Tag Archives: unexpected

Nocturnomath or Airhead?


Today I drew the Six of Swords again in an exchange reading. Remember? It’s the one with the balloon growing from the person’s head, enabling them to float away in their little aircraft.

As in my previous reading, I had to think of the character of Professor Abdullah Nightingale (in German: Abdullah Nachtigaller) from the novel “The 13.5 Lives of Captain Bluebear” by Walter Moers. He is a seven-brained Nocturnomath (Eydeet) and thus the most intelligent life form of the entire fictional world of Zamonia (Zamonien). He looks like this:

Nocturnomaths are so intelligent they have grown extra brains on the outsides of their skulls. Their thought processes make a clicking sound, and many of them have telepathic and telekinetic abilities (Nightingale, for example, can open a can of sardines just by thinking about it).

In short: We’re talking about extreme intelligence and its consequences. (And about a book you should check out if you like wildly imaginative, humorous fantasy and are ready to read stuff not written by Terry Pratchett.) But let’s get back to the card.

As I was contemplating the card image, playing with words and images in my mind, I also arrived at another concept: that of the airhead, as in “no brain, just air.” Which brings us to the other end of the spectrum, that of a glaring lack of intelligence.

And this is where I leave the playful associations and arrive in a more serious mood. I’m thinking about situations where very high intelligence suddenly (or gradually) turns into something very “stupid”…

There comes a point where a very high IQ actually keeps you from being particularly functional in an average, everyday world. Where communication breaks down or doesn’t even take off in the first place. Where you can’t help feeling like a total freak and alien amongst all these perfectly nice and perfectly normal people.

I mean, think about it.

  • The average IQ is 100.
  • 95% of the population have IQs between 70 and 130.
  • A person with an IQ of below 70 is usually considered intellectually disabled (mentally retarded), whereas someone with an IQ above 130 is considered intellectually gifted (you need an IQ above 132 to be admitted into the high-IQ society Mensa).
  • 2.2% of the population have an IQ above 130 or below 70.
  • Of those, only 0.13% have an IQ above 145 or below 55 (depending on the IQ scale you use – see illustration).

Now imagine living in a world where the vast majority of the people you interact with on a daily basis are intellectually as “far away” from you as someone with an IQ of 100 is from someone with an IQ of 50-60.Then you have an idea how my life often feels to me. (Yes, I’m one of the 0.13%. But please don’t tell my boss. And maybe not even some of my friends.)

Sure, this comparison is hugely oversimplified, and the whole IQ issue is hotly debated anyway. I’m aware of that, and I actually agree with much of the criticism of IQ testing and of the narrowing down of “intelligence” to its intellectual subset. But let’s leave that debate aside for once, okay?

Because every now and again I find it oddly comforting to look at this bell curve, find “my” spot and realize once again that there really is a world of difference between me and, say, my coworkers or my boss. That I’m not just imagining that. That at least some of my problems aren’t due to a flawed character or lacking social skills but due to simply being part of a rather small minority. And that makes it easier to go back to work the next day and deal with the fact that I spend most of my time with that mental “Ferrari” stuck in a traffic jam…

What a chain of associations, huh? But hey, I can totally tie the “mental Ferrari” back to the card image of the Deviant Moon’s Six of Swords! Well, consider this my card meditation for the day…


New Deck Interview: Deviant Moon Tarot


I’ll start out with a New Deck Interview. I’ve had very mixed results with spreads like this in the past but hope for more clarity with the addition of a time limit.

What do I need to learn from you during this week? – Knight of Swords

A knight in silver armor rides a rising dragon-horse-rhinoceros on a hill outside of the city. The color red is very prominent, and a waning moon hangs in the sky.

I take this to mean that I need to reign in my sharpness and anger a bit, which makes sense in my current job situation. Since the animal is turned towards the left/past, it tells me I need to turn my own energy elsewhere, towards the future.

How will you teach me?Knight of Wands

Another Knight! This one wears a green suit of armor with delicate violet insect wings. The knight is riding a sort of helmeted beetle, and has somehow merged with it. The full moon is huge, and there’s dry grass in the background.

Compared to the first knight, this one feels a lot smaller and slower. The way he has merged with his animal makes me think of the movie Avatar, and the beyond-physical connection a good rider has with his horse. I take this to mean that paradoxically there’s greater power in slowing down and merging with others – which also applies to my job situation very well.

I also like how this scene is more in touch with nature, even though it’s not exactly a lush landscape. This lets me hope that I, too, can reconnect to nature over the next week.

Our future relationship? King of Swords

Oh, come on, Deviant Moon, three court cards? Really?

This is a solid king, who interestingly wears a crown that could also be a fool’s cap. He is accompanied by a small creature which holds a globe-like ball. It’s mouth and teeth look like the bars on a jail window. The moon is waxing here.

The king who is also a fool… Usually, the court jester is the only one who has the freedom to tell the king the truth without fear of punishment. But this king has decided he doesn’t need a court jester and has picked a scared creature with an imprisoned tongue instead. The King is also turned slightly towards the left/past, and he doesn’t seem to pay much attention to his companion – which looks about to bolt at the next opportunity.

I’m thinking of my boss and how he seems to like having us act like his children who jealously guard what little he gave us while he reigns the empire all by himself. Needless to say, that didn’t go down very well with me, and I rose up like the animal in the first card… The result was that I’m now transferring to a different department with a new boss, a change that I first resisted but now believe to be a blessing in disguise.


This reading makes quite a bit of sense when it comes to my current job situation, although I have a hard time applying it to my work with this deck as such. Oh well, maybe the Deviant Moon isn’t much for small talk and deliberate getting to know each other. Instead, it seems to dive in right to the point – which is fine by me!

I’m surprised that I got so much sense out of a reading that contains only court cards, so that’s one thing that the Deviant Moon seems to do well: portray court characters readably.

The LWB doesn’t help me much. The card descriptions don’t mirror what I see in the images, and the meanings seem pretty generic RWS. I don’t think I’ll be using it much.