In a tiny, aging building along a busy Mesa, Arizona street, local fortune teller Madam Lisbane finishes a palm reading for one of her regular customers. She tells her that the coming equinox will create unimaginable havoc in her life, and that she must return for coaching if she’s to survive. Her customer, 83 year old Gladys Tortelli, questions our presence in the room, and is promptly told by Madam Lisbane to mind her own business; she pays and leaves.
“You can’t take any guff from the customers,” Lisbane tells us, “then they start thinking they know better.”
Yesterday, Madam Lisbane would be a standard gypsy summoning black magic and turning children into wood, but today she has announced that the nearly ten years deceased King of Pop, Michael Jackson, has officially chosen her as his psychic council and vessel.
“I was quite shaken by it, if I can be honest,” she says as she lights a cigarette. “It’s not everyday that the greatest pop star of all time chooses you as his conduit.”
The sorceress tells us that he came to her in the night, and performed a heart-stopping rendition of “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”, before announcing in a ghoulish howl that she was chosen to break his immortal silence.
“You wouldn’t believe how good of a performer he is until you see him in person, at the foot of your bed,” Lisbane says.
When we asked about the skepticism regarding her claim, her eyes drifted into the back of her head, “You’re just being ignorant,” she says to us in a high pitched tone. Her eyes then return, and she taps her cigarette over the ashtray, “Any more questions?” she asks.
But how could she be sure the specter she saw was, in fact, that of Michael Jackson?
“It was clear as day,” she says, “Who else looks like Morbius, The Living Vampire and crushes that performance?”
Criticism aside, we had to ask the question that the world has wanted know for years: were there any plans for a comeback tour?
Unfortunately, the incense-burning enchantress ruled it out, “Well, he’s dead, so… probably not.”
So why did the King of Pop choose her? What drew his spirit to the pythoness on that fateful night? We paid another $40 for her answer.
“Michael is very particular about the company that he keeps,” she tells us. “In fact, I wasn’t his first choice. Apparently he reached out to Macaulay Culkin, but said that he was ‘too old’ and ‘really let himself go’. That’s when he came to me. He told me that if anyone could tell his side of the story properly, I could. When I asked him why, he told me to ‘shut up’ and ‘stop being ignorant’. I think it’s because we’re both Virgos.”
As she spoke about her contact with Jackson, it became clear that the pop star’s spirit was anguished with the popularity surrounding the recent documentary that has captivated audiences across the world. As Lisbane puts it, “He just wishes that everyone could find the peace that he has, and enjoy his gift of music without letting these terrible stories ruin his good name,” she says, adding, “it’s a kind of a buzzkill.”
And although our session was coming to an end, one question still lingered on our mind. We paid an extra $50 just to ask if the stories presented in the documentary were, in fact, true.
The teller of fortunes answers us immediately, “Oh, one hundred percent. Yeah, said it felt ‘super good’. He’s messed up. Sick, really.”
Time will only tell how Michael Jackson - the man, the icon, the predator - will be written in the halls of history, but Madam Lisbane has a good idea. Unfortunately we ran out of cash, so stop by Lisbane’s Readings on Country Club Road, where your future is only worth what you give, and tell her The Spoof sent you.