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Today's Stichomancy for Robert De Niro

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Emma McChesney & Co. by Edna Ferber:

garment, I thought it was a joke. Before I'd been out with it a week, I began to like it. In ten days, I was crazy about it, and I believed in it from the waistband to the hem. On the level, Mrs. Buck, I think it's a wonder. Now, can you explain that?"

"Yes," said Emma; "you didn't like it at first because it was a shock to you. It outraged all your ideas of what a skirt ought to be. Then you grew accustomed to it. Then you began to see its good points. Why couldn't you make the trade get your viewpoint?"

"This is why: Out in Manistee and Oshkosh and Terre Haute, the girls have just really learned the trick of walking in tight


Emma McChesney & Co.
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Turn of the Screw by Henry James:

"Only that, I think, was to get me to do something for YOU!"

"It was partly to get you to do something," I conceded. "But, you know, you didn't do it."

"Oh, yes," he said with the brightest superficial eagerness, "you wanted me to tell you something."

"That's it. Out, straight out. What you have on your mind, you know."

"Ah, then, is THAT what you've stayed over for?"

He spoke with a gaiety through which I could still catch the finest little quiver of resentful passion; but I can't begin to express the effect upon me of an implication of surrender even so faint. It was as if what I had yearned for had come at last only to

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Cousin Betty by Honore de Balzac:

marriage.--If Roger--but Roger is away!--Hector, my boy, this is concerned with your pleasures. What, you still indulge--? Well, you are a credit to the old Guard. That is what comes of having been in the Commissariat; you have reserves!--But have nothing to do with this little job, my dear boy; it is too strong of the petticoat to be good business."

"No, Marshal; it is bad business, for the police courts have a finger in it. Would you like to see me go there?"

"The devil!" said the Prince uneasily. "Go on!"

"Well, I am in the predicament of a trapped fox. You have always been so kind to me, that you will, I am sure, condescend to help me out of

The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from Georgics by Virgil:

With spots he pranketh, muffled in a cloud, And shrinks mid-circle, then of showers beware; For then the South comes driving from the deep, To trees and crops and cattle bringing bane. Or when at day-break through dark clouds his rays Burst and are scattered, or when rising pale Aurora quits Tithonus' saffron bed, But sorry shelter then, alack I will yield Vine-leaf to ripening grapes; so thick a hail In spiky showers spins rattling on the roof. And this yet more 'twill boot thee bear in mind,


Georgics