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Today's Stichomancy for Tom Leykis

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from A Distinguished Provincial at Paris by Honore de Balzac:

have the bailiffs at my heels; indeed, when I go to the Palais Royal, I have dangerous capes to double."

In the language of the fast set, doubling a cape meant dodging a creditor, or keeping out of his way. Lucien had not heard the expression before, but he was familiar with the practice by this time.

"Are your debts so heavy?"

"A mere trifle," said Lousteau. "A thousand crowns would pull me through. I have resolved to turn steady and give up play, and I have done a little 'chantage' to pay my debts."

"What is 'chantage'?" asked Lucien.

"It is an English invention recently imported. A 'chanteur' is a man

The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from The Time Machine by H. G. Wells:

in front of the fire, with two legs on the hearthrug. On this table he placed the mechanism. Then he drew up a chair, and sat down. The only other object on the table was a small shaded lamp, the bright light of which fell upon the model. There were also perhaps a dozen candles about, two in brass candlesticks upon the mantel and several in sconces, so that the room was brilliantly illuminated. I sat in a low arm-chair nearest the fire, and I drew this forward so as to be almost between the Time Traveller and the fireplace. Filby sat behind him, looking over his shoulder. The Medical Man and the Provincial Mayor watched him in profile from the right, the Psychologist from the left.


The Time Machine
The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from Some Reminiscences by Joseph Conrad:

being published in a French translation, a Parisian critic--I am almost certain it was M. Gustave Kahn in the "Gil-Blas"--giving me a short notice, summed up his rapid impression of the writer's quality in the words un puissant reveur. So be it! Who would cavil at the words of a friendly reader? Yet perhaps not such an unconditional dreamer as all that. I will make bold to say that neither at sea nor ashore have I ever lost the sense of responsibility. There is more than one sort of intoxication. Even before the most seductive reveries I have remained mindful of that sobriety of interior life, that asceticism of sentiment, in which alone the naked form of truth, such as one conceives it,


Some Reminiscences