Life getting you down? Feeling a bit out of control? How do you cope with the curve balls life throws you? Annmarie O’Connor
gets personal with a pack of tarot cards.
I used to be an optimist. But that was bound to end. I was always the one who’d pipe up with “come on, what’s the worst that can happen?”, Armageddon and the Wrath of Babylon swiftly following in tow. I’m that poor sod who never saw it coming a mile away… I found a way to trick fate.
I’ve considered my options when it comes to damage limitation. Now there’s no real clause in the “Life Handbook” is there? Otherwise we would never:
a) have our credit cards rejected in front of a shop full of amused onlookers;
b) assume we could drink 2 jugs of Mai-TaI and a half a bottle of tequila without falling over;
c) need to fill in this space, because we wouldn’t have done it, would we?
Common sense bypasses aside, if we are capable of these minor mishaps on a regular if not religious basis, what are we to do about more serious issues?
Enter the Tarot card reader – traditionally viewed as the thinking man’s nemesis – a figure fit only for scepticism, if not intense derision. For me, I view it as a form of personal management consultancy – a means of defraying my own Y2K. Let’s be rational (all irony aside). Society places a premium on those who succeed and we can’t succeed without initiating change and we can’t initiate change without knowing what needs changing. You see the pattern emerging? Hell, we hire personal trainers, personal chefs, financial advisors, life coaches and psychoanalysts. O.K. other people do, but I would if I could afford it (see: point a). Basically, I’m looking for a one-stop shop to personal success and if a pack of Major and Minor Arcana can tell me that, then I’ll be damned if I don’t!
Never being the type of person to accept one humble opinion, I decided to give four oracles around Dublin the chance to sort me out.
1) Eddie Christian
South William Street
Length 20 minutes
Entertainment value 10/10
If you are looking for speed, good fun and accuracy down to names and occupations of people in your life, this guy delivers! The reading lasts 20 minutes and unlike the usual bog-standard reader, he doesn’t ask you a million probing or leading questions that could aid the process. Instead he seems to connect only with those things that are paramount in your life at the time. If he doesn’t see it in the cards he won’t bother hazarding a guess. I was told that I’d be changing jobs around May/June and would be engaging in an occupation that put my communication skills to better use. I was quite impressed considering I had been in the process of selling myself to the highest bidder (or to anyone for that matter) who would listen to me for 5 minutes. He even pinpointed when the general disillusionment in my present career had set in and why.
On the love front things weren’t as rosy. “Emotional redundancy”‘, I believe, was the phrase in question. “What is happening with you?” he enquired. “NOTHING” was the obvious answer. After much shock on his part and disgust on mine, I was told that nothing would be the general order of the day until next July/August when my soulmate in the form of a Graphic Designer will come and sweep the Gucci slingbacks off my feet. At this point I will probably have turned into an embittered old hag, complete with Myra Hindley t-shirt, denouncing “real men” as an extinct species… but I digress.
Apart from love and careers, he did tap into a few details, which were both precise and provocative. Nothing was said about money (most likely didn’t want to depress me further) or family matters. Overall – a bit of a laugh if you are prepared to be told the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help you God.
2) George’s Street Arcade
Length 20 minutes
Entertainment value 7/10
I believe this was the point in the proceedings when I actually started to get hooked. Despite the festooned blinds and heavily brocaded curtains, which suggested a lot of hokas pokas, her advice was actually quite practical. Again two topics presented themselves as areas that needed to be addressed: career and love. Excuse me; I feel a Bridget Jones moment coming on here…
Again, on the career front, she acknowledged the inroads I’ve been making in changing my current path and encouraged me to continue in this manner. She even pinpointed the exact areas of work I had in mind but assured me that I had to retrain before any of this could become a reality. Cue: short bout of depression.
I felt much more exhilarated, however, when the prison sentence imposed upon my maladjusted emotional life had been lifted. It would appear that in 1-10 days a broad shouldered, well -travelled man, whom I already know, will reveal his feelings for me. Although I couldn’t identify him from the line up of usual suspects in my head, she assures me that Herr Wunderbar has the ability to making my life a sea of reciprocal affection coupled with nights of intense passion, if only I let him. Let him? Does she think I’m that much of an ice queen, maybe he’s actually 70 and wants be to be his Anna Nicole Smith – either way I was perturbed and need added increased reassurance.
- 3) Henry Street
Length 7 minutes
Entertainment value 7/10
I was about to turn on my heels and forego the entire expedition when I saw the hand-written placard “As Seen on T.V. and Radio – Millennium Predictions – Find Out Who You Are Suited Two !”. I must admit, it doesn’t exactly inspire confidence even in the most naive of us but at Â£15 for a palm and card reading I was prepared to suffer the indignation.
Career-wise I was offered acting and modelling as options: one which I have considered in the past, the other which is hardly compatible with a diet of beer and chicken curries. I think chance is the only “fine thing” here!
Romance was doled out liberally in a choice of three men. I must admit, I liked her already. One is older than me (!), an Aries, and has me in mind for marriage(!!) the other two are my age and apparently more Mr. Right Nows than Mr. Right.
Financially speaking, I am due to come into an inheritance, complements of the untimely death of my 70 year old Love Squeeze, I would imagine. I’m also due to visit 5 of the major countries in the world and spend a lot of my time in airports – no doubt executing my position as a gold-digging, sugar-daddied ice queen to the best of my advantage, out to scout for another Zimmerframed unfortunate to add to my wealth.
Admittedly, I was intrigued by some of her additional insights but not enough so that I could go home and watch Sex and the City without wondering if I shouldn’t be calling up ABC and tell them what they’re missing. I needed another fix, so I went back to South William Street.
4) The Psychic-I
South William Street
Length 25 minutes
Entertainment value 9/10
With determination and a resolve of steel-enforced concrete, I revisited the initial scene of my psychic foray for one last consultation – this time with an “As Seen on the Gerry Ryan Show” seal of approval. The reading was Â£20 for 20 minutes of future-based conjecture, rather than tips and clues on how to change your present.
Again… change was predicted with the ominous death card bidding farewell to my present and obviously pathetic choice of career. Production and research in T.V. and film were predicted as cornerstones to my untold future wealth and happiness.
My soulmate is due to appear in September, this time as a banking and finance aficionado who has made his spondoolix in property and investment. What’s more, he comes from money and is going to spend it all on me! Exit Graphic Designer…
So what’s the worst that could happen? I’ll shun Mr. Broad Shoulders in the hope of getting a better deal with Mr. Graphic Designer then dump him in the hopes of The Well-Heeled Wonder, neglect a possible career behind the scenes in order to get my smug mug on celluloid and spend wildly in the hopes that some mysterious benefactor will bestow me generously with alms… which basically leaves me loveless, jobless, sitting in debtor’s court. But that’s not going to happen… is it?
YOU KNOW YOU’RE A TAROT JUNKIE WHEN…
Along with the police, the Fire Brigade, 911 and you mother, you have your own “psychic friend” programmed on your phone’s speed dial facility.
- You faithfully buy The Sunday Times for Shelley Von Strunkel’s cosmic counsel.
- You cancel all plans on a Friday evening to sit in and listen to The Psychic Zone on 98FM.
- 4. You viciously uphold the credibility of Mystic Meg.
- You actually know what “Venus in Retrograde” means.
- You refuse to date any man who is an Aries with a Capricorn ascendant, a King of Cups or a Knight of Pentacles.
- Vodka and Red Bull on a Saturday night with your mates no longer provides the same buzz as an engaging conversation on the finer qualities of rune stones.
- “Charmed” becomes part of your prime time viewing schedule.
- Forecasting is no longer a term associated only with the likes of Gerard Fleming.
- You don’t find it strange to have spent Â£70 in the course of an afternoon on advice from total strangers.
© Annmarie O’Connor 2001