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Today's Stichomancy for Steve Martin

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from The Schoolmistress and Other Stories by Anton Chekhov:

have found it with a candle by daylight. . . .

Iona sees a house-porter with a parcel and makes up his mind to address him.

"What time will it be, friend?" he asks.

"Going on for ten. . . . Why have you stopped here? Drive on!"

Iona drives a few paces away, bends himself double, and gives himself up to his misery. He feels it is no good to appeal to people. But before five minutes have passed he draws himself up, shakes his head as though he feels a sharp pain, and tugs at the reins. . . . He can bear it no longer.

"Back to the yard!" he thinks. "To the yard!"


The Schoolmistress and Other Stories
The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from The Figure in the Carpet by Henry James:

had been really splendid. He appreciated my present eagerness and undertook that the periodical in question should do no less; then at the last, with his hand on the door, he said to me: "Of course you'll be all right, you know." Seeing I was a trifle vague he added: "I mean you won't be silly."

"Silly - about Vereker! Why what do I ever find him but awfully clever?"

"Well, what's that but silly? What on earth does 'awfully clever' mean? For God's sake try to get AT him. Don't let him suffer by our arrangement. Speak of him, you know, if you can, as I should have spoken of him."

The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from The Land that Time Forgot by Edgar Rice Burroughs:

at my side. Presently he touched my arm.

"Look, captain," he said, and pointed south.

I looked and gasped, for there directly to port I saw outlined through the haze the red top of the rising sun. Hurrying to the tower, I looked at the compass. It showed that we were holding steadily upon our westward course. Either the sun was rising in the south, or the compass had been tampered with. The conclusion was obvious.

I went back to Bradley and told him what I had discovered. "And," I concluded, "we can't make another five hundred knots without oil; our provisions are running low and so is our water.


The Land that Time Forgot