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Today's Stichomancy for Michael Jackson

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Options by O. Henry:

survivors. But I've noticed you, Sam,' says I, 'seeking the bubble notoriety in the cannon's larynx a number of times. Now, what do you do it for? Is it ambition, business, or some freckle-faced Pheebe at home that you are heroing for ?'

"'Well, Ben,' says Sam, kind of hefting his sword out from between his knees, 'as your superior officer I could court-martial you for attempted cowardice and desertion. But I won't. And I'll tell you why I'm trying for promotion and the usual honors of war and conquest. A major gets more pay than a captain, and I need the money.'

"'Correct for you!' says I. 'I can understand that. Your system of fame-seeking is rooted in the deepest soil of patriotism. But I can't

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Treatise on Parents and Children by George Bernard Shaw:

As between adults, we find a general quarrelsomeness which makes political reform as impossible to most Englishmen as to hogs. Certain sections of the nation get cured of this disability. University men, sailors, and politicians are comparatively free from it, because the communal life of the University, the fact that in a ship a man must either learn to consider others or else go overboard or into irons, and the habit of working on committees and ceasing to expect more of one's own way than is included in the greatest common measure of the committee, educate the will socially. But no one who has ever had to guide a committee of ordinary private Englishmen through their first attempts at collective action, in committee or otherwise, can retain

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Tattine by Ruth Ogden [Mrs. Charles W. Ide]:

Betsy looked up with the most reproachful look imaginable as though to say, "How much talking could you do if you had to do it all with your eyes and a tail?"


Patrick Kirk was raking the gravel on the road into pretty criss-cross patterns, and Tattine was pretending to help him with her own garden rake. Patrick was one of Tattine's best friends and she loved to work with him and to talk to him. Patrick was a fine old Irishman, there was no doubt whatever about that, faithful and conscientious to the last degree. Every morning he would drive over in his old buggy from his little farm in the Raritan Valley, in abundant time to begin work on the minute of seven, and not until the

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 Walking by Henry David Thoreau:

raised for a sail, and bridging narrower streams with their dead--that something like the furor which affects the domestic cattle in the spring, and which is referred to a worm in their tails,--affects both nations and individuals, either perennially or from time to time. Not a flock of wild geese cackles over our town, but it to some extent unsettles the value of real estate here, and, if I were a broker, I should probably take that disturbance into account.

"Than longen folk to gon on pilgrimages, And palmeres for to seken strange strondes."

Every sunset which I witness inspires me with the desire to go to