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Today's Stichomancy for Jay Leno

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Gobseck by Honore de Balzac:

" 'I have no money to spare except for my own clients,' said he.

" 'So you are cross because I may have tried in other quarters to ruin myself?' laughed the Count.

" 'Ruin yourself!' repeated Gobseck ironically.

" 'Were you about to remark that it is impossible to ruin a man who has nothing?' inquired the dandy. 'Why, I defy you to find a better STOCK in Paris!' he cried, swinging round on his heels.

"This half-earnest buffoonery produced not the slightest effect upon Gobseck.

" 'Am I not on intimate terms with the Ronquerolles, the Marsays, the Franchessinis, the two Vandenesses, the Ajuda-Pintos,--all the most


Gobseck
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Republic by Plato:

and, like Adeimantus, has been distinguished at the battle of Megara (anno 456?)...The character of Adeimantus is deeper and graver, and the profounder objections are commonly put into his mouth. Glaucon is more demonstrative, and generally opens the game. Adeimantus pursues the argument further. Glaucon has more of the liveliness and quick sympathy of youth; Adeimantus has the maturer judgment of a grown-up man of the world. In the second book, when Glaucon insists that justice and injustice shall be considered without regard to their consequences, Adeimantus remarks that they are regarded by mankind in general only for the sake of their consequences; and in a similar vein of reflection he urges at the beginning of the fourth book that Socrates fails in making his citizens happy, and is


The Republic
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Coxon Fund by Henry James:

more placidly than when he happened to know the worst. He had known it on the occasion I speak of--that is immediately after. He was impenetrable then, but ultimately confessed. What he confessed was more than I shall now venture to make public. It was of course familiar to me that Saltram was incapable of keeping the engagements which, after their separation, he had entered into with regard to his wife, a deeply wronged, justly resentful, quite irreproachable and insufferable person. She often appeared at my chambers to talk over his lapses; for if, as she declared, she had washed her hands of him, she had carefully preserved the water of this ablution, which she handed about for analysis. She had arts

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 Essays of Travel by Robert Louis Stevenson:

selfish and obstructive, the men selfish, silly, and light-headed. He rehearsed to me the course of a meeting at which he had been present, and the somewhat long discourse which he had there pronounced, calling into question the wisdom and even the good faith of the Union delegates; and although he had escaped himself through flush times and starvation times with a handsomely provided purse, he had so little faith in either man or master, and so profound a terror for the unerring Nemesis of mercantile affairs, that he could think of no hope for our country outside of a sudden and complete political subversion. Down must go Lords and Church and Army; and capital, by some happy direction, must change hands from worse to better, or