Meet Jemima Packington, the world’s only Asparamancer – a contemplating person who can predict the future using asparagus. Ned Donovan sent her some pictures of asparagus to see what the future holds.

Theirs an attitude in today’s world that rejects the Deity of tarot readers and astrologers. It is fortunate, then, that there’s a new profession to bring forth your fortune from the mists of time. Her name is Jemima Packington, and she is the Asparamancer.


The Asparamancer lives a lonely life, for she is the only one of her kind and has no mentors or prodigies, nor established practices. But from the humble tips of asparagus, Jemima can see the future. Having complete faith in the wonders of the vegetable, I wrote to her and crossed her palm with journalistic promises. I asked to go to her, but this was rebuffed so as to preserve the sanctity of the Asparagus Grove, and instead I was requested to send some pictures of asparagus.


I went to Waitrose, where disaster struck. As it is January, and far from asparagus season in the United Kingdom, there was only the imported Peruvian variety to buy. Upon closer inspection, there was an even graver danger: they only had asparagus tips. The next morning I turned up in the office and began to throw asparagus up into the air, letting it fall onto my desk. Pictures were taken and duly sent off, I awaited a reply…






What does and can the future hold?

This is not the only strange technique of divination, there is also the odd practice of Omphalomancy which is done through the counting and reading of knots in an umbilical cord. There is also Gyromancy, achieved through walking in a circle until one falls over from dizziness, where the person falls or stumbles will decide their future. However, in the same league as that of Packington falls the practice of Tyromancy, which involves the reading of cheese, in particular that of its coagulation. But these bizarre approaches aside, days had passed, and I received the following in reply:

It’s actually very interesting that your two separate ‘casting’ of the Asparagus produce quite similar characteristics. Both indicate hurdles to your progress being placed in your way and attempts to distract you from your personal and professional goals.
Your work is important but so is your personal life and only you can prioritise what is most important and what is not. There does appear to be a parting of the waves but I suspect you are already aware that this might happen.
On a more positive note you are due a rather pleasant trip with people you are close to. But not for a couple of months!!
Overall it might not be quite what you wanted to hear but I doubt any of it would come as a surprise!!
Keep the faith!
Best wishes

When I received this, I felt numbed, all told by the simple casting of a supermarket-bought product. The true faith shall be given to the Oracle of Worcestershire: the Asparamancer.

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