Columnist for Friday, 2/16 - Cindy

Industrial Strength Astrology

Here are your horoscopes for the rest of the year. For the record, I would like to submit that astrology is pure fiction, with no rational foundation, and is beneath the attention of intelligent individuals. The fact that it's always right is sheer coincidence.

Aries: There are many chambers of learning within the Shaolin temple of life. The hardest for you, of course, is the Chamber of Humility. So we'll begin with small steps. I can't expect that you'll hold yourself to the same standards as the incompetents that surround you, but remind yourself that their own personal dignity, however misplaced, is as important to them as yours is to you. You might find that treating people with respect, as if they were equals, will bring out their better natures and make them slightly less insufferable.

Taurus: Now is the single greatest time to be alive. Thousands of years of human culture and technological advancement have come together so that you may appreciate this moment. Art is more meaningful, laughter is a thousand times more raucous, and the sex just can't be beat. Sure, you said the same thing last week and the week before, and you'll say it again next week, too. But you'll be just as right each and every time. Ignore the weak-minded cretins who would dismiss this deep understanding of the Universe.

Gemini: "You must be the Pizza delivery boy. Oh, I seem to have misplaced my checkbook! (Blink, blink.). How ever am I going to pay you?" Cue the funk music and drop the nightgown. Life is one big cheesy adult film, filled with bad music, cheap sets, and horribly unlikely scenarios. But the sex is real, so hey, what are you complaining about? There are a million bad porno flicks for every good one, but you know that if you were making the calls, every come shot would be tasteful, yet realistic. Make your directing debut.

Cancer: There's a feeling you get when you're young and in love that leaves you dancing on air. You haven't felt that feeling in a long time. Your Vulcan half tells you this is probably all for the best. Truly mature companionship, it says, is nothing like that. Remind the Mister Spock within about the time he nearly crashed the Enterprise into a collapsing planet. He was, if memory serves, too busy bawling his eyes out because he never told his mother he loved her. Stop listening to him and go kiss someone. Now.

Leo: The most elegant depictions of virtue stem from those who possess the least of it, which, really, is where your greatest strength lies. Those who wallow in personal virtue understand it the least. You, however, are detached enough to appreciate it with some perspective. A hint of roasted garlic in a pasta dish is a finer expression of flavor than eating a raw clove, right? And isn't a dollop of hot fudge on vanilla ice cream a finer way to enjoy chocolate than consuming a plain Hershey bar? Let good will and selflessness flavor your life, but please, only in moderation.

Virgo: Let's be honest for a moment. Like most Virgos, you don't believe in astrology. You'll read it aloud with some friends for its entertainment value, but your unflinching dedication to conventional rationality will explain away even the most troubling coincidences. Astrology is nothing but a series of hopelessly vague platitudes that could apply to anyone, right? Then how did I know you felt this way? Watch out for the guy in the red and gold striped tie. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Libra: There's a fine line between seeking the sublime wisdom that stems from thoughtful self-reflection and turning into a neurotic freak because you're constantly talking to yourself. Take a deep breath. Now another. Now tell yourself "I will decide inconsequential matters with a coin toss, if only to save time." Peel yourself off the ceiling -- I know that leaving decisions up to chance frightens you to the bone -- but there's a method to this madness. If the toss goes one way, and you think "but... but... I wanted it to go the other way..." then go the other way and bed done with it. Soon, you will have accumulated enough free time to perfect cold fusion.

Scorpio: Some people might accuse you of being duplicitous, but you and I both know that "multi-tasking" is a far more accurate description. Everyone modifies their identity somewhat in response to different circumstances. It isn't your fault if you're just better at it than the rest of the world. You love who you love, you want what you want, and if the occasional creative re-interpretation of events helps placate some of the more judgmental and intolerant souls in your life, so be it. Be true to your nature: even if you are guilty, that doesn't mean you have to feel guilty.

Sagittarius: The Roman Emperor Nero fancied himself as quite the poet. He traveled throughout the Empire, competing against the local performers and invariably triumphing. This might have had something to do with his promises to lower local taxes when he won and his tendency to execute less than appreciative audience members. Perhaps you know someone like this. Perhaps that someone is you. Challenging yourself is good for the soul, but picking only the battles that are rigged in your favor just sets you up for a fall. In any case, keep up the violin lessons.

Capricorn: An elephant never forgets. Neither does a Capricorn. Well, a sober Capricorn anyway. Adult elephants, in fact, will be held in place by a rope around their foot, because they think the rope (which they could easily snap) is the chain that secured their foot as a baby elephant. You're held back by a number of similar ropes. Be mindful before you cast them off, however. That yellow line down the middle of the road is just paint on asphalt, but if you mock its significance it just might get the last laugh.

Aquarius: That thing you said you'd do... you know, that thing you didn't want to do but felt obligated to do? Don't do it. And furthermore, explain why you don't want to do it. If your refusal is accepted there will be no bad blood, otherwise you won't have lost anything worth having. Trust me, in life you can either lie all the time or you can tell the truth all the time. Deciding each case on its individual merit is seldom worth the trouble, and you're fooling fewer people than you think.

Pisces: They say that a frog, thrown in a pot of boiling water, will hop out, but that a frog in a pot of slowly heating water will allow itself to be boiled alive. This is a total lie. A frog dropped in boiling water dies instantly, and if amphibians know anything by instinct it's when to get the hell out of the water. Pisces, however, are not blessed with such wisdom. I know the water's just getting to that nice, jacuzzi-like warmth, but if it starts to get any hotter you might question whether whoever's controlling the heat has your best interests at heart.


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