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Today's Stichomancy for Stephen Colbert

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Twelve Stories and a Dream by H. G. Wells:

of ghosts in the place. There's too much shadow and oak panelling to trifle with that. And this, you know, wasn't a regular ghost. I don't think it will come again--ever."

"You mean to say you didn't keep it?" said Sanderson.

"I hadn't the heart to," said Clayton.

And Sanderson said he was surprised.

We laughed, and Clayton looked aggrieved. "I know," he said, with the flicker of a smile, "but the fact is it really WAS a ghost, and I'm as sure of it as I am that I am talking to you now. I'm not joking. I mean what I say."

Sanderson drew deeply at his pipe, with one reddish eye on Clayton,

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

he has troubled them, if they appear to prefer riches to virtue, or to think themselves something when they are nothing.

...

'Few persons will be found to wish that Socrates should have defended himself otherwise,'--if, as we must add, his defence was that with which Plato has provided him. But leaving this question, which does not admit of a precise solution, we may go on to ask what was the impression which Plato in the Apology intended to give of the character and conduct of his master in the last great scene? Did he intend to represent him (1) as employing sophistries; (2) as designedly irritating the judges? Or are these sophistries to be regarded as belonging to the age in which he lived and to

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Case of the Golden Bullet by Grace Isabel Colbron and Augusta Groner:

pulled out several other articles of clothing, which, like the overcoat, had been given to him by Fellner. Then he packed up a few necessities and announced himself as ready to start. He insisted on carrying the torn coat, and Muller permitted it after some protest. They carefully closed the apartment and the house, and walked toward the centre of the city to the police station, where Muller lived.

As they crossed the square, it suddenly occurred to Johann that he had no tobacco. He was a great smoker, and as he had many days of enforced idleness ahead of him, he ran into a tobacco shop to purchase a sufficiency of this necessity of life.

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 Ion by Plato:

Meno, they have a divine instinct, but they are narrow and confused; they do not attain to the clearness of ideas, or to the knowledge of poetry or of any other art as a whole.

In the Protagoras the ancient poets are recognized by Protagoras himself as the original sophists; and this family resemblance may be traced in the Ion. The rhapsode belongs to the realm of imitation and of opinion: he professes to have all knowledge, which is derived by him from Homer, just as the sophist professes to have all wisdom, which is contained in his art of rhetoric. Even more than the sophist he is incapable of appreciating the commonest logical distinctions; he cannot explain the nature of his own art; his great memory contrasts with his inability to follow the steps of