It's been an exhausting week for members of the Charlatan Society.

It was bad enough putting up with the sticks and stones thrown by the media, never mind the endless taunts of the sceptics, pooh-poohing the recent warnings of Mr Moon Man - who is not, I should hasten to add, a member of our society, but for whom we share a certain sympathetic rapport and admiration.

So, having delivered a 5.1 earthquake right on the knocker as predicted, where are the astrophysicists now with their sneers and guffaws at us psychics, who happen to understand there are more mysterious things going on than meet the eye?

However even I - a fully fledged charlatan from way back - was faintly surprised to learn of Mr Moon Man's wide range of expertise in astral matters and was intrigued to learn that one could understand a cat's psychic influences by studying its paws.

I don't actually own a cat, being firmly of the view that any pet that believes it has the right to disdainfully claw household furniture should be exterminated at birth.

However I do own a small dog and now believe I could enjoy my mutt's psychic depths if I explore (via its paws) the influences that the Zodiac has on his personality.

A copy of Mr Moon Man's book, Pawmistry, (get it?) has been offered to me on the internet.

Although it's in slightly foxed condition, I'm now debating whether I'm up to handling the age-old tools of divination.

Will I be inviting Mr Moon Man to join our society? Well, actually, after considered opinion, sadly, the answer is no.

Although Pawmistry makes him a strong contender for membership, there is the vexing problem that he did successfully predict a sizeable earthquake, suggesting that his calculations were more "scientific" than merely ju-ju.

The qualification for membership, as laid down in our house rules, is simple. You have to produce succinct documentation that you have managed to fool a percentage of the population, over time, by claiming to be an expert in some jiggery-pokery activity that is clearly at the expense of the imprudent believer.

Most readers will presume we're just a motley collection of tarot card readers, crystal gazers and astral projectionists. Let me assure everybody, true-blue charlatan membership goes far beyond the everyday paranormal experience.

Our list of former directors of failed finance companies is probably one of the most extensive in the world.