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?The Mad Scientist

By Richard Unger.

Reprinted from the Hand Analysis Newsletter Vol. 6 Issue 2

The Mad Scientist Hand is an archetypal hand shape denoting a highly specific and unusual personality. Named after the wild-haired time machine inventor in the movie Back to the Future, Mad Scientist types are a total delight once you get past the bear trap on their front lawn. In combination with the fingerprints shown below, we have the makings for a wonderfully delicious plot for EarthTV. (For those who aren't hooked up yet, EarthTV is the channel in Heaven where, at the flip of a dial, angels can tune in and watch Earthlings do their incredible melodrama. High ratings guarantee many more years before re-runs take over.)

Life Purpose: Persuasion + Wisdom

The key ingredients for a Mad Scientist Hand are as follows: an Air (rectangular) shaped hand with a squarish palm, long Mercury (little) finger and exaggerated spatulate (rounded, ball-like) fingertips. The flat sided, square palmed Air person is noted for technical proficiency and practical, task intelligence. The long Mercury finger denotes a quick and curious mind, a keen observer. So far, so good. Scientists, engineers, computer types often have these qualities in common. What adds particular spice to the stew are the super-spatulated tips.

Tip Type

A person's tip type is an important variable in hand analysis. To oversimplify things, fingertips are like a person's antennas to the world; the texture of one's entire reactive mechanism is indicated by tip shape. Like many other systems in the hand, tips come in four basic types, each with a series of sub-types. In the Mad Scientist Hand, an uncommon tip type (one that is 180° opposite of the rest of the hand) combines to create an interesting duality: the orderly, analytic is countered by an extremely free wheeling, creative energy.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg (no pun intended). The merger of disciplined thought and creative freedom, though not exactly easy to maintain, is common enough to find in numerous hands. However, in the Mad Scientist archetype, the tips show an exaggerated spatulation, indicating an extreme need for freedom of expression. These are the tips visible on Janis Joplin's hands and conform to her public image as the rebellious renegade. "Whatever I feel like doing, whenever I want to," is the motto at the super spatulated clubhouse, assuming of course, that you could even get super spatulateds to join any club at all.

Gaining Entry

"Gotta be me, gotta be free," tattooed on their forehead, these iconoclastic individualists struggle to carve a niche on this ever more crowded, homogenized, lock-stepped planet. At least, that what I hear when they confide in me. Most super spatulateds gave up on us robotnicks long ago. They speak to the rest of us Earthlings through a crooked grin/grimace that seems to say something funny is going on but if we can't figure out the joke, the hell with us.

However, if they sense that I hold their super spatulated drive for freedom as a legitimate need, equivalent to my need for food and shelter, they often start sharing with me the overriding utopian vision that fuels their motor. No longer a member of the oppressive majority, I am welcomed into the brotherhood. They share their secrets, bring out their momentoes.


Yesterday's pair of hands revealed a Mad Scientist arrangement with Persuasion + Wisdom for a Life Purpose. The last time I had read for a Persuader was over a year ago in Europe. A tall man with a striking presence, he was great at persuading others as long as the cause was one he had no personal investment in. He could transfix a jury on complex legal matters, but couldn't negotiate a raise or get his fifteen-year-old daughter off the telephone.

Another Persuader Life Purpose I recall was on the hands of a woman who felt manipulated her entire life: first by her parents, then by her husband, later her kids, and eventually by strangers off the street I suppose. Her challenge was to recognize Persuasion as something positive or she would never let her Life Purpose emerge at all.

Dust, Death and Cat Food

So to persuade her that Persuasion does not have to become evil manipulation, I pulled out my best Persuasion story. 1979, Houston, Texas: I'm still working as a financial planner reviewing the financial data of an 84-year-old woman whose house smells of dust, death, and stale cat food. The cat food is on the kitchen table, the dust is everywhere, and death seemed imminent.

The Seven Rungs of Hell

She can't afford people food (no less her medicine) she tells me as I look at the $100,000 she has in the bank at four percent interest. She's been living on Social Security checks and cheap cat food (the better brands being outside her budget). Quick math shows me she can live quite comfortably if her money were in a Money Market Fund (as safe as a bank, interest rate 20% back then), but her banker warned her never to listen to anyone who suggests any other financial vehicle except his own.

Before I can decide which rung of hell is appropriate for bankers who are willing to abuse an 84-year-old for so small a profit it can't possibly matter to the bank, I need to convince her to move her money. She's not all there upstairs, but she's there enough to know someone is trying to persuade her about something and she's not buying it. Four hours later, I've made the toughest sale of my sales career and it carries zero commission. No dollars now, no residuals later. But, I do have this great story for any reluctant Persuaders I may run into.

It's A Dirty Job, But

You see, Mr. Mad Scientist, as a Wisdom Persuader here at the Earth University, it is your job to share your wisdom with us idiots who can't see what is right before our eyes if only we would open them. Yes, I know we can be annoyingly opaque. Even down right hostile at times. But, dirty job that it is, you have selected this as your Life's Work. What's that? They don't want to listen. They this, they that. If it were going to be a cakewalk, it wouldn't be worth a lifetime's purpose, would it?

He tugged on his wildly unkempt beard, eyes twinkling like a kid planning to use his erector set and the broken toaster to invent some newfangled time machine. This puts a whole new spin on his current circumstances he reported. He thanked me and got up to leave. I knew he would be back shortly. His car keys were still sitting on my desk.