Author Archives: Stella aka "fennario"

Tea & Cards With Mildred Payne

I’m still getting used to this deck, but so far it’s living up to its promise. Having Mildred around is like having your own private intelligence agency. If you didn’t see something coming, it’s because you didn’t ask her. This is a little draw I did last week.

Let me explain my situation a bit first: I have a regular job because it’s a dependable way to keep the bills paid. I do readings as well. A reader’s income fluctuates wildly – sometimes I make more than enough, other times there are dry spells. You never know if the month is going to bring imported cheeses or ramen. The landlord and the utility company like to get paid every month and are capable of making life quite hellish if I don’t comply in a reasonable amount of time. So I do both. You need more than one stream of income these days anyway.

There is a guy at my job – in my area, no less – who does not bathe. He stinks. I mean STENCH, since he hasn’t bathed or showered since last summer. Every shift is 12 hours of pure revulsion.

He is also lazy, has a rotten personality, and he’s a pathological liar. He sat there and kept eating when a lady nearby him was choking in the cafeteria. He’s dumb as rocks. He likes Trump. In other words, somebody I don’t want anywhere around me. I’ve complained about him all the way up the chain of command. Others have complained. I wrote an email to HR.

The draw was asking if he would be out of my work area that week.

The Key hints that he’ll be gone, but the other cards hint that it won’t be in that time period, and that’s exactly how it happened. Foot in this deck is about “footing” – stability and balance – not movement (that would be Boot – people are generally shod if they actually go anywhere.) Here, I think it’s literal, as well as his footing there being threatened. It’s tormented by the Devil and his Pitchfork. Factory could be the actual job. It also hints at “more and more” foot pain. He says he has plantar fasciitis. Maybe he does. Maybe that’s a lie, too – he’s morbidly, MORBIDLY obese, and that will do a number on a person’s feet, but I don’t feel sorry for him on that account. He eats three lunches at once and drinks three sodas with them. All he would have to do is cut out the sodas and he’d probably drop 100 pounds without doing anything else. There are other people working there who are almost as big. I’m sure their feet hurt, but they don’t use it as an excuse to remove their shoes and socks in the cafeteria, pick their feet, and then make a grab for other peoples’ chips, nor are their hands filthy. (He knows better than to try that with me. I make no secret of my loathing. I’d stick his hand with a fork if he did that. But he does it to others. People are keeping their chips in their laps now.)

But anyway, he’s there for that week, but the situation is extremely unstable and he won’t last much longer.

A lot of changes happen when we’re away for the holidays. So it might be as soon as January.

There is also the fact that I took time off between our days off, there’s a block of almost three weeks when everything will be up to him. He will have to do the scrap reports, clean, do the paperwork, keep up the board with the hourly numbers, etc. And he won’t.

Oh, and my email to HR. And complaints from a lot of other people.

And as clear and simple as these cards are, they’re also multifaceted. I posted this spread on facebook when I did it, and my good friend (and top tier reader!) Madame Nadia remarked that it looked like Hotfoot work. But I’m not saying I did that. If I had, I wouldn’t say too much about it.

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Mildred Payne’s Secret Pocket Oracle

Gather round, people. I want to tell you about a deck that has already earned a place of honor on my kitchen table (along with the Ensslin and the Wirths. (The Thoth, Kippers, and Sibilla have their own special box on my nightstand.) But this thing – THIS THING! lives in my always-on-the-table Moscow Mule mug. It’s the deck I consult when I wake up and have coffee. No mean feat to earn that spot!

It’s not just a deck I like, it’s important. Why? Well, I can imagine Mr. Valenza being nagged to make a Lenormand, but he didn’t. He came up with something original. And he called it an oracle deck (I will be cackling maniacally posting Mildred Payne spreads at those oracle groups where everybody is into Doreen Virtue and the like! I should sign up for a few when I finish this. Bwaaa hahaha.)

It reads well. It doesn’t have a set tradition, everybody is using their own methods, but it seems to be readable right out of the box for most. I read it from a background of Lenormand, Kippers, Sibilla, etc. I watched some youtube videos and others are reading it differently. But everybody can use it.

It comes with suggested meanings, not so lengthy and detailed as to be impossible to remember, but varied enough to work. Read them, take what you need, and go from there. 😉

The main deck and the expansion pack come with a backstory, and lots of bells and whistles:

The story goes like this:
“Young Mildred is thought to have created her childlike yet fascinating oracle circa 1928 while a patient at Fenwood Asylum.
*(Her father committed her into the facility, believing her to be insane for talking with imaginary friends.)
While at Fenwood, Mildred never stopped contacting her “friends” with her handmade oracle.
*(Fellow inmates called her “Millie the Red Witch”)
Mildred kept her tiny deck hidden from authorities in a secret pocket.
*(Although her fate is unknown to this day, some think Mildred perished in the Great Asylum Fire of 1933. Others are convinced she started the blaze!)”

Source: Deviant Moon

We have photos, we have information. There may be a Mildred tulpa out there by now. Maybe she’ll come visit you.

Or me. Mildred loves me. I am not sure how I should feel about this. 😆

The backs are a puzzle that tells you a little more about Dear Mildred. The main deck does this. You have to include the title card and the Mildred photo card for it to work.
They’re not lined up perfectly, so parts may look a little off, but the positions are correct. (My coffee table is not perfectly flat, it’s “rustic”. I wanted hardwood, not veneer, and rustic was affordable.)
Some of the little captions are “The girls wanted to be like Mother”, “I died”, “Her nipples had eyes”, and “A body behind the shed”.
*throws final shovel of dirt on the grave of those Doreen type decks and walks away whistling* 😀

And here is the puzzle from the expansion pack, if you’d like to communicate with Mildred. I’d advise you to be nice to her. I’m told she likes to burn things. 😆

I can’t say enough about this deck. If you liked the Deviant Moon and/or the Trionfi Della Luna, you’ll love this. If you didn’t get on with those, you’ll still love this. And there’s the puzzle of Mildred and her haunted doll Claire (is the grave under the noose hers? Claire’s? Or a red herring?), and deciphering all that magical script.

It’s FUN. But it works – Mildred can hone in on secrets like nobody’s business.

The stock is sturdy, and though it’s not linen, it’s slippy. Jumpers are not uncommon (Mildred? Is that you?) A bit tough to riffle (it may soften up in time) but perfect for an overhand shuffle.

I like this thing so much, here’s a free line of five for all you guys (so somewhat over-generalized, but WTH) for the coming week:

Moving away from the lunacy of the last full moon, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and all the general crazy, and looking forward to a peaceful holiday season. But wait – it’s threatened by the axe. Whether the axe hanging over your head is a retail job or toxic family members, hold on to the candle, be that little flame all by itself. If you can avoid retail hell and dinner with Grandpa Pennywise and Great Aunt Annie Wilkes (“Now we must rinse”), do it. To hell with ’em, let ’em get offended. If not, keep your head down and get through it (but don’t take any shit off of anybody!)

Dove reflects Moon and Candle, so if you’re “into stuff”, shake up your Peace Water and get your mojo on. Boot reflects Axe, so any upcoming problems will be the kind you walk into yourself. Watch your step.

Alternately, Boot + Axe could throw a monkey wrench in your travel plans. Just something to watch out for.

This deck will spawn many, many copycat decks with numbered single images, backstories, and puzzle backs, but there can only be one Mildred. Don’t be fooled by poor imitations, go here: Deviant Moon

Unboxing video from Kelly:

Expansion Pack:

A Night Off With Mr. Ensslin and Mr. Wirth

…and Mr. Vodka and Mr. Tequila. So I will loosen up and talk about a sector of my life I don’t talk about much.

What is a Tarot but Majors and Minors? And what are Minors, but Pips? The Lenormand, arguably, is a reduced Pip deck.

The Majors speak in great depth, they resonate with Kabbalah/Qabalah, elemental dignities, Hebrew letters, gematria…but the Minors tell us about the world here below, what generally concerns us. “Will he ask me out?” “Is my job secure?” “Will my parcel arrive?”

But the most incisive, to-the-point Pip deck I have encountered is Lenormand.

I know that noobs want to shuffle everything together and read them in “intuitive” combinations. I am not suggesting that anyone do that. Oh HELL no.

But from what I understand, Continental readers lay the Majors and Minors out separately. The Majors for the deep, causative stuff, and the Minors for how it’s all effecting us here on the “meat wheel” (thank you, Mr. Kerouac*. You were a goddamn wino, but I love you for this. And On The Road. You crazy genius motherfucker. RIP.)

So, what better layout than a good old Majors-only Wirth, and a few Lenormand cards?

I asked about my (non-reading, it takes several streams of income to pay the bills these days, sadly. Oh, how I wish I was June Cleaver!) job. I can see things going wacky there. We make computer automotive parts (like those things that beep when you back up and there’s something you’re going to hit.) My line puts shock absorber pads on the metal shields that hold the little circuit boards.

It’s all crazy now because we have seven lines that build these units, but our line that supplies them is being cut down to nothing. Machines we use are being shipped out. And they give us the shittiest people – currently we have a morbidly obese mofo there who only bathes when we make a complaint. He’s lazy AF and he’s got the personality of a moat – you know the moat was where the castle sewerage went. Before him, there was a psychotic lady. I had to put in a “hostile work environment” complaint to get her the f*** away from me. And that’s the easy part, I’ll get him out, too. But there will be another after him, and another…AAAARRRRRRGGGGGHHHHH.

We already lost a contract with Ford. I think we will lose another.

Everything is in flux there, in a really stupid kind of way. So I asked – in general – how it will come out. (I know everything up to this has been bitch-gripe-grumble-fuck. But the background is relevant to the cards.)

Again – Birds – Cat – Mice _ Fish – Ship

The Ensslin is not a regular Lenormand> When I first got it, I was inclined to substitute Cross meanings for Cat, but Jon St, Germain tells me that he uses it for nosiness and interference, and that works for me. (LOL, CATS.)

Stress and hecticness and gossip combined with nosiness leads to financial loss. A lot of talking and movement, but the shipment (or two, or more) is not made. Decision makers are dropping the ball in a big way. A lot of intrigue and talking and yammering, but no substance. Playing at work. Birds reflecting Ship, stress over a shipment (that should just HAPPEN, in a sane world. What is so hard about building shit, packing it, and shipping it out? I mean, if you have the machines to do that. Which we did – BEFORE THEY GOT RID OF THEM.), Cat + Ship, they have their nose in it (the shipment) but it’s all wrong. Mice take Cat (“SHUT UP”) but they shit on Fish (money).

WHY?

Magician – Moon – Fool

Magician is a trickster. Sleight of hand, con games. The people at the top are losing for a reason – tax writeoff? IDK, but it’s intentional. The Moon, things are lit dimly, people get away with things in the shadows. (Goddamn weasels.) The Fool is an utter ass who thinks he knows it all – watch out for that croc, dude.

Synthesis: The ass is leading the head, like some kind of backwards snake. Failure in 3…2…

Mr. Dreidel says “do nothing”. So I will shut up and keep plugging.

*211th Chorus

The wheel of the quivering meat
conception
Turns in the void expelling human beings,
Pigs, turtles, frogs, insects, nits,
Mice, lice, lizards, rats, roan
Racinghorses, poxy bucolic pigtics,
Horrible unnameable lice of vultures,
Murderous attacking dog-armies
Of Africa, Rhinos roaming in the
jungle,
Vast boars and huge gigantic bull
Elephants, rams, eagles, condors,
Pones and Porcupines and Pills-
All the endless conception of living
beings
Gnashing everywhere in Consciousness
Throughout the ten directions of space
Occupying all the quarters in & out,
From supermicroscopic no-bug
To huge Galaxy Lightyear Bowell
Illuminating the sky of one Mind-

Poor!
I wish I was free
of that slaving meat wheel
and safe in heaven dead.
Jack Kerouac

GOBSMACKED! The Ensslin, Schaiblin/Reutlingen Lenormand

The deck is a little wonky, but profoundly stunning. It’s easily one of the most aesthetically pleasing Lenormands I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen scads!) Is it one of those pretty but unreadable things? Not at all. Let me explain:

The numbering is not standard. That’s not an issue for most of us.

There is no Cross card, but there is a Cat card. Since Cat meanings in cartomancy are identical to Fox meanings, having a Cat in the deck is like having two Fox cards. So, for myself, I use Cross meanings. Why? It balances the deck, and “full stop, burdens, suffering, illness” fits the ferals we see every day.
(YES, my town needs TNR.) That’s my take. Do as you see fit.

Perfectly round insets, crazy sigils, lovely linework and tints. Feast your eyes a bit.

The Esslin is available HERE

And while we’re on the subject, Lauren is talking about doing a Wirth. A good, working, no glitter one! Put me down for several copies – imagine a side of these Wirth majors with your Lenormand! ❤

Odin hates nazis

Using the runes for white supremacist purposes (and that stupid backwards-spinning swastika – WTF was up with THAT?) appears to have come back and bitten the nazis on the ass bigtime.

The old Northern Gods aren’t having that shit. And BTW, “All-Father” means EXACTLY that. So these new nazis and racists are going to get their asses handed to them again.

Race is a construct – do you honestly believe that “That Which Cannot Be Reached With Thought” differentiates?

Here is the best resource on runes I’ve found. Read them, use them, and if you see a nazi, knock the shit out of him. You can’t shame a person who has no shame, after all (and that’s why passive resistance won’t work) and you can’t reason with a fascist.

Just take the runes back. They’re even blunter than Lenormand, and worth saving. RUNEMAKER SITE

The Rana George Lenormand

This one arrived on the morning of July 3rd, after being on preorder for some time. It is, as expected, wonderful. It is well thought-out. Callie French’s art is beautifully done. The cards have shiny gold detailing and a subtle shimmer all over – not glittery or glitzy, just the barest whisper of sparkle. The stock is sturdy. The booklet is substantial, and the box is one of those nice magnetic closure ones. No surprises here.

What surprised me is how affecting the whole thing is. You don’t get the full impact in photos or videos. This thing shimmers, it pulls you in, everything else kind of drops off and there’s just the cards, and this incredible lush world that doesn’t exist the same way anymore. (Check out the photo essay at Beautiful Beirut before Bombed-Out Buildings were part of the Scenery) Yet even knowing what happened, the deck manages not to be depressing. “La Dolce Vita in the Middle East” is too vibrant for that.

There are six extra cards included, total. There are extra Man and Woman cards, both in the old style and a more contemporary look. There are also the four shown at the bottom of this photo, Spirit, Incense, Bed, and Market:

Those four are cards that Rana – a top tier, seasoned reader – had actually been wishing were in a Lenormand deck for some time, they’re not innovation for innovation’s sake. And they work – having a Spirit card, for example, is much easier than having to pick that kind of information out of combos. And the Bed card! As Madame Nadia said earlier today, “The “Bed” is everything. It’s such a classic cartomantic move.” I agree. It can work like Kurze Krankheit in Kippers, but it’s MUCH more inviting! 😀 The 8×5 is going to be A Thing. Watch. 😉

I wish I had the writing chops to express how superb this deck really is, but I don’t. Just experience it for yourself. You can order the Rana George Lenormand HERE.