Placement: The Negligible Arcana
The Page, or Princess, or Knave or Jack of Fish is usually a young person, often a boy but sometimes a girl or someone whose gender is none of your business, usually human, who intently watches the inhabitants of a goldfish bowl. The goldfish may appear indifferent or have an expression that clearly translates to “If you tap the glass one more time, I will seriously **** you up! Tap it if you don’t believe me! Go on, tap! I DARE YOU!”*
Right side up:
The trivia enthusiast. Did you know that the Page of Fish card indicates a seeker whose greatest joy is to learn and pass along useless facts? Did you know that their favourite word is “actually”, often proceeded by the word “um”, and that their third favourite word is “apparently”?** Were you aware that Agent Scully from the once-and-future classic television program The X-Files was loosely based on the Greek astronomer Hypatia, in particular her time examining strange phenomena with the Macedonian mystic Mudu? Are you cognizant of the fact that buffalo mozzarella comes from the milk of the domestic Italian water buffalo, though no one knows when or how the buffalo roamed into Italy, or that memorizing the vows of the fictional Night’s Watch arctic brotherhood will not protect you from rabid muskox, which is a distant cousin of the water buffalo? Would you believe that some tarot readers are unaware not only of the suit of Fish, but of the entire Negligible Arcana?
The prankster. Did you know that the first day of April in French is not called April Fool’s Day (that phrase being entirely made of English words) but Poisson D’Avril: literally, April Fish, and that besides the name, the pranking tradition is the same?
Alternatively, the Page of Fish reversed can indicate the presence of a control-seeking behavior called Gaslighting.*** The Page of Fish reversed is certain that [insert name of well-loved authority] told her she was a [incurable burden of some sort]. She remembers the exact wording of many such accusations. None of these, however, had any witnesses besides [insert name of well-loved authority], who now plays innocent, refuses to acknowledge that it happened at all, and questions the Page of Fish reversed’s sanity until the Page of Fish reversed can no longer trust any facts that she learns for herself, arriving at a crossroads between concerned skepticism and gleeful nihilism. The positive aspect of the Page of Fish reversed in this interpretation is gleeful nihilism.
*This is, at least, how our resident expert on nautical imagery in tarot, Anais Herschel, described it. She uses more colourful phrases than what I can publish here.
**Did you know that by drinking shots upon hearing the word “apparently” in Geekarian company, one may become extremely intoxicated?
***Did you know that the word “gaslighting” comes from the name of a play and later Ingrid Bergman film called Gaslight, about a husband who convinces his wife that she is insane, and that it is impossible to give a genuinely playful description of this topic despite it being, essentially, a type of prank? Watch Ms. Bergman in Casablanca instead, a light romp about Nazi occupation and heartbreak.
****Did you know that unless otherwise indicated, four asterisks in a row in this blog stand in place of words often considered obscene, and that these obscene words refer to natural bodily organs and their functions? Did you also know that if this were a blog written in French, the language that calls today April Fish, censorable words (at least in Quebecois French) refer to religious ritual items, and that this may cast an uncomfortably weird light on our concept of what is naughty?
Classic Page of Fish deaths:
- Choking on the crumbs of goldfish crackers
- Defeated in a thunderdome of underground Jeopardy
- Victim of a celebrity death hoax perpetuated by someone in tune with The Secret
- Interrupting someone wielding a fishing knife with a thousand “um actuallies”
- Mermaids offering candy
- Lost following a red herring