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Finishing an article normally reminds me of pulling the plug in the bathtub: everything goes away except for a faint unpleasant residue, and no one is the wiser once I get things cleaned up for the next article. It is always a shock to find out what other people think when they actually do read something I've written. In fact, it is usually a shock to find out that they read it at all, since my normal assumption is that no one reads the thing once it is down the tubes, so to speak. But these gracious commentators (prodded by writing assignments of their own) have not only pondered my "gift" article; they have also told me what they think, some of them in no uncertain terms. The following, of course, is what I think about what they think.

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