His name was Seth, which either meant that he didn’t care enough about his job to adopt a flashy moniker or he didn’t need one. Other than the name, however, my tarot card reader looked the part: mysterious tattoos, gauges, dressed in all black. But still, if I had paid £10—they should give me something more exciting than Seth.
I had made this frivolous monetary decision on a total whim in Afflecks, Manchester’s indoor market that’s something of a Hot Topic meets vintage boutique meets Vegan bakery meets comic book emporium. As I wandered over to a store advertising half-priced corsets (but in a totally Wiccan kind of way, rest assured), I noticed they also offered tarot card readings. I had always wanted to have my cards read just for fun but hadn’t been willing to fork over the cash for something as, well, bullshit as tarot. But, here I was, caught up in the Pagan goddess-like energy of Afflecks and the time seemed right. I paid for my ten minutes and waited.
Seth began by closing his eyes and rifling through the cards. Then he laid about 10 cards out in a formation that I now know is called the “Celtic cross” and began to tell me how each one related to my life. I learned a view things about myself: For one, apparently I am feeling suspicious of something right now, but also feel the need to express myself. (Perhaps…through a blog? Gasp!) In the near future, I will tell someone the truth and stand up for something because it’s the right thing to do. I can only imagine this will entail an aggressive exchange of words with that one hostel-mate who slams doors in the morning and hogs the power outlet.
As you would expect, all his explanations were vague enough to apply to many situations. As I listened, I found myself trying to relate what he said to things in my life, and then hard-core judging myself for buying into it, and then realizing I had zoned out and now we were talking about swords again. (A lot of my cards were very sword-centric: either that’s par for the course or I lead a more stabby life than most).
Some of what he said did particularly resonate. The cards indicated that I was doing something that felt really right and that now was a good time for hard work. Both couldn’t apply more to being a Researcher-Writer: while the hours are long (as in 24/7), this has been one of my most exciting adventures and I love what I’m doing. (I promise I did not write this while at sword point from my editor).
Did I leave Seth’s little tarot room with any profound insight into myself or the nature of human beings? Did I have my skepticism cast aside? No. But I could have gotten my nipples pierced at Afflecks and I did this instead, so I think I made a good choice.