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Offline happyfeet

Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« on: Oct 29, 2013, 01:36 »
My husband just finished prototype and much to his chagrin his orders aren't at all what he had hoped for!  He was really striving to be an ELT because he felt that "CRC" (I'm not sure that's correct) was the subject that came most naturally to him and because he hopes to work in that area after leaving the military.  Also, I'm sure it has something to do with the fact that I've found great employment and friends here in Charleston and he was hoping to give me the opportunity to stay here as long as possible.  Also, he was wanting to be stationed on a boomer in Kings Bay, but instead he will be going fast attack out west.

Anyways, I would love to cheer him up with some words of encouragement but not cliche words of encouragement, we all know nukes don't go for that kind of thing.  So instead what I am looking for are your reasons why...

a. being an MM is better/cooler/superior to being an ELT
b. being on a fast attack is better/cooler/superior to being on a boomer

Thanks for the words of encouragement!
« Last Edit: Oct 29, 2013, 01:40 by happyfeet »

Offline xobxdoc

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #1 on: Oct 29, 2013, 09:52 »
My husband just finished prototype and much to his chagrin his orders aren't at all what he had hoped for!  He was really striving to be an ELT because he felt that "CRC" (I'm not sure that's correct) was the subject that came most naturally to him and because he hopes to work in that area after leaving the military.  Also, I'm sure it has something to do with the fact that I've found great employment and friends here in Charleston and he was hoping to give me the opportunity to stay here as long as possible.  Also, he was wanting to be stationed on a boomer in Kings Bay, but instead he will be going fast attack out west.

Anyways, I would love to cheer him up with some words of encouragement but not cliche words of encouragement, we all know nukes don't go for that kind of thing.  So instead what I am looking for are your reasons why...

a. being an MM is better/cooler/superior to being an ELT
b. being on a fast attack is better/cooler/superior to being on a boomer

Thanks for the words of encouragement!
You'd have better luck convincing him that it is better to make JV instead of varsity.

Offline Marlin

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #2 on: Oct 29, 2013, 10:11 »
My husband just finished prototype and much to his chagrin his orders aren't at all what he had hoped for!  He was really striving to be an ELT because he felt that "CRC" (I'm not sure that's correct) was the subject that came most naturally to him and because he hopes to work in that area after leaving the military.  Also, I'm sure it has something to do with the fact that I've found great employment and friends here in Charleston and he was hoping to give me the opportunity to stay here as long as possible.  Also, he was wanting to be stationed on a boomer in Kings Bay, but instead he will be going fast attack out west.

Anyways, I would love to cheer him up with some words of encouragement but not cliche words of encouragement, we all know nukes don't go for that kind of thing.  So instead what I am looking for are your reasons why...

a. being an MM is better/cooler/superior to being an ELT
b. being on a fast attack is better/cooler/superior to being on a boomer

Thanks for the words of encouragement!

   I think delivery of the message may be the key. I am seeing Sunday Football a French Maid costume with beer and pretzels on a tray.

 ;)

Fermi2

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #3 on: Oct 29, 2013, 02:56 »
Plenty of good ball players never make the majors yet the local fans love them.


Offline GLW

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #4 on: Oct 29, 2013, 03:44 »
a. being an MM is better/cooler/superior to being an ELT

It's not,.....

However, an MM (and his better half) who really likes the Navy well enough to re-up for a couple of years used to be able to re-up for ELT training and the privilege to earn the most coveted of all NECs,...


I do not know if that is still an option in the new, improved Navy of today,...

He would have to ask,...

b. being on a fast attack is better/cooler/superior to being on a boomer

That's a dicey one,...

In my experience the fast boat was fantastic as far as being a sailor goes,...

Lousy for the family left behind,...

The boomer sucked too, but only for 105 days, then it was 95 days of pretty darn good cakewalk stuff with lots and lots of time at home for those 95 days, then the 105 day grind again,...

But my understanding is; it is not like that anymore,...

Then again, there was a fast boat out of Squadron 1 in PH that may as well have been welded to the pier for as often as it's broke arse could get to sea for the three years I was stationed on another boat in the same squadron,...

The constant in the Navy is more like this,..... YMMV,....

good luck, and we thank him for his service,... 8)

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

Offline HydroDave63

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #5 on: Oct 29, 2013, 09:18 »
   I think delivery of the message may be the key. I am seeing Sunday Football a French Maid costume with beer and pretzels on a tray.

 ;)

so THAT is how an MM at proto should go to his qual board in order to get ELT  ;)

Offline GLW

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #6 on: Oct 29, 2013, 09:19 »
so THAT is how an MM at proto should go to his qual board in order to get ELT  ;)

it didn't hurt,....my chances that is,... :P ;) :) 8)



not bad considering the Navy judges on a 4.0 scale
« Last Edit: Oct 29, 2013, 09:56 by GLW »

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

Offline Marlin

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #7 on: Oct 29, 2013, 09:33 »
so THAT is how an MM at proto should go to his qual board in order to get ELT  ;)

Don't ask don't tell.  ;)

cedugger

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #8 on: Oct 30, 2013, 12:53 »
Happyfeet,

The 'Needs of the Navy' have interrupted so many well-laid plans, so your husband isn't alone. I signed up hoping to be a nuke Electronics Technician on a boomer, and ended up being an ELT on the Mobile Chernobyl. It was the best decision I didn't make...loved being an ELT. That doesn't exactly help your husbands situation, however, but he still has four years or more to make the best of it.

He's a nuke mechanic now, so time to play the hand dealt him and focus on being a great mechanical operator. Even without being an ELT while in the Navy, I'm sure there's a path to enter the chemistry or radiological controls (CRC) realm once he's out...there are many others here on this site who are more familiar with the chances of such a move. Most of my Navy buddies who went on to commercial nuclear power opted for being operators anyways, and didn't focus on the CRC stuff anyways.

Anything I know about subs is hearsay, but it seems as though fast boats actually get to see ports outside the U.S. I don't think boomers are making such visits, except for maybe the guided missile conversions. The fast boat schedule isn't as ideal as the predictability of a boomer, and that's probably why so many put boomers on their wish lists.

He wanted all of those things because he perceived them as being better...not much you can do to lessen that disappointment. He's still a Navy Nuke, which makes him awesome. He can enjoy being a great mechanic as much as being a great ELT. Plus, as you see from the replies thus far, we're a weird bunch, so he can join the ranks of those who love to display their extreme jealousy by trying to poke fun of us!

Best of success to you and your husband.

Offline hamsamich

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #9 on: Oct 30, 2013, 06:22 »
Good things about fast boats for your MM Husband- (Late 80s early 90s info be careful)

1.  ELTs on fastboats sometimes get double the workload when compared to a normal MM due to overzealous MM div LPO ("He's a mechanic first ELT second and that is how it is"!)

2.  Fastboats will probably do more interesting things, like liberty ports and more interesting boat assignments.  You could fly out and meet him if the conditions are right.  I took a weeks leave in Italy and traveled across Europe by boat and railway to meet my brother in Gemany (Army).

3.  Like someone else said, it isn't supposed to be "as good" anymore on boomers.

4.  It really does depend on the commander/higher ranking officers and chiefs.  You can have a great fastboat due to the people in charge.  that's why I got out (one of many reasons), people who may suck have way to much control over you life, there is no rhyme or reason.  So even though he is going to what some would consider the hardest assignment, really it depends on how good the people over you are.

5.  If the fastboat needs upkeep you could end up in port for awhile, like years, but this could be good or bad.  Sometimes it isn't fun at all, but he should get to see you at least 5 nights a week depending on duty schedule.  It might only be for 8 hours though (worst case).   :o

6.  He gets to be a real mechanic.  Not saying all ELTs were bad mechanics, and plenty of ELTs really got into it, but you will be put in more of a position to do real mechanical stuff.  Isn't it fun to try to fix an evaporator?  This could be bad or good depending on his aptitudes/preferences.

7.  As an ELT he might have been stuck as only one of 2 ELTs on the boat (this happened to me more than once) in port.  That means you spend every other day on board for 24 hours.  And if something happens to the other ELT (medical etc) you could even be port and report until somebody figures it out!

8.  You can go to an R-5 and get Radcon Training (the RC in CRC) if you really want it.  Especially if your fast attack sucks and he wants to try something else ASAP, R-5 used to qualify as neutral duty so it was far easier to get.

9.  It is easier to blend in as an MM, so if he isn't a hot runner but is decent at his job, he might meld better with the crew.  Low number of ELTs per boat and spotlightish kinds of jobs make it harder to blend in as an ELT.

10.  There are a couple of cool schools MMs used to be able to go to, it was harder to get these schools as an ELT on my boat.

11.  ELTs usually do "baby radcon".  If he is interested in getting into RADCON, the stuff at R-5 will be more real deal type of radcon.

12.  HE still may be able to get ELT.  I don't recommend it, but if you 2 decide to stay in, he could get sent back to prototype and get ELT I think.  Have him ask about this.

13.  People on fastboats can become really good at stuff because you are all they have to do things, so you might have more opportunity to "be the man" at something.  I got to go to dive school because no one else could pass the test!!  Or like QA stud or something like that, which could land him a good job outside of the NAVY possibly.

14.  There is a way to come out and qualify for CRC jobs on the outside.  Most commercial plants do not use a combined C/RC tech but a few do.  He could go to R-5, and while he is in the Navy get a Chemistry degree.  This would be very difficult for most situations, but one easier way to do it is for him to get as many credits as he can while in the Navy, then use the GI Bill to finish it up when he gets out.  A great alternative plan if he gets out during a bad time in the Economy.  I don't know how bad he wants to be CRC, I'm sure he will reevaluate when he has some "time on the pond".

Offline spekkio

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #10 on: Oct 31, 2013, 01:20 »
1) The ELT vs MM part:

There generally are two kinds of Eng Dept philosophies: either ELTs are part of M-Div and are owned by the MLPO when not doing surveys/sampling (which means they mostly work for M-Div), or they are their own division and only support M-Div during huge evolutions (which means that they sneak off to liberty at 1300).

If your husband is in the former, he'll be glad he's an MM because he doesn't have to deal with the 'extra' work of maintaining radcon paperwork. MMs on submarines do quite a bit of radcon work, it's just that they are overseen by an ELT who also is responsible for maintaining an admin program within the division. What that means functionally is that once the anti-c's come off, the MMs get to 'X' off the maintenance item and forget about it while the ELTs worry about making sure all the paperwork is correct and work on getting it routed/filed away.

If he's in the latter, he'll get a lot of exposure to maintenance practices, particularly QA work, that he wouldn't get as an ELT, because the ELTs are only doing radcon surveys, the daily samples, filing paperwork, and dicking around until it's safe enough to leave the pier. Qualifying QA and being involved in maintenance planning is the best thing your husband can do as far as setting himself up for gainful post-Navy employment. It will make him a better mechanic, and if he chooses to get out and go to college he'll also have experience in quality maintenance. HOWEVER, he'll probably hate life for a bit because he'll be bitter that he could be one of those ELTs leaving the pier in the early afternoon.

Underway, your husband will have more exposure to operating the plant. Generally, ELTs stay in ERF even after qualifying all the ER watches so that they can do their S/G analysis. Some hot-running ELTs get to actually stand ERS, but they generally are worse at it than their MM brothers because they lack experience in standing ERLL/ERUL, and standing ERF is usually easier than either of those. Keeps the MLPO awake and grumpy, though.

Here's the ugly part: M-Div has a shelf of like 5 binders that they maintain, the most important of which is arguably the material history. ELTs have 3 shelves of about 15 binders that they maintain, where about 4-5 are viewed as super important and are constantly getting audited. There is a large amount of being an ELT that is similar to being a postal worker in that the paperwork never.f@#$%&g.stops. Additionally, ELTs are the most monitored division on the boat and they are always being told how they are screwing up (by someone who has never personally done it) and are almost never complimented. An ELT chief turned LDO told me that ADM Donald asked him bluntly during his O-interview "so, tell me why is it that I can't trust ELTs?" It is possible for an M-Diver to do something exceptional by fixing a broken evaporator to keep the ship on station, but the most exceptional thing an ELT can do is screw up less than the next ELT. Coming from a former MPA and CRA, it was much easier to put 'above and beyond' examples on the MMs evals and awards than on the ELTs, and that was with an exceptionally strong RL division.

So, bottom line: yea he might work longer in-port hours, but he'll (eventually) get to do more true mechanic stuff and be more knowledgeable about ER operations than his ELT brothers.

Fastboat vs. Boomer:

Well, it is a huge difference in workload and the seemingly random schedule can be stressful, not at all aided by the fact you'll probably have a Nav and AOPS who don't think it's important to make the ship's schedule accessible to the crew, but you'll get to visit some cool places that you wouldn't normally see. He'll also be able to feel like he was a part of a 'real mission' instead of drilling while waiting for the message to commence judgement day (this is not to imply that SSBNs don't play an important role, but that people don't get the same sense of accomplishment from doing a patrol).
« Last Edit: Oct 31, 2013, 09:35 by Marlin »

ridgerunner61

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #11 on: Oct 31, 2013, 07:46 »
It is possible for an M-Diver to do something exceptional by fixing a broken evaporator to keep the ship on station, but the most exceptional thing an ELT can do is screw up less than the next ELT. Coming from a former MPA and CRA, it was much easier to put 'above and beyond' examples on the MMs evals and awards than on the ELTs, and that was with an exceptionally strong RL division.

So can you explain how I as an ELT got a Commadore's Award for venting RCP's during refit?

Yes ELT's did have a reputation for taking the easy way out but with smart work you can excel. Met both some dirtbag ELT's and dirtbag M-Diver I also worked along side some great M-Divers and some Great ELT's.

« Last Edit: Oct 31, 2013, 09:59 by Marlin »

Offline spekkio

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #12 on: Oct 31, 2013, 10:10 »
Quote
So can you explain how I as an ELT got a Commadore's Award for venting RCP's during refit?
You did an exceptionally rare evolution. That's the exception that proves the rule. But you got the award for doing it right, which is what you were supposed to do, which I suppose is why you didn't even get a NAM for it. And if it went like major radcon evolutions tend to go now, you didn't raise your hand to be a part of it, the EDMC and ENG just put you on the watchbill. Lots of work, but doesn't show the above-and-beyond initiative I was talking about.

That's the crux -- ELT's are expected to be perfect. So the vast majority of stuff that comes your way is criticism on what you didn't do perfectly.

Anything else? Or is one evolution your claim to fame over an entire 4+ year sea tour?
« Last Edit: Oct 31, 2013, 10:41 by spekkio »

Offline Marlin

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #13 on: Oct 31, 2013, 10:23 »
1) The ELT vs MM part:

There generally are two kinds of Eng Dept philosophies: either ELTs are part of M-Div and are owned by the MLPO when not doing surveys/sampling (which means they mostly work for M-Div), or they are their own division and only support M-Div during huge evolutions (which means that they sneak off to liberty at 1300).

If your husband is in the former, he'll be glad he's an MM because he doesn't have to deal with the 'extra' work of maintaining radcon paperwork. MMs on submarines do quite a bit of radcon work, it's just that they are overseen by an ELT who also is responsible for maintaining an admin program within the division. What that means functionally is that once the anti-c's come off, the MMs get to 'X' off the maintenance item and forget about it while the ELTs worry about making sure all the paperwork is correct and work on getting it routed/filed away.

If he's in the latter, he'll get a lot of exposure to maintenance practices, particularly QA work, that he wouldn't get as an ELT, because the ELTs are only doing radcon surveys, the daily samples, filing paperwork, and dicking around until it's safe enough to leave the pier. Qualifying QA and being involved in maintenance planning is the best thing your husband can do as far as setting himself up for gainful post-Navy employment. It will make him a better mechanic, and if he chooses to get out and go to college he'll also have experience in quality maintenance. HOWEVER, he'll probably hate life for a bit because he'll be bitter that he could be one of those ELTs leaving the pier in the early afternoon.

Underway, your husband will have more exposure to operating the plant. Generally, ELTs stay in ERF even after qualifying all the ER watches so that they can do their S/G analysis. Some hot-running ELTs get to actually stand ERS, but they generally are worse at it than their MM brothers because they lack experience in standing ERLL/ERUL, and standing ERF is usually easier than either of those. Keeps the MLPO awake and grumpy, though.

Here's the ugly part: M-Div has a shelf of like 5 binders that they maintain, the most important of which is arguably the material history. ELTs have 3 shelves of about 15 binders that they maintain, where about 4-5 are viewed as super important and are constantly getting audited. There is a large amount of being an ELT that is similar to being a postal worker in that the paperwork never.f@#$%&g.stops. Additionally, ELTs are the most monitored division on the boat and they are always being told how they are screwing up (by someone who has never personally done it) and are almost never complimented. An ELT chief turned LDO told me that ADM Donald asked him bluntly during his O-interview "so, tell me why is it that I can't trust ELTs?" It is possible for an M-Diver to do something exceptional by fixing a broken evaporator to keep the ship on station, but the most exceptional thing an ELT can do is screw up less than the next ELT. Coming from a former MPA and CRA, it was much easier to put 'above and beyond' examples on the MMs evals and awards than on the ELTs, and that was with an exceptionally strong RL division.

So, bottom line: yea he might work longer in-port hours, but he'll (eventually) get to do more true mechanic stuff and be more knowledgeable about ER operations than his ELT brothers.

Fastboat vs. Boomer:

Well, it is a huge difference in workload and the seemingly random schedule can be stressful, not at all aided by the fact you'll probably have a Nav and AOPS who don't think it's important to make the ship's schedule accessible to the crew, but you'll get to visit some cool places that you wouldn't normally see. He'll also be able to feel like he was a part of a 'real mission' instead of drilling while waiting for the message to commence judgement day (this is not to imply that SSBNs don't play an important role, but that people don't get the same sense of accomplishment from doing a patrol).

   I really hope that this is in support of the OP, it in no way reflects my experiences or that of other X-ELTs I know. Of course as always YMMV but mine were that I and the other ELTs on board were expected to qualify on the same schedule as the rest of M-Div or go DINK. Only the duty ELT was exempted from M-Div work on both of my boats. Primary plant maintenance was done primarily by ELTs so that they could do their own RadCon support, my exposure was 3.5 R when I got out, no non-ELT M-Diver came close. I qualified ERS on my first boat and was three section EWS/EDPO for two years on my second boat.

  You were much too nice to your ELTs or you had an very over manned boat which I understand is still not likely unless you had BZ as your entire ELT compliment then you would not even need an M-Div.  [devious]


Offline spekkio

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #14 on: Oct 31, 2013, 10:40 »
Of course if you ask ex-ELTs, they'll say they were better mechanics than the MMs. And vice versa  :P.

I was on a boat that subscribed to the "ELTs belong to RL div, not M-Div." Eng didn't want to do poorly on ORSE admin and radcon because the ELTs were kept too busy doing M-Divs maintenance. And as CRA, it wasn't my job to make a strong case to the Eng why my ELTs should work for someone else instead of go home when their work was done. Too nice? Maybe. Would I do it that way if I were an Eng? Nope.

As for quals -- the EDM/EDOM mandates the same qual timeline for ELTs and MMs through ERS, with ELTs having ELT added in there. Qualifying the watch doesn't automatically mean standing it and being good at it. Most ELTs stood ERF for the majority of their tours, again so they can do the S/G and condensate sample. The good ones/hot runners came out to stand ERS and had some growing pains from not standing ERLL/ERUL, which is where most of the stuff the ERS has to supervise happens.
« Last Edit: Oct 31, 2013, 10:44 by spekkio »

Offline Marlin

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #15 on: Oct 31, 2013, 10:48 »
As for quals -- the EDM/EDOM mandates the same qual timeline for ELTs and MMs through ERS, with ELTs having ELT added in there. Qualifying the watch doesn't automatically mean standing it and being good at it. Most ELTs stood ERF for the majority of their tours, again so they can do the S/G and condensate sample. The good ones/hot runners came out to stand ERS and had some growing pains from not standing ERLL/ERUL, which is where most of the stuff the ERS has to supervise happens.

   We were permitted to qualify mechanics as secondary chemists makes a difference. ELTs still had to do chemical adds but watch rotation was more balanced. Engineers made a big difference in the operating experience from boat to boat I was fortunate to serve under several good ones.

Offline Tyson812

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #16 on: Oct 31, 2013, 11:58 »
We just qualified the first I've ever seen or heard of sea-returnee mechanic as an elt. He was a MM on the Montpelier and came to prototype did a full tour as an instructor and was selected for elt. He just qualified and is headed to a boomer out of Washington. Elt manning is so bad right now they are opening it up to 2nd tour mechanics. They are also offering $500 a month for a lelt who stays at sea or goes back to sea early. He could still pick up elt if he returns to prototype as an instructor.

ridgerunner61

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #17 on: Oct 31, 2013, 12:05 »
Anything else? Or is one evolution your claim to fame over an entire 4+ year sea tour?

Was only 2 years sea time as I was a staff puke-up. But while at the type did numerous NI detector change outs.

Fermi2

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #18 on: Oct 31, 2013, 05:53 »
I WAS a better mechanic than the MMs on my boat.

Offline Marlin

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #19 on: Oct 31, 2013, 06:07 »
I WAS a better mechanic than the MMs on my boat.


Offline hamsamich

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Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #20 on: Oct 31, 2013, 07:13 »
can't believe it took him as long as it did.

Offline GLW

Re: Why being an MM is better than being an ELT!
« Reply #21 on: Nov 01, 2013, 02:23 »
..............An ELT chief turned LDO told me that ADM Donald asked him bluntly during his O-interview "so, tell me why is it that I can't trust ELTs?"..........

The Admiral is suffering from Big Navy Short Memory Stupid,....

ELT's are pulled from all quantiles of the graduating MMs,....

Once upon a time you had to not only want ELT, you had to earn ELT,...

You had to score in no less than the top half of nuke school,...

You had to maintain no less than top half through prototype,...

You had to get through a cross crew with people not predisposed to make you look good because they had their own shift's ELT candidates competing with you for top bragging rights for the section and the plant,...

So, you had to have book skills, hand skills and people skills, and you had to learn early that just doing your job successfully was going to have to be thanks enough,...

Well, it was the Navy which changed that paradigm and it is the Navy which has to deal with the new paradigm,...

Why cannot the Admiral trust ELT's?!?!?! the answer is in the mirror,.... [coffee]

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

 


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