger, and less is going to landfills, it's only 2.5% and below... not anything significant. The government confirmed last month that they weren't going to meet the target of cutting carbon emissions by whatever percentage they'd promised by 2010, so I guess it balances out.

After much consideration, I find that the view is worth the asphyxiation.
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I may disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

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Birgit
BRONZE Member since Jan 2005

Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland (UK)

Total posts: 4145
Posted:So burning stuff with energy recovery is considered recycling??? That seems wrong...

"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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