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Free Will Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Unless you buy my sacred Atlantean no-stick talisman, you will suffer from arachibutyrophobia, a fear of peanut butter adhering to the roof of your mouth. If you refuse to order my ancient Egyptian hemp dream catcher, you will contract myxophobia, a fear of slime. If you don't obtain my book, How To Attract Your Very Own Millionaire Spirit Guide, you will be tormented by anthonephophobia, a fear of flowers falling from clouds. April Fool! You are currently less susceptible to being manipulated by scare tactics than you have been in years. You'll be shrewdly courageous in the coming days.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Traditional astrologers are right when they say Taureans are conventional, of average intelligence and slow to change. Most are too addicted to the accumulation of status symbols to risk brave rebellions or to catalyze ingenious innovations. April Fool! Everything I just said is a dirty lie — and you'll soon prove it. To inspire your overthrow of Taurean stereotypes, I offer these geniuses, all born under the sign of the Bull, as role models: Salvador Dali, Martha Graham, Teilhard de Chardin, Thomas Pynchon, Golda Meir, Charles Mingus, Mother Jones, Richard Feynman, Dante Alighieri, Malcolm X, David Byrne, Calamity Jane, Orson Welles, Eva Peron, Florence Nightingale, Sigmund Freud, Mary Wollstonecraft, Margot Fonteyn.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): It's high time for you to create your own exercise video or fragrance or line of handbags. Then nominate yourself for a MacArthur Foundation "genius" award, Nobel Prize or Purple Heart. It wouldn't be outlandish for you to charge people a hefty fee for coming to their parties and simply being your big, beautiful self. April Fool! The preceding was exaggerated — but not by much. It's my boisterous way of prodding you to unleash your self-promotion urges. Don't rely on others to toot your horn.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): A cabal of android sportscasters, left-wing Amish bankers, supermodel scientists and sexy Islamic celebrities is conspiring to deprive you of your God-given right to treat yourself like crap. Behind the scenes, they are manipulating fate to prevent you from denying yourself pleasure or sabotaging your success. April Fool! There are indeed conspirators who are working to ensure that you treat yourself with more loving kindness, but they are not the folks mentioned above.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Wear a T-shirt that says, "Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most." Slap a bumper sticker on your car that reads, "Having abandoned my search for the truth, I am now looking for a good fantasy." If you're a woman, make frequent use of this declaration: "You say I'm a bitch like that's a bad thing." If you're a man: "I'm hung like Einstein and as smart as a horse." April Fool! While it is a favorable time to adopt a feisty, unpredictable, nothing-to-lose attitude, you'll get best results if you mix a bit of elegance in with this campy approach. Try these sly Oscar Wilde quotes. "I can resist everything except temptation." "Nothing succeeds like excess." "Always forgive your enemies. Nothing annoys them so much." "We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars."

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Dave Barry writes a humor column for 600 publications, while my horoscopes appear in only 130. It's natural that he receives more acclaim than I. Still, I was jealous when I heard that the people of Grand Forks, N. Dak., named a human-waste disposal facility after Barry. The only similar honor I've garnered came when a café manager in Seattle started calling his cappuccino machine "Rob Brezsny." I want more. If you value the advice I offer, I demand that you give my name to an object or pet that's important to you. April Fool! Whatever gifts you may glean from my words, you can be sure I provide them with no strings attached. That's precisely the policy you should follow right now: Give unconditionally or don't give at all.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): I have embedded a coded message in this horoscope. It asks a very special Libra to become my new consort, muse for my next book, and my hiking and Scrabble partner. Could it be you? If so, you will intuitively know exactly how to decipher the message and communicate that you're ready for me. April Fool! There are currently some very interesting persons sending you "Let's merge!" signals, but none of them are me. I suggest you drop your projections and expectations about who would be a perfect collaborator and open your mind to what's right in front of you.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): To collect the full share of good luck which is your birthright (but which to date has been withheld from you), you must cast aside your given name and adopt one of these three new super-monikers: 1) Freejoycrispfecundleapingflashdazzler. 2) Surgingsoaringfoxygeniuswhirlingrisktaker. 3) Buoyantimprovisingfearlesswideawakefunwrestler. April Fool! It's true that you have not yet cashed in on a sizable share of the miraculous fortune allotted to you at birth, but nothing so superficial as changing your name will give you the power to pull it off. On the other hand, embodying the spirit of any of the three super-monikers above could do the trick.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): God passionately wants you to remain just the way you are for as long as possible. He is deeply opposed to you shifting your opinions or revising your approach to life. Just look at how he has designed heaven: It's a perfectly tranquil place where nothing ever evolves. April Fool! In truth, God loves everything to change all the time — you included. In the coming days, God will be especially delighted when you move and shake your world. In solidarity with the restlessness of the creator, become a proud fluxaholic.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): The moon is void of course on March 27, from 5:31 p.m. till 10:04 p.m. PST, and then again from 11:12 p.m. April 2 till 3:58 a.m. April 3. Don't even think about doing anything important, interesting or innovative then. Likewise, hide in a closet while the moon squares Jupiter on the morning of March 28, refrain from stepping on sidewalk cracks while the moon squares Neptune at 2:16 p.m. March 30, and avoid dreaming of walking under ladders on the night of April 5, when the moon squares Venus. April Fool! The stars don't shape your future that specifically. Blind fate isn't relentlessly angling to ambush you. You aren't a helpless puppet enslaved to your conditioning. Imminent events will prove this.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Yell at your TV. Don't make your bed. Impersonate a wolf. Convert your landlord to paganism. Try to build a flying saucer. Apply to Harvard. Put chili sauce on your chocolate candy. Feel sorry for a devious lawyer. Carry a six-pack of Red Tail Ale home from the store on a skateboard. Do whatever your Rice Krispies tell you to do. Have great sex on a long train ride. Tune in to the hidden agendas of people with tattoos of Kirstie Alley. Steal the lint from the dryers in a Laundromat and use it to make animal sculptures for someone you secretly admire. April Fool! Only 12 of these instructions can be justified by an analysis of current astrological aspects. Can you guess which one is bogus?

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): In 2001, Adam Burtle put his soul up for auction on eBay. Before officials stepped in and forbade the sale, bidding had reached $400. As far as I know, no one has ever tried a similar stunt on any of the other popular auction sites. Given the current astrological omens, you Pisceans would be most likely to get away with it; I bet you'd also earn the highest bids and incur the smallest karmic penalty. Couldn't you use the extra bucks? April Fool! I was just testing you, dear. In fact, you must raise your immunity to cute but evil propositions and fun but dumb invitations. There is no God. Life’s a bitch and then you die. "No pain, no gain" is the ultimate truth. April Fool! Those assertions are profound yet silly

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