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© Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 1 GEOACTIVE Extension 508 549 A case study about the causes, impacts and management of flooding on the Somerset Levels For a period of three months from December 2013 to February 2014, the Somerset Levels hit the national headlines as the area suffered from extensive flooding. At the height of the winter floods, 65 km2 of land were under water. The reason for the flood was a combination of human and physical factors. Despite the area being prone to floods in the past, the floods were the most severe ever known here. No one was prepared for the extent of damage and havoc brought by the floodwater. Several villages and farms were inundated and hundreds of people had to be evacuated for several weeks. With the risk of flooding likely to increase in the future due to climate change, there is continued pressure on the government to invest in flood defences in order to protect areas at risk from flooding. Key vocabulary saturated, bankfull capacity, flood, floodplain, fluvial channel, surface runoff, agronomist, dredging, hard engineering Learning outcome By the end of this case study you will be able to identify: • the different causes • the impacts • the management responses of a flood event in an economically developed country. Relevance to specifications Exam board Link to specification AQA A Unit 1: Physical Geography, Section B, Water on the land, page 13 http://filestore.aqa.org.uk/subjects/ AQA-9030-W-SP-14.PDF AQA B Unit 1: Managing Places in the 21st century, The coastal environment, pages 8–10 http://filestore.aqa.org.uk/subjects/ AQA-9035-W-SP-14.PDF Edexcel A Unit 2, The Natural Environment, Section A, The Physical World, Topic 2: River Landscapes, pages 21 and 22 http://qualifications.pearson.com/content/ dam/pdf/GCSE/Geography-A/2009/ Specification%20and%20sample%20 assessments/9781446911907_GCSE_ Lin_Geog_A_Issue_5.pdf Edexcel B Unit 1, Dynamic Planet, Section B, Smallscale Dynamic Planet, Topic 6, River Processes and Pressures, page 17 http://qualifications.pearson.com/content/ dam/pdf/GCSE/Geography-B/2009/ Specification%20and%20sample%20 assessments/9781446911914_GCSE_ Lin_Geog_B_Issue_5.pdf OCR B Unit 562, Key Geographical Themes, Theme 1: Rivers and Coasts, pages 12 and 13 http://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/82581- specification.pdf WJEC A Unit 1: The Core, The Physical World, Theme 1, Managing Rivers, page 16 http://www.wjec.co.uk/qualifications/ geography/geographygcse/16128. pdf?language_id=1 WJEC B Unit 2: Living in Our World, Theme 2: Physical Processes and Relationships Between People and Environments, pages 16 and 17 http://www.wjec.co.uk/uploads/ publications/17213.pdf CCEA Unit 1: Understanding Our Natural World, Theme A: The Dynamic Landscape, ‘Sustainable management of rivers’, pages 9 and 10; a copy of the specification can be downloaded from: http://www.rewardinglearning.org.uk/ microsites/geography/gcse/index.asp Cambridge IGCSE Theme 2: The Natural Environment, Rivers, page 16 http://www.cie.org.uk/images/150857- 2016-syllabus.pdf Edexcel IGCSE Section A, The Natural Environment and People, Topic 1, River Environments, page 7 https://www.edexcel.com/migrationdocuments/ IGCSE%20New%20IGCSE/IGCSE2009_ Geography_(4GE0)_Specification.pdf Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 By Christina Mann 2 GEOACTIVE © Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 Extension Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 In December 2013, heavy rain began to fall on the Somerset Levels. This continued into February 2014. The huge volume of water falling on saturated ground meant that both the Parrett and Tone rivers reached their bankfull capacity, forcing the rivers to flood. The physical characteristics of the Somerset Levels and Moors mean that flooding is generally a natural occurrence there. It is an area of low-lying farmland and wetlands situated between the Mendip and Blackdown Hills in central Somerset. This area forms the floodplain of the river Parrett and much of the area lies at sea level, or just a few metres above it. Thousands of years ago the area was covered by the sea, but now it is a landscape of rivers and wetlands. The land had been artificially drained, irrigated and modified to allow for agriculture, human settlement and wetland conservation. Today, it has become an area of social, economic and environmental importance. The area covers 650 km2 but has a low population density (that is, the number of people per km2 ). Despite its natural vulnerability, no one was prepared for the extent of flooding, or for the socio-economic and environmental impacts that followed (Figure 1). What caused the flooding on the Somerset Levels? A river flood happens when a fluvial channel bursts its banks and spills onto the surrounding floodplain. A floodplain is an area of low-lying ground adjacent to a river, formed mainly of river sediments and subject to flooding. A flood can last days, weeks or even months – the time depends on the river’s ability to drain the floodwater. A flood event is often caused by a combination of human and physical factors. This was certainly true in the case of the Somerset Levels flooding. “A flood event is often caused by a combination of physical and human factors.” The most common cause of flooding is prolonged rainfall. In January 2014 in southern England there was 183.8 mm of rain, which is approximately 200% higher than average for that month (Figure 2). It was the wettest since records began in 1910. This intense downpour caused the ground to become saturated and led to the frequent over-topping of the Tone and Parrett rivers, creating a huge lake which covered 11500 ha. High tides and storm surges from the Bristol Channel (which has the second highest tidal range in the world) made the problem worse. The surge prevented the floodwater from being taken to the sea, and forced it to back up along the rivers across the Levels and the Moors. Many local people believe that the decision by the Environment Agency not to dredge the rivers was responsible for the floods. Silt washed up from the Bristol Channel and carried inland had clogged up the river channels, reducing their ability to store water. If the rivers had been dredged of this silt they would have been made wider and deeper. This would have increased their capacity to carry away the floodwaters. Changes in farming practices are also thought to have contributed to the floods. In the hills above the Levels, such as the Quantocks and Brendon Hills, many of the fields have been converted from grassland to maize (a fodder crop for cattle). This more intensively used land is less able to retain water and this causes surface runoff rather than the water being absorbed into the ground. Impacts of the Somerset floods The extensive flooding meant that the Somerset Levels soon made the national headlines. People travelled to the affected areas to see the ● 549 GeoActive Series 27 Issue 2 Fig 549_01 Mac/eps/illustrator v15 s/s OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS Artist: David Russell Illustration Taunton Langport Somerton SOMERSET Glastonbury Bridgwater River Tone Bristol Channel River Parrett N 0 10 km Somerset Levels Areas under water, 11 January 2014 Key Figure 1 The extent of flooding across the Somerset Levels, January 2014 Source: Environment Agency 3 GEOACTIVE Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 549 © Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 Extension floods for themselves (such people became known as ‘flood tourists’). While many of those living on the Levels had experienced some form of flooding in the past, no one was quite prepared for the scale of these floods. No one died, but there were personal tragedies. People had to witness their homes, possessions farmland and animals succumb to the floodwaters (Figure 3). There were many evacuations, and people had to seek temporary accommodation elsewhere while they waited anxiously for the floodwater to subside. Only then could they begin to salvage what was left of their homes. More than 600 homes and 6880 hectares of farmland were inundated with quickly rising waters, and entire villages were cut off after roads became unusable. In the village of Muchelney, for example, the residents’ only way of leaving the island was via a boat which left every two hours (Figure 4). Isolated communities soon provided an opportunity for thieves: in January, 900 litres of fuel was stolen from a pumping station in Westonzoyland. By early February, there were reports of heating oil and quad bikes being stolen from homes of flood victims. Many of the main roads were closed, such as the A361 which links Taunton and Street. Trains were also disrupted on the Bristol line between Bridgwater and Taunton. The economic costs soon started to mount up. Fuel for emergency pumps used to reduce water levels in parts of flooded Somerset cost £200000 per week. Local businesses reported losses of more than £1 million. According to ‘Visit Somerset’, the floods on the Somerset Levels cost the county’s tourism industry £200 million. Farmers struggled to deal with flooded fields, ruined crops and the costs of moving livestock away from the affected areas. After nearly three months under millions of tonnes of water, much of the soil was now severely damaged. Standing water prevented oxygen getting to the Figure 3 Aerial view of a small village between Taunton and Yeovil on the Somerset Levels Source: © SWNS/Alamy Figure 2 Rainfall anomaly map 1–28 January 2014 Source: © Crown Copyright; Met Office 4 GEOACTIVE Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 549 © Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 Extension land beneath, killing insects and destroying nutrients, making the ground toxic. Land scientists, known as agronomists, believe it may take up to two years to restore the soil chemistry and biology sufficiently to grow crops. Flood-hit home owners are likely to see their insurance premiums drastically increase in the future. Many people are now without insurance as they simply cannot afford to pay the premiums. Management and response “The response to the floods was rapid and well organised.” The response to the floods was rapid and well organised, as to be expected in an economically developed country (Figure 5). The Met Office issued an advanced amber warning for heavy rain in South West England, informing the public to be prepared for significant flooding. Many residents were able to respond by using sandbags to protect their homes and by moving valuable items upstairs. One man even built a giant wall out of clay and soil around his house in the village of Moorland on the Somerset Levels, in a bid to protect it from rising floodwaters. The fire brigade visited hundreds of properties, helping those who had been affected, and rescue boats were deployed to help stranded people. In early February, rescue crews waded through Moorland on the Somerset Levels, knocking on doors and urging villagers to evacuate. Owners of around 80 homes complied but about 30 other residents chose to remain (Figure 6). Extra police patrols were brought in to respond to increased crime. By the end of January, the army had been sent in with specialist equipment to help those in the affected areas by delivering food, transporting people and distributing sandbags. By 6 February, they were accompanied by 40 Royal Marines. At the height of the floods, 65 pumps were 24–31 December South West England is hit by storms. Flood warnings are issued by the Met Office. 3 January The village of Muchelney is completely cut off by floodwater. 3–4 January RSPCA leads a rescue of cattle and horses from a farm on the Levels. 6–7 January Evacuation of residential properties begins. 24–25 January Tonnes of pumping equipment is brought in by the Environment Agency. 27 January Environment Secretary Owen Paterson is confronted by angry residents for his failure to dredge the rivers. 29–31 January Military and specialist vehicles are brought in to help. 4 February The Prince of Wales is escorted through the floods by boat, declaring the scene ‘a tragedy’. 5–6 February Two severe flood warnings are issued. 40 Royal Marines are deployed to help. 13–16 February The Environment Agency imports 13 high-capacity pumps from the Netherlands. 5–6 March David Cameron declares ‘money is no object’: a 20-year Flood Action Plan is devised. Figure 5 How the response unfolded, with key dates Figure 4 Residents of Muchelney approaching Langport by boat Source: Adrian Sherratt/Alamy 5 GEOACTIVE Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 549 © Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 Extension working 24 hours a day to drain 65 million m3 of floodwater. This included 13 high-capacity pumps imported from the Netherlands. In the midst of the crisis, there was enormous local support for those affected by the floods. This was coordinated by the charity organisation FLAG (Flooding on the Levels Action Group). Volunteers organised fundraising, collected supplies to help those who had suffered, and made extensive use of social media via Facebook and Twitter to communicate news. “There was enormous local support for those affected by the floods.” Future considerations Looking ahead to the future, a long-term plan was needed to reduce the frequency, duration and severity of flooding in the area. ‘The Somerset Levels and Moors Flood Action Plan’ was commissioned by Environment Secretary Owen Paterson. It was compiled by Somerset County Council, the Environment Agency, residents and other interested parties. It included measures such as dredging, a tidal barrage, and extra permanent pumping sites – total cost £100 million. Ten million pounds was provided by the government, a further £10 million came from the Department for Transport, and the Department for Communities and Local Government gave £500000. This formed part of a 20-year plan for a more sustainable future and gained the backing of Prime Minister David Cameron who stated: ‘We cannot let this happen again’. In November 2014, the Environment Agency (EA) kept its promise and completed the crucial 8 km dredge of the rivers Parrett and Tone, at a cost of £6 million. This will certainly go some way to help protect homes and agricultural land from the effects of flooding. However, some critics argue that dredging alone is not the answer. To be successful it should be used alongside other forms of flood defence, such as flood relief channels – but at what cost? Can the government justify spending money on maintaining the dredging of the river Parrett when the socio-economic value is low? This is especially pertinent given the high population densities and the many urban settlements along the Thames river basin (South East of England) which are also in need of protection. Given the future implications of climate change, the South West region is likely to experience more heavy rain and more storm surges. According to the Met Office, sea levels around the UK are likely to rise by 11–16 cm by 2030. Investment in expensive hard engineering defences may prove to be unsustainable in the long term. A more sustainable option would be to allow some areas of the Levels to be set aside for flooding, with farmers compensated and home owners moved to higher ground. However, this is unlikely to be a popular option. Conclusion The harsh reality of the recent floods is that, over several decades, more people have put themselves at risk of flooding by occupying this low-lying floodplain. The growth of farming and settlement in the area can be attributed to the belief that flooding was under control. This was clearly not the case and it is therefore not surprising that the local people felt so let down. While the impacts of this flood were felt by many, they could have been far worse if it had not been for the effective and rapid response, from the emergency services, the army, and the local community. All of these can be depended on in an economically more developed country. The longer-term implications for the residents are likely to be the reality of higher insurance premiums and a struggle to sell their homes. ‘I was mobilised to Moorland, one of the communities that was affected. When I arrived at the scene, it was like an apocalypse. I had never seen anything of this magnitude. All around there was floodwater. The Fire Service’s first role was to prevent loss of life, so evacuations were the priority and then rescue, by boat, of people who were stranded. After this, the many different rescue agencies were put to work on the construction of temporary flood defences using sandbags and defence barriers. People had been notified well in advance, so only a limited number of people needed rescuing. The problem we encountered was that a number of people were reluctant to leave because they were afraid of looting, despite extra police being drafted into the area to help with security.’ Figure 6 Extract from an interview with Phil Musgrove, a local firefighter 6 GEOACTIVE Flooding in the Somerset Levels, 2014 549 © Oxford University Press 2016 GeoActive Series 27, Issue 2, January 2016 Extension Learning checkpoint ● The Somerset Levels floods occurred during winter 2013/14 and were the most severe ever known to this area. ● An inland lake was created covering 11500 ha which affected more than 600 homes and thousands of hectares of farmland. ● It prompted a huge response from community to national level and led to a £10 million flood protection investment. Glossary task Write glossary definitions for these terms: agronomist bankfull capacity dredging flood floodplain fluvial channel hard engineering saturated surface runoff Remember this case study To help you remember this case study, make notes under the following headings: What were the causes of the Somerset Levels floods? What were the primary and secondary impacts? How was this flood event managed in both the short term and the long term? Try to make your notes fit a single sheet of A4. You could even use a detailed mind-map to help you. 1 Using Figure 1, describe the extent of flooding across the Levels. 2 Complete a table to identify human and physical causes of the floods. 3 Study Figure 2. Summarise the rainfall data for the Somerset Levels in January compared with the rest of the UK. 4 Identify two primary and two secondary effects of the flooding. 5 a Using Figures 3 and 4, describe the impact of flooding on local people. b Using Figures 3 and 4 and your answer to (a), create a newspaper report to show how the flood affected local people living on the Levels. 6 Using the outline in Figure 7, produce a spider diagram to summarise the immediate responses to this flood. 7 a Working in small groups, research hard and soft engineering strategies to manage flooding. b Indicate which strategies you think would be most suitable for this flood. 8 Visit these websites: www.flagsomerset.org.uk/ http://levelsandmoors. somersetleader.org.uk/ Investigate the community response to the disaster. As a class, discuss your findings. 9 In pairs, list the ways in which social media may have been a help or a hindrance during this flood event. Report back to your class. 10 Research a flood event in a less developed country and compare both the impacts of and responses to the Somerset Levels flood. Activities IMMEDIATE RESPONSES Figure 7 Spider diagram: Responses to the flood

^ Geography resource from my homelearning

Edited by Barzon Kerman

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HOLIDAY EATING TIPS

1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Holiday spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It's rare.. You cannot find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not as if you're going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It's a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It's later than you think. It will soon be Christmas!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole milk. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Holiday party is to eat other people's food for free. Lots of it. Hello?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don't budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They're like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you're never going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple, Pumpkin, Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or if you don't like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it's loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, please, have some standards!

10. One final tip: Wear sweatpants/loose fitting clothing. If you are leaving the party and you can walk without help from a construction forklift, "you haven't been paying attention, people!" Re-read tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner. Remember this motto to live by:

"Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate and wine in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

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n177VTl.png

I imagined this dude based on some random words. His machine is one where you can upload your mind to a virtual place of eternal life...except it is broken and inadvertently killed everyone because nobody could tell it was broken.

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..-. .-. .- ... - --- -. / -.-. .-.. .- ..- ... . / .. ... / -.-. --- -- .. -. / - --- / - --- .-- -. .-.-.- / .... . ... / -- .- -.- .. -. / .- / .-.. .. ... - --..-- / .... . ... / -.-. .... . -.-. -.- .. -. / .. - / - .-- .. -.-. . --..-- / .... . ... / --. --- -. -. .- / ..-. .. -. -.. / --- ..- - / .-- .... --- ... / -. .- ..- --. .... - -.-- / --- .-. / -. .. -.-. . --..-- / ..-. .-. .- ... - --- -. / -.-. .-.. .- ..- ... . / .. ... / -.-. --- -- .. -. / - --- / - --- .-- -. .-.-.- / .... . / ... . . ... / -.-- --- ..- / .-- .... . -. / -.-- --- ..- .-. / .-.. -.-- .. -. --. --..-- / .... . / -.- -. --- .-- ... / .-- .... . -. / -.-- --- ..- ...- . / -... . . -. / -... .- -.. --..-- / .... . / -.- -. --- .-- ... / - .... .- - / -.-- --- ..- / ... -. ..- -.-. -.- / - .... .- - / - .-. . .- - / ... --- / -... . / --. --- --- -.. / ..-. --- .-. / --. --- --- -.. -. . ... ... / ... .- -.- . -.-.-- / --- .... --..-- / -.-- --- ..- / -... . - - . .-. / .-- .- - -.-. .... / --- ..- - --..-- / -.-- --- ..- / -... . - - . .-. / -. --- - / -.-. .-. -.-- --..-- / -.-- --- ..- / -... . - - . .-. / -. --- - / .--. --- ..- - --..-- / .. -- / - . .-.. .-.. .. -. / -.-- --- ..- / .-- .... -.-- / ..-. .-. .- ... - --- -. / -.-. .-.. .- ..- ... . / .. ... / -.-. --- -- .. -. / - --- / - --- .-- -. .-.-.-

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..- -... .--- / --.- ...- --.- / .-.. -... .... / --.- .-. .--. -... --.- .-. / --. ..- ...- ..-. / ...- --. / . .-. -.. .... ...- . .-. ..-. / . -... --. .---- ...-- / -. .- --.- / --.. -... . ..-. .-. / .--. -... --.- .-. Try to decode this.

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ac085c8550f724ec80ce090fd515431f.jpg

^ not mine

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Z5hSyCv.png

Placing that to my signature.

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We are the masters of a power driven to the far reaches of the universe, and we have but one desire! Can one such as you possibly fathom how dearly we have clung to this dream across the aeons? How could you! You couldn’t! Never ever ever! We who once faced those who were in such fear of our power that they sealed us away and banished us to the edge of the galaxy! US! As if THAT loveliness wasn’t enough, they tried to erase our very existence from history! RUDE! Only through our magic were we able to overcome their science and achieve great prosperity! We alone were responsible for stopping that repulsive nightmare of a galactic crisis, yet this is how you repay us! This won’t stand! It won’t be forgiven! It won’t be forgotten! Never ever EVER! Those who called us mad, are you listening? You left us at the edge of the galaxy to be forgotten, then went along your merry way, probably living somewhere pretty and peaceful! But know this! Your future is a farce! You have none! We, masters of a matter most dark, vow to be restored, as foretold in the book of legend, which everyone thought was just a fairy tale! It WASN’T! We have already obtained the vessel that contains our Dark Lord, and he will soon awaken and shower us in compassion! Look! The vessel of our Dark Lord is filling up even as we speak! Now the time for his greatness to enter our world has come! Welcome to a new history! A new age! The age of awesome! HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DARK LORD! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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 It harvests Ore by utilising some force field to rip up the ground entierly.

 

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(nothing i have)

Edited by Gapone

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swap Tylo and Kerbin's internal names

(from AlienSpacePrograms thread)

Edited by Gapone

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KSP soundtrack:
Sun
    Near
    Far
Moho
    Surface
    space
Eve
    Far
    Near
    Entry
    Sky
    Surface
Gilly
    Gilly 1
    Gilly 2 (interchangeable anywhere in SOI)
Kerbin
    Surface
    Prelaunch
    Launch
    Sky
    Space near
    Space far
Mun
    Space
    Surface Kerbin-facing
    Surface Kerbin-opposing (only slightly different: omit references to Kerbin's theme)
Minmus
    Space
    Surface 1
    Surface 2
Duna
    Space
    Entry
    Surface
Ike
    Space
    Surface
Dres
    Space far (simple version)
    Space near
    Surface
Jool
    Space far
    Aerobraking
Laythe
    Space
    Entry
    Sky
    Surface
Vall
    Space
    Surface
    Vallhenge
Tylo
    Space
    Surface
Bop
    Bop 1
    Bop 2
    Kraken (make like Submerged Castle)
Pol
    Space
    Surface
Eeloo
    Space far
    Space near
    Surface

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300px-NGC2207+IC2163.jpg

On prime games.

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