SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):
If you're planning on sidling up to a taboo, slinking into a forbidden zone, harboring a righteous dissident, or cooking up a benevolent conspiracy (and I hope you'll do at least one of those things), don't send out press releases. Be as discreet as a politician running for re-election, as cagey as a secret Santa Claus. And please don't allow your strategic stealth to turn you into a manipulative jerk: Make your covert operation a work of art, not a weapon. One more thing: If you find yourself being scrutinized by the perpetrators of ass-backwards justice, put the hint of a smile on your otherwise poker face.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):
Have you ever seen the game called Playing the Dozens? Participants compete in the exercise of hurling witty insults at each other. "You're so dumb, if you spoke your mind you'd be speechless" is a relatively benign example. A more typical slam is "Your mother is so old, she was a waitress at the Last Supper" or "You're so ugly, you couldn't get laid if you were a brick." This week, Capricorn, I'd like you to concentrate on rebelling against every impulse in you that resonates in harmony with the spirit of Playing the Dozens. In fact, I hope you'll consider trying a new game called Paying the Tributes. To do so, simply ransack your imagination to come up with smart, true, extravagant, and amusing praise for various people you know. Here's a sample: "You have such far-seeing vision I bet you can glimpse the back of your own head."

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):
The pest control company Hydrex named the yellow jacket its Pest of the Month for June. Previous winners include pantry moths, fungus gnats, and carpet beetles. I urge you to be inspired by their efforts, Aquarius. Home in on just one of the vexations that are draining your energy. Forget about the others for now so you can devote your full attention to driving the chief offender away. I'm not sure which irritant would be the best candidate, but consider the red herring or the straw men.


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PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):
Pregnant women sometimes get unusual cravings. When Ro was pregnant with our daughter, she felt a daily compulsion to eat oranges and artichokes and read the work of Nobel Prize-winning bard William Butler Yeats. Is it any surprise that 11-year-old Zoe has turned into a lyric poet who loves oranges and artichokes? I bring this up, Pisces, because chances are good you're pregnant right now, if only in a metaphorical sense. (Check to see if it's also literal, though.) As a result, you'll be attracted to sensations and experiences that are unique to the brainchild you'll ultimately give birth to.

What's the best joke you could play on yourself? Do you promise to try it someday soon? Write: beautyandtruth@freewillastrology.com

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