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Today's Stichomancy for Billy Joel

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Essays & Lectures by Oscar Wilde:

of his own view he urges two points more: first, that the Lacedaemonians being allowed furlough for the purpose of seeing their wives at home, it was unlikely that the Locrians should not have had the same privilege; and next, that the Italian Locrians knew nothing of the Aristotelian version and had, on the contrary, very severe laws against adulterers, runaway slaves and the like. Now, most of these questions rest on mere probability, which is always such a subjective canon that an appeal to it is rarely conclusive. I would note, however, as regards the inscriptions which, if genuine, would of course have settled the matter, that Polybius looks on them as a mere invention on the part of Timaeus,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz by L. Frank Baum:

readily decide that the kitten is wrongfully accused and should be set at liberty."

When the Tin Woodman sat down no one applauded him, for his arguments had not been very convincing and few believed that he had proved Eureka's innocence. As for the Jury, the members whispered to each other for a few minutes and then they appointed the Hungry Tiger their spokesman. The huge beast slowly arose and said:

"Kittens have no consciences, so they eat whatever pleases them. The jury believes the white kitten known as Eureka is guilty of having eaten the piglet owned by Princess Ozma, and recommends that she be put to death in punishment of the crime."


Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Island Nights' Entertainments by Robert Louis Stevenson:

which would never do. Up I stood, made believe to stretch myself, came down the verandah stair, and strolled towards the river. There went a short buzz from one to the other, like what you hear in theatres when the curtain goes up; and some of the nearest gave back the matter of a pace. I saw a girl lay one hand on a young man and make a gesture upward with the other; at the same time she said something in the native with a gasping voice. Three little boys sat beside my path, where, I must pass within three feet of them. Wrapped in their sheets, with their shaved heads and bits of top-knots, and queer faces, they looked like figures on a chimney- piece. Awhile they sat their ground, solemn as judges. I came up

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 Life of the Spider by J. Henri Fabre:

can penetrate.

Exposed to all the inclemencies of the weather, among the dead grasses, close to the ground, the Epeira's nest has also to protect its contents from the winter cold. Let us cut the wrapper with our scissors. Underneath, we find a thick layer of reddish-brown silk, not worked into a fabric this time, but puffed into an extra-fine wadding. It is a fleecy cloud, an incomparable quilt, softer than any swan's-down. This is the screen set up against loss of heat.

And what does this cosy mass protect? See: in the middle of the eiderdown hangs a cylindrical pocket, round at the bottom, cut square at the top and closed with a padded lid. It is made of


The Life of the Spider