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Today's Stichomancy for Mikhail Gorbachev

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from Gobseck by Honore de Balzac:

white satin skin of her throat was rough, "turned to goose flesh," to use the familiar expression. As for me, I laughed in myself without moving a muscle.

" ' "This gentleman is one of my tradesmen," she said.

" 'The Count turned his back on me; I drew the bill half out of my pocket. After that inexorable movement, she came over to me and put a diamond into my hands. "Take it," she said, "and be gone."

" 'We exchanged values, and I made my bow and went. The diamond was quite worth twelve hundred francs to me. Out in the courtyard I saw a swarm of flunkeys, brushing out their liveries, waxing their boots, and cleaning sumptuous equipages.


Gobseck
The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from Tik-Tok of Oz by L. Frank Baum:

home. The small girl here is Betsy Bobbin, from some unknown earthly paradise called Oklahoma, and with her you see Mr. Hank, a mule with a long tail and a short temper.

"Puh!" said Ann, scornfully; "a pretty lot of vagabonds you are, indeed; all lost or strayed, I suppose, and not worth a Queen's plundering. I'm sorry I've conquered you."

"But you haven't conquered us yet," called Betsy indignantly.

"No," agreed Files, "that is a fact. But if my


Tik-Tok of Oz
The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from Democracy In America, Volume 2 by Alexis de Toqueville:

States frequently intermingle their phraseology in the strangest manner, and sometimes place words together which are always kept apart in the language of the mother- country. These remarks, which were made to me at various times by persons who appeared to be worthy of credit, led me to reflect upon the subject; and my reflections brought me, by theoretical reasoning, to the same point at which my informants had arrived by practical observation.

In aristocracies, language must naturally partake of that state of repose in which everything remains. Few new words are coined, because few new things are made; and even if new things