Horoscopes | Week of November 17-23, 2008

ARIES (March 21-April 19): 'Are we here to kiss ass, or are we here to work, people?!? If you haven't noticed, everyone, my sleeves are rolled up to the elbow. I've got my dirty hip-boots on. I am ready to make progress already! And the only way to do that, of course, is for me to tell you exactly what problems I'm seeing. Yes, I know you're my boss and all… but I don't honestly think you hired me to be your yes-man, did you? Thought not. I'm fully prepared for you to wince at the onset, as I begin digging my grubby little hands into the dirt and chucking out chunks of garbage we really don't need anymore. Don't have heart failure! My straight-shooting isn't exactly for the faint-of-heart… but ultimately builds your trust in me, since you know I must be giving you the real deal or why else would I risk ruffling your feathers? I suppose I could, instead, tell you what you might love to hear (even if it's not completely true), but where would that get either of us? Nowhere fast. I'm in this for more than just a couple pats on the back and a perfunctory paycheck. I see the greater opportunity here. That's why I'm going out on a limb, to prove I'll do my very best job, even when it upsets the immediate peace…'


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): When I inform you that you're now definitely in 'deep-cleaning mode', I must also add this has absolutely nothing to do with rags, scrub-brushes, or hours spent crouching in the corners of your kitchen. I'm talking about a state of psychological purge, Taurus, not some setting you click to 'on' on your oven console. Try as you might to neatly sum up your emotional state in a calm sentence or two that illustrates how 'clear' you've become on this or that issue, the planets are telling a much different story: The expanding emphasis on your solar 8th house indicates an unsettledness, as the 'evolved consciousness' you're striving for competes with the 'lower emotions' you still harbor (such as anger, jealousy, disappointment or thwarted desire). But while these emotions are often disrespectfully thought of as 'lower', they are precious sources of information, since they reveal an important side to our psyche that usually isn't permitted expression. Yet, as long as you continue finding yourself making snide off-the-cuff remarks or silent-but-deadly judgments, you can't legitimately claim to be 'over it' or 'above it all'. Instead, such behavior merely proves you still care. So while you may crave a stroll down 'the high road' (because it grants that warming sense of moral superiority?), you probably don't belong there quite yet.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Check your work carefully early in the week, Gemini… and keep on checkin' it every time you make a change, close or reopen the file, or even turn your head away for a split-second. Your brain is probably having a hard time concentrating on the nittiest-grittiest parts of the task, eager as it is to wander into dreamy reflections on whatever glamorous escape it yearns for—and, of course, whichever enjoyable companion it yearns to accompany. If it makes you feel any better, you will get your chance to pour all your energy into figuring out what's what with You-Know-Who. (In fact, judging by your astro-forecast for the rest of the year, you'll probably be spending a lot of that time indulging such interpersonal explorations.) Yet, that doesn't change the fact that, during this current week that's happening right here right now and not in the eagerly-lusted-for weeks ahead you hardly seem capable of waiting for, you've still got shit to take care of. The work at hand still needs your full attention for the next several days. Please don't leave sloppy results or dangling question-marks in your wake, just because your head's already living in the future.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): It's still a great time to meet new people and/or get to know the old familiar ones much better than you do, Cancer… though the amount of spare time you'll find available for delighting in these simple pleasures of leisure social activity will soon become considerably smaller. With Venus residing in your 7th for another three weeks, you won't lose your special shiny sparkle right away; rather, your mind will soon be further occupied with mundane concerns (i.e., completing chores, organizing details, restoring full productivity), leaving you less energy for mingling. Yet, this week, Mercury caps off his transit through your flirty 5th with an inhibition-lowering square to Neptune in your solar 8th, giving you a unique opportunity to transcend your usual timidity and show more of yourself than you ordinarily would. For a brief spell, personal shame becomes less of a worry. Embrace this limited chance to leave your bashful act behind. Skip the subtleties. If you go for the over-the-top, super-provocative vibe that nobody could possibly miss, you just might catch a certain someone (your maybe-baby?) so off-guard that he/she will willingly follow your lead—wherever you want to go. Go on, then, and make some jaws drop.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Should you find yourself backed into a corner by an important someone who simply must process their important issue with you right now, you'll likely be able to provide them with enough of what they want to get 'em off your back. You'll feel where they're coming from… and have just the right comforting comments to make, and the right way to communicate 'em, to leave 'em with the sense that you've heard, and truly care about, their situation. The only potential problem here, Leo, is with your sincerity level. I'm not implying that you don't sincerely care for the person in question, but merely raising the question of whether what you tell 'em this week (just 'to get 'em off your back' perhaps?) is completely and genuinely true at the moment you say it—or if it's just what you've come up with to move the conversation along, so you can get back to the work you're engaged with or the fun you're trying to have. Nobody likes to wonder if they were being pandered to, rather than offered a spontaneously authentic sentiment. And while you might escape their detection for now, they'll eventually figure it out—once your future actions betray the supposed concern you'd like them to believe you're holding for them.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): By the time your week finally draws to a close, you may well be so energetically drained by all the catching up with pals, the swapping of stories and entertaining of options, the words of wisdom (both given and received), and enough social interactivity to seemingly last you a lifetime, it'll become overwhelmingly apparent that you're all talked out. Notice, Virgo, how I mentioned this awareness arises only after the week in on its last legs… which therefore implies you'll be spending the days between then and now cramming every last minute full of these necessary (or at least highly favorable) communicative exchanges, so that you justifiably earn that sense of exhaustion. (It also means you should hold off on any complaints about how you're not cut out for this much social interaction, don't want it, can't stand it, or otherwise needn't subject yourself to it.) Starting next week, there will be enough planetary action in your solar 4th to totally justify taking another brief period for cocooning, away from all their whiny voices and nosy insinuations, at home, taking care of those matters that are nobody else's business but your own. But until then, keep all your appointments… be an active and engaged participant in all your chit-chats… and gladly fulfill your role as companion, sibling, cousin, neighbor and/or general friendly face.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): We may find ourselves in surprisingly meaningful and intimate interactions, potentially leading to powerful personal breakthroughs, when we allow ourselves to enjoy liberties with casual acquaintances or total strangers that we wouldn't easily oblige with those we know well. Odd though it might seem, it's sometimes much easier to confess one's secret feelings to someone with no major investment in your personal affairs. For starters, such behavior obviously 'maintains appearances' among one's circle of close friends—and we all know how Libras love to maintain their appearances. Beyond that, though, the response we get from a person who's largely unfamiliar with the ins and outs of our personal life can often prove more honest or forthright (since they wouldn't know which of our 'tender spots' to avoid) and uncorrupted by their self-serving motives (when, for instance, a close friend might give us bad relationship advice because she doesn't like the guy we're dating or counsel us not to take the job offer because she doesn't want us to move to Chicago). I suggest then, Libra, that you find such an interpersonal situation where you can unload whatever's weighing on your heart… without necessarily leaving you to feel like you 'blew your cover' or unduly burdened a tight pal with too much delicate information about yourself. You'll hardly believe how much better you feel afterward, while those in your immediate circle may remain none the wiser.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Isn't it amazing how you can belabor the process of making doubly sure you've conveyed yourself with the utmost clarity… and still, the folks will hear something markedly different? Well, Scorpio, I'd also imagine it can be pretty perturbing, too, when it seems the more insistent you get with your second and third round of re-explanations, the less trustful they become. But this would be a rather rotten time to take a reactive stand, to refuse to spell out the obvious to people who (per your exasperated assessment) are either not listening closely or too clueless to get it. See, it's ultimately in your best interest to continue explicating the specifics more and more thoroughly, if pals or colleagues remain unclear on why you're doing what you do. While you may enjoy maintaining that air of mystery (and/or reserving a certain power for yourself through withholding), it can also make other people suspicious of your motives. What they don't know, they will fill in with their own (perhaps faulty?) prognostications… which just might paint you in a less-than-flattering light, due to the paranoia your (apparent) lack of transparency enflames in them. With that in mind, happily give them more information when asked.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): The Sagittarian takeover continues this week. After last week's welcoming of Mars into your sign, we now celebrate the additional arrivals of both the Sun and Mercury by week's end, giving you that much more planetary mojo to use however you see fit. I'm assuming you've already begun your leap back into the center-ring action, having received some sign of cosmic clearance that your temporary lull is officially over. But before Mercury hits your 1st house, he must first make a logic-clouding, boundary-blurring square from your 12th to Neptune in your 3rd… which means it's a great week for suggestibility, but far less ideal for intelligibility. In other words, your communications and transmissions will be occurring on a more emotional level—strongly colored by hopes, dreams, wishes and prayers—than a logical one. So, for your own sake, please spend these coming days on efforts to generate support and enthusiasm, to speak non-specifically with sentiments straight from your heart, and to open doors for future follow-up. Wait until next week, however, to fill in the fine-print, to square away the agreement, to discuss the logistics or to otherwise ground the vision into real-world details. There will be far less confusion… and far clearer information from all sides.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): As he counts backwards from 20 to 1, the anesthesiologist administers the doping injection… and smiles at your blissed-out grin, watching your ego-conscious personality drift off into transparency. Under this all-over influence, your self turns pliant and highly impressionable. Were somebody to soothingly inform you, Vegas-hypnotist-like, that you were a chicken trying to cross the road, you just might start clucking. See, Capricorn, with the Sun and Mercury now joining Mars in your solar 12th (which I described last week), it's as if your normally-solid sense of individuality recedes, dematerializing into the ethers like a waft of smoke melding with the invisible air. In a rather profound way, the events transpiring aren't necessarily about you. That's not to say, however, that your presence isn't needed or desired. On the contrary, standing close by as someone near-and-dear to you gets his/her chance to shine makes a world of difference. This special person will take great comfort in knowing you're cheering 'em on from the sidelines. So don't disappear from the scene altogether. Instead, like a protective fairy godmother looking out for the tender child in her care, hover gracefully over one shoulder… leaving 'em the full spotlight to bask in as theirs, but without letting 'em brave its harsh glare all alone.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Having trouble getting beyond your own unrelenting outlook on your place in the world? That's a shame, Aquarius, since the fuller entirety of your situation is way larger than your humble little self could hope to make sense of. And ordinarily, in such circumstances, you might expect me to launch into a spiel on the necessity for 'gathering friends' opinions' or 'finding some outside perspective'. But I'm not going to do that this time around. Why? Because even the act of soliciting feedback on the oh-so-big questions surrounding what you may or may not be accomplishing on the world stage is much more zealous and purposeful than you presently need be. Relax for a bit already. Quit trying to orchestrate your next takeover or determine which parts of your previous strategy could use some improvement. See all those people around you, filling your life with camaraderie and comfort and joy? Be grateful for them. Seek out their company. Drench yourself in their energies of friendship. Shoot the shit. But do what you can to avoid turning your catch-up sessions into fancy production-number conversations, where you challenge the easy vibe with pointed questions or ambitious intentions that drain the fun right out. The freshest outlook you could possibly receive from your cherished peeps—and one that you desperately need—is the radical idea of not worrying about what's next for you and what you 'should' be doing to prepare for it.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): As of now, and continuing over the following three weeks, there is simply no such thing as 'off the record'. Everything you say and do is, directly or indirectly, relevant to where you're next headed (or not headed) in your career life. Therefore, any notions that what you do when you're not 'on the clock' should hold no bearing on how you're publicly perceived vis--vis your qualifications or suitability for the professional role you covet are willingly woefully ignorant. If a goal is important enough to you, Pisces, it should overshadow all (or at least most) other considerations. Few moments should pass before more thoughts about how exactly to make it happen—and which behaviors to avoid, at least for the time being—fill your head, reminding you never to lose that focus if you hope to triumph. Alas, if you're not currently taking your ambitions that seriously, you must start to address your laxity… or quit complaining about how no new developments have occurred. Image definitely does matter. Please repeatedly remind yourself of that before you casually whisper inappropriate comments to a colleague or get a little too loose at the after-work cocktail hour.