Welcome to the Equinox: Zombie Cat Shambles 2021!


Intention is everything in subtle energy work. Anything that isn’t covered by intention is usually covered by symbolism.

The YouChoose post this morning talked a little bit about liminal energies and transitional spaces. Some transitions are sharp and out of the blue, like walking through a narrow doorway. Others are slow and build gradually, like walking down a long hallway. At first I’d thought about making this post as a ginormous list of everything I’ve been working on, posting them today to honor the equinox and the beginning of my favorite season and that would be that.

That’s not today’s energy

I feel nudged to go with a slow roll-out instead of a terse list. That will let me give full attention to the intention and symbolism behind these things such as they are. Today….


Zombie Cat is an alter-ego sort of character that came from the old blog, when I working under the name Modern Oracle Tarot, inspired by the famous Schrodinger’s cat experiment and an episode of Menage A Tarot podcast. Zombie Cat lives all year in the special & lower cost readings section of the no appointment email readings page. During Halloween, ZC comes out to play on the home page.

I enjoy Zombie Cat. I enjoy doing short, fun, anything goes yes-or-no readings from that slightly snarky frame of mind. Frame of mind and fun both count in this kind of work. That is why when I do a cutesy pants promotional price reductions anymore unless it has some sort of symbolic meaning for me. In this case, I’m reducing the price of Zombie Cat readings to give energy to all the fun that Zombie Cat gives and all that Halloween and Autumn mean for me.

But I’m hoping it will entice a bunch of you to get these holiday readings, too.

Zombie Cat yes/no readings are $5 off until Halloween. Get yours HERE

Zombie Cat

Growing Ogres

Shrek: ….ogres are like onions

Donkey: They stink?


Shrek: No! Layers. Onions have layers. Ogres have layers. You get it? We both have layers

from “Shrek” copyright 2001 Dreamworks Pictures, quote via imdb.com

Layers mean complexity. Layers apply to all sorts of things that are actually more complex than they seem at first glance; ogres, onions, cakes and – you guessed it – Tarot.

Reading Tarot for yourself is actually quite simple. In a couple of hours I could teach you to do good DIY readings for yourself. (Related: PeaceTarot ebook)

Reading for other people is another story. High level professional readings are, like onions and ogres, more complex than it seems on the surface. That’s the whole point of them. A professional reading can gives you extra layers of insight and experience that you can’t get alone. Two heads are better than one. Two eyes give depth perception (related post: parallax) The two of us working together gives your reading another layer of understanding.

Sometimes layers talk about authenticity. Sometimes you have to peel back a few layers to get to the real heart of the matter. We’ve talked about authenticity and public Tarot practice before, after my Modern Oracle Tarot work was re-branded to TaoCraft Tarot (related: what’s in a name, Shakespear’s Roses, Spell Your Name)

That’s all well and good, but consider another aspect of layers: growing new ones. Interestingly, actual onions grow on the inside. New layers are added at the core while older outside layers get dry and thin and ultimately fall away. In this, onions give us another useful metaphor.

In the medical field, and no doubt many other professions, continuing education is a condition of licensure and employment. You have to keep learning and keep current if you want to keep working. Whether it is required or not, whether it is career related or not, lifelong learning is a respected mark of excellence. Learning isn’t just formal education. Learning comes from experience and experimentation and the living of life. Artists’ work evolves over time. Any person’s point of view can evolve over time.

And so, the “Modern Oracle” layout is evolving. I’m calling abort on the video / text hybrid format. It was an experiment that failed, and I’ve learned something important from it.

Remember how deeper layers are often perceived as more authentic and how old layers of growing onions turn papery and fall off? It’s time for the 5 and 7 card Modern Oracle layouts to evolve, to become more authentic, to show more of their inner complexity. The video hybrid isn’t the way for that to happen. The names of layout card positions are changing. It’s a tiny detail that you may not even notice from your side of the Tarot table. On my side of the table it is important shift in mindset. This allows me to fully and authentically follow what intuition and spirit shows me.

I wrote the initial layout meanings to create a bridge from old fashioned, predict-the-future, fortune telling layouts to a more modern advice, guidance and empowerment reading. I wrote the Modern Oracle layouts specifically to show the power of your choices over your future. Cards that once were called “past, present and future” in the old style became “lessons from the past, current situation, and moving forward.” Predicting the future evolved into making an action plan.

Now it will go one step further. I in my minds’s eye, I see a reading in terms of dynamic energy flows, not a concrete road through time. As Modern Oracle layouts become TaoCraft layouts, we will let go of time and predictions entirely. If the Modern Oracle layout was like GPS map for your path ahead, the TaoCraft layout is like a GPS traffic update with a weather report.

Card 1, lessons from the past, will become Fading Energies, symbolizing energies that are moving away from you. These are things that need less of your attention.

Card 2, current situation, will become Current Energies, the energies that are strongest, and deal with things that need your attention in this moment.

Card 3, moving forward will become Growing Energies, energies moving toward you, or gaining influence in the path you’ve currently chosen. It still isn’t predictive. It is still intended to guide you, help you prepare for possible conditions ahead. Think of it like a weather report. It doesn’t tell you exactly what will happen to you during your day, but it can give you the chance of rain or sun while it happens.

Card 4 will remain Choices. It is still placed under the current energies card and at the center of the layout because that is still the place of power. Empowering your choices is still the heart of the reading. The choices card will take on a more advisory tone than before. Instead of suggesting how to persist or how change your path, it focuses on whether changing or whether staying the course is the wisest thing to do.

Card 5 is still Alternative Path just like before, showing the most open alternative path you if you decide a change is needed. (Or it can help keep you on your path if you like the way things are headed.)

Card 6 Helping Energies and card 7 Potential Challenges are the same as always, and speak to exactly what the name implies.

Long story short, if you are dead set on a specific “accurate” prediction, you aren’t going to like the new TaoCraft layouts. If that’s the case, you need the Zombie Cat yes/no readings like we did the other day. Even then, you have to realize it isn’t 100%.

If you are ready for next level, dynamic energy readings, I can help. Welcome to TaoCraft Tarot.


Ask Zombie Cat: Book Smarts

Q: “When will my son ever develop a love of reading?”

A: In the list of things Tarot sucks at, medical / pregnancy questions may be #1, but answering “when” questions is a solid #2 (the double entendre there is accidental, but not wrong ) Using Tarot to answer medical or “when” questions is like asking “What time is it?” and having someone answer with “Blue! Applesauce! Yahtzee!” There isn’t anything evil or wrong about it, it’s just not particularly helpful.

In this case, a tumble of logical questions are getting in the way of intuition, so let’s get them out of the way first. How old is you little one now? If he is young, and reading is still a very new skill, maybe he needs a little time to get good at the skill of reading before he can appreciate the fun of it. Wondering when he will love reading might be like asking when you will love a new skill that that you were forced into learning. For example, what if you were suddenly forced to learn integral calculus for your job? So when are you going to learn to love esoteric mathematics? It is easy to love the things that come easily to you, but things that are hard to do are harder to love. If you suspect reading is extra difficult for him or his learning isn’t on par with his age and development, then talking with his teacher might be the best place to start. It might be jumping the gun to worry about loving reading unless you already know there are no problems with learning reading, like dyslexia or what have you, getting in the way.

Let the record show this is NOT my area of expertise. We cats never read much until sitting on computers became a thing. Turning pages is a pain in the tail when you don’t have opposable thumbs. But if all is well on the learning front, it begs another question. Intuitively I hear “what has he seen?” I’m guessing your question means you are a book lover. Have you had a chance to read when he is around? Has he ever seen you read and love it? Have you read to him and enjoyed it? Leading by example, if you haven’t already, might help. I have to admit I’m a Kindle junkie, but a young one might equate reading on a device with other screen time rather than an actual book. Maybe indulge in some of your favorite old school books and magazines. It is a visual vocabulary to go with the idea. That would do two things. First it would be nonverbal connection with the concept of reading a BOOK, not just generic screen time. Second it would be an energy vibe. If you are reading something you yourself genuinely love, the love + book vibe will be there for him to sense, even on a subconscious level.

Speaking of the ‘loving it’ vibe, is there any topic he is already head over heels for? Dinosaurs, astronauts, cowboys, trains, cars, computers, needlepoint, advanced nuclear chemistry or anything at all? Whatever his interests already are outside of reading, put books in his hands about that thing, whatever it is. If he’s crazy for dinosaurs, give him dinosaur books, even if they are only picture books. If he wants to be a chef when he grows up, give him a kid’s cook written on his current reading level. If he likes wizards, prep him for Harry Potter days to come Then you are very literally connecting books and love. The hooman’s kitten comes to mind. She has always like music and songs. So they gave her loads of rhythmic, sing-songy books like Dr. Suess and Sandra Boyton. Now that she’s all grown up, she loves to read and she’s a music therapist. It is a two for one offer! I’m not sponsored or paid anything, but I’ve heard the hooman talk about scholastic.com as a good resource for kid’s books ideas.

When I drew a card, I got Strength, which might emphasize that idea of playing to his existing strengths (e.g. audio books if he has visual learning issues or loading him up with books about things he already loves.) It might also mean that not everyone loves reading but they still turn out to be strong, successful people.

Or it could mean YAHTZEE!

All best wishes to everyone, especially your little reader in potentia


Zombie Cat’s AMA for the Apocolypse

Zombie Cat

Pittsburgh likes our zombies.

My first apartment was 15 minutes away from where they filmed Night of the Living Dead, and I don’t know of anyone here who hasn’t been to the mall where Dawn of the Dead was filmed. Maybe that was part of the influence in creating my imaginary pet / alter ego Zombie Cat who emerged fully formed from the confluence of Menage A Tarot podcast’s episode “Test Tubes and Tarot Decks” and a Minute Physics episode about Schrodinger’s Cat.

I’ve always thought it would be fun to do a live AMA, but then we would have to figure out a good time and a good place that suits as many of you as possible. So why not do it RIGHT EXACTLY HERE and ALL THE DOGGONE TIME….

It may not be real-time fast, but it still asking and it is still anything. It still feels kind of end of the world out there, so Zombie Cat is the perfect person (Being? Entitiy? Fictional Character?) to take on a post apocalyptic zombie shamble speed Q&A session. Here is how it works

  1. You ask a question
  2. Zombie Cat writes the answer in a blog post.

When it comes to the AMA Q&A, it’s Zombie Cat’s world and we are just living in it. I’m giving ZC control over what he answers and when. Watch out for the snark. All of ZC’s writing is guaranteed to contain words, but has a 50-50 chance of being dead wrong. Ask anything in the comments at your own peril.

Today’s Tarot w/ Zombie Cat: A meeting of the minds

Braaaaiiiiiiinnss – they aren’t just for zombies anymore

It’s true that humans are social creatures. There is something primal about it that probably goes back to wolly mammoth BBQs. In modern times there is some other thread that ties us together other than pure group effort survival (altough some of that is needed nowadays too)

Wherever there is a meeting, there is a meeting of the minds. At a concert, it is the shared enjoyment of music. At a movie itvis the shared experience of images and stories. Pictures and stories don’t have to be called art and literature brain and emotion feeding kinds of things.

“What an astonishing thing a book is. It’s a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you’re inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, an author is speaking clearly and silently inside your head, directly to you.” – Carl Sagan

Whether you are reading a book and communing with that unknown author, or chatting it up on facetime with grandma, it is still human interaction on a much needed mental and emotional level, if not the physical one.

During times when our physical beings are kept separate, it is all the more important to connect in a meeting of the minds.

Trust me on that one, because, you know, brains.

Meet Zombie Cat 2020


Hey everyone. I’m Zombie Cat. I poofed into quantum probability collapsed existence back in 2015 after Schrodinger’s experiment and a Menage A Tarot podcast collided in the hooman’s head and came out as a blog post on her old Modern Oracle site. You can read a reprise of the original post here. Both the hooman and I are very grateful for that podcasting experience to say the least.

A few days ago she tossed me the keys to the joint and walked off mumbling something about Mad Max needing cheese ….or maybe it was make a mask and going for groceries. Either way she had a slightly stressed look on her face like she was about ready to go full metal shoulder pads and start singing Tina Turner – badly. I figured that was my clue to take over the Tarot readings for a day or two. I usually only come shambling around at Halloween, but the end of the world as we know it has my attention. I’m back for the duration of the pandemic, to give you all a little break from being all positive and productive and hopeful and all that crazy crap. Some days if you peel off those 5 day old pajamas and take a shower it’s an accomplishment. If you want something thoughtful, diplomatic, kind, calm, reassuring, inspiring or empowering – go get one of the hooman’s readings. That’s not my style. Seeing as I am

  1. a cat and
  2. a zombie

I don’t feel any particular need to sugar coat such things. Despite the fictional undead cat thing, I’m a damn fine Tarot reader. That’s why I usually charge $10 per reading. I’m cutting you people types a break while the lung rot is out there, and my yes or no readings are only $5 (three cards for the price of one) until the end of April. Maybe longer. The hooman said she’s not letting her guard down until someone squirts an FDA approved vaccine in her arm. Meanwhile she is always running around cautioning people about how Tarot doesn’t predict the future, trying to encourage them and show them the power of their choices and all that. I just call ’em as I see ’em. If you want to believe a prediction from an un-dead fictional cartoon cat, who am I to judge? Ask me anything. I’ll give you a straight up yes or no answer guaranteed to contain some words and have a 50% chance of being dead wrong. Any accidental snark or humor is free of charge. All policies and disclaimers apply, caveat emptor, swim at your own risk.

And go wash your hands.

Zombie Cat Tarot: Justice

Zombie apocalypse movies are all about the apocalypse, not the zombies. It’s not the zombie’s fault they woke up all corpse-ish and dead and hungry for brains. In a real crisis, it’s the living whose faces fall off and show you what has been inside all along.

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” – Maya Angelou