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Today's Stichomancy for Bill Gates

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Danny's Own Story by Don Marquis:

you are going to get shut of it, once you are fool enough to start in.

In Tennessee he had met Miss Lucy. Which her wedding to Prent McMakin was billed fur to come off about the first of November, jest a month away.

"I don't know whether I ever told you or not," says the doctor, "but I was engaged to be married myself, Tom, when I went down to your place. That was what started all the trouble.

"You know engagements are like vaccina-

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Silverado Squatters by Robert Louis Stevenson:

print dresses (chosen by Rufe) and with a large sun-bonnet shading her valued complexion, made, I assure you, a very agreeable figure. But she was on the surface, what there was of her, out-spoken and loud-spoken. Her noisy laughter had none of the charm of one of Hanson's rare, slow-spreading smiles; there was no reticence, no mystery, no manner about the woman: she was a first-class dairymaid, but her husband was an unknown quantity between the savage and the nobleman. She was often in and out with us, merry, and healthy, and fair; he came far seldomer - only, indeed, when there was business, or now and again, to pay a visit of ceremony,

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Wife, et al by Anton Chekhov:

"What is it? "

"For God's sake, go up and have a look at Liza; there is something the matter with her. . . ."

"Very good, with pleasure," I muttered, greatly relieved at not being alone. "Very good, this minute. . . ."

I followed my wife, heard what she said to me, and was too agitated to understand a word. Patches of light from her candle danced about the stairs, our long shadows trembled. My feet caught in the skirts of my dressing-gown; I gasped for breath, and felt as though something were pursuing me and trying to catch me from behind.

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 Enemies of Books by William Blades:

of his English congeners. He was transparent, like thin ivory, and had a dark line through his body, which I took to be the intestinal canal. He resigned his life with extreme procrastination, and died "deeply lamented" by his keeper, who had long looked forward to his final development.

The difficulty of breeding these worms is probably due to their formation. When in a state of nature they can by expansion and contraction of the body working upon the sides of their holes, push their horny jaws against the opposing mass of paper. But when freed from the restraint, which indeed to them is life, they CANNOT eat although surrounded with food, for they have no legs to keep them steady, and their natural, leverage is wanting.