Horoscopes | Week of July 25-31, 2005

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The most important question you'd better start asking yourself is, 'How is it going to work?' Now, I'm as big a believer in taking faithful leaps and presuming the best… but that 'trust is all I need' approach sometimes falls short, especially in the shorter-term. To attest to your preparedness (either to certain key stakeholders or to the universe-at-large), you should plan on showing some physical form of the goods, whether through clearly delineated timelines and budgets or in actual product, prototype or work-in-progress. Talk is cheap… and only gets cheaper, the longer it's all you have to show for yourself. The good news is, if you humbly admit your shortcomings and recruit trusted team-members to assist in the doing and making, you'll have your goods to show in no time at all.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): If you haven't yet read this week's article, then I suggest you do, since its topic impacts you greatly… that is, Mars entering your sign this week, where it will stay for an insanely long seven months. This will grant you the sustained energy boost necessary to push through any obstacle, real or perceived, that stands in your way. But in quintessential Taurean style, you should expect it to take the full seven months—including gradual effort made on a weekly basis, and the occasional stop-and-start—to clear the targeted impediments. As Mars makes a t-square to Saturn and Chiron upon its entrance in Taurus, the first piece of the job at hand entails an active integration of your inner and outer personalities, so that you're less able to let yourself get away with the disappearing-and-reappearing act. Part of assenting to Saturn's 2-year program for emotional wellness is learning to accept that there's nothing to hide. Easier said than done, I know, but it will be a natural effect of developing a greater feeling of safety. Since these are longer-term projects I've got you working on, let the notions sink into your consciousness for a while. If need be, print out or write these recent horoscopic nuggets down for regular revisiting.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Your characteristic quick-draw reactions are functioning at below-par reliability, Gemini… but perhaps the biggest danger is that you won't notice or believe me. See, everything might seem to be its usual hunky-dory, yet there are invisible forces at work that convolute the normal flow of instincts. You'll have less conscious a grip on what gushes forth. Even your best intentions are liable to complicate, rather than simplify, matters… so only imagine what could happen if your motivations lapse into 'get me out of this' or 'I've got this one in the bag' self-service. Need I remind you that ruling trickster Mercury is retrograde in, of all places, your house of communications and casual social interactions? Must I beg you not to try to swing a special deal or an exception to the rule, for fear of perturbing the woman behind the counter and losing what you already have? When in doubt, remove yourself from the immediate situation long enough to think—and rethink—how to proceed, and preferably choose the safe way out.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): 'Ideas! Get your steamin' hot ideas… all you can spew, while supplies last!' Open up the barn doors, Cancer, and let the cavalcade of fresh, wacky and wild ideas flow forth from you. Though this is not the time to try putting stuff into action, it's perfect for lining up a bunch of new concepts (and remodeling some of the better ones you already have). No ideas are bad ideas, except for those you're hoping to bring to fruition by next Friday. Please listen to me when I say this is the brainstorming period, not the nose-to-grindstone time to hit deadlines. Take fullest advantage of it by adopting the trite corporate adage and 'thinking outside the box'. The weirder and less situationally appropriate, the better. You'll have enough opportunity to reason out the kinks, as long as you don't rush the development process. And remember, creatives-in-action like to have their share of fun and write it off as 'inspiration material'… you can get away with that, too, right now. A little silly adventure or bungee-jump may be just what the idea-guys are ordering up, and maybe you need to lead the pack off the edge into free-fall thrills.


LEO (July 23-August 22): It might be easier and less unnerving to swallow the necessary self-stabilizing medicine if it didn't seem like everyone was watching. Unfortunately, Leo, there's nothing we can do about that… because, in fact, they are watching. You must juggle the mix of (1) Mercury acting all retrograde-nuts in your sign, (2) the brand-new influence of Saturn in your sign, not letting you getting away with much of anything that broaches your boundaries of being responsible, and (3) a persisting Chiron-sponsored invitation to appear vulnerable and humble and sweet in your one-on-one interactions… and all this, now, while bright lights are shining in your eyes and exposing your gaping pores and crepey crow's-feet to a voracious crowd. Luckily, you thrive under the pressure of having people to impress. But to legitimately do so, you'll want to speak slower (it buys you more time to consider your words first), move slower (so as not to trip and skin your knee), and kindly remind yourself that this will not be your last performance, so it also doesn't need to be your absolute best. Authentic effort (in contrast to lazy, last-minute, off-the-cuff, blasé motions) is always rewarded with good will, no matter the results.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): With Venus in your sign opposing Uranus this week, be on the lookout for pleasantly unusual interactions with remarkable people and/or remarkable interactions with pleasantly unusual people. In all said situations, do what you can to do it differently. A lot's to gain by going against the grain, showing up at strange spots at odd times wearing curious clothes. I know this sort of thing runs contrary to your very nature, being rather reserved and behaviorally tidy and all, so don't think I'm goading you to make a permanent change. Think of yourself as a tourist in the land of weird and whimsical, and make sure to take lots of pictures or snag a few souvenirs. A whole bunch more than what's on the surface will uncannily infuse your exchanges in this bizarre world of extraordinary characters. Don't judge a book by its cover or the words being swapped by their dictionary definitions. The only things you can do wrong are (1) trying to come up with logical explanations for your participation and (2) opting not to partake.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Needier personalities are at play than civil equanimity can appease. I am not privy to whose personality these intemperate hands belong to, whether it's yours and/or one of your intimates', but solicitously fair won't suit the circumstances. Someone wants more, at the expense of all proper methods. Is that okay with you? Are you willing to crack the glass and pull the handle… address what's really going on? A step or two outside the chalk outline won't kill anyone, so don't misread that queasy feeling as actual physical danger. No, it's psychological progress in the form of risk-taking, wagering appearances for the jackpot of honesty. Don't think of this as being about the specific interpersonal situation in which you're presently embroiled—too hyper-charged. Think of it in terms of your own leanings toward an existence more in tune with your values and beliefs. You ideally want a world in which folks fess up to where they stand. How, then, do you intend for this world to become real, if not by walking the walk?


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): This is not the week to press your parents for an apology or to tell your boss what she can do with the extra assignments. Ultimatums, while never the best communicative approach, are especially liable to explosively imploding under the weight of their own inflated self-worth. Tread lightly on those whose fingers are jeeringly wagging themselves at you, right in easy shot of your being able to step on them and pretend it was an accident. It will be no accident, if you purposely ignore my warning and enter the ring without the benefit of a referee. Your eyes should be on the big prize, not the little schoolyard victories that come from stealing other kids' lunch money. The temptation to bully, burden, impose or convince will be even worse because of the strong likelihood that you can indeed succeed using these methods—in the short term. Don't do it. Be the bigger man or woman. Step away from the gun, and move on to something else. The immediate power struggle will blow over and present itself again, in less charged circumstances later, where you'll have great hopes for winning… without plundering the village and inspiring vengeance from the (temporarily) defeated locals.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): I suggest you just stay out of it. I know you have this idea that, if you've witnessed the instigation of this dispute (or 'situation', as the authorities might euphemistically call it) from its inception, you have some moral obligation to divulge your opinionated take on what happened. But don't be so sure you saw what you saw, or that it began when you think it began, or that your opinion is particularly relevant. If there's the slightest chance it's none of your beeswax, then please don't get involved. Why risk them turning their vitriol at you once you enter the fray, even with your absolutely best and purest motivations in tow? It's quite likely that one or more parties (including you) have the story confused. And in the meantime, work-related projects to which you can diligent devote your undivided—and solitary—attentions are strongly favored at this time. Choose duty to yourself, your goals and your own personal health over philosophical enmeshments that, in authentically and unobtrusively selfish terms, really don't matter.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Now that Venus and Mars are both in earth signs, complementary to your condition, you're one of the luckier signs of the moment. Well, perhaps 'luck' is stretching it a bit… you're at least one of the lesser likely to trip and fall, crash and burn, or sputter and stall. After all, Mercury is retrograde, which is not necessarily the most fantastic influence on any of us (although, I suppose, there are some cats who vibe well with its loopy logic). For you, Cap, the danger zone appears where soul-baring confessions and gut-wrenching negotiations might dare to present themselves. This weighty psychological meat is best handled, for now at least, on your own. Introspection and internal processing are preferable to too much outward expression or external expectation. The flow of communication won't be clear enough to deal with more difficult issues. Yet, there's the chance you might still feel compelled to put it out there anyway, thanks to Mars's entry into your 5th house. Trust me, don't press your 'luck'… Mars'll be there for a while, but Mercury will only be retrograde for another couple weeks. Keep mulling it over, and keep it to yourself for the present time.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): The inner work is invisible and potentially lonesome, and that makes it a bit humdrum. This could be why your unconscious wants to implicate other people into your personal drama, so that there's more to 'do'… and less to keep quiet about. The environment couldn't be riper for you to project your issues outward onto others, and to essentially create relationship bugaboos out of harmless situations. Can you feel yourself hunting for reasons to call her/him out? Do you detect the Aquarian wandering-eye on the lookout for complicating factors? You don't have to let the unconscious drives prevail—if you're willing to own the emotional restlessness and admit (to yourself and/or to others) that you're in the mood to be difficult. Hey, kiddo… we understand. We all get that way sometimes. No one expects you to maintain the cool veneer at all times (even if you're usually damn good at, if you do say so yourself). Just don't go looking for a fight—if you let the self-righteousness get a hold on you, it's going to run with the ball until you realize you scored a goal for the wrong team.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): The right people to surround yourself with are those who will support any efforts you make to break from the mold and try it a different way. Anyone who expects you to behave as you've always had is infringing on your space for experimentation… and it's your fault for fulfilling the expectations. You don't have to cut these people out of your life permanently—just stay away from 'em for the next week or two. In order to escape the stalemate in solving logistical problems, you've got to commit to a few months' of faithfully trying a number of different solutions (possibly several at the same time). And there won't be a quick answer. That's why the chums who specialize in living off the grid or outside the mainstream are the ones to court and cultivate. They'll know best how to help you appreciate where you are and what you have, while you simultaneously keep an open enough vision to create something completely new over a span of time. Keywords: 'over a span of time'.