Having a good time is pretty much in the cards at Club Charles

On Nightlife

July 06, 2006|By SAM SESSA

I've seen my future, and it's looking good, good, good.

Last month at one of Club Charles' Macabre Mondays, I got a free look at what lies ahead - courtesy of a numerologist and tarot card reader. The second Monday of every month, the club brings them in and sets up Ouija boards on the bar.

My roommate Patchen and I went last month, and we both left pleased with what is to come. It's hard to go to Club Charles and not leave satisfied - having our fortunes read was the icing.

Club Charles' walls are painted raw-steak red, and the lights are kept low. Though the club is not that large, the atmosphere alone can swallow you.

On Mondays, you can get $1.58 draft Yuenglings, which is delightful, except after a few rounds you end up with pocketfuls of change.

You can feed the quarters into Club Charles' legendary jukebox (my all-time favorite citywide), but chances are, when you pull your car keys out of your pocket later that night, the pennies, nickels and dimes will spill all over the sidewalk.

The crowd last month never numbered more than 20 strong, which meant we didn't have to wait long to see the tarot card reader and numerologist.

First, I sat down with the numerologist, who said his name was Jeremy. He handed me pen and paper and told me to write down my name, birth date and astrological sign. When I finished, he took the pen and paper, worked some kind of black mathematics, and came up with three numbers: three, three and six. Three is a powerful number, he said, and since six is a multiple of three, that makes it even more powerful. I liked where Jeremy was going.

Jeremy glanced down at a cheat sheet in his lap, looked back up and told me this: I am energetic (true), movie star-like (also true) and slightly egotistical (true again!). The numbers also say I'm going to have throat and kidney problems somewhere along the line, which kind of freaked me out. That part better be false.

The numerology reading was free, but I tipped Jeremy a powerful $3 and walked back to the bar.

After another $1.58 Yuengling, it was my turn at the tarot card reader's table. Her name was Rebecca, and she has been interpreting the cards for quite some time, she said. I doubted this, because like Jeremy, she had a cheat sheet in her lap.

Rebecca started with a disclaimer: The cards would only predict my future based on where I am right now, and all of this could change at the drop of a hat. Being a big fan of Quantum Leap, I understood her completely. She told me to shuffle the cards and silently ask myself one burning question I needed to answer. I did. (I'm not printing it here, because then I might not get the answer she predicted.)

I finished shuffling and put the cards back on the table, and Rebecca drew from the top of the deck. The first couple of cards were meant to show my current life status, which I think is pretty good, and they thought so, too. She pulled a card for my immediate future and came up with The Lovers, which made me smile and should also make my girlfriend giggle when she reads this.

Around this time, Rebecca started to look a little sour. When I asked her what was wrong, she told me she didn't like how good my cards were. Gee, thanks, Rebecca. That all changed when we looked at my past. She dealt me a couple of gloomy ones in a row and told me I needed to move on from whatever haunted me. I could tell she was happy to finally give me some bad news.

My card for the more distant future was The Emperor, which meant I will eventually rule the universe and enslave you weakling readers for all of eternity. Sorry, suckas! For such a good reading, I tipped Rebecca five bucks and let Patchen take his turn.

Patchen was having girl troubles and said the cards told him to go with his gut, which meant "do nothing." He waited and received a foxy late-night phone call from the object of his affection that week.

"I'm happy to credit the cards with being right," he later said.

And I, Emperor Sam the Merciful, am also satisfied.

Macabre Mondays at Club Charles starts at about 9:30 p.m. Monday. There is no cover charge. The club is at 1724 N. Charles St. Call 410-727-8815.

sam.sessa@baltsun.com

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