Wannabe psychic casts net for customers but comes up empty

January 26, 2020 — by Allen Chen

Across history, many have claimed supernatural abilities, from seeing the future to reading minds. Many have even made a business consulting others with their supposed powers. Seeing the exorbitant amounts that famous psychics have been sued for, as well as our town’s resident psychic on Saratoga Avenue, I was inspired to try my hand in the fortune telling business.

Of course, I had no idea how to actually go about this. As far as I could tell, I had no psychic abilities. I didn’t even know how to fake it, and I wasn’t about to pay $120 to see an actual fortune teller to learn. Instead, I found a certificate of achievement for the James van Praagh School of Mystical Arts online and photoshopped my name in. Armed with my new qualifications, I entered the arena of supernatural consultation.

Typically, one would start by doing a few small consultations and selling a few good luck trinkets to build a customer base. I decided to just wing it. I picked up a few cat keychains from Daiso, dug up a hall pass flip flop I had acquired through completely legitimate means and scheduled a grand opening in the school’s lobby (yes, the school has a lobby [it’s in front of the large gym]) for the Friday before Martin Luther King Jr. Day. I posted an advertisement on Facebook and decided it was enough.

It just so happened that I also had an Art Club meeting to go to that I had completely forgotten about. I ended up setting up a stand in the art room, wearing a tiny paper wizard hat and receiving many strange looks from normal club-goers.

Eventually, I started feeling bad for intruding on the club with my business, so I decided to relocate to the cafeteria. Because I looked a little … different, I decided to take the initiative and approach potential customers before they ran away. “Hmmmm,” I said, waving the flip flop over their heads. “I see … a big choice in your future.” My supernatural instincts would typically fail me after this point.

“Can you tell me my college results?” asked one victim. I took the responsible route and said no. Interest in my services quickly plummeted after that.

No doubt I would go bankrupt as an actual fortune teller. But I now have more respect for those who make a living as psychics. Given the sheer lack of interest I saw among potential customers, I now understand why professionals need to charge such high amounts per customer. Although I am now retired from the profession, if any of you ever need your fortunes read or your chakras analyzed, you know where to go.

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On March 27, members of the Air National Guard converted the Santa Clara County Convention Center to a temporary federal facility for about 250 coronavirus patients. The center is to house those who have tested positive for the virus, but don't require intensive in-hospital care. More information can be found through the local news. Photo courtesy of Randy Vazquez of the Bay Area News Group.

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