Friday, July 31, 2009

Does My Bum Look Fat in These Jeans?

Mercury in Virgo August 3- 25
I have the absolute worst possible Mercury in history. And, given that Mercury is about how you communicate, the way in which you process information, and how you think, it is actually a miracle that I can even string 2 words together, let alone be able to sell coal to Newcastle when I have had a few bevies.

Why is my Mercury so bad? My Mercury is in Pisces where it is traditionally in the sign of both its detriment and fall. Mercury has difficulty expressing itself in mutable, watery, no boundaries Pisces. Also, my Mercury is in the 12th house, the house of self undoing, the place where you lock your deepest and darkest secrets away. Suffice to say, few planets operate well from the 12th house. Finally, my Mercury is retrograde natally, which means that it appears to be going backwards. The good part of that one is that I tend to feel retrogrades less than people who have Mercury in a stronger position to mine.... leading me nicely into Virgo.

If you have Mercury in Virgo, your Mercury is very very different to mine- Mercury rules Virgo and is strong, smart and extremely sharp in this position. The only (and rather mean) comfort I take from this is that during Mercury retrograde periods, you are likely to be substantially more affected than I am.

But that is probably the only comfort I can take. Where Mercury in Pisces is about the “big picture”, Mercury in Virgo concentrates on the details- every single little detail. In fact, nothing is below the notice of Mercury in Virgo, and every one of them will be analysed. Mercury in Virgo is the ultimate record keeper and statistician, forgetting nothing, and having a place for everything. This placement has a quick and brilliant mind (although sell themselves short), and the ability to make conversation on numerous subjects (but think they could be better).

Mercury in Virgo is critical, picky, and practical. Never ask if your bum looks fat in those jeans- this placement will tell you it does and what you need to do to make it better. Not because they want to be mean spirited, but because they truly believe that perfection can be attained. It is this idealism, and an awareness of how things are versus how they can be that drives this analytical placement.

But to those of us with a weaker Mercury and a more expansive arse, a little less analysis and a little more dishonesty would be nice!

Does this Mean we are getting married?


Venus in Cancer: August 2-26

There’s this little piece of astro humour (See Sex, Lies and Bodypaint) about the one line which each of the signs might say after a one night stand. For Cancer it might be “Does this mean we are getting married?”

If you have Venus in Cancer, you take relationships very very seriously, and are quite conservative in your attitude to love and romance. In fact, the whole idea of a one night stand line for Cancer is a bit of an oxymoron. Love is for life.

It has been (unfairly?) said that Venus in Cancer can be nagging, clingy and manipulative. But consider the life of a Crab- it has to ride the tides of the ocean by clinging hard to rocks for its’ survival – so it is when Venus is in Cancer- it will cling on and on and on and on- often way after the relationship is dead and really starting to stink. Nothing you can do will shake them off. Nor will they leave of their own accord- after all, you need them, and Cancer needs to be needed! But unlike Pisces who will be all desperate and pining and make you feel sorry for them, Venus in Cancer has a Mothers ability to produce guilt- without you really knowing why you should be feeling guilty- a talent indeed. Venus in Cancer does not like conflict, so brooding silences and retreat are usually great indicators that things are not FINE.

What is fair to say, is that under the hard outer shell, Venus in Cancer is fearful of rejection. This highly sensitive, maternal, compassionate and completely loyal sign will do anything and everything to protect and nurture its’ relationships. The more they do for you, the more you need them and the less likely you are to leave. It is well worth remembering this if your partner has Venus in Cancer- the occasional thoughtful gesture will make him/her feel loved, needed and cherished far more than will flashy bling- although, that is always nice as well.... Never ever think that you can buy them- with Venus in Cancer, it is all about emotion and feeling.

Venus in Cancer will pack your bags with your favourite things before you go away and welcome you home with a hearty meal - proving that no one looks after you quite like they do. In fact, you will rarely go hungry if your partner has Venus in Cancer- although you may have problems in dragging your love out of their shell into the open- nothing beats an economical home cooked meal. Venus in Cancer will be sensitive to your mood as soon as you walk through the door and act accordingly. Venus in Cancer will help out around the house- often without being asked... yep, even the men. In the workplace, even the most businesslike Venus in Cancer will understand if you aren’t feeling well and will genuinely be interested in your family and photos. Abuse that trust? Take advantage of that compassion? Venus in Cancer will forgive, but rarely forget.

As I have mentioned in previous blogs, not only does your Venus placement indicate your preferred relationship style and what makes you feel good, but in a mans chart, the Venus placement will also indicate what he is looking for in a partner. If your man has Venus in Cancer, he will be attracted to partners with Cancer characteristics- perhaps someone who will look after him, cook for him, possibly even mother him. He will also be looking for a relationship that is committed, loyal and predictable.

Venus in Cancer? Get past that craggy shell, expect a little sideways dodging of issues, learn to read the different interpretations of FINE, and you will never be hungry again.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Casting a Spotlight on Leo


I was having coffee with a girlfriend a few weeks ago in a new place- great coffee menu, great lighting and really dramatic interiors. Nice. Anyway, we got to talking, like friends do, and, like conversations do, the subject turned to a mutual acquaintance who had recently separated from her husband. Now, I have never particularly liked this person and I wouldn’t have trusted her husband under any circumstances, so without thinking I said rather sarcastically “Now what could possibly have gone wrong there?”

My friend looked at me for a second or two and quite seriously replied “I don’t know what you mean.”

Recklessly I went on. “Surely you heard the rumours about him and his affairs? I seriously have no idea why she put up with him for so long.”

“Jo, only they know what went on in their relationship.” She idly stirred her coffee and then continued: “I must remember to call her and see if she needs anything. Now, tell me about that pair of Marc Jacobs shoes …”

Subject closed.

My friend has Mercury and the Sun in Leo and is way too dignified for gossip. Think Bree in Desperate Housewives, but perhaps without all the other hang-ups. It isn’t that she thinks she is above it, just that she really doesn’t enjoy it. Mercury in Leo expresses itself with dignity, warmth, generosity and flair & whilst the temper can be legendary, generally rates quite low on the bitch scale.

Another dear friend has the Sun in Leo. She is the most glamorous person I know and, although she now lives far away, is also one of the warmest and most generous friends I have- and I value her for that. The quintessential Leo, she is always impeccably groomed, treats even the most humble Tupperware party as a major social event and is equally at home hosting a barbecue or an art show. The consummate hostess with the mostess.

Leo is a fire sign and is associated with the 5th house of the birthchart. Leo is all about creativity, self expression and the ego. Leo is theatrical, dramatic and all flourishing. Think Madonna, Bill Clinton and Jackie O. At its absolute best, Leo is generous, loyal and charismatic. But at its worst? Think Diva, think tantrums, dogmatic and think manipulative.

Leo is King (or Queen) of all he surveys, and that is how it should be. Ruled by the Sun, Leo has a sense of entitlement, a need to be recognised and an absolute pride in whatever he may do. But underneath this longing for glamour, luxury and recognition is an innate vulnerability. Consider the Lion in Wizard of Oz.

Leo wants to be liked and is terrified of the alternative. From the insecurity comes a show of drama queen proportions, but that is what it is, a show. A Leo with the Sun in the 12th house can be like someone with the light switched out- they often don’t realise that if they show their natural warmth, loyalty and generosity of spirit they will be loved for themselves, not their portable spotlight.

Happy Birthday Leo- this month, it is all about you.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Travel- Its all About Soul


Getting below the surface in Rotorua (NZ). Pic by me.

We were standing in the shelter of an Indonesian market town from tropical rain waiting for the shuttle bus to take us back to our Resort, so really, I had no choice but to shamelessly eavesdrop on the conversation happening in front of me. It was between a Singaporean lady who had come to the island for a long weekend (SL) and a tourist from a country I won’t name for fear of upsetting all the other wonderful people from that country :)(T). It went something like this:

SL: So, how long did you spend in Singapore?

T: Just 3 days, but that was long enough to see everything.

SL: Did you enjoy it?

T: Well, the 1st day we spent trying to get over the flight and used to this dreadful heat. Then we went for a walk down Orchard Road and I said to my husband and son that really we could be in Los Angeles or Sydney.

(I grinned at this one, as last time I looked, George St was nothing like Orchard Rd... but I digress)

SL: Maybe you should have had a look at Little India, Chinatown or Arab Street- and seen the old Singapore?

T: (shudders) The City Tour took us through Little India and... (another shudder)... we really didn’t like it.

SL: What about the Zoo, did you go to the Zoo? Singapore Zoo is one of the best in the world.

T: No, we have been to so many zoos around the world and our Zoo in XXXXX (nearly gave away the nationality...) is what Singapore’s Zoo was copied from.

(By now SL is desperately waiting for the shuttle bus to turn up).

SL: But you must be happy with the Resort?

T: Well we are now, although have you seen the price of the pizzas? And my husband hasn’t been able to get a rugby score on TV & don’t get me started on the insect bites.

At this point a giggle escaped from me, so I had no choice but to join the conversation...

Jo: But how cool are the Malaysian soap operas? We love the ones without the subtitles & try & make up the words.

T: (gave me a look which roughly translated as “are you for real?”)

Jo: And, you have to admit, the weather is heaps warmer than back home at the moment? And where else can you buy 3 Tiger Beers for $5?

This whole random conversation made me think about what our charts say about us as travellers. Our sun sign will tell us quite a bit, but how you approach travel can be seen by the sign that rules the 9th house in your birthchart. You may be a Taurus Sun, but with a Sagittarius 9th house would be interested in cultures, religions and pushing your limits a little more.
As a Pisces, I am naturally drawn to anything with water and anything where my boundaries can dissolve. But with Scorpio on the cusp of my 9th house, I approach travel from the viewpoint of Scorpio- I like to get below the surface to the soul of wherever I go. Tour groups invade my privacy, and tend to make me feel constrained and a little claustrophobic.

Thankfully my husband is of a similar mindset. With a Scorpio Sun and Sagittarius on the cusp of his 9th house, he also wants to immerse himself in culture. So when we travel, while we might stay in good hotels (my idea of camping is a 3 star hotel) with access to water, but we head off the tourist trail as much as possible, eat locally (usually that is also the cheapest option) & attempt to find out how people really live.

Our daughter (an Aries Sun with Leo on the cusp of her 9th house) likes to travel, but prefers a resort with sun lounges, a pool and plenty of pool games. A common phrase for us when on holidays is “It’s not all about you, Sarah.” Very Leo on the 9th.

So, what does your chart say about you as a traveller? If you know the sign that is on the cusp of your 9th house, that is great- read both the description of your Sun sign and that ruling the 9th. If you know your birth time, hop onto Astro.com and get your own birthchart.
Aries: You want to be first- that goes without saying. If you can’t explore new territory, at least be the 1st of your group to go somewhere new. And if that doesn’t work, pick a resort where you can kick the arses off the other guests in pool volleyball, tennis, drinking games or anything else competitive. Combine the 2 and follow your favourite sporting team or army on tour. Avoid guided tours at all costs.

Taurus: Somewhere nice and conservative, but with good value for money. You love modern cities with great shopping, good food and where you don’t have to do an awful lot. Relaxation is the name of the game, but a visit to an art gallery or a stroll through shops followed by cocktails is exercise enough. Resorts and cruises are great, but don’t go too far off the beaten track- stick with what you know.

Gemini: Don’t even think about retreats... ever... unless there is a group of you going- actually unless there are a few groups going- you need the variety. Contiki tours or a backpacking holiday where you can gather friends (and facebook contacts) from all around the world- and party all night- are right on the money. If it’s Thursday we must be in Rome.

Cancer: You really don’t like to be too far from home, but when you are, you prefer to set up base in a single place and make it as much like your home away from home as possible. Apartments by the beach are great when you can get the groceries in and cook for yourself- eating out too much really can’t be justified when you can whip up a perfectly good meal yourself.

Leo: It goes without saying that you prefer to follow the sun. But don’t even think about a put your own tent up in the African jungle safari. Sun and Glamour are your key words. You love a 5 star resort with cocktails by the pool, a great in house beauty salon and the perfect poolside wardrobe. Perhaps a cruise, the Greek Islands, or both. It is no less than you deserve.

Virgo: Let’s face it, you are going to get travel belly wherever you go... but I did notice when we were in Singapore recently that all the Hawker markets are graded in terms of food quality and cleanliness... no, I am not sure what standard they are measured against or the actual statistics of how many people had to get sick, but my point is, this definitely makes it easier for Virgos to eat cheaply, locally and know where their tummy bug is coming from. The best part of a holiday has to be in the planning and working out where you can get the best value for money. Don’t share with other families- you know you will be the one having to do all the chores. Organised tours are perfect for you- you really don’t like anywhere too relaxing, loud, flashy or wet.

Libra: Anywhere gorgeous where you can shop for designer goodies- just make sure you take someone equally as decorative to carry all your bags; somewhere glamorous where you can lie back with your champagne and be fed chocolates by one admirer while getting a foot massage from another; a resort or cruise where the biggest decision you need to make is which pool lounge you will drape yourself across to best possible advantage. Leave the pool games to Aries, you don’t want to break a nail.

Scorpio: I will say this once only- avoid organised tours- you have absolutely no control and people will be in your face all day. Also avoid anywhere too bright or too loud. Scorpio likes to make his own way and will actively seek out the underbelly of society and the hidden depths and the soul of a place. Being a water sign, scuba diving shipwrecks has to be the most literal translation of this. But whatever you choose, with Scorpio on the 9th, you will be transformed by travel- if you let yourself go.

Sagittarius: Particularly drawn to skiing holidays and (yes, Virgo, I was getting to this part) skiing injuries. Sag likes anywhere where there is something to drink, something to jump off or something to jump into or something to gamble on...Consider a drinking tour of Vegas casinos. Sag is also into spirituality, so has been known to gallop off into the sunset after their latest Guru.

Capricorn: Preferably a trip paid for by someone else, but if that is not possible, book somewhere of good quality, conservative, respectable and great value for money. Plan it well and you won’t have any nasty surprises. Capricorn really does not like to relax as time away from work means someone could be making them no longer indispensable. Take your Blackberry and your laptop so you can still jump in with your vast experience when trouble strikes.

Aquarius: Admit it, you secretly want to be on one of those Moon flights. But this aside, your holiday needs to be different. Whether you are up a tree saving the forest from chainsaws or in deepest South America researching the local people, or doing the Woodstock thing, as long as it is slightly unconventional and involves other people to share ideas with you will have a great time. One on one quality relationship time with your partner? Forget it.

Pisces: Pisces uses travel to escape from whatever version of reality they find themselves in. You don’t like to plan too much, drifting from one place to the next is perfect. As long as your holiday involves water, duty free alcohol and absolutely no responsibilities you are a happy fishy. Having some bossy Tour Guide telling you what time to get up, where to go and what to do when you get there is your idea of organised hell.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Holidays

I will be on holidays for the next 2 weeks, so will not be posting to this blog until I get back to Australia towards the end of July... so, check back then for Leo updates.

Talk Dirty to Me- Mars in Gemini


(Pic by Bogalo courtesy www.dreamstime.com)

Mars in Gemini 13/7/09
Shane Warne has his Mars in Sagittarius, which I am sure no one except me really cares about (probably not even him). And why do I care about this? Because, I was absolutely convinced that if anyone had Mars in Gemini it would be Shane Warne- with all that texting that he is so well known for. But he doesn’t have Mars in Gemini which means I need to find another example and I really didn’t want to have to use another episode of Sex And The City. (If I did use SATC, I was going to use the episode where Miranda is having long distance phone sex with a colleague and enjoyed it until she found out he was juggling his phone calls, so to speak- very Mars in Gemini). But I used SATC last week. This week, I thought I would use an Australian Cricketer famous for his contributions to mobile phone use. But that hasn’t worked out either.

Instead, I am going to rely purely on fact, lots of little facts in little bullet points to appeal to a Mars in Gemini brain.

Fact 1: The sign that Mars is in shows how you use your energies and asset yourself.
Fact 2: The sign that Mars is in shows how you assert yourself and fight.
Fact 3: The sign that Mars is in shows what turns you on (or off)
Fact 4: In a woman’s chart the sign that Mars is in tells you what characteristics you like in your partner.
Fact 5: The sign that Mars is in shows how you may try and impress a partner.

Putting it all together, in short sharp bullet points, if you have Mars in Gemini you will:

• Invest your energy on mental activity gathering lots of little facts and socialising in lots of different groups.
• Your energy will be scattered, unfocused and inconstant
• You will talk a lot
• You will talk with your hands
• You will like any activities where you use your hands
• You will argue rather than throw things- especially when bored- in fact, arguing can be a way to pass the time with a particularly tiresome companion
• Your boredom threshold is low- both in the bedroom and out of it
• Speaking of which... think oral (and I know what is going through your mind...) kissing, talking (before, during and after), sexy talk, sexting.
• To Mars in Gemini, the brain is an erogenous zone.
• You will impress your partner with your amazing ability to talk about anything
• You will impress your partner with your quick wit
• If you are a woman with Mars in Gemini, you will be attracted to someone who is spontaneous, keeps you guessing, and is always changing.
• If you have a partner with Mars in Gemini, be prepared for their attention to wander. Also be prepared to mix it up, keep the relationship interesting, keep them guessing... which takes me to Samantha & Smiths’s penchant for role playing- very Mars in Gemini.

So really, I could have just used the phone sex scene from SATC- it would have said it all.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Venus in Gemini- The Good on Paper Relationship

Last Sunday I found myself in the rare position of having absolutely nowhere that I had to be and nothing that I had to do. Sure, there were places and things that I should have been at or should have done, but I decided instead to take a “whatever” attitude and get over the guilt. So, I sat on the lounge all afternoon, got the ironing up to date and watched Absolutely Fabulous & Sex and the City.

You know how some people are convinced that there is an episode of Seinfeld or The Simpsons for every life event? I am like that with Ab Fab & SATC. I have never quite been able to decide whether Carrie in Sex and the City is Gemini or Libra. She is definitely the Air element in the show, and her love of designer clothes certainly points to Libra, but the absolute passion for words and her eclectic taste certainly points to Gemini. Venus in Gemini likes to put together things that don’t match, but somehow work.

Anyway, there is this episode of SATC in Season 4 where Carrie is sleeping with Ray, a jazz musician with whom she is having great sex hoping to turn it into a relationship. Ray is the quintessential Gemini- totally scatty, spontaneous, young and thrilling with a severe Attention Deficit. But Carrie feels the mental connection is missing and she ends the relationship when it becomes obvious that Ray has “stopped playing her and moved onto another instrument”. Walking home from what she calls ADD (Another Dating Disaster) she ponders why they call it mind-blowing sex- perhaps that level of physical connection obliterates the chance of an intellectual one? “Great sex is great, but I still like the song of a melody I can sing to”.

When Venus is in Gemini the mental connection will always be more important than the physical or the emotional or the practical. As Carrie says- “What kind of a relationship could I have with a guy I couldn’t even talk to?”

Venus is where we find pleasure, what we like doing and who we like doing it with. Gemini is an air sign, so is social, mental rather than emotional, and idea based. Gemini is also mutable and needs variety and flexibility. If you have Venus in Gemini, you will like to browse, like to flirt and like to chat... a lot... with lots of different people about lots of different things. Venus likes the idea of a relationship sometimes more than love itself.

The ideal date for someone with Venus in Gemini would be plenty of witty banter, some great conversation, perhaps some bookstore browsing or a party. A romantic dinner in an expensive restaurant with a bottle of fine French champagne and roses will be totally wasted on Venus in Gemini. Unless the variety and the mental stimulation is there, the relationship that looks good on paper won’t last beyond the first couple of dates.

Venus in Gemini also has a not undeserved reputation of being fickle. Beating the boredom is why Venus in Gemini is able to juggle more than one partner quite effectively. The inconstancy is also due to their search for the theoretical ideal relationship. What looks good on paper proves quickly to not be so great in reality. When your idea of a perfect relationship can change quicker than the weather changes in Melbourne, the mind (and the heart) can wander just as quickly.

The trick to Venus in Gemini is to keep things interesting, keep him guessing, keep him curious and keep him texting.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Water on the Brain- Mercury in Cancer


An installation artist at Floriade in Canberra, Pic by me.

Mercury scuttles sideways into intuitive Cancer tomorrow and I actually have very little I want or feel the need to say about it. In fact, I had real troubles even finding people in my chart database with this placement. I found just one- the sweetest most together teenager I know.

But aside from all of that, Mercury is in Cancer from tomorrow effectively delivering us all with a shot of water on the brain. OK, this placement can be a little moody and possibly even diva-ish in its expression (depending on the Moon), but it is also incredibly intuitive and absorbs information like a sponge.

People with Mercury in Cancer may not tell you very often how they feel, but rest assured, when the birthday card arrives, it will tell you all you need to know- and then some. This is feeling beyond logic, words to treasure and adding warmth to known truths.

Mercury in Cancer can also be subjective, paranoid and mistrusting, and these feelings can sometimes overpower you- particularly at that time of the month. Regrets and “could have dones” can weigh heavily, so it does pay to let your mind work through the fear.

Poetry, history and words from the heart will enthral you, and a good (lockable) journal is a safe way to express your needs and practice all those wonderful crabby putdowns. And if that doesn't work, throw on some good loud emo music and eat chocolate- that will.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Fear, Change and Bosu Balls


I like things loud and fast. I have amazing memories of driving with someone I shouldn’t have been with through a road tunnel way too fast, with the windows down and the stereo way too loud, singing at the top of my lungs to something really naff and feeling that primal, guttural, raw throb of a V8 engine. What can I say? I have Venus in Aries... The adrenalin rush that I get from speed or a theme show ride hurtling you through space and time just can’t be bottled.

But the other day my Trainer got me to stand on a Bosu Ball. And it scared me. You see, instability terrifies me. Actually, what I am really frightened of is not having control or, even worse, losing control. I trust others more than I trust myself.

On first glance, the Bosu looks harmless enough... an exercise ball which has had the top third cut off & the open end covered in hard black rubber provides a platform for the unsuspecting to stand and attempt to precariously balance. Once on and balanced (ie, not gripping the arms of your trainer for dear life), you can perform gravity defying tasks like... balancing or, for the really advanced, squats. When a gorgeous little gym body falls off a Bosu Ball (no, I have never seen it happen either) people come to help. When someone like me does, people just snigger.

My Trainer’s end goal was have me confront my fears and in doing so strengthen my core- it is these muscles that keep us upright and provide stability on uneven or rocky surfaces. So it is with change. So many of us are frightened by it, but in most cases, confronting that which scares us, gives us more core strength to deal with future challenges- facing the fears and challenging them make us stronger inside.

The Fixed Signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius) tend to have the biggest fear around change, whereas the Cardinal Signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn) are usually the ones to initiate the change cycle. Mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces) have the least difficulty in changing course. But that isn’t to say that the cardinal and mutable signs don’t fear change- they do. In many cases, it is fear which motivates the cardinals to initiate the change in the first place and fear which convinces the mutables to follow.

Not all change is good- it isn’t. In many circumstances, the fixed signs are right to stand firm against the havoc their cardinal colleagues are proposing and their mutable workmates are colluding in. But in many other cases, as it was with my Bosu Ball, overcoming the fear is necessary to become stronger in your core- although personally, I prefer Bellydancing.