NEW ORLEANS — I knew it was out there somewhere, hiding along the Mississippi River’s banks or lurking just off the Mardi Gras parade route. There had to be some unique perspective on Baltimore and San Francisco’s little get-together on Sunday in the Superdome. The hype machine has now been steaming full bore into its second week.
I knew it would be hard to find an uncorrupted football soul on the streets of the Super Bowl city. Voodoo joints dot the streets of the French Quarter like pizza parlors in other neighborhoods. I tried one of them, but they told me the “priest” was booked solid all afternoon. I’ve got a feeling I’m not the only one exploring this avenue.
I made my way to Jackson Square, where, worst case, I would get a beignet at Café du Mond, and I could listen to some street musicians while I figured all this out, at least. And there she was, sitting at her card table amid the starving artists and sidewalk preachers. She quietly sang Earth, Wind, and Fire’s “September” amid the early-week chaos.
Kelleigh (pronounced Kelly) may wear silver rings with things like skulls, possess a whole bunch of crystals, and sport some impressive tattoos, but she is a football fan. She was born in South Dakota, raised in South Florida, and has dispensed fortunes in the Big Easy for nearly three decades. She loves the Saints.
I Think I Found The One
Kelleigh shows me a small sign announcing free readings for Paul Tagliabue, should the righter of Roger Goodell’s wrongs find himself knee-deep in the fray later this week. Still, I think she’ll do. Aside from going to a Dolphins game with her dad as a kid, she’s pure of heart. As a warm-up to her prediction, calisthenics for mystics, she reads my cards, a first for this non-believer.
She asks me to shuffle her well-worn Tarot deck. Right off the bat, she starts talking about my primary card being the Queen of Wands, a suit I’m unfamiliar with. “What I’m getting is cynicism,” she declares. “A lot of cynicism that comes from your job.” At this point, I’m starting to believe she may have the gift, and I’m feeling better about her ability to identify the world champion.
She mumbles something about drunken frat boys always asking her if they will get lucky as a group of revelers makes their way past. I honestly was having trouble following everything she was saying, what with being a newcomer to all this supernatural terminology. But then she started talking about an occasion in the spring, maybe an anniversary, and I might want to make a big deal out of it this year. Memo to self: mail order flowers aren’t going to cut it on June 3.
To My Delight, The Subject Switches To The Big Game
At some point, she either notices my eyes have glazed over or decides I’m too far gone to help, and we move on to the big game, asking me to start pulling some cards from the deck. “The hanged man represents impatience,” she noted. “But the hanged man also says you will find what you seek. It’s just not likely to happen as quickly as you want. There might be some overtime involved.”
So no Super Bowl’s ever gone to overtime. She’s on a roll now, and I’m not stopping her. Again, there are points where she might as well be speaking another language. She notes that the Five of Cups is a card of disappointment and frustration. “Someone has to lose,” I think to myself. Then she talks about the Empress card as a care-taking and nurturing archetype.
She moves onto the I-95 corridor, and suddenly the stars must have aligned on her small table. “Baltimore,” she blurted out. Now, I can’t say exactly how she came up with that. But I know it had nothing to do with anything a talking head on the NFL Network said, and that’s good enough for me. And then I learned that psychics don’t give receipts, a discussion I’ll undoubtedly have with the bean counters upon my return.
Article courtesy Daily Record