Horoscope

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I suggest you enlist the help of a Jewish fairy godmother. If you can't find a good candidate in your own neighborhood, check out the feisty saint at yourjewishfairygodmother.com. Though I don't know her and can't vouch for her services, I like how she says she "combines a New Age soul with old world wisdom, East Coast savvy and West Coast mellow," and "has black belts in schmoozing, manipulation, and chutzpah." That sounds just right for your current needs, Aries. At this juncture in your noble struggle, you need to be nagged and sweet-talked, prodded and praised. If you get too much tough love or too much tender sympathy, you'll keep missing the point about your problem. But you'll be perfectly motivated if you receive a blend of both.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Welcome to the first horoscope in history that relies entirely on the colors of Crayola crayons for its metaphors. To what do you owe such an honor? Simple, Taurus: After a dicey cruise through the midnight blue and burnt umber parts of the spectrum, you're now awash in a kaleidoscope of flashier hues, ranging from pink flamingo to electric lime to neon carrot. Even wild blue yonder and mango tango are injecting themselves into the mix. Congrats on this vivid redirection. Where you're headed is more interesting than the yellow brick road. In Crayola-speak, it's more like the banana mania brick road.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Turn your attention, please, to the predicament of Mohabbatsinh Gohil, a diamond trader in India. A cow swallowed 1,722 diamonds that he accidentally dropped in the street. By combing through the beast's dung for many days, Gohil was eventually able to recover many of his jewels. I suspect that in the coming weeks, you'll encounter a challenge comparable to his. Let's hope you've got the patience, humility, and sense of humor to sift through the dreck in search of small but weighty treasure.

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CANCER (June 21-July 22): There's only one bad thing about mountain biking in the windy rain: I have to keep my eyelids half closed and blink constantly to avoid being blinded. But as long as I'm wearing my waterproof parka, the ride is great fun. Today I swear I heard the wild irises sing with ecstatic gratitude as they soaked up the downpour. The moist, blooming, humus smell of the earth was intoxicating. The raindrops seemed jubilant as they gathered together into gushing streams and cascaded down the trails. Because no other humans were crazy enough to be out, I got to exult in some precious alone time with the woods. What's the equivalent of mountain biking in the windy rain for you, Cancerian? What tiny annoyances are outweighed by gleeful benefits? You should pursue those experiences passionately this week.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): "God is a comedian playing to an audience that is too afraid to laugh," mused the 18th-century French philosopher Voltaire. What's ironic, I would add, is that the moment you summon the courage to laugh, God's jokes become tonic rather than cruel. They have a cleansing effect, and often tend to break down the obstacles to your dreams. Are you ready to make the transition, Leo? The planetary omens suggest that you have ripened sufficiently to find the next divine punchline hysterically funny.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): According to wordspy.com, the term pareidolia(pronounced "payr-eye-DOH-lee-uh") refers to "the erroneous or fanciful perception of a pattern or meaning in something that is actually ambiguous or random." Mainstream astronomers say this is the perfect word to describe what rogue researchers have called the "Face on Mars," an evocative plateau in the Cydonia region of the red planet. It's important to note, however, that not all wonders and marvels are the result of pareidolia. For instance, the personal message you think you discern in a billboard or tortilla this week may really be a communication directly from an angel of mercy to you. To distinguish authentic breakthroughs from mere pareidolias, strike a balance between skepticism and open-mindedness. Just because some apparent miracles are frauds doesn't mean they all are.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Your role model in the coming weeks is Latin pop star Julio Iglesias, born on the Virgo-Libra cusp. Though he has sold over 150 million records, he admits that there are thousands of people who are more polished vocalists. "I know I can't really sing properly," he told the German magazine Bunte. But he believes it is precisely his lack of perfect technique that makes him so appealing. "My voice has emotion, a style. The best singers can't touch people like I can." If I understand the astrological portents correctly, Libra, you're most likely to succeed in the coming days if you use Iglesias's approach in your own field of endeavor. Don't let an obsession with flawless execution get in the way of expressing genuine feeling. Emphasize magic over cleverness.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Imagine it's 30 years from today. You're looking back at the history of your relationship with desire. You realize that the period of April through August of 2004 stands out as a watershed. That was when you clearly saw that some of your desires were mediocre, inferior, and wasteful, while others were beautiful, sacred, and invigorating. Beginning then, you made it one of your life goals to purge the former and cultivate the latter. Thereafter, you occasionally wandered down dead ends pursuing goals that weren't worthy of you, but usually you wielded your passions with discrimination and integrity, dedicating them to serve the highest and most interesting good. Right?

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Don't camp next to a forest fire or go on a picnic where mad bulls roam. OK, Sagittarius? Don't play with matches next to a gasoline pump, either, or fly a kite in a lightning storm, or feed steroids to the monsters under your bed. In fact, I suggest that you take fewer risks than you normally might. Whenever you feel a surge of daredevil energy, turn it inward and direct it at the mental blocks that have been messing with your creativity.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): It's an astrologically favorable time to expand your repertoire of pleasurable activities. The hidden forces of fate will bring you luck and synchronicity when you set aside your familiar old amusements and experiment with fresh ones. For example, whatever your favorite sexual positions or techniques are, you should consider retiring them for a couple of weeks while you branch out. Same with desserts, intoxicants, games, and getaways: Try anything different at least once. Drink some of that new chocolate beer. Get stroked by two massage therapists simultaneously. Schedule a singing lesson on a mountaintop or a flying lesson in your dreams.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Is there anything more dangerous than getting up in the morning and having nothing to worry about, no problems to solve, no friction to heat you up? That state can be a threat to your health, because if untreated it incites an unconscious yearning for any old dumb trouble that might generate some excitement. I'm concerned that you might fall into this trap in the coming week, Aquarius. To ensure that you don't, go hunt down some useful and fascinating trouble as soon as possible.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Late last year, the DJ Danger Mouse made a record that blended vocals from rap star Jay-Z's Black Album with instrumental tracks lifted from the Beatles' White Album. The result, which he called the Grey Album, was praised by Rolling Stone as "the ultimate remix record" and "an ingenious hip-hop record that sounds oddly ahead of its time." Your assignment in the coming weeks, Pisces, is to join together seemingly unrelated elements to create a combination that's as interesting and innovative as Danger Mouse's. There's one way I hope your effort will be different from his, however. Because he didn't have authorization to use the Beatles' material, the Grey Album can never be commercially released. Your work, on the other hand, should be legal, kosher, and karmically impeccable.


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