Do you understand Perl's logical ||? The key point in the context you are having trouble understanding is that the tested value is returned. Other languages with a logical or return a boolean value. Perl returns the actual value. So:
0 || 'wibble'
returns the string wibble, not 1, -1 or true as you might get in other languages. That makes logical or very useful for providing default values.
True laziness is hard work
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