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Today's Stichomancy for Osama bin Laden

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Rescue by Joseph Conrad:

to do. How's one to know what YOU are after?"

She had never expected to hear so many words from that rigid shadow. Its monotonous mumble was fascinating, its sudden loquacity was shocking. And in the profound stillness that reigned outside it was as if there had been no one left in the world with her but the phantom of that old adventurer. He was heard again: "What I could tell you would be worse than poison."

Mrs. Travers was not familiar with Jorgenson's consecrated phrases. The mechanical voice, the words themselves, his air of abstraction appalled her. And he hadn't done yet; she caught some more of his unconcerned mumbling: "There is nothing I don't


The Rescue
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Unconscious Comedians by Honore de Balzac:

matter what,--the communists, the humanitarians, the philanthropists, you understand,--all these people are our advanced guard. While we are storing gunpowder, they are making the tinder which the spark of a single circumstance will ignite."

"But what do you expect will make the happiness of France?" cried Gazonal.

"Equality of citizens and cheapness of provisions. We mean that there will be no persons lacking anything, no millionaires, no suckers of blood and victims."

"That's it!--maximum and minimum," said Gazonal.

"You've said it," replied the corn-cutter, decisively.

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain:

sonality here; she was head chief of this household, that was plain. She caused us to be seated, and then she began, with all manner of pretty graces and graciousnesses, to ask me questions. Dear me, it was like a bird or a flute, or something, talking. I felt persuaded that this woman must have been misrepre- sented, lied about. She trilled along, and trilled along, and presently a handsome young page, clothed like the rainbow, and as easy and undulatory of movement as a wave, came with something on a golden salver, and, kneeling to present it to her, overdid his graces and


A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
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 Marriage Contract by Honore de Balzac:

the people here who know you and will watch and hamper you, so be it! But if you feel that desire for a solitude together which can hardly be expressed, let us go to Paris were the life of a young couple can pass unnoticed in the stream. There alone you can behave as lovers without fearing to seem ridiculous."

"You are quite right," said Paul, "but I shall hardly have time to get my house ready. However, I will write to-night to de Marsay, the friend on whom I can always count to get things done for me."

At the moment when Paul, like all young men accustomed to satisfy their desires without previous calculation, was inconsiderately binding himself to the expenses of a stay in Paris, Maitre Mathias