By Jared Chausow
By Katie Toth
By Elizabeth Flock
By Albert Samaha
By Anna Merlan
By Jon Campbell
By Jon Campbell
By Albert Samaha
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is one of the most popular and critically acclaimed movies released in 2003. Yet some of its fervent fans have come forward to identify its many problems with continuity. Did you notice that Frodo's scar migrates from his right cheek in one scene to his left cheek in a later scene? That's just one of over 30 flaws registered by readers of the moviemistakes.com website. I applaud this effort. I believe that the most useful critiques often come from people who deeply appreciate the subject they're critiquing. This so happens to be your mandate in the coming week, Taurus: Compassionately assess what needs improvement about everything you love.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): My survey of New Year's resolutions by Geminis reveals some surprising trends. Twenty-one percent of you have vowed to lose weight in 2004, but 26 percent of you hope to gain weight. Thirty-six percent of you plan to launch a new hobby, whereas 58 percent want to get rid of one of your hobbies so as to have more time for the others. While 31 percent of you are plotting to supercharge your ambitions or career, 42 percent of you are quite sure you want to work less and cultivate more leisure and luxury. Finally, 16 percent of you want more "espresso sex"quickies with casual acquaintanceswhile 69 percent have your hearts set on deep, slow, cozy lovemaking with emotionally intelligent partners who crave cuddling.
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CANCER (June 21-July 22): The Weekly World News reports that President George W. Bush, the world's most famous Cancer, plans to invade the moon and declare it the 51st state. To fill the office of the moon's live-in governor, Bush intends to appoint his former foe Al Gore, who garnered 540,520 more votes than the president in the election of 2000. In the weeks ahead, I urge you Crabs to come up with an equally nutty and brilliant strategy as you expand your empire to exotic new locales and shake off old adversaries.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): "Dear Doctor Rob: I'm battling mixed emotions. On the one hand, I have frequent surges of intense compassion that make me want to build houses for poor folks. On the other hand, I'm beset by flashes of vanity that make me want to spend my money on Prada shoes and expensive jewelry rather than on trips to third world countries to help Habitat for Humanity. Is it crazy and self-defeating to want both things? Guilty Leo" Dear Guilty Leo: You've summed up a dilemma that many Leos are wrestling with. My advice? Honor both your urge to express beauty and your desire to aid your fellow humans. I have a vision of you wearing a gold tiara and Prada's sculpted d'Orsay pumps as you frame a wall for a new house in Haiti.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): I predict that 2004's mysterious gifts will free you from your old self. At least one of your inhibitions will disappear. Attacks of self-consciousness will diminish in frequency and intensity. You'll realize how fun it is to rebel against your antiquated image. The only new taboo you might take on is a taboo against imitating the overused shticks that have worked for you in the past. Because of these explosive improvements in your relationship with brash spontaneity, you may be ready to acquire your porn name. Here are two suggestions about how to generate the new moniker: (1) Combine the name of your first pet with the name of the street where you lost your virginity. (2) Go to mypornname.com and follow the directions.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): To frame your assignment this week, I'm plundering an old horoscope from The Onion (theonion.com), America's finest source of news and entertainment. "Even the mighty Ozymandias, king of kings, was brought low by time," the 'scope read. "If possible, live your life without this mysterious phenomenon." To help you carry out this difficult but rewarding task, Libra, here are a few tips: (1) In your initial attempt, don't overdo it. Spend no more than three days eluding the oppressive grip of time. (2) Hide all clocks and watches. (3) Read historical novels and watch movies set in other eras. (4) Fantasize about what you were in your previous incarnations and what you'll be in your future lives. (5) Meditate on Plato's idea that "Time is a moving image of eternity."
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): "When in a doughnut-eating competition," writes Esquire's Cal Fussman, "press down hard on each one before biting into it. If you don't, the air inside will bloat your belly and you'll get blown out after six." I suggest you regard this as your metaphor to live by in the coming week, Scorpio. Squeeze out all the filler that might dilute your enjoyment of the really killer stuff. Don't get bogged down in empty symbolism and vacant fantasies that wear down your competitive edge.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): In Greek myth, Psyche was a pure-hearted young woman whose misadventures with love got her into trouble. One day she found herself at the mercy of the goddess Aphrodite, who commanded her to sort a big heap of mixed millet, wheat, and poppy seeds into separate piles. You're now in a situation that reminds me of Psyche's predicament, Sagittarius. Is there any hope for you to complete your own version of this seemingly impossible task? Yes, there isespecially if you garner the kind of help that Psyche did. Feeling compassion for her plight, thousands of ants swarmed to her aid, separating the seeds for her overnight. Can you call on an equivalent ally?
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): You now have the power to design and implement a fresh version of fate for yourself. This window of opportunity won't last long, though, so I suggest you act with swift decisiveness. To guide your work, I offer two observations. The first is from Alan Kay, who conceived the laptop computer: "The best way to predict the future is to invent it." The second is my paraphrase of astrologer Hadley Fitzgerald's paraphrase of Ram Dass: "On the one hand, everything is preordained. On the other hand you have complete free will. When you truly grasp that paradox, you're no longer a slave of your conditioning."
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Aquarian singer Justin Timberlake suffered a temporary blow to his reputation last November. Speaking to ABC-TV's Diane Sawyer, his ex-lover Britney Spears implied that he is under-endowed in a part of his anatomy that most men take very seriously. It didn't take long for Timberlake's grandmother to come to his defense. "I helped raise him, and I can assure you that there's nothing wrong with him physically," 70-year-old Sadie Bomar told the press. I predict you will soon undergo a similar fall and redemption, Aquarius. Start rounding up the allies you will want to testify in your behalf.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): "Thinking outside of the box presupposes you were able to think in it." This gem from automotive executive Bob Lutz sets the tone for your new plan of action, Pisces. In the coming week, you should concentrate on understanding your life's long-term trends from an inside-the-box perspective. Stick closely to what you actually know, as opposed to what you might speculate or fantasize. Confine your analysis to the data you can definitely confirm. Starting next week, it'll be time to think outside the box. Having prepared a strong foundation, you will have ensured that your imagination will provide useful visions when you finally unleash it.
Name 10 items from among your personal possessions that you would put in a time capsule to be dug up by your descendants in 500 years. Tell us at beautyandtruth.com