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Today's Stichomancy for Uma Thurman

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Illustrious Gaudissart by Honore de Balzac:

barbarism succeeding the saturnalia of popular thought and the last struggles of those civilizations which accumulated the treasures of the world in one direction?

The commercial traveller! Is he not to the realm of ideas what our stage-coaches are to men and things? He is their vehicle; he sets them going, carries them along, rubs them up with one another. He takes from the luminous centre a handful of light, and scatters it broadcast among the drowsy populations of the duller regions. This human pyrotechnic is a scholar without learning, a juggler hoaxed by himself, an unbelieving priest of mysteries and dogmas, which he expounds all the better for his want of faith. Curious being! He has

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Miracle Mongers and Their Methods by Harry Houdini:

actually swallowed SEVENTEEN, of the effects of which he died in March, 1809. On dissection, fourteen knife blades were found remaining in his stomach, and the back spring of one penetrating through the bowel, seemed the immediate cause of his death.

Several women have adopted the profession of sword-swallowing, and some have won much more than a passing fame. Notable among these is Mlle. Edith Clifford, who is, perhaps,


Miracle Mongers and Their Methods
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Vicar of Tours by Honore de Balzac:

though, for the last few mornings, the vicar had been forced to strain his mind to find beguiling topics on which to loosen her tongue. If the narrow limits of this history permitted us to report even one of the conversations which often brought a bitter and sarcastic smile to the lips of the Abbe Troubert, it would offer a finished picture of the Boeotian life of the provinces. The singular revelations of the Abbe Birotteau and Mademoiselle Gamard relating to their personal opinions on politics, religion, and literature would delight observing minds. It would be highly entertaining to transcribe the reasons on which they mutually doubted the death of Napoleon in 1820, or the conjectures by which they mutually believed that the Dauphin was

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 The Second Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling:

If we trusted our ears we should know that of all things he is most foolish." Raising his voice, he added, "The Man-cub is right in this. Men hunt in packs. To kill one, unless we know what the others will do, is bad hunting. Come, let us see what this Man means toward us."

"We will not come," Gray Brother growled. "Hunt alone, Little Brother. WE know our own minds. The skull would have been ready to bring by now."

Mowgli had been looking from one to the other of his friends, his chest heaving and his eyes full of tears. He strode forward to the wolves, and, dropping on one knee, said: "Do I not know


The Second Jungle Book