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February 1, 2015 3:03 pm  #41


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Lola Red wrote:

Zatoichi wrote:

The problem I´m still having with understanding cornered and desperate Mary are the following:

I can see why she´s in desperate fear of Magnussen´s knowledge on her, as this really means her life and the life of everyone she loves is in danger. I can see she´d want to save her unborn child at all costs!

But with Sherlock and John knowing it´s different. This wouldn´t mean her life is in danger, because if she really thinks John and Sherlock would just hand her over and leave her to die, then how can she ever claim to "get them" or see through them? They would never kill anyone over hurt feelings, and they´d protect her unborn child at all costs. So when she rather shot Sherlock than confide in him and risk the danger John would find out, she wasn´t desperate for her life and her child, but for her marriage. I can see how that´s still frightening when she really loves John, but well.. she´s in that corner now, and she has the choice either to risk her new-found happiness or to risk the death of her friend. She chose her marriage over a life.. and I find that very very hard to accept. We can argue that this decision had to be made very quick and she just made a mistake, but nothing whatsoever in her behaviour afterwards suggests  a feeling of regret. We can argue that she was so fixed on the idea that "no one can know, alone protects me" that she didn´t think rationally in that moment, but I find that very hard to get together with her being an ex-assassin who has to remain rational in a crisis situation. That´d be similar to "she´s a crack shot that precisely calculated the way of her bullet, but then again not really precisely enough".. the snarky bad-ass ex-assassin who can´t live 7 months without danger and yet looses rational thought when the love of her man is at stake..?

Very very interesting post, allow me to add my two cents: I think that is exactly what happened; emotion, “sentiment”, got in the way. I find it very interesting that at a time that we see Sherlock developing a great deal emotionally we are given one more example of “sentiment it a chemical defect found in the loosing side”. Sherlock has spent most of his life shutting himself off from sentiment, Mycroft (who is even more intelligent than Sherlock) still very much lives that way. And now we see how sentiment leads a “snarky bad-ass ex-assassin” totally off track.

Yes, that actually makes sense.. So we have the dominatrix brought to her knees over her sentiment for Sherlock, and the killer brought totally off-track by her sentiment for John.. one nearly gets herself killed if Sherlock hadn´t saved her, and the other one becomes a loose cannon that nearly gets Sherlock (and possibly also other people close to her including herself) killed if Sherlock hadn´t saved her from herself.. Well, while I´m a little less than excited by the "dangerous woman trips over her love for a man"-trope I can still see them using it. (And the same motif again when Sherlock almost trips over his sentiment for the three Watsons..)
 

 

February 1, 2015 3:05 pm  #42


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Lola Red wrote:

 In TBB we learn that “when an assassin cannot shoot straight” it means that “they are not really trying”. 

But didn´t she shoot straight when she missed his head, or didn´t she shoot straight when she missed the exact spot that wouldn´t make his heart stop? http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/confused.png
http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/lol.png
http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png

 

Last edited by Zatoichi (February 1, 2015 3:08 pm)

 

February 1, 2015 3:21 pm  #43


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Zatoichi wrote:

Lola Red wrote:

 In TBB we learn that “when an assassin cannot shoot straight” it means that “they are not really trying”. 

But didn´t she shoot straight when she missed his head, or didn´t she shoot straight when she missed the exact spot that wouldn´t make his heart stop? http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/confused.png
http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/lol.png
http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png

 

She didn't shoot straight when she missed his head (or heart, if you want to stay closer to the actual location of the bullet), but she still choose a very, very risky place to put it. I think she was well trained enough to know about the proximity of major blood vessels, though I cannot say if hitting them was an honest mistake or part of the Russian roulette she was playing. Hence my scepticism about the phrases “surgery” and “saved my life”

And yes I saw the smileys, but the question warrants a sincere answerhttp://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png
http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

 


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February 1, 2015 3:25 pm  #44


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

About Mary's motive for shooting at Sherlock: I see that everybody desperately leaves out the Johnlock thought. But down the line of love being a vicious motivator, I would not rule out that Mary at least partly didn't mind shooting the man who is in love with her husband. Jealosy makes a plausible explanation IMO.


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February 1, 2015 3:28 pm  #45


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

From a realistic POV...unless Mary has been practising@t a shooting range 2 or 3 times a week....both shots are impossible.
SH has a rather well known saying about that.....

 

February 1, 2015 3:32 pm  #46


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

lil wrote:

From a realistic POV...unless Mary has been practising@t a shooting range 2 or 3 times a week....both shots are impossible.
SH has a rather well known saying about that.....

I hate to admit that, but following the inner logic of the show it is not impossible. Just think of John shooting the cabbie through two closed windows in ASIP.

Last edited by Schmiezi (February 1, 2015 3:41 pm)


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I still believe that love conquers all!

http://i1353.photobucket.com/albums/q666/Schmiezi/f78f2088-06ef-444c-b254-d9efa841bc19_zps435390b3.png      http://i1353.photobucket.com/albums/q666/Schmiezi/140545df-e987-4a67-9272-fa8b2742790c_zpsa8b00ed8.png

"Quick, man, if you love me."
 

February 1, 2015 3:40 pm  #47


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Hitting a fully grown man in the shoulder? Much much easier than the surgical strike and the coin toss shots...if we assume Mary hasn't been using her gun regularly in years...but yes maybe just a tv reality thing.

 

February 1, 2015 3:44 pm  #48


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

lil wrote:

Hitting a fully grown man in the shoulder? Much much easier than the surgical strike and the coin toss shots...if we assume Mary hasn't been using her gun regularly in years...but yes maybe just a tv reality thing.

Our physics teacher explained to me how improbable that hit would have been in real live. Both windows would alter the way of the bullet. Hiting the cabbie at all is an incredible thing to do (according to him).


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I still believe that love conquers all!

http://i1353.photobucket.com/albums/q666/Schmiezi/f78f2088-06ef-444c-b254-d9efa841bc19_zps435390b3.png      http://i1353.photobucket.com/albums/q666/Schmiezi/140545df-e987-4a67-9272-fa8b2742790c_zpsa8b00ed8.png

"Quick, man, if you love me."
 

February 1, 2015 3:49 pm  #49


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Schmiezi wrote:

About Mary's motive for shooting at Sherlock: I see that everybody desperately leaves out the Johnlock thought. But down the line of love being a vicious motivator, I would not rule out that Mary at least partly didn't mind shooting the man who is in love with her husband. Jealosy makes a plausible explanation IMO.

I have avoided it in my comments on Mary so far because I really did not want to hear "Of course you do not like her because of Johnlock", IMO a cheap and all-too-easy objection. But it is funny how much sense some things make if you allow for Sherlock and John being in love with each other. 

P.S. I will post some thoughts about the meaning of costumes later. 

Last edited by SusiGo (February 1, 2015 3:51 pm)


------------------------------
"To fake the death of one sibling may be regarded as a misfortune; to fake the death of both looks like carelessness." Oscar Wilde about Mycroft Holmes

"It is what it is says love." (Erich Fried)

“Enjoy the journey of life and not just the endgame. I’m also a great believer in treating others as you would like to be treated.” (Benedict Cumberbatch)

http://up.picr.de/28609194so.png

 
 

February 1, 2015 3:56 pm  #50


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Schmiezi wrote:

About Mary's motive for shooting at Sherlock: I see that everybody desperately leaves out the Johnlock thought. But down the line of love being a vicious motivator, I would not rule out that Mary at least partly didn't mind shooting the man who is in love with her husband. Jealosy makes a plausible explanation IMO.

Oh boy, is it wise to include a subject of passionate discussion in a thread about another subject of passionate discussion? But okay, I’ll try without setting anyone off: Assuming Johnlock is happening in the show, from what we are shown, I do not see jealousy from Mary in that regard. She seems very inclusive of Sherlock, so assuming Johnlock is happening, she seems okay with it (there are countless relations happening in this world with more than two participants with everyone involved being okay with that). She even makes it very clear that she would welcome him if John decides to forgive him after his sudden return in TEH and she very much includes him in the wedding planning and makes sure he feels he is not about to be replaced in John’s life in TSOT.
 
I’m just going to out myself here as a Johnlock agnostic, before anyone acuses me of being a)homophobic or b) delusional. I can see both: one of the greatest friendships in fiction and one of the greatest romances in fiction, depending on how I angle my head.
 
 

Last edited by Lola Red (February 1, 2015 3:57 pm)


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February 1, 2015 4:03 pm  #51


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

But there is not a single scene in HLV in which she encourages the friendship. For me there is a clear change in her behaviour from the beginning of this episode. Mary snapping at John when he mentions Sherlock. And how does she provide back-up - by sitting in a car in her pyjamas? I got the feeling that she did not want to miss the excitement. 

But there is one thing I fully agree with - John trying to be a "good husband". But why does he have to try only weeks after the wedding? Why can he not just be a good husband? Because his heart is not fully in this suburbian married doctor idyll which is proven in the lab scene. And it is so obvious that even Billy Wiggins can deduce it. 


------------------------------
"To fake the death of one sibling may be regarded as a misfortune; to fake the death of both looks like carelessness." Oscar Wilde about Mycroft Holmes

"It is what it is says love." (Erich Fried)

“Enjoy the journey of life and not just the endgame. I’m also a great believer in treating others as you would like to be treated.” (Benedict Cumberbatch)

http://up.picr.de/28609194so.png

 
 

February 1, 2015 4:09 pm  #52


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Schmiezi wrote:

lil wrote:

From a realistic POV...unless Mary has been practising@t a shooting range 2 or 3 times a week....both shots are impossible.
SH has a rather well known saying about that.....

I hate to admit that, but following the inner logic of the show it is not impossible. Just think of John shooting the cabbie through two closed windows in ASIP.

Schmiezi wrote:

lil wrote:

Hitting a fully grown man in the shoulder? Much much easier than the surgical strike and the coin toss shots...if we assume Mary hasn't been using her gun regularly in years...but yes maybe just a tv reality thing.

Our physics teacher explained to me how improbable that hit would have been in real live. Both windows would alter the way of the bullet. Hiting the cabbie at all is an incredible thing to do (according to him).

You both make valid points. In show universe, the skill level of the shots is incredible, in reality it is very improbable that any of the shots would have worked out the way it did. In show universe John was without any problem able to take out the cabbie, in reality he was just as likely to hit Sherlock or no one at all. In show universe, Mary had good reasons to trust herself to were exactly she put the bullet (and might or might not have slightly overestimated her abilities), in reality, all she could have claim was that she did not aim directly at Sherlock’s heart.

 


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February 1, 2015 4:45 pm  #53


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

SusiGo wrote:

But there is not a single scene in HLV in which she encourages the friendship. For me there is a clear change in her behaviour from the beginning of this episode. Mary snapping at John when he mentions Sherlock. And how does she provide back-up - by sitting in a car in her pyjamas? I got the feeling that she did not want to miss the excitement. 

But there is one thing I fully agree with - John trying to be a "good husband". But why does he have to try only weeks after the wedding? Why can he not just be a good husband? Because his heart is not fully in this suburbian married doctor idyll which is proven in the lab scene. And it is so obvious that even Billy Wiggins can deduce it. 

I see what you mean. I feel both are very snappy at each other. Mary seems annoyed with John’s handling of the whole situation with her neighbour (I feel her snapping is more directed at John’s attitude than the mention of Sherlock); John is uncharacteristically insensitive towards someone in distress and shouts at his wife. Also the pregnancy still seems very much one the forefront of their minds, maybe they are still freaking out a little bit about becoming parents? Or they are both bored out of their skins without Sherlock in their life (John’s PTSD seems to be playing up again)? With both of their pasts, both seems understandable.

About her not encouraging the friendship in HLV, that is true. Mary, Sherlock and John haven’t seen each other for a month (since the wedding?), unfortunately we are not made privy to the reason behind that. Was there a fight? About Sherlock leaving the wedding early? Did they just recently return from their honeymoon? Did John and Mary decide to life a less dangerous lifestyle now they have a child on the way (we know that wherever Sherlock is, danger is not far behind)? Did Sherlock break off the contact because now there is “a real baby on the way”? It’s hard to tell why they have been out off touch for so long, but fact is when they meet again, Sherlock is high on drugs. John is (rightfully) furious with him, but Mary just seems quite glad to see him back, drugged or not, and frankly seems amused by his newest shenanigans. Next thing we know, the boys are driving back to Baker Street on their own. If Mary had anything to do with that arrangement, we cannot know thanks to Sherlock’s filtering. The next time Mary sees Sherlock, she shoots him, so from there on distance between John and Sherlock would be very much in her interest.
 

Last edited by Lola Red (February 1, 2015 4:49 pm)


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February 1, 2015 5:08 pm  #54


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

There's a honeymoon mentioned in John's blog.

I don't see jealousy from Mary.  She's seems to instantly be drawn to Sherlock and wants John to be involved with him, encouraging them to be together.  There's that little scene at the wedding where it's clear that Sherlock sees Sholto as a rival, but not Mary, and Mary seems to see it the same way. 

It also seems like a very awkward plot point.  Mary didn't plan to be interrupted by Sherlock so that she could have the opportunity of getting rid of a rival.  If she'd wanted to kill him, she wouldn't have done it with John around, and likely to appear at any second.   She had other reasons (than jealousy) to attack Sherlock at that point, so jealousy (if it existed) becomes superfluous.

 

February 1, 2015 5:20 pm  #55


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Once again, the main reason Mary is such a divisive character is because so much of her is left blank.


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February 1, 2015 5:35 pm  #56


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Lola Red wrote:

Also, I think she indeed get’s both Sherlock and John absolutely wrong. She see’s them as two man who are one the side of the angles, willing to risk their life to get after “the other side”. I think she believes that once they find out that she belongs to “the other side”, they will turn on her. What she fails to see is that John is deeply bound to her by the same thing that is clouding her own judgement: sentiment. And she fails to see that Sherlock can actually emphasise a lot with “the other side”. He might be on the side of the angles, but he is not one of them. For him, it is a conscious decision that he has to make every single day of his life. One could argue that when he shot an unarmed Magnussen in the head, he decided to leave the side of the angles (at lest temporarily). In a way, the way Sherlock is wired is closer to Mary than it is to John, who is closer to Lestrade for example. John and Lestrade are “angles”, Sherlock and Mary are not and have to decide which side to stand on. And Mary fails to see that, she thinks the "angles" will turn on her, but she is blind to the fact that Sherlock isn’t one of them and John is more than just an “angle”, he is an “angle” in love with her and that alters their actions.
Admittedly, this is was quite a trip into speculation land, but there you go.
 

Thank you for these interesting thoughts! 
I wil let them sink in, but for now some things don´t quite ring true with me..

- Mary instantly gets John and Sherlock and connects with them, yet gets them both completely wrong in this regard.
- Mary completely hides a big part of herself, the writers took care that not even the actress herself knows about it so not a trace of it will show beforehand, and yet John is supposed to have sensed that part of her and love her exactly for that (this is paraphrased from an earlier post of yours).
- John is so much bound to her in sentiment that he chooses not to have a look at something that might possibly alter that perception of her.. is he attracted to her assassin-part or is he apalled? If he doesn´t mind, then why not look at the stick? If Mary thinks that´s what he likes, then why does she say "if you love me don´t look at it.. because you won´t love me afterwards?" There´s still something very dodgy about that.. he loves her character that enabled her to do things he despises? I can´t quite get that together for now.

(Edit: I don´t think Sherlock has a character that would enable him to work as an assassin.. from S1 and 2 and also from some ealier interviews with Steven Moffat I got the impression that Sherlock just wears the mask of the unaffected sociopath, but is really very emotional and caring about right and wrong. His morality might be a bit different from normal people, but that he´s a psychopath who will cross the line someday is a misunderstanding by Sgt. Donovan, who thinks him capable of all kinds of things because of his rude and sometimes dismissive behaviour. The later interviews sound different and Sherlock´s cruelty is emphasized.. if your assessment is correct and Sherlock would indeed be able to kill for money just as Mary did and  has to decide on a day-to-day basis whether to be on the side of angels or not, and John secretly roots for that while displaying an upright facade and occasional outrage about their behaviour.. well. A bit not good, I´d say.)

Last edited by Zatoichi (February 1, 2015 6:18 pm)

 

February 1, 2015 5:47 pm  #57


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

tonnaree wrote:

Once again, the main reason Mary is such a divisive character is because so much of her is left blank.

You are very right, but when has the absence of an abundance of fact ever stopped us from having these delicious discussions?http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

 


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February 1, 2015 6:38 pm  #58


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

I hope it is alright if I post my ideas about the symbolic use of Mary's costumes right here. As I said, it is a slightly different way of looking at what happens in the show. 

Stylistic choices - Mary's costumes

In HLV we see Mary twice in Sherlock's mind palace. I would like to take a closer look at the way she is visually presented in this episode:

1. I wonder why we do not speak more about the way Mary appears in Sherlock's mind palace after he has been shot. Can we please for a moment talk about a bride shooting her husband's best friend in the chest? I mean, they are laying on the symbolism really thick here. Why does Sherlock not see her in her black combat dress, just the way she was when she shot him? This would have been logical. 
But no, his mind blends Mary the bride and Mary the assassin. 
Why? My answer would be because he has been hurt long before she shot him. He has been hurt by the marriage even if it was not Mary's fault. 
This explains why Moriarty does not just mention "pain" and "death" (caused by the shot wound) but also "heartbreak" and "loss" (explaining those with the loss of his childhood dog seems a bit farfetched to me). Therefore these terms cannot be explained by the current situation but by something that happened earlier, i.e. the wedding. IMO this explains why Mary the bride and Mary the assassin visually merge into the person we see in Sherlock's mind. 

2. Sherlock's deduction in hospital. After Janine has left, Sherlock retreats into his mind palace. We see Mary standing in the hallway from ASiP (I think, correct me if I am wrong), again not wearing the clothes she wore when shooting him but the dress in which he saw her for the first time. The dress she wore as the lovely fiancee who promised to talk John around, to help Sherlock to restore their friendship, who showed compassion and understanding. 
But this again is just a facade because in this scene she does not appear lovely and helpful, she is standing there motionless, a calculating look in her face. And now Sherlock finally accepts what he saw from the beginning but probably chose to ignore - that she is a liar. 

We should always remember that this is the way Sherlock sees her, the way he thinks about her. He visually associates "good" Mary from TEH and TSOT with the woman that has been revealed as a former assassin who nearly killed him. This IMO confirms that Sherlock regards everything Mary was before the shooting as a facade (which also corresponds with his remark about the projection in Leinster Gardens). 

And one last point - her red coat in the tarmac scene. For me it is highly incongruous, a visual slap in the face. It is a sad and somber scene which is emphasised by the dark clothes worn by the other characters. IMO Mary is presented as an outsider here and this fact is underlined by the very conspicuous colour of her coat. 


------------------------------
"To fake the death of one sibling may be regarded as a misfortune; to fake the death of both looks like carelessness." Oscar Wilde about Mycroft Holmes

"It is what it is says love." (Erich Fried)

“Enjoy the journey of life and not just the endgame. I’m also a great believer in treating others as you would like to be treated.” (Benedict Cumberbatch)

http://up.picr.de/28609194so.png

 
 

February 1, 2015 6:41 pm  #59


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Just before I answer, I just want to say that it is a real delight to discuss with someone like you. While we don’t agree on some points (and likely never will) you always explain to me where you think my reasoning is faulty. Your posts challenge me to think deeper, instead of growing defensive (which I probably would if the only reaction I would get was “No, you are wrong”). So thank you for making this discussion so much fun.http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

 
Here we go:

Zatoichi wrote:

- Mary instantly gets John and Sherlock and connects with them, yet gets them both completely wrong in this regard.

I would rather say she instantly connects with both of them. Her underestimation of both of their characters shows that she does not entirely get them. A little like John instantly connected with Sherlock, but failed to see the addictive nature of his personality in ASIP, though John is forced to “get” this part of Sherlock relatively quickly because of the drugs bust and Sherlock’s demonstrated willingness to risk his own life just to make a point. Where John seems to have been blinded by Sherlock’s genius; Mary was blinded by her fear of the “angles”.

Zatoichi wrote:

- Mary completely hides a big part of herself, the writers took care that not even the actress herself knows about it so not a trace of it will show beforehand, and yet John is supposed to have sensed that part of her and love her exactly for that (this is paraphrased from an earlier post of yours).

Amanda was indeed (as far as we know) unaware of Mary’s past, but the writers where not. They worked in small hints. The skip code, her impressive memory and her lack of long term friends were absolutely intentional and many in the fandom have argued that her understanding of Sherlock’s actions in the confrontation with John in TEH have been as well. But in general she is indeed very good in hiding it; even Sherlock cannot get completely being her mask. He can deduce the liar in her (but chooses to dismiss it), but he does not see the assassin. The penny only drops when he sees her pointing a gun at someone. So I think it is feasible to say that John might have subconsciously sensed the danger in her and was attracted to it, without ever being consciously aware of it. Johns seems to forget that danger has a strong appeal to him. Not surprisingly for someone who spends a considerable amount of time in the presents of the likes of Sherlock Holmes, he seems to think of himself as quite ordinary. But Sherlock sees behind that right from the start, he knows what it is that motivated John (“I said danger, and here you are.”)

Zatoichi wrote:

- John is so much bound to her in sentiment that he chooses not to have a look at something that might possibly alter that perception of her.. is he attracted to her assassin-part or is he apalled? If he doesn´t mind, then why not look at the stick? If Mary thinks that´s what he likes, then why does she say "if you love me don´t look at it.. because you won´t love me afterwards?" There´s still something very dodgy about that.. he loves her character that enabled her to do things he despises? I can´t quite get that together for now.

I agree that it is dodgy. I believe John loves danger, that is what attracts him to both Sherlock and Mary, but he also has very strong moral principles. Mary might very well have killed people less “deserving” than Magnussen in the past. I think she is right to fear that John would not love her anymore if he knew the details. We do not know if Mary fled form her past because she was threatened herself or because she realised the monstrosity of what she was doing, but neither takes away what she has (possibly) done. I would have loved to see a bit more of how John came to his decision, because it does feel strange to me that he chooses not to know about her and rather spend the rest of his life speculating. (But there was a lot going on in these 90 minutes, so I understand that there where time constraints to consider.)
 


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February 1, 2015 7:10 pm  #60


Re: Mary – the subject of discussion

Lola Red wrote:

tonnaree wrote:

Once again, the main reason Mary is such a divisive character is because so much of her is left blank.

You are very right, but when has the absence of an abundance of fact ever stopped us from having these delicious discussions?http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

 

Oh, I'm not complaigning!

Says the girl who spent 3 years in the 80's debatting passionately wether or not Darth Vader was REALLY Luke's father.  *giggle*


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"Anyone who takes himself too seriously always runs the risk of looking ridiculous; anyone who can consistently laugh at himself does not".
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"Life is full of wonder, Love is never wrong."   Melissa Ethridge

I ship it harder than Mrs. Hudson.
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