Good morning, All! Welcome to my MashUp for 26 December 2014: the King of Cups, II the High Priestess and clattering by on the re-grouting table is the 8 of Wands reversed. I admit, I was somewhat trepidatious approaching this pack: I have no other like it (well, one) where everything is dark & spidery and black & red velvet interiors. It minds me very much of what a decadent would consider “perfectly awful, darling, I love it.” The sticking point for Tarot readers is that is a bit hard to actually see underneath under all that black crêpe organza. (“Clive! Luncheon’s ready!”. . . “What are we having?” “Toad & Termite Soup, Cockroach Crunchies, and your favorite, sorbet of spider web.”) Dark, black decks remind me of adolescent Goths – grow up, please. But, sigh, each to its own, so I gave it a try and was pleasantly surprised. I’m not a sudden fan of heavy metal death thrash music, either, but you can listen and decide. Our 1st encounter for the day is the King of Cups. He’s pretty well-set (though not filthy rich like the King of Pentacles!), an honest, somewhat bumbling, easygoing soul who just happens to a GENIUS at matters of the heart. You wouldn’t think it to look at him, and although his luck generally runs true, today it may dealt taken a turn for the bizarre when he must give his arm to II the High Priestess. Not exactly a comfortable date to the ball: her coiffure is in flames, her eyes are caged by gold, and in the center of her sternum an old man dispenses either advice or madness. I’d say Glenda the Good Witch retired. (For some reason, the phrase “self-indulgent” just popped into my head, so maybe that is a side blow from II. IF so, here we go with “make a list of your character faults.” Fuck that, here’s my character fault, bend over.) Well, the Dynamic Duo moves on, full of their schemes to dominate my persona, but run smack into the 8 of Wands reversed. “No so fast, no so fast, there, Shady Lady: Let’s just see what you’ve got in this here jet-beaded reticule . . .’ there is nothing but a pint of tequila and her deck of Tarot cards. The surly 8 of Wands growls, “Travelin’ mighty light, ain’t ya, Lady?” She responds, “No. Destinies can be quite heavy.” Still cautioning caution and stealth, with just a hint of reluctance & jealousy in his eyes, he shoos them away forward to reach the castle. With Challenges and obstacles becoming achievements waiting to occur, it is a bit like living in a temporary temporal slip. Even with all that blackness and gothic boowoo-iness, the message is simple enough: Pay NO attention to the wrappings, look inside, follow the instructions. The high priestess has something to say to you, the King of Hearts believes in her, and the 8 of Wands wants me to i-m-p-l-e-m-e-n-t any changes slowly. Alright, off to look at the day with a jaundiced eye!