Horoscope

ARIES (March 21–April 19)
"Don't use an ax to embroider."—Malay proverb. "Our fears always outnumber our dangers."—Latin saying. "A stumble may prevent a fall."—English epigram. APRIL FOOL! All that stock wisdom gleaned from the past might be helpful at other times, Aries, but at an unprecedented and unpredictable moment like this, you need freshly minted maxims. For starters, try the following: "Abundant pleasure is your birthright, but you still have to fight like hell to claim it." "God expresses Herself most articulately through change, not permanence." "Why be a merely clever genius when you can be a morally vigorous and emotionally intelligent genius?"

TAURUS (April 20–May 20)
I predict that a transsexual chanteuse who has time-traveled from post–World War II Italy will knock at your back door this week, offering you rosary beads and ben-wa balls made of pure gold in return for a chance to take a nap next to you and thereby absorb some of your magically healing vibrations. APRIL FOOL! There will be uncanny adventures involving love and wealth this week, but they won't be THAT weird. On the other hand, do not underestimate the enormous drawing power of your magical healing vibrations. They could attract both needy souls and generous benefactors from afar.

GEMINI (May 21–June 20)
Behold my bold predictions! (1) While gazing at a UFO playing tag with a black helicopter, you will have a vision of the winning lottery numbers. (2) Telepathic messages from ascended masters will alert you to upcoming natural disasters, which you will report to the National Enquirer. (3) Inspired by a dream, you'll wander in the desert for 40 days, then start your own religion. APRIL FOOL! I was testing your susceptibility to inflated fantasies, which I suspect is soaring. Here are your real oracles: (1) While peering at a food stain on your jacket, you'll have a vision of yourself taming a demon. (2) The contagious emotions of big crybabies may put you in a weepy mood even though your own life isn't that bad. (3) Inspired by a dream, you'll stop moping around and resolve to get more disciplined about the way you express love.

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CANCER (June 21–July 22)
I have founded an organization called POMP (Proud Owners of Multiple Personalities). It will be dedicated to erasing negative stereotypes about healthy nonschizophrenics who enjoy being a community of many different selves. You're a prime candidate for membership, Cancerian—especially now, when your whole spectacular array of subpersonalities is in full bloom. Please repeat after me: "Consistency is death! Paradox is life! I am we!" APRIL FOOL! There is no such thing as POMP. Everything else I said is true, though.

LEO (July 23–Aug. 22)
If you're a rock star, the time is favorable for writing a song that will trigger the swoon mechanism in millions of consumers in the 13- to-22 age group. If you're a politician, you now have a heightened ability to hypnotize your constituents into swallowing your pretty lies. And even if you're merely a legend in your own mind, it's a pregnant moment to infect a few other minds with that legend. APRIL FOOL! Nothing I just said is anchored in astrological fact. Besides, as a devotee of the sublime virtues of free will, I would never advise you to manipulate other people into being slaves of your whims. I don't mind telling you, however, that it's a good time to risk adventures that will expand the minds of everyone you know, including yourself.

VIRGO (Aug. 23–Sept. 22)
I predict that while composing a pornographic film script in iambic pentameter, you will be struck with a vision of the key to God's plans for the universe. APRIL FOOL! The above prophecy is a distorted version of the truth. Here's the real deal: If you pray to learn more about achieving spiritual illumination through sexual pleasure, you will be given a sacred thrill that will make your relationship with God more intimate and friendly.

LIBRA (Sept. 23–Oct. 22)
I named a cloud after you today. As I meandered through a field spinning out dreamy thoughts about what I would write for your horoscope, I had a sudden crazy urge to look up. And there was your perfect double, a puffy cumulonimbus in the vague shape of an eager chameleon. APRIL FOOL! I lied. Here's the truth: As I jogged along a manicured path through a sculpted garden, I spied a sharply defined rock formation that reminded me of you. It was a precise reflection of my sense that you are anything but a fuzzy, shape-shifting creature these days. In fact, I fully expect you to prune your excessive tendencies to want to please everyone.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23–Nov. 21)
Don't be nice to people unless you want something from them. Lie and cheat if it helps you become more moral. Love your enemies just in case your friends turn out to be jerks. Make a wish upon a scar for a change, not a star. APRIL FOOL! I was just messing with you, Scorpio. I was acting like one of those tricky teachers who test the resiliency of your skepticism before delivering a core truth. And the core truth in this case? It's this: The very thing about you that is most neurotic is the key to your tapping into hidden reserves of creative brilliance.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22–Dec. 21)
Was it a rat I saw? A Santa lived as a devil at NASA. He maps spam, eh? Aha! Rot can rob a born actor. Go hang a salami—I'm a lasagna hog. A slut nixes sex in Tulsa. APRIL FOOL! The preceding jumble was pure disinformation. It was my way of introducing you to the mysterious power of palindromes—sentences that say the same thing when read backward as they do the normal way. Here, now, is your real April Fool's horoscope, which I hope will inspire you to practice the art of reversal everywhere you go: Rise, sir lapdog! God, pal, rise, sir! Revolt, lover! Bombard a drab mob! Egad—no bondage!

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22–Jan. 19)
Hey, Capricorn, who owns you? What? You say you haven't been able to procure the full rights to yourself? Then we invite you to try our scientifically formulated self-help program, "Buy Yourself Back." Piece by piece, this amazing 99-lesson miracle cure will help you reacquire authority over your own body, soul, and spirit. Money-back guarantee! We promise you will own your destiny free and clear by April 1, 2002. APRIL FOOL! "Buy Yourself Back" is still on the drawing board and not yet an actual program. But feel free to steal the idea and develop it to your heart's content. All the astrological omens say this is the year to take complete possession of your life.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20–Feb. 18)
Lick the tongues of blow-up dolls. Eat shark fin soup and rattlesnake tails. Bite the neck and suck the blood of your boss. Compete in "Spitting Into the Wind" contests. Holler savage curses at Hell's Angels motorcyclists. APRIL FOOL! As tempting as these naughty acts might be, Aquarius, I beg you not to employ your growing oral fixations in such risky behavior. Instead, I suggest you try the following: Eat the delectable petals of daisies and petunias. Work diligently to improve your cunnilingus or fellatio skills. Sing and laugh twice as much as you usually do. Speak surgically precise truths to people who've become numb to the sloppy half-truths that are going around.

PISCES (Feb. 19–March 20)
In an underreported study, psychologist Ron Deluga discovered that workers who consistently flatter and agree with their boss have a 5 percent advantage over employees who depend solely on their job performance to advance. "Sucking up works," Deluga concluded. Need I say more, Pisces, now that you're in the perfect astrological phase for shoring up the foundations of career success? APRIL FOOL! Deluga's findings may apply at other times in your life, but not now. Your best bet for making progress on the job in the coming weeks is to combine dogged excellence with creative candor.


If you're not prepared to give it all, don't bother giving anything. APRIL FOOL! Real life requires an excruciating willingness to do the half-right thing when it's impossible to do the totally right thing.

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