AT 14, British transplant Peter Joyes learned the art of "Old English Tea Cup Readings" from his mother, in their Henley-on-Thames country home. Joyes, who arrived in the US in 1960, 'reads' tea leaves and gemstones, offering insight and intuitive interpretations for private and corporate affairs, and frequently conducts his popular table-side readings at private parties, coffee shops, and tearooms throughout the country.

In the traditional spirit of trashy tabloids (National Enquirer, The New York Times, etc.), the Portland Mercury asked Peter Joyes to reveal to its readers his psychic predictions for 2001.

Says Joyes, "My predictions for the New Year have to do with the increase of anxiety in all its forms." Who could have guessed?

Keeping this in mind, the Mercury asked Joyes the following important questions.

Mexico City: What popular major catastrophes will befall this historic city in 2001?

"Voters will continue to become even more disappointed in the lack of action by political leadership on behalf of the poor and the impoverished, despite continued expectations of progress. Erupting volcanoes are the metaphorical equivalent of a giant zit on the surface of the earth."

Apocalypse now or later?

"The four horsemen have taken up rowing. They are now the four oarsmen with the pucker lips. But seriously, their names identify characteristics within each of us which, if we let them get out of hand, will indeed bring about the end of our world. The four horsemen are named: IDENTITY (maintaining my image to avoid being seen as a fool), OBSESSION (anxious fixation--especially on fundamentalism--I am right and you are wrong), ENTITLEMENT (the belief that I am owed something by the world or the government), and REVENGE (holding on to resentment --'Somebody's gonna pay for this!')"

Will the Queen admit she put a hit out on Diana?

"We will be ever more amazed by stories of the Royals in 2001. Any time people become obsessed with maintaining their public image, they risk public embarrassment."

Why don't psychics read goat innards anymore?

"Goat innards don't reveal much. The Anti-vivisection Society has objected. I am proud to tell you that no animals, politicians, or advertising executives have been harmed in the creation of these predictions."

Will any world-famous fashion designers fall prey to an assassin's bullet?

"World-famous fashion designersNo assassinations here as if we care. Fashion designers will popularize two hot new garments for women. One is Arm Hosiery, and the other is a Buttock Bra."

What does the Zeta stand for, in Catherine Zeta-Jones' name, and will Michael Douglas die having sex with her?

"Zees Eees Thees Actors last-ditch ploy to land a big movie role. Good luck!"

Why do so many people like New Year's psychic predictions?

"People like New Year's predictions because they never come true But as in the world of financial forecasting, it doesn't matter if they are true or not--the question to ask is 'Do they help you make better decisions?'"

What's up with the pope?

"This Pope is the best thing that could have happened to the Catholic Church. As a result of his extreme conservatism, we can now be sure that there will at last be significant and useful changes when he dies."

What will be the next great food fad?

"The next great food fad is here. It is upon us. There is a significant backlash against all these packages with 'NO ARTIFICIAL INGREDIENTS' printed all over the label. People want to know more about these artificial ingredients. They are asking important questions like 'How can I get this TOFU to taste like steak?' and 'Why am I being denied the opportunity to experience all those unknown side effects?' The next big food fad will be IMITATION ARTIFICIAL INGREDIENTS. Made of pure polystyrene, they look very similar to real artificial ingredients. I have some featured in the Artificial Products page of my website. They meet tobacco industry standards for craving and addiction. They make your health food taste normal."

What's the best tea to use to do a tea reading? Do you drink it?

"The best tea to use for a tea leaf reading has large leaves which create revealing pictures and story images when the liquid is either drained into a saucer, or sipped carefully with the little finger raised."

For more information about Peter Joyes, visit his website at For booking information or private readings (which range from $5 to $15), he can be contacted at or by calling 503-833-7630, or 800- 721-2250.