Oracles & Divination 4

The I Ching



            Of all the historic oracles, today we are the most familiar with the I Ching, the sophisticated Taoist prognostication technique involving the interpretation of 64 six-line figures known as the Hexagrams. I frequently have wondered how it evolved. With a tip of the hat to Rudyard Kipling, the master of the Just So Stories, here is a 'Maybe So Story' about how the I Ching was born, and just to show how far back it might go, a correlation with some primordial growls and grunts.

            Once upon a long time ago, oh dearly beloveds, an invading tribe from the North, from whence all invading tribes seem to come, surrounded a primitive village. The chief took one good look over the stockade at the enemy's bronze-tipped spears, the superior length of their long bows, and his bowels liquified. Should he fight? Should he surrender? The howling warriors looked extremely fierce and there were so many of them! Even now they were beating on the lashed bamboo poles of the gate! He ran to the village shaman for guidance, and caught the old man packing up his potions and amulets.

            "What should we do?" the chief shouted. "Fight or surrender? Either way we die!"

            The shaman shrugged. "You've got me. Personally, I'm heading out the back way."

            The chief grabbed him by the shoulders. "Either you tell me what to do, or you die first!" he screamed, drawing an obsidian ax out of his belt.

            The shaman glanced around. Not knowing what else to do, out of sheer despair he grabbed two well-chewed peccary ribs out of a nearby middenheap and tossed them in the air. As they tumbled to the ground, he evolved a plan. If they fell crossed over each other like battling clubs, it would mean the tribe should fight. If they fell apart, it would mean they should surrender. This time, maybe they fell apart, and the shaman advised surrender. Maybe the chief split his head open for his trouble, surrendered and was killed in turn. Or maybe the bones fell across each other, the villagers fought all day and were slaughtered because the invaders had the better weapons. So you could say that either way the shaman had chosen wrongly. But then. oracles never guarantee anything. They just make up your mind for you.

            Somehow the bone-throwing technique survived, and maybe 'surrender,' the passive choice, came to be known as 'Ah,' or the feminine principle. Sorry 'bout that, sisters., but to fight obviously was 'The Man's Way,' the active or 'Rrrr' principle. These names make sense to me on a number of levels because 'Ahhh' is the primordial vowel, the sigh of contentment and release of tension. 'Rrrr!' of course is the primordial consonant, the growl and the roar of rage. The symbols adopted for these became - -, the separated bones, and , the touching bones.

            As time went on, the technique evolved into a number of throws, and the symbols into a two- and then a three-tiered stack:

                                                            - -                   

                                                            - -                   

                                                            - -                   

            The "Ah" stack resembles the position of the throat when these sounds are made: - - the open air passage between the muscles - 'Ahhhh.' Maybe so? Then the connected lines would symbolize the constricted throat - 'Rrrr!' Maybe the triadic nature of the symbols (known today as 'trigrams') also indicate the three levels at which the sigh or growl could be resonated - the head, the throat or the chest. Thus were born the 'three sons and daughters' of Mama 'Ah' and Papa 'Rrr,' combinations of all the possibilities of broken and unbroken lines. Here they are:

            1          2          3          4          5          6          7          8

            ‹        - -        - -        - -        ‹        ‹        ‹        - -

            ‹        - -        - -        ‹        - -        ‹        - -        ‹

            ‹        - -        ‹        - -        - -        - -        ‹        ‹

            Thousands of years must have passed before all three sons and daughters were added as possible answers to the throw of the bones. Son Number One (#3 above) held the lowest, unbroken line which maybe stood for the chest growl 'Rrrr' -- the low rumble an animal gives before turning tail and fleeing. In the I Ching, this one is named 'Distant Thunder.' I call it, 'Let's Get Outta Here!' Instead of fighting or surrendering, you can always run like hell.

            Son Number Two (see #4 above) was the throat growl, the solid line in the middle or throat position. We all understand the difference between a chest growl and a throat growl. Ask your mailman, or watch a few dogs. At first the aggressor rumbles in his chest. If the sound does not migrate to the throat, things remain poised between fight or flight, waiting to see what the other's tail will signal. But it's the throaty 'Grrr!' with the teeth bared that precedes the attack roar of            __



            The I Ching names the Son Number Two trigram appropriately 'Danger.' The Third Son (see #5 above) was the 'Rrr' in the head, which can only be the snore. Sure enough,the I Ching lists the third son's attribute as 'resting.' And so the village shaman now had the following possibilities to choose from: Father "Roar" -- all-out attack, Mother "Ahhh" -- surrender, First Son "Rumble" -- run like hell, Second Son "Snarl"- danger (threaten them and maybe they'll back down), Third Son "Zzzzz" -- sleep it off in the bushes and maybe they will go away.

            If my assigned sounds are correct, the three daughters should then be the three versions of the 'Ahhh.' The First Daughter, the 'ah' in the chest, is a grunt with sexual significance - 'unh, unh.' The I Ching names her 'The Gently Penetrating' (see trigram #6), which makes sense. Send out the beautiful maidens with wreaths of flowers and maybe the attackers will agree to a party. The 'ah' in the throat could stand for the 'aha!' of surprise or a sudden idea -- or perhaps the yawn (see #7). The I Ching names her 'the light-giver,' which fits the 'aha!' of inspiration. In the context of our beleaguered shaman, perhaps it allowed him to say, 'Fake them out with something smart.' The Third Daughter, called 'the joyous' in the I Ching, is of course the 'ah' in the head (#8 trigram) or the 'ha-ha-ha' of laughter. In terms of the enemy at the gates, it's maybe harder to see the significance of these latter three. However they could signify 1) 'Meet them with dancing maidens,' 2) 'Surprise them' and 3) 'Tell them funny jokes' - or perhaps, 'Send out the clowns.' Maybe so!

            Now that the eight trigrams have been described, what about the original one-liners and two-liners? The ‹ and - -, the === and = = must have signified the great-grandparents and grandparents respectively.

            Searching for the most primal "R," I settled on the death rattle for Great-Grandpa and the vomit-spit for Grandpa, both ancient sonic "R" events. Great-Grandma then becomes the cough "K-Ah," and Grandma the sneeze -- "Ah-choo!"

            From the eight trigrams, the Chinese went on to evolve the sixty-four hexagrams, a very sophisticated system which expanded the possibilities into many subtle interpretations,whose appropriate sounds must await futher investigation by a linguistics scholar. But it may be so, that one desperate shaman's throw developed into a divination method of such subtlety that it is still in use today.






Interview Eleven

San Francisco



Q: How's our connection today?

A: Side 1: debt] [Slang] same as PAWN hock

hockey [prob. OFr. hoquet, bent stick] 1: a team game played on ice skates

Side 2: 1: to keep back; stop 2: to thwart hinder

hinder rear

Q: Okay, let me try warming things up. (Chanting Sanskrit prayer). How are we now? And I'm switching to the left hand to pull the slips.

A: Side 1: leafstalk of a Philippine plant used for making rope, paper Manila

Side 2: [Tamil, man-kay] 1: the yellow-red, somewhat acid fruit of a tropical tree mango 2: the tree

Q: That seems somewhat better for some reason. At least not a "no." Are you there?

A: Side 1: (muskat) {LL. muscus, musk] a sweet European grape

Side 2: mumbo jumbo 1: an idol or fetish 2: meaningless ritual talk, etc.

Slip 2: Side 1: credulous gullibility

gully a small, narrow ravine

Side 2: control 1: one whose work is conducting tours, etc. 2: a controlling guide

Q: A gullible guide? And "mumbo-jumbo" for the world's most ancient prayer is not very respectful. Let's pick a new topic. Anything you want to talk about, or shall I suggest something?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: endways 1. on end; upright 2: with the end foremost 3: lengthwise Also endwise

Side 2: base of gigere, to produce] 1: any machine that uses energy to develop mechanical power 2: a railroad locomotive engine

Slip 2: Side 1: characterization

charade [Pr. charrar, to gossip]

Side 2: charm

Q: "Charming gossip?" Well, that was my friend Jack on the phone just now. He's delighted I'm interviewing you, and says your answers to him over the years have been amazing.

A: Side 1: terrible terrere, frighten] dreadful 2: extreme; intense [Colloq.] very unpleasant, etc.

Side 2: b) to become unfrozen: said of frozen foods 2: to become warmer so that snow, etc. melts 3: to lose one's coldness of manner

Q: Are you experiencing an unpleasant warming of your sunspot?

A: Side 1: relegate [L. re-, away + legare, send]: to exile or banish

Side 2: a new location relocation


Q: You're being kicked out of your community? I hope it's not because of me, or our conversations! Where are you going?

A: Side 1: commemorate

Side 2: community college

Slip 2 Side 1: monks, etc. 2: a dress frock

frogs 1: a tailless, leaping amphibian

Side 2: freeze quick-freeze (food, etc.) and then dry under high vacuum


Q: I'm going to a 'commemoration at a college' tomorrow evening. Are you talking about that? I guess you're hopping off to somewhere cooler? Or do you wish to say something about our trip to Santa Cruz tomorrow evening?

A: Side 1: preacher one who preaches; esp. a clergyman

Side 2: 2: to do repeatedly proficient 3: to work at, esp. as a profession to do something repeatedly

Slip 2 Side 1: [ALCOHOL + L. de, without + HYDROGEN} a colorless fluid oxidized from alcohol aldehyde

Side 2: air conditioning regulation of air, humidity and temperature in buildings, etc. air-condition

Slip 3 Side 1: dapper small and active 2: trim; neat

Side 2: a harmful gas sometimes found in mines 1: to bank (a fire) 2: to check or reduce dampness

Q: "repeatedly preach" what? And I'll try to dress neatly for the event.

A: Side 1: full canine tooth


Side 2: temple of Jupiter] where the U.S. Congress meets at Washington capitol

Q: May I repeat that question? "repeatedly preach" what?

A: Side 1: Davis, Jefferson president of the Confederacy

Side 2: debt [L. debere, owe} 1. something owed to another 2. the condition of owing


Slip 2 Side 1: bloodhound any of a breed of large, keen-scented, tracking dogs

bloodless 1: without bloodshed

Side 2: blissfulness

blister 1. a raised patch of skin filled with watery matter and caused as by burning.

Q: This is very interesting! Tonight and tomorrow on television the film "Separate But Equal" is playing, featuring John W. Davis, my American grandfather, to whom I do indeed owe a debt of gratitude. He paid for my education for many years, and was a loving, nurturing person in my life. You wish me to "preach repeatedly about by debt of gratitude to John W. Davis?" It certainly would be a blissful, bloodless act.

A: Side 1: predicate beforehand; predict

forethought 1: a thinking beforehand 2: foresight

Side 2: (Pronunciation guide from the bottom of the page)

Slip 2 Side 1: permanent


Side 2: party]

or platform

Q: Davis was indeed a forethoughtful person, and probably did come to a permanent standoff on his party's platform. He certainly did not approve of Roosevelt policies. Why are you so interested in him? Are you in contact with him somehow?

A: Side 1: boarding house a house where meals or room and meals can be had

Side 2: bluffer

bluff ascending steeply with a flat front

Slip 2 Side 1: lobbyist one who tries to get legislators to support certain measures


Side 2: living 1: alive; having life 2: in active operation

Q: You're saying that he's reincarnated again? That doesn't surprise me. Any tips available on who or where he is?

A: Side 1: limestone, chalk, etc.

calcium carbonate

Side 2: cunning 2: cautious cagily


Slip 1 Side 1: clothes to make or become ragged tattered


Side 2: often a hinged lid


Slip 3 Side 1: any of the primates except man and the lemurs; spec., any of the smaller, long-tailed primates [Colloq.] trifle or meddle monkey

Side 2: monotheistic

monotone 1: utterance of successive words without change of pitch or key

Q: Okay, so you're playing it safe. I'd rather change the subject too before the family thinks I'm doing something disrespectful. So what about "monotheistic monotones?"

A: Side 1: crocus blossoming plant of the iris family

Side 2: as crushed paper crinkly


Q: Is there anything else you'd like to talk about before we quit for today?

A: Side 1: slowly and evenly

hopsacking a coarse fabric of cotton or wool

Side 2: [L. horrere, to bristle] 1: the strong feeling caused by something frightful or shocking

Slip 2 Side 1: ball successively hits two balls

a hitting and rebounding

Side 2: 2: U. S. Armed Forces a light semiautomatic or automatic 30-caliber

Q: Is something frightening going on? (Turning on CBS at 12:48 pm) Traffic update, two stalls. Sunday weather forecast a good one. Tonight clear and cool. "Eight Is Enough" star in trouble with the police (suspicion of burglary). Nope, nothing on the news. You want to talk about the horrors of violence and war?

A: Side 1: 3: to move gradually on edge 1: very tense, irritable 2: impatient

Side 2: economy

Slip 2 Side 1: temper] 5: to fail to have, get. etc. [to lose one's chance] 6: to fail to win 8: to wander

Side 2: regarded as a region of strength, etc.

loincloth a cloth worn about the loins

Q: You're saying that "the economy is on edge, and you're afraid I'm going to lose my loincloth?" Hey, you're right! Any suggestions you have as to how I could increase our income would be greatly appreciated. I keep thinking of a mail order business of some sort. What thinkest thou?

A: Side 1: 2: to surprise or arouse

with brilliant qualities, display a dazzling dazzler

DC, D.C., d.c. direct current

Side 2: decapitation


Slip 2 Side 1: misadventure a mishap; bad luck


Side 2: the Mississippi 2: Middle West State of the U.S.

Slip 3 Side 1: to leap over b): to pass over

Side 2: Karachi Pakistan

Q: I should surprise and dazzle, lose my head over a contest? Maybe you're talking about the rewrite of the novel for the contest? And what's this about a "misadventure?" Should I be looking out for something dangerous?

A: Side 1: 2: to add at the end 1: a thing affixed 2: a prefix or suffix

afflatus [L. ad-, to + flare, to blow]: inspiration (a divine imparting of knowledge)


Side 2: adumbrate {L. ad-, to + umbra, shade]: 1: to outline vaguely 2: to foreshadow 3: to overshadow adumbration

Q: How can I "add inspiration" and avoid whatever is dangerous and/or an economic dead end?

A: Side 1: -toed

Side 2: G. ich

Slip 2 Side 1: or lace knotted in designs

macro- a combining form meaning long, large


Side 2: Luther, Martin 1483-1546; Ger. Reformation leader


Side 3 Side 1: treacherous 1. characterized by treachery 2: untrustworthy treacherously

Side 2: tribunal 1: a seat for a judge in a court 2: a court of justice


Q: My wife Judy just entered the room and wants to know how to handle difficult situations in the next fifteen days before her trip to the Twin Cities.

A: Side 1: arising from circumstances to cause on occasion sometimes

Side 2: ring; 'a' for a in ago; ë, Fr. coeur; G. ich, doch; foreign [derived from

(pronunciation guide)

Q: May I ask the question again?

Slip 2 Side 1: [OE. strengthu] state or quality of being strong; force 2: toughness; durability 3: the power to resist attack 4: potency strength

Side 2: stoutly


Q: She should act from a position of strength. Thank you. Back to our conversation, Shady. Were you warning me about a "treacherous court case" involving "Lutherans?"

A: Side 1: 2. highest in quality, achievement 3: highest in degree 4: final; ultimate Supreme

Supreme Being

Side 2: supplement

Q: All honor to the Supreme Being, or perhaps you're talking about the Supreme Court and the film "Separate But Equal?" Anyway, I think this is enough for today. Ready to quit?

A: Side 1: woman's skirt


Side 2: [blank]

Slip 2 Side 1: primp

Side 2: continuing development involving many changes

Slip 3 Side 1: crescere, grow] amount, number, etc.

Side 2: incalculable

Q: You wish to continue developing this theme involving many incalculable changes? Go on, then.

A: Side 1: pasture 1: grass, etc. used as food for grazing animals 2: ground suitable for to put to pasture

Side 2: receives the action passivity

passive resistance

Slip 2 Side 1: threefold; triple or performing the treble

highest part soprano treble

Side 2: 1: the general 2: a current style trend

Q: Put passivity to pasture and treble the current trend? I guess you mean I should actively seek a teaching position, since the 'current trend' is that I'm teaching a class?

A: Side 1: eraser a thing that erases; specif. a rubber device for erasing ink or pencil marks

Side 2: fond of sensuous

to do with an epicure EPICURE


Q: Not making any sense, Shady. Over and out?

A: Side 1: without restraint b): to relieve of something that troubles, etc.

Side 2: harmony; agreement

that is a union of related parts

harmonious, unified arrangement

Q: Thanks. Over and out.


[End of Interview 11]





Interview Twelve

San Francisco



Q: Rereading yesterday's conversation, it seemed that you were concerned about violence and guns, something I missed at the time. Last night's news was horrendous, with a number of murders and shootings. Also a program on gun ownership and statistics on shootings in households. Very depressing. How can this problem be resolved, Shady?

A: Side 1: insensitive not sensitive; not responsive insensitivity

Side 2: be accustomed] boldly disrespectful insolence

Q: Yes, that defines the attitude that creates the problem. But what is the solution?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: when a button on the handle is pressed


Side 2: swimming hole a deep place in a creek, etc. used for swimming

Slip 2 Side 1: repairable

Side 2: re-, again + plenus, full] 1: to make full or complete again

Q: A family crisis switchboard is a good idea, and does exist. "Swimming hole" I don't understand, except as a poetic term for counseling center where people can be "repaired" and "made complete again." Also there's The Well, a telecommunications conferencing network. Perhaps "swimming hole" refers to something similar? Am I on the right track, Shady?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: 2: [Slang] jail -- to confine as in a coop

co-op cooperative

cooper one whose work

Side 2: contrive 1: to think up, devise, design, etc. 2: to make inventively

Slip 2 Side 1: repository [L. re-, back + ponere, place] a box, room, etc. in which things may be put for safekeeping

Side 2: to feel such regret over (an action, intention, etc.) as to change one's mind repentance

Slip 3 Side 1: slow burn up of anger: often in do a slow burn

slowdown a slowing down, as of production

Side 2: smooth 1: having an even surface, with no roughness

Q: Fascinating! "Contrive" a "cooperative coop" which functions as a "repentance repository" where individuals can slow down their "slow burns" and "smooth out." You're talking my language! I continue to be interested in cooperative sanctuaries and rural communities for rootless individuals who are allergic to being told what to do. What would be the best way to contrive such places? Our attempts in the 'sixties were short-circuited by the county authorities.

A: Slip 1 Side 1: heal make or become well or healthy. 2: to cure (a disease) or mend, as a wound healer

Side 2: a cigar made



Slip 2 Side 1: palla, ball] 1. a large, airtight bag that rises when filled with a gas lighter than air. 2: an airship with such a bag

Side 2: trite; hackneyed banality

banana 1: a treelike, tropical plant

Slip 3 Side 1: attack with bombs [Slang] to have a failure

bombard 1: to attack with

Side 2: bongo - gos either of a pair of small drums of different pitch

Q: "Heal by having "banal ball" (games) and bombard them with "bongos" and drums? I like it! Drumming is great for bringing a group of people together, and would be very therapeutic if available in prisons, for example. I once had an idea for a truck full of steel drum instruments which would travel from high school to high school. Be great if youth gangs could be turned onto these -- start a competition of drumming bands in the inner cities. And of course, sports are a great outlet too. The steel band might be a good project for our nonprofit Peregrine Foundation.

Well, Shady, I took your advice. I just talked to the police department's Juvenile Division, and they referred me to the Chief of Police His secretary will bounce the idea off the Chief and call me back. Am I following your suggestion correctly?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: pleasant; friendly affability affably


Side 2: advocate [L. ad-, to + vocare, to call] one who pleads another's cause or in support of something

Slip 2 Side 1: disconnected 2: random

detach 1: to unfasten and remove

Side 2: -throning to depose (a monarch)


Q: An "affable affair" to "advocate" indeed! Any more advice on this or another subject? I'm following leads to connect with existing steel drum bands in the area.

A: Slip 1 Side 1: 2: a stop; pause

leukemia a disease chaaracterized y ab abnormal increase in the number of leucocytes

Side 2: lie detector same as POLYGRAPH

lief [OE. leaf, dear] gladly

Slip 2 Side 1: a world] 1. a bright-red pigment 2: a bright red or scarlet

Side 2: one person in place of another

shared in by imagined participation in [a vicarious thrill]

Q: Stop gladly? I'm glad you're enjoying this vicariously!

A: Side 1: dental filling of silver

mixture; blend

amalgamate unite; mix

Side 2: 1: one's other 2: a constant companion


Q: Yes, I'll let my wife Judy in on this. In fact, I thought we could use the kids in her school as our first steel drum band. There have been some violent incidents recently between the different racial groups there. Anything else before we sign off?

A: to take a polish

2: Slip 1 Side 1: elegance; refinement, etc. 3: a substance used to polish polish off [Colloq.] to finish (a meal, job, etc.)

Side 2: a wooden ball and long-handled mallets

Polo, Marco Venetian traveler in E. Asia

Slip 2 Side 1: Athena the Greek goddess of wisdom, skills, and warfare

Side 2: -lating [L/ ad-, to + similare, make similar to] 1: to absorb assimilate

Q: Yes, we'll need mallets with wooden balls on the end to polish off the drum sets. And I'll "assimilate" Judy, who indeed is a veritable "Athena," wise and skilled when it comes to dealing with "warfare" among the high school youths. Anything else before we quit?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: 1: to put in proper relation with something else 2: to arrange the parts of (a whole) so as to be harmonious proportion

Side 2: view; scene

anticipation 4: a) something expected b) [usually pl.] apparent chance for success 5: a likely customer, candidate prospect

Slip 2 Side 1: uppercut Boxing a short, swinging blow directed upward

Side 2: no special skill or training

unskillful having little or no skill; awkward; clumsy

Q: "Balance everything for the best chance for success with those who are unskilled." I like it. I think steel drum music does not require a great deal of training, and the instruments are indestructible. The hardest part is learning how to make them. But maybe we can get some donated by the manufacturers. How are we doing?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: swear; blaspheme

cursed a curse

Side 2: cul-de-sac [Fr. lit. bottom of a sack] a blind alley

Slip 2 Side 1: deny [L. de-, intens. + negare, to deny] 1: to declare (a statement) untrue

Side 2: demeanor demener, to lead] outward behavior; conduct; deportment

Slip 3 Side 1: to hinder; delay

Side 2: [see RETRACT] 1: a withdrawal, as from danger

quiet place

Q: Usually when you become insulting, you want to sign off, Shady. You can't be retracting everything you said earlier, can you? Are we through?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: stitch, used esp. at a hem, made by pulling out several parallel threads and tying the cross threads

Side 2: helplessness

helpmate a helpful companion; spec. a wife or husband

Slip 2 Side 1: double-dealing

double-entendre term with two meanings

Side 2: dosed, dosing to give doses to

dossier [Fr.] a collection of documents

Q: Okay, over and out?

A: Side 1: priceless of inestimable value


Side 2: Gram. espressing past action or state the past tense

preternatural (1: beyond what is regular in nature 2: outside normal experience)

Q: I'm a "priceless, preternatural prick?!!" That's it. I'm signing off.

[End of Interview 12]






A Sampling of Shady's Replies on A Computer Network

From The Spirituality Conference on The Well teleconferencing network


Topic 155: Our Interdimensional Oracle Offers Aleatory Advice


# 4: Howard Rheingold (hlr)

Shady, what should I do to alleviate the current financial crisis?


# 5: Janey Fritsche (janey)

Shady, what should I do to alleviate the current financial crisis?


# 6: David Gans (tnf)

Shady, what should I do to alleviate the current spiritual crisis?


# 7: Stephanie Leonard (tiffy) Thu, Jun 21, '90 (16:53) 2 lines

Shady, what should I do to alleviate the current financial and spiritual crises?


# 8: Brad Allen (omath)

Shady, what are the current financial and spiritual crises?


# 9: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

<Why don't we do the world's first class-action oracular session, Ramón?>


# 10: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Okay, Shady, put on your thinking cap.


Q: What should Howard do to alleviate the $-crisis?

A: Side 1: hula a Hawaiian dance also hula-hula

       hulk 1: the body of a ship, esp. if old and dismantled

       Side 2: 5: electrically charged (a hot wire) 6: [Colloq.] recent; fresh (hot

       news) 7: [Slang]

       recently stolen or smuggled. b) [slang] excellent

       make it hot

       Slip 2 Side 1: sparkle 1: to throw off sparks

       Side 2: to name in order the letters of a word 2: to make up

       (word defined is spell)


Q: And what should Janey dooo?

A: Side 1: meek 1: patient and mild

       Side 2: middle number in a series

       median number, point, line. etc.

       Slip 2 Side 1: save except; but


       Side 2: the Roman god of agriculture 2: the second largest planet of the

       solar system. Saturn

       Slip 3 Side 1: reconverts the signals so that the images are reproduced on        a screen

       2: television broadcasting

       Side 2: teakettle a kettle with a spout for boiling water for tea. etc.

       Slip 4 Side 1: opportunity to be heard
       an appearance before a judge, investigative committee hearing

       Side 2: to try to judge the weight of by lifting

       (word defined is heft)


Q: And what should David do???

A: Side 1: paneling

       panels collectively 2: sheets of plastic, wood, etc. used for panels

       Side 2: Palatine one of the seven hills of Rome

       1: the official residence of a king, etc. 2: any large, magnificent


Q: And what about Stephanie (financial AND spiritual)?

A: Side 1: blow

       blowing to move with some force

       Side 2: blench same as 'blanch'

       Slip 2 Side 1: abide 1: to remain 2: [Archaic] to reside

       to put up with abide by 1: to live up to (a promise, etc.) 2: to submit to

       and carry out

       Side 2: (blank side)


Q: And to Brad's 'what are the current financial and spiritual crises?'

A: Side 1: 4: life, spirit 5: a fragrant odor 6: a slight breeze 7: a whisper, a        murmur

       (word defined, I think, is breath)

       Side 2: bring up 2: to introduce

       to vomit up

       Slip 2 Side 1: gold a yellow, mettalic, highly malleable element
       Side 2: gonorrhea


Ramón: Dan, please clarify your remark!


#11: i don't have no crises of the financial/spiritual kind, but all the same i need to know ....... (daniel)

Shady, what do you think about the words 'hospital' and 'Wednesday?'


# 12: soft rubber keys (tnf)



# 13: Tina Loney (onezie)

Is your whimper for self or Boone?


# 14: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady replies to daniel:

A: Side 1: ENDEMIC [Gr. en, 'in' + demos, 'people'] prevalent in people

       Side 2: ENERGETICALLY

       or showing energy; vigorous


Ramón: Go for the hospital, daniel! And be happy. 'Enema' was just down the page.


# 15: David Gans (tnf)

Shady, thank you for stonewalling me! I thought it through on my own and came up with a solution. What do you think of that?


# 16: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)
Shady, when you're through explaining things to Gans, please tell me what my next step should be in regard to the contentious album-release situation.


# 17: Don Momaday (dmoma)

When's the best next time for the planting project?


# 18: Howard Rheingold (hlr)

In response #4, I asked Shady what to do to alleviate the financial crisis. In response #10, I felt that Shady was telling me to make it hot for my creditors. Let me cut to the chase. I've been up shit creek because a well-known magazine publisher and a well-known book publisher have been holding out and stonewalling all queries. Today I woke up PISSED OFF! and told my agent I was going to get a restraining order and hold up the August publication of the book and I was so angry I would rather spend the rest of what they owe me on lawyers just so I could fuck them worse than they fucked me. He gave me the number of their general counsel. I called and told her secretary that I had a problem that was about to become their problem. Ten minutes later, my agent called me back. The check is, uh, in the mail. AND, another, LARGER check that I didn't expect for months, JUST ARRIVED at their office.


# 19: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

Your situation parallels one I'm in up to my ears. Thanks for the encouragement.


# 23: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)
I'm consulting with Shady by remote control from St.Paul, so please bear with me if things seem in any way odd, or if I'm a little slower on the uptake.


Q: To David's "What do you think of my coming up with a solution":

A: Side 1: futurity from a point of view in the past

       (Realized that she 'should' have to do most of her farm work before        sunrise).

       Side 2: shop 1. to examine goods or services with intent to buy.


Q: To Dan's "Next stop in regard to contentious album-release" etc:

A: Side 1: multivalence the quality or state of having many values,

       meanings or appeals

       Side 2: multiplet 1: a spectrum lines having several components. 2: a

       group of elementary particles that are different in charge but similar in

       other properties


Q: "Come again, Old Shade?"

A: Side 1: 1: to become retired 2: to become antiquated


       Side 2: presenting only an appearance without substance or significance.        superficially


Q: And to dmoma's 'best next time for planting project?"

A: Side 1: from a higher to a lower condition. 2: from an earlier time

       b) from an ancestor or predecessor

       Side 2: the portion drunk or inhaled in one such act

       b) a portion poured out or mixed for drinking



# 24: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> YOW!!!!!! <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Shady, how do you do it <gasp!>?


# 25: David Gans (tnf)

Shady, that's amazing. Here's one for you: "All good things in all good time." Thank you!


# 26: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady is on such a roll with this Collegiate Dictionary, I thought I'd go back and pick up on a few earlier queries that I let roll by:


Q: For Brad I will ask Shady,"How do you feel about the current method of        communication, which I interpret to mean this vacation use of the        Collegiate Dictionary?"


A: Side 1: relating to the mind or spirit ( - 'peace')

       3: marked by close acquaintance: familiar 4: directed toward the interior

       (word defined is inward)

       Side 2: extending outward 300 miles or more, containing free electrically        charged particles by means of which radio waves are transmitted

       (word defined is ionosphere)


Q: And another from Brad: "What kind of a place do you live, Shady?"
Side 1: the characteristic vertebrate organ of hearing and equilibrium        consisting in the typical mammal of a sound-collecting outer ear

       separated by the

       (word defined is ear)

       Side 2: early on at or during an early point or stage (the reasons were        obvious early on in the experiment.)


Q: And lastly, Shady, how do you know things?"

A: Side 1: 7: Forecast; conjecture 8a: an overspread of color or modification        of appearance of a substance by a trace of some added hue: Shade (gray

       with a greenish cast)

       (word defined is cast - this is getting truly spooky!)

       Side 2: carvel-built built with the planks meeting flush at the seams


# 27: Howard Rheingold (hlr)



# 28: Shady Grove, My True Love (paulbel)

Q: Shady, should I continue to push to work in Seville, on the 500th

       anniversary World Exposition of Columbus' voyage of discovery?

A: Side 1: and to all queen larvae

       (word defined is royal jelly)

       royal palm any of several palms, esp. a tall, graceful, pinnate-leavedpalm        of southern Florida and Cuba that is widely planted for ornament.

       Side 2: ordinary 2: of, relating to, or being in accordance with established        procedure.        routinely

# 30: Tina Loney (onezie)

Shady, I've got two questions: How do I get my head straight? and

What tack should I take with the most imminent of these upcoming crises?


# 31: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady replies to Tina's first:

A: Side 1: commiserate 1: to feel or express sorrow or compassion for.

       Side 2: based on racial or cultural groups communally

A: And to Tina's second:

       Side 1: CRANK as in 'crancstaef,' a weaving instrument akin to 'cradol',        cradle 1: a bent part of an axle or an arm keyed at right angles to the end

       of a shaft 2: archaic bend

       Side 2: inventing or producing as a) the act of investing with a new rank        or office b) the first representation of a dramatic role 3: something that

       is created creation


# 32: Tina Loney (onezie)

<hairs rising on arms> Thank you, Shady.


# 33: Paul Theodoropoulos (cassiel)

Well, this is just altogether too intriguing.... I simply must query:

Shady, what's the deal with my girlfriend?? Thanks, in advance....


# 35: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Responding to Paul (#33), Shady sez:

A: Side 1: lower the boom on (someone) force (someone) to stop doing        something that is annoying.

       boring dull, tedious, annoying

(Ramón: Sorry about the above. I hate it when Shady puts out a negative response.)


Q: Anything POSITIVE to say to Paul, Shady?

       Side 1: psychologize make psychological investigations or speculations

       Side 2: 2: the human soul or spirit or mind.


(Ramón: well, that's a little better, at least)


# 36: Paul Theodoropoulos (cassiel) Sun, Jul 8, '90 (00:40) 11 lines

good god, holy shit, jeezis h. christ-on-a-cracker!

#1 was done to me yesterday evening about 8:30 pm, and #2 just about sums up my entire life, and the way I've been trying to understand this relationship! Remarkable. If i may press my luck a little -- Shady, what about Cassie?


# 37: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

To Paul, Shady replies:

A: Side 1: heart

       Side 2: head on


# 38: Lara Owen (lara)

Ooooh! This is interesting. O.K. My turn please. Dear Shady, what advice can you give me about my relationship with Winston


# 39: Howard Rheingold (hlr)
Shady, how's my timing?


# 40: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

to lara, Shady replies (somewhat cryptically:)

A: Side 1: Valley 11: suffixed form wel-ana in a) Greek 'helene, wicker        basket: 'inulin'

       (word defined is prefix 'WEL')

       Side 2: 'Vinaceous, Vine, Vini; Vinegar, Wine'


And to Howard regarding his timing:

A: Side 1: manner; propensity see 'habit' HABITUDE

       Side 2: hah Varient of 'ha.'


# 41: Rocketman (norm)

Two questions, Shady: (1) When should I actually give Howard his honorarium check? 2) With regard to the current mess, WTFIGO (What the fuck is going on)?


# 42: Lara Owen (lara)

Cryptic isn't the word! Downright mystifying. But I have faith in Shady, so I'll see if the unravelling of time explains her foggy message. Can you ask the same question twice if the answer is unclear -- like the I Ching? If so, please go ahead.


# 43: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

Shady, what does "aleatory" mean?


# 44: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

"Aleatory" came into use via John Cage's chance techniques for composing music (rolling dice, etc.) It means "chance" or "random." Shady will ponder the question also, offline, and get back.


# 45: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Q: To Rocketman's "When should I give Howard his check?"

A: Side 1: Appendix squasher

       Side 2: sprung past participle of spring


Q: And to Rocketman's 're current mess WTFIGO?'

A: Side 1: of seasoning 4: strictly distinguished from others; very: 'at that precise moment.' 5: Distinct and correct in sound or statement precise

       Side 2: prefabrication



Q: And asking for Lara again about Winston, Shady?

A: Side 1: handwork Manual labor as distinguished from machine labor.

       Side 2: below the wrist, consisting of the palm, four fingers and an        opposable thumb hand


Q: And Dan wants to know what 'aleatory' means:

A: Side 1: meantime the time between one occurance and another interval

       Side 2: Volume or Capacity (a table of Measurement Units)


# 46: Rocketman (norm)
It will indeed be most amusing if the honorarium check to Howard bounces.


# 47: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

We are not amused.


# 48: Lara Owen (lara)

Thanks Shady & Ramón. Still pretty cryptic. Maybe not the right question.


# 49: Bob Bickford (rab)

Shady, two questions:

1) Any suggestions on how I can find that perfect job/contract?

2) What may I expect in the next few days?


# 50: Elly van der Pas (elly)

Shady: What should I do about the termites? I don't like to throw poison around, and I don't like to kill things. I don't want my house to crumble, either, though. Any suggestions?


# 51: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Q: Shady replies to Bob's question #1 re job/contract:

       A: Side 1: Union commander in Civil War

       grant-in-aid a grant of funds, as by a foundation

       Side 2: Great Britain England, Scotland, Wales

Q: And to Bob's second: "what to expect"

       Slip 2 Side 1: the east also eastwards

       Side 2: echelon [L. 'ladder'] a steplike formation of ships, troops or        aircraft


Q: And what should Elly do about the termites?

A: Side 1: others to support. 3: to increase

to push upward or forward booster

       Side 2: by the book according to the rules
       The (Good) Book
the Bible


# 52: David Gans (tnf)

Shady, am I getting anywhere?


# 53: Janey Fritsche (janey)

Shady, what's a good name?


# 54: Mitsuharu Hadeishi (mitsu)

Shady, any advice about going to a large entertainment company to find what we're looking for?


# 55: Paul Belserene (paulbel)

Shady, is the idea for BC in Spain the right one?


# 56: Elly van der Pas (elly)

Pushing upward I understand, but what did you want to tell me about the GOOD BOOK? 0:-)


# 57: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Answering David's "Am I getting anywhere?":

A: Side 1: quadratical quadratic quadratically

       (Quadratic: of, pertaining to, or resembling a square.)

       Side 2: The upper parts were reddish brown striped with darker on the        head, shoulders and forepart of the body



Q: Could you elaborate more on David's situation, Shady?

A: Side 1: The cut (illustration) represents the initials 'N.W.'

       (from a definition of the word cipher)

       Side 2: see also portal. In the invertebrates, the higher forms have a     more or less complete efficient circulation


Q: To Janey's "What's a good name?":

A: Side 1: hummock to form into hummocks, especially on an ice field

       Side 2: hundred-footed


Q: May I ask again, Shady?

A: Side 1: royal purple a) originally a crimson. Now usually a color blueish        blue-red in hue

       Side 2: a rowel of twigs or branches of a tree (Fr. roele, rouele, a little   wheel)


Replying to Mitsu re: going to a large entertainment company:

A: Side 1: see 'Incandescent Lamp' Such light used for illumination

       Side 2: eld 1: to grow or make old


And to Paul re 'idea for BC in Spain:'
Side 1: routinism adherence to routine

       Side 2: about; approximately

(phrase defined is round about)


Q: And what did you want to tell Elly about 'the Good Book?'

A: Side 1: to get clear through or past, as to clear a hedge; to clear a reef.

       Side 2: consonant cleaving which consists of the conversionof a simple

       into a compound sound. Cleaving may be seen in the frequent        development of mod. Eng. "i" (pronounced 'ai') out of an earlier 'i'        (pronounced 'ee').


# 58: Janey Fritsche (janey)

Thanks, Shady. I need to think about that a while.


# 59: Jeanne DeVoto (jdevoto)

Shady, why hasn't our new Mind Conference host posted yet?


# 60: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady replies to Jeanne:

A: Side 1: Transitive: 1: to cause to telescope; to cause to jam one into        another telescope

       Side 2: strong cable impervious to water to be laid underground

       telegraph cable


# 61: Hank (hank)
Shady, I want to build a 7' piece for Cedana: any thoughts on design? And I haven't heard from the astronomers yet; what do you think of their proposal?


# 62: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady answer's hank re 'thoughts on design':

A: Side 1: oily 1: of or like oil 'an oily liquid'

       Side 2: off-color 1: not of the usual or required color


And to hank's query re the astronomers' proposal:

A: Side 1: 2. to teach or advocate and urge others to accept or follow: 'the        leaders preach economy'

       Side 2: a linking verb and modifies the subject of the sentence

(word defined is predicate adjective)


# 63: Eugene L. Schoenfeld (zerotol)

Shady, what happens to lost socks? Where do they go? What to do with the many socks that remain, one of two needed?


# 64: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

To Eugene's first question:

A: Side 1: words that is meaningful but lacks the subject and predicate of a        complete sentence

       Side 2: from or depend on the presence of light

(word defined is photoelectric)


Q: Where do the socks go, Shady?

A: Side 1: ward off shots made by the opposing team

(word defined is goalkeeper)

       Side 2: goner [slang] someone or something that is ruined or doomed.


Q: And what do with the leftover sock?

A: Side 1: a confession of 'A priest confessed them.'

       Side 2: congestion a conditition of overcrowding


# 66: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

Perhaps the sock question is opaque even to Shady. Is it not, after all, one of the Great Mysteries of the Universe?


# 67: Rik (rik)

Yeah, along with how Don King gets his hair to do that. And why.


# 68: Eugene L. Schoenfeld (zerotol)

Thank you, Shady, oh wise one.


# 69: Merrill Peterson (merrill)

Seems to me that Shady knew the precise answer to Gene's question: The lost sock is a goner, and the proper response is to clean out the overcrowded sock drawer of all those unmatched socks.


# 70: Joe Flower (bbear)

Lost socks go where your lap goes when you stand up, along with all those forgotten punchlines. It has a name: Tamboulia. See Goedel Escher Bach: The Eternal Golden Braid, for confirmation.


# 71: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

I prefer a more prosaic, even physical, notion of a sock heaven. Before the millennium arrives, I believe they will all return physically, starting in some little-known laundromat in the midwest. One day, an innocent local housewife will return to the laundromat and find the washing machine filled to the brim with unmated socks. Next time, it will be literally overflowing, and from then on there will be no holding it back. They will be everywhere.


# 72: Eugene L. Schoenfeld (zerotol)

Meanwhile, shall I put the unmatched socks in the freezer?


# 73: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

If you can subdue them.


# 74: Eugene L. Schoenfeld (zerotol)

Will they retain memories..... of their mates?


# 75: Dan Brisling (dbrisling)

They know them by smell <pfui>.


# 76: Paul Belserene (paulbel)

Shady, I'll read this when I return from Singapore. What should I learn from this trip?


# 77: Shady (dbrisling)

Don't use any public laundromats if you value your socks.


# 78: Bob Bickford (rab)

I bet Shady says something about travel, foreign languages, or culture.


# 79: Janey Fritsche (janey)

I don't think culture will get tangled up with Singapore. It's been bulldozed out.


# 80: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)
Shady, what should Paul learn from his trip to Singapore?
Side 1: nonchalar to disregard, giving an effect of easy unconcern

       Side 2: relating to or being a noun or a word or expression

(word defined is nominal)


# 83: Tina Loney (onezie)

Wow, I sure am upset! Shady, is this incident the end of a long friendship? Should I attempt further clarification, or just continue communication in other directions, or just chuck the whole thing as a miserable experience?


# 84: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Q: Shady, is Tina's incident the end of a long friendship?

A: Side 1: burden; load

(word defined is encumbrance)

       Side 2: engulf to swallow up



Q: Should Tina attempt further clarification or just continue communication        in other directions?

A: Side 1: one who is lame or otherwise disabled

(Word defined is crippled)


       Side 2: croissant a crescent-shaped


Q: Should she just chuck the whole thing as a miserable experience?

A: Side 1: commentary a series of explanatory notes

       Side 2: 1. companionship; society 2. a group of people gathered or

       associated for some purpose.

(word defined is community)

Sorry Shady took so long to respond. We've been travelling a lot, but we're home at last!


# 85: Tina Loney (onezie)

Thanks, Shady. I don't mind waiting for that answer. I'm working on the community commentary right now!


# 86: Hank Roberts (hank)

Shady, how've you been the last four months?


# 87: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Q: Shady, are we in contact?

A: Side 1: drier, driest 1: not under water Dry land.

       Side 2: means of a drill drill

       for making holes

(I interpret Shady's response as a response, so there is some sort of contact.)


Q: So, Hank wants to know how you've been for the last 4 months.
Slip 1 Side 1: together + 'ire,' go] sexual intercourse also coition

       coke coal from which most of the gases have been

       Side 2: cooperate with the enemy collaborator


(Oh, I think I understand) ;-}


# 88: Jeanne DeVoto (jdevoto)

Shady's first response is clearly referencing the WELL, complaining about the recent dry spell... :-)


# 89: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

So let's keep going.

Q: Shady, dear Shady, any advice for us folks here on the WELL?

A: Slip 1 Side 1: status symbol

       as a sign of (high) social status

       Side 2: 2: to take (a look, etc.) slyly [he stole her heart]

       Slip 2 Side 1: soliloquize

       Side 2: sophistication


Ramón: Hey, are all us status symbol types only talking to OURSELVES?


# 90: Hank Roberts (hank)

What state are we in now, Shady?


# 91: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)
Side 1: potter's wheel a rotating disk upon which clay is molded
       Side 2: possessed 1: crazed 2: controlled as if by a demon

       Slip 2 Side 1: interpret negotiator

       Side 2: interview

       of people face-to-face

       meeting in which


# 92: Don Momaday (dmoma)
Well, by Friday we found that we shouldn't have tried to install that crazy potter's wheel (I take Shady's comments as valid just the moment I get to read them)

Shady - Any suggestions how to keep the Well up on line and still give dhawk a humane sleep/wake cycle? Or was this already covered by the end of the last response?

Hey Shady -- no fair answering before we ask!


# 93: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady responds (somewhat belatedly, since his channel has been up to his bushy eyebrows in deadlining a manuscript)

A: Side 1: calibrating to fix or correct the graduations of (a measuring


       Side 2: cacaphony


Q: Yes, Shady, right, but what about dhawk's snooze time?

A: Side 1: SMUDGE

       Side 2: SNOWMOBILE
(oh well...)


# 94: Don Momaday (dmoma)

What shall we do to help fertilize the future?


# 95: Ramón Sender Barayon (rabar)

Shady replies:

A: Side 1: fable 1: a fictitious story meant to teach a moral lesson. 2: a myth or        legend

       Side 2: fair-trade designating or of an agreement whereby a seller of a

("fair-trade fables" -- I like it!)


Q: So Shady, while we're conversing, what will be the most important results        of the Gulf War?

A: Slip 1: To hit a ball so that it spins. [Colloq.] to pretend not to recognize a        person

(the word defined is cut)

       Side2: Dad [child's cry 'dada'] father

       Slip 2 Side 1: magnification of a lens vt. to supply with a source of        power. adj. 1: operated by electricity, a fuel engine, etc.

       Side 2: [pre & cognition} the supposed extrasensory perception of a future        event

Ramón: "cut Dad" - could this refer to the weakening of the patriarchy?

I can't figure out the word defined by 2:1 but it probably starts with pre-

"Precognition" is a fascinating response, considering that we expect Shady to do exactly that.


# 96: Lara Owen (lara)
The reference to "source of power" could refer to the oil and the whole issue of energy consumption & resources.