Genesis 39-41: The Unnamed Prison in Egypt...Redemption (Season 1, Episode 21) - Part 2 of 2
What happens when Joey is sold into slavery in Egypt? A famine is predicted, a Shawshank is Redeemed, and a Harry Potter convention meets a horrifying end.
|Jay Willem||Oct 10, 2019|| 2|
This is the latest episode in a serialised narrative. If jumping into things mid-way doesn’t bother you, ignore this and keep reading. If you like to start from the beginning, check out the archive here.
If you are a creationist, evangelist, fundamentalist, or biblical literalist, this will probably offend you.
If you have any sense of propriety, this will probably offend you.
If you have the capacity to be offended, this will probably do the trick.
If you're okay with that, then read on.
If you want to read on just so you can tell me how terrible I am and that I should never write another word ever again, feel free.
Who knows? It might actually work.
Suddenly, two years have gone by...
Out in the world, Cups is doing what he does best – serving Pharaoh his morning wine.
“Hey, it’s noon somewhere,” Pharaoh says, and drains the thing in a single gulp. He hands the goblet back to Cups, who takes it, bows, and goes to get the guy a refill, thinking, “Do people start drinking at noon? Is that the saying?”
Sure, he feels bad for letting Joey rot in prison. He wasn’t lying when he said he’d vouch for him – he just never got around to it. It never felt like the right time.
He didn’t want to say something on the pharaoh’s birthday – only an asshole would do that – so he waited.
And he waited...
And he waited.
Then, all of a sudden, too much time had passed. It’d be weird if he mentioned it now.
Things were going so well for him. He never wanted to rock the boat by vouching for a prisoner. Especially when that prisoner had been accused of the same thing he’d been accused of – sleeping with a superior’s wife.
Better to just not say anything.
If the moment arose, he’d say something. Of course he would. Only an asshole wouldn’t do that.
But until then, call this guy the opposite of the 2009 British comedy starring Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy and Nick Frost, because this is The Boat That Didn’t Rock.
Unfortunately for Cups, Pharaoh chooses that moment to say, “Y’know... I’ve been having this dream for the past week or so. Same one every time...”
Cups, who is in the middle of pouring the refill, slows, and then stops entirely as Pharaoh continues to speak.
“...I’m standing on the edge of the Nile, masturbating into the river, as every pharaoh does...”
I didn’t just make this up. Apparently, the rulers of Ancient Egypt would ceremonially (and publicly) jack off into the Nile. It had something to do with the god Atum, and regulating the flood cycle, and I don’t even care if it’s not true, because it’s goddamn hilarious.
And we’re back in...
“...and I had just reached completion in front of a cheering crowd, when I saw something before me. These big, fat cows emerged from the water, and they started grazing on the reeds. At first, I’m thinking, ‘Fuck, are these my kids? Did I just have some weird cow-babies with the river? Shouldn’t they be like water-people then, or like mermaids or something? Why cows?’ But then these other cows come up out of the water, and these ones are all ugly and thin. So I’m like, ‘Yeah, they’re clearly starving – they’ll just eat some reeds too.’ But then they start eating the other cows, the fat cows. They’re just tearing chunks out of them while they’re still alive, and the cows are scream-mooing, and I’m just standing there watching this bloodbath take place, when it occurs to me I’ve still got my dick in my hand. I mean, it’s flaccid by now, obviously...”
Cups is just standing there, faced away from the pharaoh, his face twisted up in a “What the fuck?” kind of gesture. He realises the pharaoh’s waiting for a response, so he clears his throat and takes the ruler his wine.
“Well, that’s certainly an interesting dream...”
“It’s not the only one,” Pharaoh says, traumatised. He snatches the cup out of Cups’ hand, downing the entire thing in one gulp. “I had another dream after that...”
“Oh, god...” Cups mutters under his breath, realising this will be his entire day now.
The pharaoh continues as if uninterrupted. “I was out taking a tour of the corn fields, and I saw a stalk with seven ears of corn – big, fat ears. I was about to take one from the impoverished farmer, as is my noble right, but then another seven ears grew. These ones were all thin and diseased-looking. I immediately recoiled, fearing the dreaded blight. But then the shitty ears of corn started eating the healthy ears – just grabbing onto them with their leafy fingers and enveloping them. God, it was horrible. I’m just standing there, watching this cannibal corn massacre take place, when it occurs to me I’ve got my dick in my hand.”
Cups frowns, confused, like, “When did your dick get in your hand?”
Pharaoh frowns too, like he’s just realising that part of the dream is weird. “Yeah, I guess I must have taken it out at some point. Anyway, those are my dreams. I’ve had all kinds of people try to interpret them – magicians and wise men and astrologers, and even one animal tamer – but no one’s been able to crack the code.”
He puts a hand on Cups’ shoulder, staring at him with pleading, wine-wet eyes – already buzzed and it’s not even nine o’ clock. “Can you help me, my dutiful cupbearer, who I trust more than anyone in the world and who would never do anything to hurt me?”
At that moment, Pharaoh’s wife comes into the room from a doorway behind her husband so he can’t see her. She freezes when she sees Cups. He does the same when he sees her.
Slowly, she backs out of the room.
“Is everything alright?” Pharoah asks, oblivious.
Cups clears his throat. “Uh...yes, of course. Of course I can help you. That’s me – the dutiful, trustworthy servant who would never do anything to hurt you.”
Pharaoh smiles, relieved.
“Now, I can’t help you personally,”Cups goes on. “But I know a guy. A Dream Whisperer.”
Pharaoh arches an eyebrow, intrigued. “Where is he?”
Cups hesitates. “In prison.”
Pharaoh’s eyes narrow in suspicion. He’s rapidly losing confidence in his cupbearer.
An hour or so later, Joey’s on his way to Pharaoh’s throne room under armed guard.
He’s been allowed to shit, shower, shave, change clothes. Combine that with the thirty-odd pounds of muscle he’s managed to stack on in the last two years, and the Dream Whisperer is looking good.
He’s gone from Christian Bale in The Machinist to Christian Bale in Batman Begins – if Christian Bale in Batman Begins was in the habit of wearing sweet linen tunics and brand new leather sandals.
And let’s not forget that charcoal eyeliner that made the Ancient Egyptians’ eyes pop like crazy.
Joey’s brought in before Pharaoh, and when he sees Cups standing there beside him, his blood starts to boil. He imagines killing the guards on either side of him, then grabbing Cups and force-feeding him wine until he bursts.
Seems like a poetic end, right?
Instead, he does nothing.
He smiles, graciously, like any slave with a knack for self-preservation, and Cups isn’t sure what to make of it. He doesn’t know if Joey’s forgiven him, or if he even remembers how Cups betrayed him.
Prison will do crazy things to a man. Cups ought to know – he was there for almost three full days.
The room is packed with all the wise men, magicians and astrologers who tried (and failed) to interpret the dream. I don’t know about you, but I’m picturing a bunch of fully-grown adults waiting in line at a Harry Potter convention, complete with elaborate witch and wizard costumes.
As Joey walks past them, they all scoff and chuckle and whisper to each other.
“This guy? Really?”
“Pfft. He doesn’t even have an animal to cut open and read the entrails of.”
Joey just ignores them. He’s got a real smugness about him – a real “Oh yeah, you fuckin’ nerds? Watch this!” kind of mentality.
Pharaoh (now quite drunk) proceeds to tell Joey his dreams, and Joey, blocking one ear as if touching an invisible headset, pretends to be receiving a translation directly from God in real-time.
“Hold on, I’m getting something...” Joey says. He closes his eyes, listening intently.
Pharaoh and Cups lean in, fascinated. Even the previously-doubtful crowd find themselves being entranced by the performance, rendered speechless like any hack when confronted with genuine talent.
Noticing this, Joey decides to really milk the situation.
He lets out a cry of pain and falls to his knees. Like an ant being burned alive by a kid with a magnifying glass, he pretends to wither and shrink – as if the sheer act of communicating with God is causing him physical pain.
“What?!” he screams. “I didn’t quite get that! Can you repeat yourself?!”
The awe-struck and terrified crowd looks on as Joey collapses onto his back, writhing around like he’s having some kind of seizure. Cups is watching this, like, “What the fuck is this guy doing and why are these people buying into it?”
“But I don’t understand!” Joey screams. “Why would you...? Oh, of course. Of course! It all makes sense now.”
Suddenly, he goes still.
The crowd looks on with bated breath.
Joey sits up, slowly, opening his eyes. He looks around at the crowd as if coming out of a trance and gets to his feet. A few gasps from the onlookers, like, “Oh, shit – this guy’s the real deal.”
Joey stands tall, looking an astonished Pharaoh dead in the eyes.
“Your dreams are one in the same,” he says, calmly. “The seven fat cows and the seven healthy ears of corn signify seven years. The thin cows and the shitty ears of corn do the same. Your dream means that there will be seven years of plentiful harvests, followed by seven years of famine.”
Nervous whispers among the so-called ‘magicians’. Pharaoh looks very concerned.
“Also...” Joey says. “God told me that the cupbearer is having sex with your wife. Does that make sense?”
Pharoah spits out the rather large mouthful of wine he had just taken, inadvertently drenching Joey. The inebriated ruler turns on Cups, bursting with anger.
Cups takes a few steps back. “No, wait...”
Pharoah points at him, calling to his guards, “Arrest him!”
The guards move in.
Panicking, backing up, Cups turns to Joey. “Tell them, Joey. Tell them it isn’t true.”
Joey shrugs. “Sorry, pal. That’s what God told me. I’m a translator, not an editor.”
“No!” Cups screams, as the guards take hold of him.
“If I may...” Joey says.
Pharaoh signals to his guards to stop, and indicates that Joey may continue.
“God also told me that the cupbearer should be punished by spending seven times seven years in prison. So, like, what’s that? Come on, nerds, help me out...”
He turns to the crowd, many of whom are still speechless with awe. Cups watches on in horror.
One guy goes, “Forty nine.”
Joey claps his hands together. “Forty nine! Thank you.”
The cupbearer’s blood runs cold. “Forty nine years? That’s a life sentence...”
Pharaoh considers it. Finally, he nods. “Then a life sentence it is. Seems a little harsh to me, but if that’s what God said, then my hands are tied.”
He nods to his guards, who resume dragging him out. Cups struggles against them, screaming, much like his brother when he was taken away. “No! No! Your hands aren’t tied, you drunk! There’s no proof. No proof he’s telling the truth.”
“You’re the one who told me he was a Dream Whisperer,” Pharaoh says, with a shrug. “Funny how you change your mind only after he’s incriminated you. That only makes me believe him more.”
Cups realises he’s toast. Done for. His goose is cooked. He sees Joey smiling at him – the warm, infectious smile of a man who has just sated his lust for revenge.
The kind of revenge which isn’t immediately cathartic – like, say, murder – but rather, prolonged and poetic. The kind of revenge which carries thematic weight, and is that much more satisfying for the reader because of it.
Cups goes limp, resigned to his fate. He stops kicking and allows himself to be dragged silently from the room to the small, dark cage where he’ll spend the rest of his life.
Once he’s gone, Joey turns back around to face the pharaoh. He isn’t done yet.
“If I may...”
“You don’t need to keep saying that,” Pharaoh says. “Just say what you want to say.”
Joey nods. “Thank you, I appreciate that.” A quick glance around at all the Dream Whisperer wannabes to make sure they know who’s boss. Then, back to Pharaoh, “Now that you know there’s seven years of famine ahead, you’ll need to appoint someone to be in charge of preparing for it.”
“Who does God recommend for the position?” Pharaoh asks, genuinely interested.
Joey holds his hand to his ear again, gritting his teeth and closing his eyes as if in pain. “Hold on, I’m getting something...” After a few seconds, he returns to normal. Then, a little sheepish, kind of chuckling, he goes, “Wouldn’t you know it? He said that I was the one you should appoint. Can you believe that?”
At this, Pharaoh’s royal vizier (a fancy word for advisor) steps forward. “Alright,” he says. “I think I’ve heard quite enough of this.”
“Enough of what?” Pharaoh says, confused.
The vizier shakes his head. “We don’t know anything about this man. He could just be making all this up.”
Pharaoh frowns, as if he doesn’t understand the accusation. “He just predicted my dreams, guy. How do you explain that?”
“Yeah, guy,” Joey says, backing up the pharaoh. “How do you explain that?”
The vizier sighs, weary. He’s put up with this alcoholic moron for decades and is just about sick of it. “The dreams haven’t come true yet. How do you know he’s not lying?”
“Did you not just see him having a seizure on the floor?”
“That could have been an act. I’m not saying he’s not a talented actor.”
“How did he know that the cupbearer was sleeping with my wife, then?”
“He just made a random accusation. You cleared the cupbearer of suspicion for that a long time ago. Don’t you remember?”
Pharaoh thinks hard, trying to find the memory through a drunken fog. He takes a sip of wine to help him remember.
Joey can see which way the tide is turning and quickly jumps in before Pharaoh comes to his senses. “Don’t listen to him, Pharaoh. He’s lying. God told me that he’s jealous of you. He wants to seize your throne for himself!”
Pharaoh’s eyes bulge. “You bastard!”
The vizier panics, realising what a dangerous situation he’s put himself in. “No, wait...”
“Guards!” Pharaoh says. “Kill that man!”
Before the vizier can object, the guards move in, skewering him from a dozen different angles with their spears. The vizier makes a horrible moaning, choking sound, then goes limp.
The guards withdraw their spears and he falls to the ground in a bloody, perforated heap.
Pharaoh studies the body with distant, glassy eyes, like he’s already forgotten what happened, and is trying to piece it together in his head.
“You did the right thing, Pharaoh,” Joey assures him.
Pharaoh shakes his head, snapping out of it, struggling to remember what they were talking about. “So, like, what are your qualifications? Do you know anything about agriculture, or...whatever...economics?”
Another quick ear touch by Joey. “God says don’t ask questions. Appoint me your royal advisor and give me power over Egypt, or he’ll bring the famine early.”
Successfully intimidated, Pharaoh backs down. “Of course. Of course. Whatever God commands.”
He stands, wobbling, taking a moment to steady himself. He barks orders to his servants in Egyptian. One of them brings forth a fine linen cloak and drapes it over Joey. Another hangs a gold chain from his neck.
Pharaoh staggers forward and removes a signet ring from his own finger, sliding it onto Joey’s. “With this...(hiccup)...I pronounce you...(burp)...Zaphenath-Paneah.”
Sidebar: that’s kind of like the Vice President, second only to Pharaoh himself. But instead of being VP, he’ll be ZP. Instead of being the Veep, he’ll be the Zeep.
Joey grins. “Fantastic. Now...as my first order of business – seeing as you’ve got me, you won’t need any of these hacks?”
Pharaoh looks around at the increasingly-horrified faces with indifference. “I suppose not...”
He staggers back over to his throne to get another drink.
Joey gestures to the guards, then to the crowd of Harry Potter nerds. The soldiers descend on the witches and wizards without mercy, hacking and slashing and stabbing, until nothing remains but a pile of cloaked and pointy-hatted corpses.
For the next seven years, Joey travels around Egypt, preparing the country for its impending famine. He doesn’t do so on foot, or astride a camel like some common Ishmaelite trader.
He’s not a slave anymore, and neither is he the son of a goat herder in Canaan.
He’s the motherfucking ZP now, baby!
And as the Zeep, Joey does Egypt in style.
(Note to self: killer idea for a screenplay – Joey Does Egypt. Rated G).
He rides in one of the pharaoh’s chariots, accompanied by a flock (a gaggle?) of servants who pitch his tent every night, build his fire, cook his food, pour his wine. He’s accompanied by an even larger harem, who pitch a different kind of tent, if you know what I’m saying. Folks...
(pause for laughs)
Joey sails down the Nile on the ancient equivalent of a cruise ship. He stays in palaces at every city along the way. He gets wasted to the point of soiling himself every night. He’s even allowed to hike up the goddamn pyramids.
I mean, what’s the point of being the second-most powerful guy in all of Egypt if you’re not allowed to hike up the goddamn pyramids and have a coke-fuelled three-way at the summit?
In between all this biblical-era glamping, Joey actually manages to get some work done. It’s not all sights and drugs and fifty-person orgies. There’s a famine coming. And Joey’s gonna make sure that his new homeland doesn’t get swallowed up by it.
After all, if there’s no Egypt, there’s no ZP.
If there’s no ZP, Joey goes back to being a nobody.
Now that’s altruism.
His plan is simple – hoard the surplus grain during the years of plenty, then ration it out (at a significant markup) during the famine that will follow. Not only will Egypt be saved, but he’ll also make a shit-ton of money off the back-end.
Just as the years of plenty draw to a close – and years of plenty they certainly were (especially for the Zeep) – Joey returns to the city where he began and decides to settle down.
He tracks down his old girlfriend, Sen, only to find out that she’s already married.
Shortly after Joey’s return, her husband has an unfortunate ‘accident’ involving a night cruise on the Nile (paid for by Joey), a lot of wine, and some very hungry crocodiles.
Joey realises only after the fact that perhaps killing her husband was not the best way to Sen’s heart, so to make it up to her, he kills her father, the closeted captain of the guard.
This isn’t as crazy as it sounds, and actually serves two purposes:
It enables Joey to get his revenge on the man who falsely imprisoned him.
It enables Sen to get her own revenge. See, shortly after Joey went to prison, Potter had Zulie executed for her repeated infidelities. Sen never forgave her father for this and has resented him ever since.
Not long after that, Joey and Sen are married – and all it took was a little trickery, sprinkled with a few grisly murders.
Who says romance didn’t exist in the ancient world?
With the still-grieving widow/orphan that is his bride, Joey has two children, Manasseh (Manny) and Ephraim (Effy).
But he doesn’t stop there.
The Pharoah’s only sunk deeper into alcoholism in Joey’s absence, so the scrappy, young go-getter from Canaan decides to do him a favour.
How does he assist the poor pharaoh, I hear you ask?
Does he help him get sober? Send him to rehab? Act as his sponsor in the event of relapse? Pour out all the booze in the palace and make him go cold turkey?
That kind of thing takes time and money, not to mention a basic level of compassion and empathy. Plus, if it works, it’ll only result in a stronger, healthier pharaoh, which is kind of the opposite of what Joey wants.
So what does he do?
He puts the pharaoh out of his misery instead.
Joey convinces himself that the pharaoh’s got nothing to live for, and that it would be kinder to kill him than to allow him to continue suffering.
That’s our Joey – always thinking of others.
During a night of orchestrated debauchery, he slips a deadly poison into Pharaoh’s wine, and by so doing, drops the Z from the P to become just straight-up P.
Now that he’s proven himself by storing up enough grain to provide for Egypt during the famine, the country welcomes him with open arms. Next to his constantly liquored-up predecessor, dude looks like the second coming of Djeserkheperure-setpenre Horemheb.
It’s a real rags to riches (to rags to riches) story, involving (for once) literal rags and literal riches.
Doesn’t it just warm your heart?
“I guess you could say I crawled through a river of shit and came out clean on the other side,” Joey says to his cupbearer (Cups II, or New Cups), the day after his coronation. Joey’s drinking wine to fend off a hangover and is already pretty loose, following in the footsteps of the previous pharaoh.
The triumphant score starts to swell as Joey goes on, smiling, “I sat and drank with the sun on my shoulders and felt like a free man. Hell, I could have been tarring the roof of one of my own houses...but I got some slaves to do that instead. I was the lord of all creation. As for Andy - he spent that break hunkered in the shade, a strange little smile on his face, watching me drink his beer.”
Cut to Cups II just staring at him, having no goddamn clue what to make of it. Who the fuck is Andy? What are you talking about?
“I guess it comes down to a simple choice...” Joey says, like he’s about to impart some serious wisdom. “Get busy livin’, or get busy dyin’.”
Again, Cups II has no idea how to respond.
As you can see, the power (much like with his ancestors) has gone straight to Joey’s head. It’s also attracted the attention of someone who’s been strangely absent from this story...
A few days later, Joey’s having his breakfast (and nursing one doozy of a hangover) when God suddenly appears at the other side of the table. He’s so surprised that he chokes on his wine and ends up coughing and spluttering for a good minute, minute and a half.
When he finally recovers – red-faced, bloodshot-eyed and raspy-voiced – God goes, “You good?”
The big guy looks like he’s put on a little weight. He’s also wearing shades to hide a pretty obvious black eye.
“Yeah...” Joey says, sounding like he’s just had a laryngectomy. “I gotta say, I’m...a little surprised to see you here.”
“I’m a little surprised myself. I thought you were dead.”
Joey frowns. “You thought I was dead?”
“Well, yeah.” God starts helping himself to the elaborate morning feast for one, loading his plate with meat and bread, drizzling sauces and oils over the top. “That’s what Jude told your dad when they got back. Said you got torn apart by wolves or some shit. Even had the ripped-up, bloody coat to prove it. Now, I’m thinking they probably just killed a goat or something.”
God dips some bread in the sauce and takes a bite. His eyes roll back in his head as he savours it. “Oh, man, that’s good...”
Joey watches him eat, confused. God sees this, and with a mouthful, says, “Sorry, I’m starving. Enoch kicked me out of the house. I’ve been living in a tent in the backyard.”
Joey isn’t quite sure how to respond. He notes the sunglasses, the black eye. “Oh, I’m...uh, sorry to hear that.”
“Yeah,” God says, with a shrug. He grabs a few grapes, dropping them into his already full mouth. “What are you gonna do? It’s been a rough decade.”
“A rough decade?”
“Yeah, but that’s like a week for me. I’m immortal.”
“Why don’t you just break up with the guy?”
God chuckles. “If it was that easy, I would’ve done it centuries ago. Shoulda just let the bastard die as a human, but no – I had to ask him to move in with me instead. Never get involved, Joey. I’m telling you.”
“I just got married.”
“Oh...” God forces a smile. “Mazel tov.”
Quickly moving on, he goes, “Anyway, that’s why I’ve been kind of asleep at the wheel lately. I hope you’ll forgive my absence.”
Joey holds his arms out, gesturing around at the luxurious room they’re in. “I think you’ll agree I ain’t doin’ too shabby. It’s actually a pretty interesting story...”
Sensing (correctly) that Joey is about to launch into said story, God cuts him off with, “I’d love to hear about it some time.”
He takes a sip of wine and continues eating.
Something occurs to Joey. “Hey, I been meaning to ask you about these dreams?”
“The ones I can interpret because I’m a Dream Whisperer...”
God looks up, brow furrowed, crumbs falling from his mouth. Da fuck?
Joey continues. “...because you gave me the power to predict the future through dreams?”
He’s phrasing what he thought was an obvious statement as more of a question, waiting for God to remember and go, “Oh, yeah – of course, of course, the dreams...”
But God does no such thing. He just stares openly at Joey through his sunglasses.
“What the fuck are you talking about, kid? What’s a Dream Whisperer?”
Now it’s Joey’s turn to be baffled. “You didn’t give me any special powers?”
“I don’t give anyone special powers.”
“But...I predicted the baker’s execution.”
God, having just torn a chunk of meat off the bone with his teeth, shrugs. “Lucky guess?”
Joey can’t believe what he’s hearing. “So...the famine I predicted? The reason I’ve been going around storing up grain? You’re saying that’s not gonna happen?”
Again, God isn’t sure what Joey wants him to say. “It might. Famines happen from time to time. But they’re caused by a variety of factors – war, crop failure, overpopulation. Even I can’t predict that stuff – why should you be able to?”
Joey’s reeling from the revelation. All this time he thought it was God helping him to decipher those dreams. Sure, he put on a bit of a show for the pharaoh, but he didn’t doubt the divine origin of his abilities.
“I don’t know, man,” God says, getting up and wiping his hands. “Maybe it’s some weird genetic mutation that allows you to see the future. That’s pretty cool, right?”
But Joey can tell God’s just humoring him now. He sighs.
“Hey, whatever you’re doing is clearly working. Keep it up, y’know? Keep truckin’.” He pinches a few more grapes and pops them into his mouth. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I gotta go figure out some kinda punishment for Jude. Thanks for the grub.”
With that, God vanishes, back up to heaven.
Or, more specifically, to the tent in his backyard.
Joey’s left there by himself, feeling hollow, wondering if he even has any special powers. Wondering what will happen when, once the seven years of plenty come to an end, the famine never arrives?
He’ll be the first ruler in history lynched for a famine not occurring.
He wonders if he really is a Dream Whisperer, or if he just faked and murdered his way to the top by buying into his own bullshit?
It just goes to show you, kids (I’m assuming my audience is exclusively children aged 5-12) – anything is possible if you just believe in yourself.
That’s the moral of this story, right?
If you delude yourself enough, if you latch onto an idea and narrow your vision to such an extent that you block out anything even resembling reality or consequences, you can achieve anything. In fact, fame and wealth and power are almost guaranteed.
Ah...what a lovely, inspirational note to end on.
Unfortunately, there’s still one more episode to go.
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