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REAL ASTROLOGY for an unreal world 

Wednesday, Jul 5 1995
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Aries (March 21-April 19): In one version of the story of Pinocchio, woodpeckers whittled his nose back to its original shape after it had sprouted to monstrous proportions from his inveterate lying. From a certain loosely metaphorical perspective, something similar will transpire in your life this week. An intervention comparable to the woodpeckers will cut an overgrown, top-heavy part of your attitude down to size.

Taurus (April 20-May 20): They'll be celebrating the Fiesta of San Fermin in Pamplona, Spain, this week. That means hordes of bulls will be running wild in the streets right behind crowds of macho fools who're trying to avoid being trampled and gored. It just so happens that this festive holiday coincides with astrological aspects that practically mandate all you human bulls to run wild in the streets, as well. It's time for you, in other words, to become the ultimate party animal. (P.S.: As you romp and stomp, do your best to keep from squashing any macho fools.)

Gemini (May 21-June 20): Feeling lucky in your money chakra? You should be. The Triple Witching Hour is imminent. During this eerily harmonious time, all your financial biorhythms will converge in one gorgeous weave. Most likely, a cosmic stroke will then deliver unto you an unprecedented economic opportunity -- not exactly for striking it rich, but at least for striking it richer.

I hear the bell tolling already. Quick, utter a prayer to the muses of prosperity and chant the following mantra: O MONNEE GIMMEE SUMM.

Cancer (June 21-July 22): Imagine that you're approaching a building you've never seen before -- the first structure that pops into your mind. Look down. What kind of path are you on? Dirt or brick? Long and winding or short and straight? Now you've got to find the key to the door. Where is it: in your pocket or under a mat or lying in mud in the yard? What's the key like? Open the door and go inside to explore. Imagine you find a cup. Where is it? Describe it.

This has been a test with no right or wrong answers (exactly like what you're facing in real life right now). The house you envisioned is a symbolic picture of the new phase of your life you're about to enter. The path represents the way you arrived here. The key is the knowledge you'll soon need. The cup is love.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22): Take a cue this week from Robert Shepard, the resourceful Leo who managed to escape an imprisonment much more severe than the one you're experiencing right now. While incarcerated in a West Virginia slammer, Shepard painstakingly collected dental floss and wove it into an escape rope. He used it to scale an 18-foot wall and bolt to freedom. Your "jail" may not be as literal as his, which means you'll have to be even more ingenious about finding a way out.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): I suspect that sometimes you'll be sleeping while standing up this week, and other times you'll be working while lying down. Your body chemistry will likely react as if it's undergoing experiments at the hands of a mad but happy scientist. In fact, I bet that even if you're completely drug-free, your own brain will spontaneously produce compounds that are identical to those found in certain illegal psychotropic drugs. This just might lead you to act like the person your mother warned you about.

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Every year or two there comes a brief time when I have an almost supernatural power to see you and bless you for who you really are. I tune in to all the things you do that no one else knows about or appreciates. I glimpse your best possible future. My dreams about you are filled with sweet revelations, secret gifts, and crafty breakthroughs.

This magic moment is now upon us, and it's no coincidence that you match my energy in every way. In other words, my power to consecrate you is merely a reflection of your own electrifying beauty.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): There'll be lots of clear-cut choices this week. I'm not saying they're easy, just that the different alternatives are sharply delineated. To get started, select one of each of the following pairs: 1) thunderclaps or lightning bolts; 2) grazing like a sheep or rambling like a mountain goat; 3) finishing your homework or facing your expanded horizons unprepared; 4) pitiless logic or generous fantasies; 5) dreaming of a soul-cleansing getaway or actually making that getaway.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Have you been studying Machiavelli or Forbes magazine or something? Or hanging out with diabolically clever Scorpios? You seem to have appropriated for your own use the notorious skills of those Great Manipulators. Not that I'm criticizing or complaining. As long as you promise to mix a generous amount of your usual Sagittarian integrity into your tricky strategies, I guess there's no harm in convincing people that they want what you want them to want.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): In Old England, a holiday called Flitch Day was celebrated around this time of year. A panel of unmarried adults would assemble to hear testimony from couples who claimed to have been happy together during the previous 12 months. Any twosome that could prove they'd practiced an exemplary brand of mutual respect and care were awarded a flitch, or side, of ham. "Very few took home the bacon," says my source, James Koehnline.

And even fewer would do so in this day and age, no doubt. Although I must say that you Capricorns, of all the signs of the zodiac, would be most likely to succeed -- at least in the next two months. I'm betting you'll break all previous records for conjugal harmony between now and Sept. 1.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Be glad you don't live in Russia. The astrologers there are a nasty, pessimistic bunch. They enjoy scaring people with spooky predictions. Here's what a top Russian horoscope columnist just wrote for Aquarians: "You have big plans about money, but none of them will come true. Friends will be deceptive. You'll be consumed with envy and wish you were someone else."

There's a grain of half-truth in this, but its relentless negativity makes it a dangerous lie. In actual fact, your failed financial plans will cure you of unrealistic fantasies. Friends won't be deceptive so much as they'll be confused, and that's because they're changing faster than is comfortable. And any torment you experience because of envy should motivate you to try harder to achieve the successes you envy.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20): It'll be a great time to graduate from stolen glimpses to brazen stares, and to extend invitations to play tag around a sprinkler after dark. It won't be such a good time to think about eating while having sex, although it'll be an excellent time to think about sex while eating. Try to learn some new bedtime stories this week. Teach your lover how to crow like a rooster. And please please pretty please: Get over any fear you might have of hearing the truth.

In conclusion, it'll be a good time to try to have your cake and eat it too, but a bad time to give away things that don't belong to you. P.S.: Always yodel when passing through tunnels.

About The Author

Rob Brezsny

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Slideshows

  • Nevada City and the South Yuba River: A gold country getaway

    Nestled in the green pine-covered hills of the Northern Sierra Nevada is the Gold Rush town of Nevada City. Beautiful Victorian houses line the streets, keeping the old-time charm alive, and a vibrant downtown is home to world-class art, theater and music. The nearby South Yuba River State Park is known for its emerald swimming holes during the summer and radiant leaf colors during autumn. These days the gold panning is more for tourists than prospectors, but the gold miner spirit is still in the air.

    South Yuba River State Park and Swimming Holes:
    The park runs along and below 20 miles of the South Yuba River, offering hiking, mountain biking, gold panning and swimming. The Highway 49 bridge swimming hole is seven-miles northwest of Nevada City where Highway 49 crosses the South Yuba River. Parking is readily available and it is a short, steep hike to a stunning swimming hole beneath a footbridge. For the more intrepid, trails extend along the river with access to secluded swim spots. The Bridgeport swimming hole has calm waters and a sandy beach -- good for families and cookouts -- and is located 14 miles northwest of Nevada City. Be sure to write down directions before heading out, GPS may not be available. Most swimming holes on the South Yuba River are best from July to September, while winter and spring can bring dangerous rapids. Always know the current before jumping in!

    Downtown Nevada City
    The welcoming, walkable downtown of Nevada City is laid back, yet full of life. Start your day at the cozy South Pine Cafe (110 S Pine St.) with a lobster benedict or a spicy Jamaican tofu scramble. Then stroll the streets and stop into the shop Kitkitdizzi (423 Broad St.) for handcrafted goods unique to the region, vintage wears and local art “all with California gold rush swagger,” as stated by owners Carrie Hawthorne and Kira Westly. Surrounded by Gold Rush history, modern gold jewelry is made from locally found nuggets and is found at Utopian Stone Custom Jewelers (301 Broad St.). For a coffee shop with Victorian charm try The Curly Wolf (217 Broad St.), an espresso house and music venue with German pastries and light fare. A perfect way to cool down during the hot summer months can be found at Treats (110 York St.) , an artisan ice cream shop with flavors like pear ginger sorbet or vegan chai coconut. Nightlife is aplenty with music halls, alehouses or dive bars like the Mine Shaft Saloon (222 Broad St.).

    The Willo Steakhouse (16898 State Hwy 49, Nevada City)
    Along Highway 49, just west of Nevada City, is The Willo, a classic roadhouse and bar where you’re welcomed by the smell of steak and a dining room full of locals. In 1947 a Quonset hut (a semi-cylindrical building) was purchased from the US Army and transported to its current location, and opened as a bar, which became popular with lumberjacks and miners. The bar was passed down through the decades and a covered structure was added to enlarge the bar and create a dining area. The original Quonset beams are still visible in the bar and current owners Mike Byrne and Nancy Wilson keep the roadhouse tradition going with carefully aged New York steaks and house made ingredients. Pair your steak or fish with a local wine, such as the Rough and Ready Red, or bring your own for a small corkage fee. Check the website for specials, such as rib-eye on Fridays.

    Outside Inn (575 E Broad St.)
    A 16-room motel a short walk from downtown, each room features a unique décor, such as the Paddlers’ Suite or the Wildflower Room. A friendly staff and an office full of information about local trails, swimming and biking gets you started on your outdoor exploration. Amenities include an outdoor shower, a summer swimming pool and picnic tables and barbeques. Don’t miss the free vegetable cart just outside the motel in the mornings.

    Written and photographed by Beth LaBerge for the SF Weekly.

  • Arcade Fire at Shoreline
    Arcade Fire opened their US tour at Shoreline Amphitheater to a full house who was there in support of their album "Reflector," which was released last fall. Dan Deacon opened the show to a happily surprised early audience and got the crowd actively dancing and warmed up. DEVO was originally on the bill to support Arcade Fire but a kayak accident last week had sidelined lead singer Mark Mothersbaugh and the duration of the west coast leg of the tour. Win Butler did a homage to DEVO by performing Uncontrollable Urge.

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