Saturday, November 2, 2013
A blank stare
What a busy day. My friend The Hot Italian and I read tarot cards for several hours at a church bazaar. Ten bucks for 10 minutes. A bargain we only offer once a year at the bazaar.
Unfortunately this year wasn't nearly as busy as last year, when we had to put out a sign-up sheet so people didn't have to stand in line to wait their turn. We would rather have read more today, but it was still a good day. We had a lot to talk about during the slow times.
We never know who will show up to sit across from us. Today Hot Italian read for a boy who was about 10 years old. He walked up, handed her a 50 and told her what change she should give him back. We also read for a newly married couple at the same time, and later I read for a husband and wife one after the other.
I read for several people who were concerned about health issues: cancer, deteriorating knees, stomach surgery. Sometimes it's hard for me to keep the readings to 10 minutes, so I was glad I had some extra time today to hear people's stories. One of the best things about reading tarot for me is hearing the stories.
Most people are pretty eager to talk about whatever their question or issue is. That's why they're spending their $10 to sit across from us. People who pay for a full consultation, which usually lasts an hour, always want to dig deep. It's rewarding work.
Today for the first time I read for someone who didn't want to know anything at all. There are plenty of people who walk by, smile, and tell us they really don't want to know anything, but they don't give us money.
This young woman did seem to want to know something -- or at the very least she gave me money. She'd never had a tarot reading, so I explained how it worked. As I talked, her face was completely blank, like she was watching a documentary on 13th-century pottery or staring at a wall.
I asked her to think about a question she wanted to ask or a situation. She shuffled the cards a couple of times and handed them back. I explained the layout I was going to use, and then asked her if she wanted to share her question.
"I don't really have one," she said. "I wasn't really thinking about anything as I shuffled."
"Ooookkkkaayyy," I said. "Well, let's just see what the cards show and maybe something will come out."
She stared back at me, emotionless.
I laid out 3 cards and told her what each position meant. She barely nodded her head. Still not even a smile to acknowledge that we were 2 humans engaged in a conversation.
I gave a broad reading of the cards. I have to say it felt uninspired to me. It felt about as interesting as she looked interested.
"Does any of this seem relevant to anything you're experiencing in your life?" I asked.
"Not really," she said and shrugged. Finally some emotion. (I take what I can get.)
I tried to dig a little deeper into the cards, but it was like a dry well. Neither she nor the cards were giving me anything. I finally stopped and said, "Does any of this mean anything to you at all?"
"Eh. Maybe. Not really," she said. "I don't know." She stared me down.
"This doesn't seem to have been very helpful to you," I said. "Maybe you'd like your money back?"
She stared blankly at me for a few long seconds. "No," she said. "I'm good." And then she got up and walked away.
I've lost count of how many tarot readings I've done, but this is definitely the first time I've read for someone who gave me nothing to work with, and who seemed to get nothing at all out of the reading. I imagine reading to a robot might be a similar experience.
Then again, I don't know that she didn't get anything out of it. She really didn't tell me anything.
I'm not going to worry about it. One thing I know about the tarot is that it doesn't always seem right on the day of the reading. Sometimes it takes a couple of weeks for the reading to kick in. I hope something kicks in with that girl, but I'll probably never find out if it does.
If you'd like a reading, I've recently added information at the top of this page on how you can get your cards read even if you don't live close to me. Take a look and consider sending me an email and setting up a time.
Everybody's got a burning question. What's yours?