Horoscopes | Week of September 17-23, 2007

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I can't give you the exact specifics on why this or that person is taking things way too seriously… only that, on the general-astrology level, there's a Mars-Pluto opposition that's inciting folks to interpret all sorts of circumstances as obstructions or threats to their dominance, even if such an interpretation isn't entirely accurate. And because he's your ruler, whenever Mars is part of the picture, you're likely to be impacted more than many. In this case, Aries, with Mars in your 3rd, you could find yourself thrown into combative situations when all you were trying to do was have a little light-hearted fun, make an innocent or meaningless comment, or complete a supposedly simple errand. But, oh no, someone wants to know just what you meant by that… why you should be able to get away scot-free, when they are forced to do x, y or z… or how you live with yourself being such a hypocrite, deadbeat, or thoughtless asshole. While your head is still spinning in shock and confusion about how totally misguided this individual ('they're the friggin' hypocrite, deadbeat, or thoughtless asshole!') is, you have a choice to make. Will you fight back, climbing up onto an even higher high-horse, to speak even ruder remarks in an even louder voice… knowing that, as an Aries, you have a good shot at beating 'em at any war-game they want to play? Or will you opt for the much much sweeter revenge: continuing to have a gay ol' good time, barely stopping long enough to let their petty crap get you down, and skipping off to your next bit of fun while they stew in their own toxic juices?


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): What you require to take good care of yourself is rather straightforward… and you, Taurus, are a rather straightforward person. So if you're opting not to embrace the clear black-and-white-ness of listening to your own needs, then something—or someone—is getting in your way. Do you feel ashamed for needing what you need? Oftentimes, we internalize messages that our individual necessities are somehow frivolous… perhaps because someone close to us (now or long ago) doesn't have a similar need, or because we're so accustomed (for familial reasons, probably) to sharing the limited resources 'fairly' (as if such a method exists) that we don't expect to get much. But now that you're an adult, and a crafty one at that, you don't have to settle for obeying others' dictates or going without, just because there are others in the world who aren't as lucky. And chances are, in the real-time present moment, there's probably another person who's showing up to help illustrate this lesson of sticking up for your own safety and security, with their own grabby hands or scornful judgments on how you're going about it. (If it's not an actual interpersonal dynamic, then it could also be the manner in which you're viewing somebody else—with envy or judgment of your own.) You may actually have to ignore this one especially overbearing individual and/or refuse to waver on seeking to satisfy your non-negotiables… though, please be forewarned, they might resist your brush-off. By all means, don't let 'em pressure you into some lengthy exchange in which they try convincing you that they know better about what's good for you. Remember? It's straightforward, not unnecessarily complicated. If you give in now, the bullying will only worsen later.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Look, Gemini, everyone knows there's a pencil-thin line between love and hate… and before you launch into some ridiculous complaint about that guy or girl whose friggin' insane actions have gotten you all riled up, you'd better check in with yourself about which side of your line said individual is situated on. Are you sure you don't secretly adore the commotion? Is it possible that, instead of punching Mr. or Ms. Pain-in-the-Ass in the face, you actually want to jump his or her bones and bump uglies 'til the wee hours of the morn? I'm not expecting you to register your final answer by the time this week draws to a close… merely to entertain the notion that whatever strong feeling you're harboring at any given moment could well be only one side of a coin that, no matter whether it's showing heads or tails, is still worth the same amount in the end. And while we're at it, let me just remind you about Mars's present hangout in your sign, and how that recently deemed you 'Trouble with a capital "T"'—a role that's obviously still in effect, in light of the devilishly mixed messages you're giving off (or playing back to yourself in your head). So, right as you're about to give that person who's gotten under your skin a piece of your damn mind already… you might want to fess up that, barely beneath the surface of that over-hyped fury crossing your lips, you're also about ready to crack up into hysterical giggles (the kind that, once they slow down into the awkward aftereffects, could be your lead-in to that first or latest passionate kiss). There's very little chance you will stick to one side of the dividing line or another—not this week, and not for the next few months. Have a blast straddling the fence!


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Go for the simple, immediate, self-gratifying pleasures—and beyond that, don't even try to address any of the massive questions hovering out there this week (not even a little bit!). Trust me on this one, Cancer, the more forcibly you coerce yourself into 'staying focused on what matters', the stronger will be the urge to scream, 'Fuck everything!' and drown your impatience in a gallon of cheap wine, only to start angrily drunk-dialing people you're not even really upset with. You'll have to be on the lookout for frustrations that seemingly come out of nowhere… as well as being extra-careful not to take 'em out on unsuspecting souls because you're convinced you do know why you're so damn frustrated when, in fact, you don't. I promise you: You will end up feeling guilty afterward, if you don't find healthier ways to vent your passing sense of aggro angst than dragging somebody else into it. (By the way, tugging on their heartstrings in passive silence, but all the while pitching psychic tantrums, still qualifies as 'dragging others in'.) The minute the nervous dissatisfaction shoots through your body, you've got to take a nice long walk through the park or along the water… pick up your book, sit at a café, and escape into someone else's epic story… cook a deliciously time-consuming meal for yourself (and a loved one, if you promise to behave during dinner), or bake some hearty bran muffins… anything that channels your uneven energies into a slower, steadier rhythm. While the edginess will definitely move on soon enough, this is merely the beginning of a longer-term lesson in how you handle Mars issues. Can you take control over how your physical energies get used, or will they simply sweep you into their whirlwind and work you over 'til you yelp?


LEO (July 23-August 22): You can't be all things to all people—and still expect to feel good about it, or not get caught later on in some messy misunderstanding. That's okay, though, Leo… your sparkle has begun to return (repeat: 'thank you, Venus!'), and, along with it, a newly solidified sense of your true personality that'll (hopefully) inspire you to stop making concessions to certain folks, just so you can 'stay on their good side'. Please let yourself off the hook, if you've recently allowed yourself to go along on others' rides because you needed a break from the responsibility of Leonine stardom or, hell, you just didn't know what else to do. Think of those ego-compromises as your survival instinct having kicked in. But you've now survived, and no longer require sucking up the true grit behind your fancy party face, painted on clown-like to hide the tears. Newly wise and tired of waiting around, you can stop bullshitting now. If you feel the pressure to sell yourself short or out, just to impress a particular pal or to prove you belong to the group, it's just not worth it anymore. Don't play both sides, or you won't find your niche in either. It's time to start standing out again. And if this or that person is uncomfortable with the bigger-brighter-and-more-beautiful you… well, I guess the room's not spacious enough for the both of you, and you should decide whether you're staying or going.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Doubts closing in? Second-guesses daring to undermine your ambitious stretch toward more? Feh! I say, Virgo… don't give in now, when it's obvious the astro-gods are challenging you to be strong and steadfast. All you need is a combination of gumption and faith in the power of intentions, in order to battle the 'evil forces' that would seek to pound you back down into your humble cave. What's behind these 'evil forces'? I don't know if it's good or bad news to report: It's you, my dear… and whatever (hopefully unintentionally) cruel number those well-meaning-enough (let's assume, for this argument) family members pulled on you during the child-rearing process, more or less lovingly, transmitting residue of their self-doubts, dissatisfactions and perhaps even envious feelings toward you, their own child. (Crazy, I know!) But this is no resentment-filled blame session, oh no. The point I'm trying to make here is that the potential to combat the 'evil' with your own stubborn, competitive good is absolutely in your hands. However, old psychological crap is a formidable opponent… especially when, considering your Virgoness, such habits (e.g., what you're 'good' at, what you 'could never ever do', etc.) run way deep. Put your dukes up, and thrust yourself into the spotlight wherever you hope to gain additional respect, responsibility or renown—even if you've got to nudge somebody less worthy aside. Second place is such 'old hat'. Get yourself noticed already. And if you feel really nervous about taking such a bold step, take that as a very good sign.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): It'd only take one quick scan of the other 'scopes I've authored this week to clue you into a running theme—with a Mars-Pluto opposition dominating the scene, the potential for butting heads or scuffling against looming obstacles or other such discordant interactions is way up. But you, Libra, may have an upper hand when it comes to avoiding the worst, thanks to your ruling planet Venus helping you not stand out too strikingly from the crowd or the consensus. So while everybody else is hunting for arguments or refusing to relinquish their seat at the head table, you'd be a wise cat by staying far out of the fray. With the Mars-Pluto business falling across your 9th/3rd axis, the biggest battle for you to participate in is one of higher knowledge and perspective—and nobody else needs to become sloppily indicted in it. Should the fighting spirit awaken in you this week, I'd advise directing it into a quest for getting beneath surfaces… delving deeper into, under and behind whatever topics of interest are both interesting and currently insufficiently explored. All of this, though, is your own debate. As far as all other people are concerned, simply rely on your incomparable knack for saying the right thing at the right time (as opposed to voicing the internal dialogue that might be going on inside you), and your charms will save you from the line of fire. Yet, if you don't take what I'm writing you to heart, you may find yourself wandering right into unnecessarily unpleasant exchanges… as a result of you weighing in too strongly, with an opinion you may not have thought all the way through, and which may end up changing once you do a bit more research.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Right as I'm about to launch into, yes, another Scorpio horoscope warning about the heightened possibility of conflict… I urge you to hear me out. It's hard not to come to such a conclusion, when glancing at the planetary outlook and discovering your two ruling planets Mars and Pluto in opposition to each other. But rather than continue by attempting to soothe your Scorpionic spirit with paltry appeals to 'tone it down' or 'watch your words' (so as not to injure all those poor defenseless creatures out there), let me offer a different approach in light of the current situation. How about: The conflict is wholly inside you. To be more specific, the reason that a certain person is driving you so friggin' crazy right now—and perhaps tempting you to tell 'em off, in a way only a Scorpio could—is because you are ambivalent about just how involved you want to be. (This could be a romantic and/or sexual dynamic, a familial one, or some touchy financial entanglement.) That is, you eagerly want to dive right in up to your ears (is there any other way?)… on some level. And yet, you fear (rightfully perhaps) what you will have to give up to get as deep as you desire. So, in the magnificently human move to entertain contradictory intentions at the same time, you're going to (consciously or not) try to go all the way into it with them and still keep a large chunk of the pie for yourself. In that frantic dance, of course, it's far too easy to lose sight that this is what you're doing and instead externalize the dialogue—claiming not to want what you want and then continuing to pursue it, blaming the other person for trying to take something from you when they probably aren't, knocking them down a peg or two so you're in a better position to pick and choose how it's going to go. (The potential permutations go on and on.) Obviously, Scorpio, you can see how conflict is liable to erupt. But remember this: You ultimately can't have it both ways, at least not without constant maneuvering and a big headache for all parties. You're either in and intertwined, or out and in complete control.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): It wouldn't hurt to prepare for someone close to you to lash out against what they'd say is your inability to see things from their side. You shouldn't be too surprised if they vent annoyances that could date back awhile, but which they'll claim they were too fearful or intimidated by you to initially share. And don't be so taken aback if you also have plenty to say to them, in your own defense or in a separate-and-unrelated(-though-now-indistinguishably-clumped-together) offense that, if you're not careful, could end up ripping this person a new asshole. Need I point it out? None of this promises to be very pretty. Chances are, even if a conversation about the said topic(s) has never occurred, you already have a pretty good idea of 'what you did'—and why your partner, friend or co-worker doesn't like it. Yet, if you honestly think you're in the right, then you probably recognize no incentive to back down. If you're feeling confident and firm in your position, then I suppose you should just let 'em grumble. This is ultimately a battle of wills, as framed by Pluto in your 1st opposed by Mars in the good-ol' relationship-oriented 7th house… and I'm not telling you whether I think you should fight to the death (of the relationship? of somebody's innocence?) or give in (for convenience's sake? because you see the partial error of your ways?). I can only describe the situation as I see it. Oh, yeah, and throw in one more important fact: Due to Mars's upcoming retrograde, you will very likely revisit this situation during the Christmas/New Year's season. So even if you get to the 'over and done' point, it still probably ain't over.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): If I bumped into you during the middle of some workday this week, Capricorn, I'd seriously want to stay out of your path. You've got the gusto to steamroll through heaps of errands and chores… and more than that, it's almost as if you're being compelled by some hidden force to keep at it, tirelessly, as if to ward off some encroaching recognition of something (what it is, I couldn't begin to guess) that you'd rather not allow to catch up with you. So, staying busy and productive—perhaps even to the point of being a little scary to those watching—is actually a perfectly appropriate means to keep from falling downward. But let me add another piece to this puzzle: You're also giving off a certain effusion of delectable desirability, liable to draw some definite hotties (or the sometimes-dormant hottie inside your ol' standby sweetheart) to your door. In other words, you've got it this week. And you'd probably find yourself in a rather romantic (or outright horny) mood—if you stopped working long enough to notice. Now, maybe this vibe you're emitting is somehow interlinked with whatever 'something' you're trying to avoid… in which case I guess I can understand why you'd rather toil long hours than confront an attraction (mutual or one-sided) that you just can't deal with right now. (However, I must point out, it's not going to disappear until some acknowledgment is made.) But if they are unrelated… well, then, if I were you, I'd step away from the overtime responsibilities every so often during the week, or you'll miss a supreme chance for lovin'. Adult play is another good way to occupy or distract yourself, after all.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Just keep a 'high-minded' stance toward your romantic-relationship life, and you're liable to slide into a wonderfully copacetic ease in the dynamic between the two of you. And if you're single, that means being unafraid to stand tall in your principles… and ready to walk away from a potential sweetheart rather than sacrifice what you've already determined to be crucial to your interpersonal happiness. Now that Venus is direct and back into position opposite Neptune in your 1st, it is quite simple to slip back into the togetherness mindset—assuming you've successfully completed the Saturn-in-the-7th trials of the past two years, and affirmed that you indeed know both what you want from a relationship and how to properly behave in order to get it. If in fact you've asked the questions, found satisfactory answers, and made necessary adjustments… then, hell, let it be that easy, and enjoy the companionship. You'll be sure you've done it right if, rather than restricting your fullest self-expression as an overly proud size-14 might squeeze her voluptuous frame into a too-tight size-10, you feel wholly free to embrace your true larger-than-life-ness… without apology to those who'd prefer a different sort of character. As long as you and the appropriate person you're with (or the appropriate absence of an inappropriate person you're reveling in) are having a good time, then it's perfectly awesome if the observers don't quite 'get' it. It's your game—play by the rules you two set forth, and both of you are winners.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): I know we've talked previously about you coming to more fully own your power in the professional (and/or public-world) sphere, Pisces… and this is an ongoing process of many years, thanks to Pluto's forever-and-a-day transit through your 10th house. But quite honestly, this wouldn't be the wisest week for pushing the envelope with bosses, co-workers, authority figures or 'The System'. That's not to say your observations about the crooked or shameful dynamics in which you're inescapably caught in are totally off the mark. Yet, what's churning inside you at this very moment is not merely a reaction to what's going on around you—it's also messily intermingled with other emotional upsets (conscious or just barely evident) that may be factually unrelated but still have you stirred up much more savagely than you might be on another occasion. Therefore, should you choose to unabashedly go up against the so-called 'power structure' (which may be real or imagined-to-be-more-powerful-than-it-is), you'll read as if your fists are already clenched and you're swinging madly into the air, hoping to hit whatever enters your personal space. Not a good attitude to possess going into a struggle where, frankly, you're the underdog. If you've waited this long and done little about it, then this isn't the time to start stirring shit up—and expect to win a quick victory. If in fact you do intend to work yourself further up the ladder (of the workplace structure or in your own self-empowerment climb), you should probably begin more humbly, with strategizing moves that'll take the next six months or so to fully enact. Until then, lose yourself in the little-picture details. Thinking too much about the whole kit-'n'-caboodle just may keep you tied up in knots.