Readings by Photo

Writers’ trigger: You are familiar with a cut and pasted ransom note. Why not try writing an entry based on interesting words and phrases cut from a variety of print sources?

  • Do not try this exercise with a subject already in mind. A preconceived topic will dull the outcome.
  • Spread the snippets out on a work surface and play with them.
  • Surprise yourself. Surprise your reader.


Some blogs ago, I mentioned passing through Silver City, New Mexico. Walking down the street, we saw the sign posted below.

Pet readings can be “done in person or over the phone or over the Internet by photo.” Please… cut me some slack. People who pay for pet readings must have more money than brains.

I went to the website – just to learn more. Gaye “promises to get to the core of the problem.” What’s more “she feels privileged to bridge the gap between animals and humans.”

It sort of sounds like she’s an animal behaviorist, but a reading based on a photo will not get my cat off the couch.

One of my daughters called today. She wanted to know the time of her birth. A friend had a “reading” based on the date of his birth, and he was blown away with accuracy of the feedback.

Not to sound cynical, but I remember (vaguely – I cannot cite the source or the study) reading about a psychology class experiment. The professor introduced the topic of horoscopes and asked each student to write down his birthdate. After class was dismissed, he planned to match the dates to each student’s sun sign. When the class met next, he would pass out each student’s appropriate horoscope.

The next meeting, students were asked to read their individual horoscopes and comment on the accuracy. Student after student raved about the accuracy of his horoscope.

After the students had testified to the uncanny match of the readings to their lives, the professor admitted that he had tricked them: regardless of their birthdate, all students had been given a reading for Sagittarius.

No doubt my readers who are true believers will think that I am full of it. 

I’m not worried. I just went to to check my Nov. 14 horoscope. I am reassured. My horoscope says, “Don’t get hung up on people’s opinion today – what they think can’t harm you.”

So there! I’m immune.

About timeout2

I have lived 100 lives. I write essays, short stories, poetry, grocery lists and notes to myself. If I am ever lost, look for a paper trail, but be careful not to trip over any books that lie scattered here and there. I am a reader. I am a reader in awe of writers. When I don't live in Westcliffe, Colorado, I live in London where I am a long-time member of Word-for-Word - Crouch End.
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