Call me an idiot if you like, but for some reason that made me laugh until milk came out of my nose.
Somehow I've been talked in to getting a pet. Namely a guinea pig. Or two guinea pigs actually because, apparently, these furry things get lonely. You know I'm pretty sure that, outside of specifically bred farmyard animals, humans and creatures should try and mix as little as possible. For example, this morning I asked my good friend Rob from Gen-1 whether he'd ever had a pet. He sent me this as a reply. These, good people, are the words of a respected Marine Biologist and published writer.
“When I was about 7, my brother decided his hamster and me should be friends, so he called me over and put this hamster on my shoulder. I was nervous of it, it was nervous of me, and when I moved it decided to hold on tighter. The little bastard grabbed onto my earlobe with its teeth, and when I tried to shake it off it hung on. I pioneered hamster-earrings, you know.”
See? And Rob positively likes animals. Suffice to say that I'm starting to regret agreeing to get a pet in the first place. If Rob got a Hamster hanging from his ear, then I'm pretty sure that I could quite easily lose a finger to a guinea pig.
If only I could find someone who would be able to “speak” to my pet. Someone who could let me know when it was feeling down, or let me know that it just wants to eat Salt and Vinegar Pringles. Someone who would be able to tell me whether my guinea pig likes bathing in chocolate or champagne. Someone to tell me when it's time to start taking quotes from taxidermists. If only I could pick up the phone and call someone like that.
Well thanks to the magics of the interwebz, you can. Meet Lisa Greene, a
You may be amazed to hear this, but it wasn't Greene's attractive portrait or her thoroughly interesting biography that got me so enthused about her. Nay good kinsmen, it was instead the “testimonial” section of her website that finally won me over.
If you read the same magazines as I do, you'll be familiar with the art of the “anonymous fan” style of recommendation. Usually they accompany adverts for things like sprays that make you “irresistible” to members of the opposite sex. “It really works!” says Harry B. “I was a loser with the ladies until I tried this product. Now I get a date with a different woman every night!” says Tim G. That kind of thing (Gee Note: Sadly it turns out that no amount of spray is going to improve your chances if you look like a steamed cabbage and have the personality of a walnut. Not that I speak from experience here you understand. Oh heavens no. I'm a regular little Fabio).
Well gosh darnit if Lisa doesn't have a slew of these for you to peruse at your leisure. And who here doesn't trust the testimony of someone who won't give their last name? For example take Britain's very own Edwina K and her horse Sirus.
"Dearest Lisa: Greetings from the UK. I thank you for your time and all of the assistance you gave to Sirus and me last month. Since our talk, we have become much closer to one another and our training has accelerated greatly. He's not lowering his head like he was and just seems quite more relaxed now. I'm making the changes he requested and it's working. I'm also bringing him his strawberry candy that he so adores. I will send you photo's of him eating his candy. He's a stitch! Thank you for everything, I learned so much. I'll be contacting you again soon."
Oh that Sirus, he's such a riot! To be fair a horse did have me in stitches once. But then that was because the damn thing mistook the side of my wrist for a sugar cube. Now if I was unsure of which Pet Psychic was the one for me then I'm pretty sure that Edwina K's review alone would sway me. But what would seal the deal? How about this from Colleen P talking about her deceased snake Stephanie?
"Lisa did a reading for me when I lost my precious Stephanie snake after 7 years of doting on her. I was so beside myself with guilt and grief, I just didn't know what to do. When I found her dead I spent 2 hours blowing into her trachea to try to revive her. I couldn't face the idea of losing her. I couldn't IMAGINE it. I wanted to know WHERE she was and that she was OK. After 7 years of taking care of her, healing her from being a sick baby, and being totally bonded with her... suddenly she was gone and I was blaming myself, hating myself for not knowing how sick she was, etc."
Two hours? You gave mouth to mouth to a snake for two hours? But how? They don't have any lips for God's sake. (Gee Note: This may be in poor taste, but does anyone else have the mental image of the snake slowly inflating like a balloon with each puff? No? Just me then). I also love the way she finishes the harrowing tale with “etc”. It would be like asking someone how they were, only to get “Well my wife left me, my house burnt to the ground, and I lost the sight in my right eye due to a freak boating accident. But you know me, I can't complain”. Anyway, believing that Stephanie has been reincarnated just like Lisa said she would be, Colleen P continues.
"Someone found this angel up in the mountains in Northern Cal, not sure where. Turned into pet store. Couldn't keep because you need license, they're native species. Dick walked in, they know he has license, they gave her to him. That was 5 days ago. Right NOW he's gone farther north again... he called me from fresno area, store was somewhere near there but DICK is going up to way north, you said above palo alto, could that be you seeing DICK taking her there before I get her?? I swear I almost dropped everything to go drive there, you know me..."
"I BELIEVE THIS IS STEPHANIE. OMG I HAVE BEEN WILLLLLING HER TO COME BACK. This matches almost every single thing you said, just that it wasn't ME finding her, it was dick and she found him knowing she'd get to me. I'm god mother to his alligator... remember we talked about him?"
It should be noted that the text reprinted here is exactly the same as it appears on Lisa Greene's website. Which means that not only does this woman genuinely believe that her serpent has come back to life, but also that in a thank you note to a psychic she uses the word “dick” an awful lot. Regardless this would be enough to convince even the most cynical of reader that Lisa Greene
You sitting down?
No really, you really should be sitting down.
Well “in home/barn” sessions cost $200. If that's a bit too pricey for you then you could always call her on the telephone. For $75 per 30 minutes, or $120 for an hour. Completely worth it, if of course you happen to be waiting for the news that your dead pet has been reincarnated.
At the end of the day though, losing loved ones is tough, and people can do completely irrational things when faced with tragedy. So I guess if you've genuinely got $200 you can afford to lose then maybe you may find some comfort by enlisting the services of a pet psychic.
But the truth is that I can't help but think people like Lisa Greene may take advantage of those who are either unable to cope with the loss of a pet, or already far too into an animal companion to begin with. Now I'm not sure what the psychological definition of “slightly unbalanced” is, but if you are willing to believe that your cat can send it's voice from beyond the grave and want to pay $200 to a woman from Texas to prove it then, well, I'd have to guess that you would fit that description.
So when faced with the choice between paying a psychic to tell me if my guinea pig wants me to tickle his tummy more, or paying for a good vet to administer some medicine when required and a “How to” book on caring for rodents you'll excuse me if I don't plump for the latter.