Psychic Shocker

photo 1Ms. Lee claims 99% accuracy on her readings, but it’s her punctuality that worries me. It took four days to secure a time to meet with her and even then she was an hour late.

I’ve passed by the brick red house with shingle siding, just beyond the iconic Shirt Circuit and the display of her cell phone number for months wondering about the person who owned the shop. Was it just one lady? Was there ever a man? What kind of formal training happens with psychics? None of these questions were answered.

When she finally arrived she was escorted by a man who plopped down on a couch in the entryway. Her long skirt matched the mauve carpeting and she led me into the “reading room.” The walls were a dirty beige and ceramic trinkets surrounded us along with candles, crosses, and multicolored stones.

Ms. Lee says she is a fourth generation born psychic and has had no formal training, coming from a family of five sisters—three are also born psychics. Her first psychic encounter, having happened when she was just five years old, I expected a cute story about a neighborhood friend or another family member… maybe a Ouija board tale of green underwear… instead, she says, “Oh, I don’t remember that, and even if I did, it’s confidential.”

Most of what I learned about Ms. Lee was located on fliers at the front door and on yellow 3 x 5 papers stamped with 50% off readings. She seems uneasy answering my questions, often readjusting herself in the chair, asking if I’m ready for my reading, and checking the time on her smartphone. Still she insists, “I’m very comfortable giving advice. This does take a lot of time and energy, but it comes to me naturally.”

There’s an array of options for customers. Palm/face readings are $30 and she predicts up to three months. Tarot card readings are $60 and her predictions are for one year. Psychic is $85 and this covers a full life reading. The prices seem to vary as much as her name when I try to verify if I should call her Miss Lee or Mrs. Lee or Ms. Lee. Some of the fliers call her Amy.

I’m slated for the palm/face reading and she tells me she’ll give it to me for only $20. When I ask if she takes debit card she says her machine is broken. However, she does trust me to come back after my reading and pay her the cash. While I’m getting my twenty bucks I remember the 50% off flier and realize her “deal” for me is five bucks more than the sale she’s offering. Who’s the sucker now?

The thing is, the reading was nice, but nothing that a good friend couldn’t tell you on your birthday week for free. She asked if I had a man in my life: I said no, a woman. She asked if she was younger: no, she isn’t. A few more attempts at telling me I had a positive vibe (my necklace said happy) and that I would live a long time according to my lifeline and then she said we were done.

When I returned with my money she was on her phone giving advice with such vigor she waved me away and mouthed “I’m on the phone now.”

So if you call Ms. Lee today, chances are that she’ll pick up on the first ring… at least 99% of the time.

by Mandy Clark