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the biopsy went pretty well. the worst part was holding my arm over my head for 30+ minutes. i think they went in 3 times, so that means three suspicious areas/cysts/whatevers. they also went into 2 or 3 (possibly 4) lymph nodes, even tho there's only two teeny bandages. they actually discovered less areas than they'd thought on thursday's sonogram, and the doctor said at least twice, "that's good, lisa, that's good". there were a few moments of humor also, like when the drilling noise started, and i said, "whoa, tell me you're drilling now?" and the doctor giggled and started to explain and i said, "i don't care, take everything you have to, fine by me."

i like the doctor. no, i love the doctor. i was worried cause she's like 12. but she's smart and professional and compassionate. i tried to eek out her gut reaction, and she deflected honestly but gently. she also reminded me that cancer is curable. i like that she didn't say SOME cancers are curable.

unfortunately i won't hear the results for 3 - 5 days. i'll try to let you guys know asap.

i've already convinced myself it's cancer. that's just how i'm wired, you all know that. but i made the mistake of researching on the internet yesterday ... so at this point, if they tell me all i need is a lumpectomy and radiation, i'll kick up my heels with joy. even a mastectomy. (ok. well. i doubt i'll be dancing around celebrating if it's that.) just as long as it's not the Evil Breast Cancer Stage Who's Number I Can't Remember. i'll take anything but that. just as long as it's contained. not that i'm not thinking positive. i am. it's just, well, i dunno. none of the doctors have said anything about benign cycts or lipomas or abscesses. and lymph nodes mean serious shit.

my mom's being my rock. she also went to the cemetary and made the rounds and asked dad and grandma and grandpa and all the greataunts and greatuncles to pray for me. gotta love it.

i'm going back to work tomorrow. no more depression couch. back into the stream.

and who knows, i could come out of this 20 lbs lighter with those perky, perfect C-cups and the short chic 'do i've always wanted. (oh yes, i went there. and with my mom too! and we both laughed. hee!)

thanks for all the love and concern and positive energy. your support is priceless.

(((beloved kvetchies)))
{{{{{mando}}}}} it sounds like whatever is coming around the bend you have a great survivor's attitude. I am going to keep all of my fingers and toes crossed.

Ongoing thoughts and vibes for (((mando))). You do sound amazing chica. I'll be thinking of you this week.

Second day back at work after vacay and the job is already driving me nuts, it feels like we're forever re-inventing the wheel in here. Grrr.

Anti-kvetch: lovely fall day outside.
(((((((mando))))))) keeping all parts crossed for you! I am in awe of how you are dealing with this; it's definitely wow factor. You are being strong and positive but also preparing yourself for all eventualities and that can only be a good thing. I am glad you love your doctor too.

(((yuefie))) feel better.

(((star))) ditto.

Kvetch: I didn't get the wine job.
Anti-kvetch: I'm a little suprised (I honestly thought the second interview went well) but I'm not that disappointed and even a little relieved. Yes, I desperately need the money and it would have been so interesting learning about wine but the hours were shit, I would hardly have seen the boy and my heart is in books so I need to keep pursuing that. I start at the bookshop tomorrow so I am hoping that goes well and leads to something permanent.


eta: kitten, yuefie, rose, the boy has CDs so I'll burn and post as soon as I can. rose, I'll email you my new address (are we doing posties?)
I've just had to turn down an invite by my friend to the science museum today because a. I have no money and b. I have to clean the bathroom sad.gif.
(((((mando))))) yay for your attitude! and mamasan too.

((((bunny)))) boo! but you have the job in the place you wanted, and starting tomorrow is good too. now go get yourself an oystercard or I'll come embarrass you on your lunch break...

((((kitten)))) yay laptop! has s/he got a name?

((((star)))) hope you're feeling better today

((((syb)))) yay for holiday but gah at work.


ok, I have to go take Indigo for a walk. And drag myself into town for book club (I've not finished the book, oops). I've got a headache and I'm not looking forward to tomorrow - I have to get up at 6am to go squeeze myself into a cox's seat made for someone several inches shorter and many pounds lighter (I am coxing our next race on saturday, because bitchface lastyearscaptain can't do it, and we need a "senior" cox... I'm the closest thing to it). But then I'll take my boat out, which will be nice.

Oh, good news. G has a job that's really good, working for a company he loves (with/for the guy who is his hero), doing what he loves. He'll even get an actual paycheck, which is exciting. It hasn't been finalised, as they're hacking out the details (basically setting up a new division so they can hire him), so maude knows when it'll actually happen, but it's actually going to happen.
Take care of yourself, Mando. And please keep your positive attitude.

Friday night's sleep study wasn't exactly a party. Trying to sleep with a dozen electodes on the head is a challenge. It'll take a while to get the report, but it appears I don't have sleep apnea. This morning, an echo of the carotids was done; no plaque was found. Yea! At this point, the only other thing scheduled is a December 11th consult with a gastroenterologist to discuss why I'm not absorbing B-12. At least I should have a good idea of my overall health when all of this is done smile.gif

Hugs for everyone.
{{{{mando}}}} Not that I directly work with cancer, but I spend way too much time with radiology these days (thesis stuff), and the lymph nodes are likely a precaution - IF they aren't benign, then they would have to see if it's spread to the lymph nodes, and if they're already doing a biopsy, it's easier to just go ahead and yoink the nearby location - less risk and pain and cost for you. ~*~*~*~ benign vibes ~*~*~*~

bunny! I'd love one too, if it's not too much effort. I love Christmas mixes, but can't make my own due to a severe lack of Christmas music outside of The Chipmunks and South Park. (I know, I'm like 10!) I've got some random other mixes that I could send back smile.gif

kitten! That dress looks cute! I think it'll definitely work - still on the conservative side of things, but in a fun way.

tesão knows this already, because I snagged her on Skype over the weekend (she's good and what not, busy, misses everyone, etc etc - same ol, same ol)... I'm going to Brazil over spring break because the price was right ($650! OMG! It was more than that when I flew to Boston last June!!) and Gostozinho wants me to see his hometown, and I'd originally planned on traveling abroad for break (but Paris, before Gostozinho) and, unlike Paris, Brazil is nice and warm in March. It'll be a good time for sure! (Also, after all this time, I finally know what tesão means, thanks to Gostozinho. It's very diryt, though I'm one to talk with calling him Gostozinho, especially *why* I call him that tongue.gif)
You are an amazing woman. You know that, don't you? Because it's true. Glad to hear that you feel good about this doctor. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!

QSpice, Brazil sounds fantastic! So happy to hear that things are working out for you.

Billy, hooray for no plaque! That's great! Sorry to hear you still don't have any answers, though. Be sure to keep us informed. I'm sure I'm not the only one who worries about you.

Speaking of people I worry about, has anyone heard from Dusty lately? She hasn't posted in forever.

Bunny, the bookstore job definitely sounds better. I have a feeling you'll be happier there than you would selling wine.

Morn, that's great about G's job! Hooray!

Life has been SUPER DUPER ULTRA stressful for Sheff over the last 2 days. There's a big deadline on a game at work. Not the final deadline, but a major one, nevertheless. Yesterday he was at work from about 9am until 2am! 17 fucking hours! And unfortunately, right at 1am, an ugly old bug that he hadn't seen in a month reared its ugly head. He thought it had been fixed, but Sony updated the code for the PS2 last week and blah-blah-programmer-language-blah. I don't understand all of it, but I know it meant that the game was crashing. Sheff has until 3pm eastern-time today to fix it (so that the west coast people get it by noon). Here's hoping he can pull a miracle out of his ass. Poor thing. I think I'll make shepherd's pie for dinner tonight in an effort to cheer him up.

In other news, one of Sheff's very favorite co-workers (and a good friend of mine) is leaving the company. Luckily she isn't moving. She just got a job with another company that is moving to town. Still, I think Sheff is sad to see her go. We'll have to make an extra effort to keep in touch now. She and I are going to the opera tomorrow so that'll be nice, but I worry that I won't see her as much once she starts the new job. Fingers crossed.

Nothing else going on with me. Last week's angry rage has finally left my system, so that's great. The last thing Sheff needs right now is a grumpy wife!
mornington - what does "coxing" mean? The sentance made me snicker because I am actually 12. Also, the name "Fancy Francie" keeps popping in to my head for my computer but first I have to meet her.
{{{get some rest Sheff}}}
bunnyb and q-spice - hey, maybe with things working faster on a new computer I could make some mailable CD mixes.
{{{billy}}} I hope the testing ends soon with good results.

qspice, now i had to look up the meaning of tesão and gostosinho! here is what i found...

tesão - portuguese slang for an erection, a hard-on. In Brazil, it is also used when you find something or someone particularly exciting and pleasant.

gostosinho - cuddly. interestingly, i found that word used from a brazilian model about her affair with john mccain! laugh.gif

*~*~*soothing vibes for sheff*~*~*

billy, i hope you find out some news soon.

Sort of, but not really! They're both risqué entendres (at least, in Brazilian Portuguese). Gostosinho is the diminutive of gostoso, which means yummy (but, ah, not necessarily in the food sense in this context).
Drive by!

Good news! Sheff had a very good, very productive day yesterday. He managed to fix the Bug From Hell in time! And not just a patchwork job, but a genuine fix! I know this may sound minor, but it's a BIG deal & a huge weight off of Sheff's shoulders. Hooray! On his way home I told him to pick up Dr. Who Season 4 (it came out on DVD yesterday) & I made a lovely shepherd's pie for dinner, so basically we spent the whole evening on the couch, eating lovely food & watching David Tennant. Good times.

Today I decided to completely overhaul our closet, as well as the two upstairs bathrooms. Lord only knows what got into me, but when a bug like this bites me I have to indulge it because lord only knows when I'll be willing to tackle our messy closet again!

[blows kisses & runs away]
Christine Nectarine
*pops in* yay for cleaning closets! and suggestive pet names! and bookstores! and general wonderfulness! it's snowing!!!!! i'm totally going home and making some yummy shepherd's pie. what is it about this thread? anyone mentions what they're cooking for dinner, and i'm instantly craving it...

anti-kvetch: just found out i have a load of vacation days accumulated, much more than i thought. gee, how will i manage it? i feel a road trip coming on...
*waves to everyone*
*pops out*
*drive by*

~~~~super duper heavy duty strength everything be okay vibes for mando~~~~
along with some hair brushings a mega dose of of extra tight hugs.

(((mandolyn)))) glad it went okay, and i am hoping for clear, benign results

i am just back from a four-day trip to see the in-laws. it was not easy. FIL has dementia, and MIL is not used to having to do anything, and now she has to do everything. It is really hard when one person suddenly has to be a caretaker to the other, and that person is not well-suited for caretaking. Poor Martini. I wish he had a brother or sister to help with all the pressure.

my condo drama continues. i know we're totally in the right, but it sucks all the same. i probably shouldn't post about it anymore since lawyers are coming into the picture. bleh.

I am off the next two days and have a bit of freelancing to do, then I'll be just relaxing. I'm looking forward to maybe getting my nails done and a bit of sewing. Hope everyone is well.

((((mando)))) thinking of you

((((kitten)))) a cox is the person in rowing who steers the boat and shouts, and doesn't actually row - they're usually small and light so the seats are small and narrow (you sit *in* the boat, low down, as opposed to *on top of* the boat; imagine it like a half-circle shape). Coxing is the act of steering and shouting. And trust me, every joke you can think of has been made... and I still snigger occasionally.

right. must dash to uni. mm, lectures. (((((kvetchies))))
~~fly by~~

((mando))) thinking of you.

Extra tight hugs for those who need them


I got my news.
Not good.
Two cancerous areas in my breast, 3 cm apart.
Ductal. Invasive (meaning it/they have broken thru the duct walls).
Two lymph nodes are involved.
The doctor's exact words were "we have alot of work to do on you." (she sure as hell doesn't sugarcoat. but the warmth and compassion and reassurance are still there.)

Still don't have a definitive diagnosis. Don't know what type of cancer, how agressive, or exactly where it is. I have to have a breast MRI (next weds) and a CT scan and a PET scan (this saturday). I know the body scans are typical procedure, but I wasn't really thinking about it being anywhere besides my left breast. so now the horror stories are invading my brain.

the good news is, thanks to bossman, aka my knight in shining armor, i have exceptional health coverage.

the other good news is ... i'm not sure. mom finally crumbled but she's rallying. danny's being strong in front of me, i imagine things might be different behind closed doors. thank god he's got his therapist. the mr's being more ridiculous than usual. i had to finally tell him that his non-reaction is bugging the shit outta me. maybe he's being stoic, and i certainly don't expect continuous tears, but it's disconcerting to hear him laughing downstairs while i'm curled up on my depression couch in a fetal position. he says he'll be there for me. i know he will. but ... oh, i don't know. i should know by now not to expect what i need from him. then again, it's not entirely his fault. we haven't been on the best husband-wife terms for a long time now. not enemies, certainly friends, more like roommates. (there. i said it.) that said, i would expect a better more loving & concerned reaction out of a roommate.

i'm having a hard time telling people. maybe it'll be easier once i have a diagnosis and prognosis.

one thing i read online: if someone starts telling you about someone who died of cancer, stop them politely and say "i only want to hear stories with happy endings." that sounds horrible & selfish and callous, doesn't it? but i think that's going to be my first mantra. i have to put me first.

in vapid you've-got-to-be-kidding-mandi news, i'm crushed i had to cancel my cut/color/highlights hair appt for next weds, because of the MRI. then again, i may not have to worry about my hair much in the months to come.

that's enough for now. i'm far too fuzzy to write anymore. i barely made it out of bed this morning as it is.
i know, i know ... just keep swimming, just keep swimming ...

please please please know that your support and love and prayers and vibes mean the world to me. i'd be lost without them. you. you know what i mean. i know i should probably take this to LJland from now on, instead of bringing you all down. but i'm not up to it.
((((Mando)))) I can't even imagine what you are going through! As for Good news...I have an aunt who has beat breast cancer....twice! If she can do it, so can you!
~*~*~*Big FUCK YOU CANCER!! vibes for Mando~*~*~*

It's okay to post here, it really is. I get regular updates for this kid I don't know who's 10 and has some super-rare form of brain cancer; his dad posts on and I donated $5 to help him get treatment at Sloan-Kettering, so now I'm on the mailing list for the mass updates they send out. Yeah, they're depressing (his form of cancer is probably terminal), but I'd rather know. I know you more than I know this kid, and I'd rather know than avoid it and worry. So keep posting as much as you want, Mando. It's okay.

(((Mandolyn))) I don't know what to say other than my thoughts and prayers are so with you right now! From your other posts, I see that you are so strong and you are a fighter. Continue to fight sweetheart! I'll be praying for you.


what polly said about posting here - I would much rather know than worry, and you know we're all here for you. And you shoud just re-arrange your hair appt; you deserve pampering! It's a part of you-first, most definitely. I'm glad Bossman is being supportive, and you have Danny and Mamasan too. Been thinking of you all day dearest, sending hairbrushings and hugs

fuck you, cancer. fuck you in the ear with a rusty chainsaw.
Mandi, please don't stop posting here, honey. This is a place for support and sharing, good or bad. Don't feel bad like you are bringing anyone down, sweetpea. Please let us all rally around you.

~~~A continual loop of extra tight hugs & soothing vibes~~~
and the hugest FUCK YOU CANCER!!!.
((((((mando)))))) you will be in my thoughts every day from now until you beat it, okay? Know it. Also, don't take this to eljay please, I fucking hate eljay wink.gif.
If you can't do the hair, have a pedicure instead and a margarita (or beverage of choice). Lots of gingerbread lattes too, to soothe. Your happy endings only mantra is spot on (and if you can receive any happy endings from a male masseuse then all the better...)

Big hugs to you and (((everybody else))).
(((((mando))))) what everyone else said.

I think your "happy endings only" mantra is a good idea. It is going to be really important to oick and choose what you bring into your life for quite awhile here. Happy good vibes will help. You simply will not have the energy or the time to absorb other people's pain and sorrow.
Tell us everything that you want us to know. We are here.
((((Mando)))) You will beat this suck-ass cancer. I know you will!

Please keep writing here when you want. I'm sure I'm not just speaking for myself when I say I'll be thinking about you a lot and want to be kept up on what's going on as you're able to post.

My mom beat it, my childhood friend beat it, you will, too. Let me know if there is anything at all I can do. I mean that, even if it's of limited value from way across the country!

mando, you have the full Force of the the Lounge behind you, and we don't take no shit, especially from cancer. we will kick its ass around the block and back, and you're going to be the ringleader.

let's fuck shit up, bitches!

~*~*mando vibeage*~*~*
(((((((((((((mando)))))))))))) We're all here for you. You will get through this. Please post here as often as you want to, we all want to hear from you.
(((((mando))))) anything you need, an ear to listen to you, whatever, please let us know. you are not bringing us down at all. i hope you keep posting here.

i have so many emotions running through me as i read your post that i can only imagine how you are feeling. sad.gif you have my digits. so, call me.

i think your use of the "just keep swimming" is a great motto for going with the flow with recent events. sometimes, swimming is all you can do at the moment. take each day as it comes. i worked with individuals with cancer and their families for about a year. i heard alot of amazing success stories. your story will be just as amazing.

(((((more hugs for you))))
((Mando)) All your Busties are here for you. I am wishing the best for you, and am sending lots of good thoughts your way.
*coming through the portal between Okayers and Kvetch*



Echoing what everyone else in here who loves you is saying: you keep coming in here and tell us what's going on, because we'd all worry if you didn't. And I agree too that you should reschedule your hair appt for sure. Pamper yourself silly (and gorgeous, of course.) ((((((((Mando))))))))

You will beat this. *puts on cancer ass-kicking boots to join the Lounge cancer-beating posse*


hey mandy... you know we're all pulling for ya lady...

and just so you know, seeing your little blue dog makes me happy as ever.

****super stupid sucky lame ass cancer doesn't put up much of a fight, gets it's super stupid lame ass kicked down a fight of stairs, thru the living room, and out the front door, down the street and out of town and practically evaporates quickly, never to be heard from again, cos we love mandy so much vibes****

you're in our thoughts and prayers. keep your chin up!
Just popping in to give

~~~~~~~~~~~HEALTHY VIBES TO MANDO~~~~~~~~~~

Girl, we'll be thinking of you. Feel free to come on over to the Okayer thread anytime. You've got support there too.

Mando, we love you. Take good care of yourself.

It's Friday and they're black.
Mando, we love you and support you. Please keep posting, as we are always here for you. I'm sending you very positive karma vibes. I think the "happy endings" and "just keep swimming" are excellent mantras for you.


Anti-kvetch: I got a internship with the Epilepsy Foundation working with my counselor! It's unpaid but it's something for now. I set my hours/days, so it will be a good experience. I'll just be helping other clients job search and be supportive.

Green undies.

you guys have made me tear up, in a good way. the best of ways.
thanks for all the kind words, emails, ecards ... everything. you've boosted my spirits immensely.

speaking of tearing up, today's guffaw comes courtesy of my s-i-l, an accountant, who - in a lovely email - said, "now i'm crying in payroll. there's no crying in payroll!"

(and i surely hope you all know what famous comic movie scene that's referencing!)

beige lace wacoal. white lace panties. yes i had to peak.

(((group hug)))

Okay, so here's something else to talk about! (Thanks for the opening, mando!)

We made it "official" this morning!

Since I don't work on Fridays, my Thursday night ritual is to stay up late and usually fall asleep on the couch. At 3AM, I woke up and was watching a little TV. He came out of the bedroom and said, "you should come to bed"...after a little coaxing I did. I figured he was just having trouble sleeping without me in bed. We both fell asleep. I woke up around 8:15 and he wasn't there, so I figured he'd gone to work (I sleep with ear plugs in, so I usually don't hear his alarm go off) I fell back asleep. Around 8:45, he's jostling me to wake up, and he was holding Albus. I'm thinking, "wtf?" and I pull out the ear plugs.

He's got a piece of paper in his hand, and he says, "I've got a big speech and I'd forget it if I didn't write it down, so here it goes.

When you knew that The Ramones were the godfathers of punk and not a Spanish flamenco band; that the Coen Brothers were filmmakers and not that legal team that plays their commercials at two in the morning; and that Fawlty Towers was a TV series and not that cute bed & breakfast down the road, that's when I knew you were the one for me.

You're one of the most thoughtful and compassionate people I've ever met. You've taught me to take part in things I care about and believe in. You've helped me be brave when I've wanted to run and hide. And you've shown me the world can be a great place if you're willing to give it a chance. You're my best friend. I can't imagine my life without you and I want to be with you for the rest of the adventure.

Besides if I don't ask you soon, Albus is totally gonna make a move [since he's so affectionate and we always joke that he's got a thing for me :-P] Albus is cuter but I've got opposable thumbs and a job, so will you do me the honor of marrying me?"

I said yes, of course, and the ring was in a little drawstring bag around Albus' collar.

Then he made me get out of bed- he'd gotten up at 6:00 to get everything ready and had gone to our favorite breakfast restaurant and gotten pancakes for us. Then we spent the rest of the morning watching Ferris Bueller's Day Off (besides it being one of our favorite movies, it was appropriate since he'd taken the day off work). After I shower, we're going to go show off the ring to some family and friends, and then he's got another surprise planned later for today. Yay!

I will, of course, post pictures ASAP. We'll probably stop at The Selena's and have her take some pictures, since she's got a much nicer camera than we do!
congratulations, polly! woo!


That sounds like an awesome day Polly! Congratulations!

((((Continued love and virtual hairbrushings for Mando)))))

Dh and I both got paid today, so we've been planning and plotting our Christmas shopping. Where did this year go?
Congrations polly!!!

That speech is so beautiful! I didn't know you were a Fawlty Towers fan either. smile.gif


CONGRATS, polly! That is such a cute way to propose. I'm so happy for you and can't wait to hear the other surprise!

((((((mando))))) much love.

*waves at the okayers and the de-lurkers*

yay for the internship, sassy!

(((sidecar))) I'm sorry for the shitty time you're having lately.

undies: oyster pink satin girl-shorts with lace panelling and black pinstripe and matching push-up bra.

kvetch: the new job is kicking my arse; I'm so tired. I'm liking it though; ordering books and dealing with customer orders and book distributors and stuff.

anti-kvetch: the boy's parents are visiting this weekend! they arrive in a couple of hours. Should be a lovely weekend.

Have a great weekend (((everyone)))!
Wow, there is a lot of emotions running through this thread. I am crying as I read everything. Thankfully, there is crying in Kvetchlandia.

{{{{POLLY}}}} I thought that might be what happened when I saw your Facebook status. biggrin.gif smile.gif biggrin.gif smile.gif Yay! What a great proposal. (Side note, I also sleep w/earplugs. Otherwise The Geek would have a sock shoved down his throat some night b/c he snores and I refuse to be held accountable for my actions when half-asleep.)


Well, my new computer arrived today, much earlier than the origonal eta. It is less Flamingo Pink and more Metallic Powder Pink but I like it just the same. It is so smooth and sleek. I am practically molesting it. This weekend The Geek and I are driving to a lovely hotel in the middle of Illinios for wine shopping and a romantic night out. I really can't wait. Tonight I am making "steak frites." I got a subscription to Cooking Light for my birthday so it is time to start experimenting.

Have a great, restful, and HEALING weekend everyone!

Undies: Blue two=string bikinis w/hearts on them and red bra.

((((((((MANDO))))))))) We've got your back, fo' sho'! Just let us know if you need anything...we will wrap you in our love and bring you all the (((((FUCK CANCER)))) vibes that we can. The no-diagnosis-yet place is a nasty one, when all you want is a PLAN, something to DO - anything to move forward...take care of yourself, and call in the support network!! I'd also call for chocolate, brownies, and as much laughter as you can manage amongst good friends. My momma is a 15yr, stage 4, breast cancer survivor, and we have celebrated every victory to be had along the way, and we just keep celebrating the miracles of medicine + support network + fuck cancer positive attitude. We love ya, mando, and we'll be here for you through the whole journey.

Also, as a professional cancer-fighting-ninja (okay, I just do graphic design) for the American Cancer Society... if you need info/support once you get a formal diagnosis, give them a call 800-ACS-2345...they have a lot of services for patients and caregivers that no one knows about, and the folks who answer the hotline have the most up-to-date info on every type of cancer at their fingertips, beyond being really amazing at what they do. And they can connect you to your local office and programs as well. Sorry for the work plug, but this is why I do the work I do. I just hope one day I won't need to pass along this info to people I love. smile.gif

Polly, Congratulations!!! I am SO happy for you and Le Boy!! And what a SWEET proposal! I think that is the Best Nap Ever! WOW....he really did an excellent job - from planning to speech, and I can't wait to hear what else he's planned for you! SQUEEEE!

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