1995: at the entrance of a building I was living in at that time
‘Jordi, what does this mean?’
Ms Garcia was pointing at a new sign I have just put in my mailbox:
Jordi Serra del Pino
My name was not the mystery. No, the question referred to the ‘prospectivista’ – the Catalan word for futurist. Mrs. Garcia was one of my neighbours, an old lady that had been very friendly with my wife and I since we moved into the building. Not only that, she had some influence in the community and I wanted to let her know that Futures (prospective) was a respectable practice. In retrospect, I think that I also wanted to impress her, let her know what a great thing Futures was and that she was lucky enough to have a trained futurist in her own building. Her look showed true curiosity and, maybe, a spark of anticipation. I started explaining Futures to her. I tried to sound erudite yet accessible; but, before too long, I began to realise that I was losing her. I decided to raise the stakes by improving (or so I thought) the quality of my explanation, but her body language was clear, I was a sinking ship. And there I was, desperately trying to find the most sophisticated examples to make my case, when she decided to put me out of my misery. With a movement of her hand she stopped me while asking a second question.
‘Just tell me this, do you throw tarot cards?’
That was the proverbial torpedo to my flotation line, I was not sinking, I had already sunk.
‘No Mrs. Garcia, I do not throw tarot cards.’