The past few days, I've caught some television ads for psychic readings...on several cable channels.
Women in the commercials, pretty, blond sincere looking women tell the camera how precise and wonderful their over the telephone psychic readings were. How the person knew them, knew their problems and gave them correct advice...advice they'd base their lives on from now on.
Let me tell you about a friend of mine who got a job as a telephone psychic back a few years ago when they were hot and a thing.
This lady, for she was and still is a lady, told me that she got the job, not really knowing what it was going to be about. The people in charge handed her a loose-leaf notebook full of answers to give to the suckers who called.
Now, this lady never claimed to possess any psychic powers whatsoever. The phones rang, people poured out their hearts to her and she was supposed to riffle through the pages of the guide and whip out an appropriate answer. None of these answers were direct. None of them actually professed to guide the questioner in exactly what they should or shouldn't do. (careful of lawsuits). But they were innocuous and sounded good. Or made little sense unless the person being read already knew what they wanted the words to mean.
Sort of like the Oracle of Delphi, only in New York City.
Well, by and by, this lady friend realized that people were calling, asking for help with their personal problems. She, being a mother and wise woman of more years than the callers possessed, gradually interjected some of her own wisdom, leaving the callers with more practical, definitive, motherly advice than was found in the loose-leaf.
She got fired.
Beware, any who think calling a number for a buck a minute is going to be the answer to any or all of your problems.
She never got to take the loose- leaf home with her.