Howdy!

Well, I’m back from vacation, my “Bronzed God” (I’m not sure who I’m quoting exactly) status reiterated. I used my vacation time well. I relaxed, I exercised, and I caught up on my reading. I’ve been meaning to finish that “Girls of California Community Colleges” article for a long time. And boy I’m glad I did. Otherwise I never would have known that Sara, from Mustache County is a “Fresh, wholesome kind of gal” who likes to wear cowboy spurs, holsters, and nothing else. Her turn-ons include “funny people and poppy seeds” and her turn-offs are “genocide and flat beer.” She likes natural, as opposed to fake breasts, but “only on other people.”

When I wasn’t reading, I happened to catch a little TV. Some people say that Cable TV is a vast wasteland, but I disagree. Sure cable is littered with dozens of professional wrestling and televangelist channels (and lots of overlap between the two). But I was very impressed by the wide selection of porcelain figurines available (I bought Yassir Arafat), not to mention three separate channels devoted to the miraculous technological breakthroughs in eye make-up application.

The most intriguing thing I watched was an episode of Larry King Live on which he had a woman psychic as a guest. This woman, whose name escapes me (I am fairly certain it was not Bob Costas), claimed that she talked to dead people. A caller would come on the line, and this woman would talk to that caller’s dead relatives, who apparently were immediately available.

It amazed me that people seemed to believe her despite the fact that she was obviously faking it. I could tell, in part, because while the psychic could clearly hear the dead person say that he loved the caller dearly, somehow the dead dude’s voice became harder to discern when relaying verifiable details. A typical exchange went like this:

Larry King …and don’t forget, tomorrow night we have Bob
Dole and Marilyn Manson together, for the full
hour. You don’t want to miss that. OK, Sue from
Duluth is on the line for the Psychic lady.

Sue from Duluth Hi Psychic Lady.

Psychic Lady
Hi Sue, is it cold up there in Duluth?

Sue from Duluth Not particularly, no.

Psychic Lady
See, I knew that!

Sue from Duluth
You are amazing Psychic Lady. Say, can you
talk to my father? He died last year.

Psychic Lady
Sure can. He says hello.

Sue from Duluth
Oh my God!

Psychic Lady
He says his name was Ray.

Sue from Duluth
Actually, it was Hector.

Psychic Lady
Right, Hector, it sounded like he said Ray, but
there was a little static. He says he was a potter.

Sue from Duluth
No.

Psychic Lady
…or a painter?

Sue from Duluth
Nope.

Psychic Lady
Something creative?

Sue from Duluth
Negatory.

Psychic Lady
But he does say he worked with his hands.

Sue from Duluth
Well, actually he crushed wine grapes with his feet.

Psychic Lady
I see.

Sue from Duluth
He lost his hands as a child in a horrible Bar-B-Que
accident.

Psychic Lady
Right. I knew that. But as I said, he worked with
his limbs. And he says he loves you very much.

Sue from Duluth
OH MY GOD!!! I’m so happy to hear that psychic
lady. You are amazing!!

Larry King
I don’t know how you do it. By the way, next
Tuesday night, a round table on terrorism with
the Backstreet Boys. Next, Meghan from
Portland, you’re on the line.

Psychic Lady
Hi Meghan. I love Portland. I can see where you
are, surrounded by the beautiful Maine foliage.

Meghan from Portland
Actually, I’m in Portland, Oregon. But I was wondering
if you could see my Grandmother. She’s been dead for
15 years and I really miss her.

Psychic Lady
I can clearly see she has blonde hair.

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
Well, not totally blonde. Maybe an off-brown

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
Brunette?

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
Redhead.

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
Alabaster.

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
LOOK!! I can’t tell what Goddamm hair color she has, but
I can see it was beautiful hair! Right??

Meghan from Portland
No.

Psychic Lady
NO???

Meghan from Portland
My grandmother had alopecia totalis her whole life.
She never had any hair.

Psychic Lady
Listen you little twit, she says she loves you very
much.

Meghan from Portland
REALLY??? OH, thank you so much Psychic Lady. I
was skeptical before I talked to you. But now I know
you really talked to ma-ma.

Larry King
This never stops blowing my mind. We’ll take a break
and come right back with more of your phone calls. And
remember, Friday night, a special edition: Morley Safer
talks about losing his virginity for the full hour.

Of course, all of the caller’s dead relatives “love them very much.” Psychic lady never says, “Your father says you were a cosmic schmuck. He loathes the very night he drunkenly impregnated your mother. He spoke to God yesterday, and the Lord said, ‘pack some sun screen for the afterlife.’ Finally, he’s says, ‘don’t call again, you douchebag.'” Of course, if she did that, no one would buy her book.

The bottom line is, there are no psychics. We know this for several reasons. First, their predictions are almost always wrong. Look at last year’s predictions: Michael Jackson’s head did not explode. Mars was not invited to join NATO. George Clooney did not run off to marry Barbara Bush. Satan did not inhabit the body of Celine Dion…well OK, I did say almost all of the predictions were wrong.

I’ll tell you what, I have a little test to give the next person who claims he can predict the future, or commune with the dead, or read tarot cards, or whatever, ask them where Chandra Levy is. And “near water” is not good enough. Take me to her. Or even better, ask them why they didn’t give us a heads up on the World Trade Center Bombing. That would have been nice.