By Caeriel Crestin | For Weekender

Sign language: What do the stars have in line for you?

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Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)

You’re a gobstopper in the midst of a major sucking session. Your colors and flavors are changing rapidly, thanks to powerful external forces. I admire your versatility and flexibility, but I’m also worried that things might get out of control. So far these are just outer layers—different hats you’re capable of wearing, so to speak. But this much erosion, left unchecked, could affect your core, too. Make sure, while you’re experimenting, that you have an out—a safety line or two—or you could wind up in the belly of a beast much bigger than you are.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)

The world’s a bloody mess. Anyone who has eyes to see can easily be daunted by the immense trouble we’re in. There are just too many problems happening all at once, with most of them resistant to simple solutions. Apathy is a real danger, because once you realize you’re helpless, it seems like your only option is to surrender and stop caring. It’s “out of your hands.” It’s not, though. True, you’re nowhere near powerful enough to solve any of the big stuff by yourself, but there are a couple quandaries you’re uniquely qualified to see clearly (while others miss them entirely), and resolve completely. Please do so this week.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)

You can overdose on equanimity, to the point where it’s more of a curse than a blessing. Your ability to accept things as they are is slightly out of control. I usually admire your ability to serenely experience extreme situations without feeling any pressing compulsion to change them. However, it’s not always appropriate—sometimes they need transformation, and the only person equipped to do so is the person who’s standing just outside of them; in this case, you. Don’t be reluctant to get your hands dirty or engage in confrontation this week. If you know in your heart that you can “fix” something (even if it’s not technically “broken”), please do so—you might be the only one who can.

Aries (March 21-April 19)

Technology is changing human existence. Just knowing what time it is, all the time, or being able to contact people instantly, makes us dramatically different from humans of a few centuries ago. Too much of this “revolution” happens by default, unfortunately, without much conscious decision-making. Stuff’s made, marketed, and embraced without consideration of how it’ll change us, until it’s too late. It may sound stupid, but think about it: What’s your smart phone doing to you? Is it actually as necessary as you think it is? Examine the technology you use—from elevators to gadgets to automobiles—and make sure it’s actually making your life better, in the short- and long-term. Some of it just plain isn’t. Get rid of it.

Taurus (April 20-May 20)

When walking the sidewalks of Paris, you have to watch your step, lest you step in one of the ubiquitous piles of dog shit. Consequently, you can sometimes fail to notice how pretty the city is, at least above sidewalk level. You’re not in France’s capital, but you might as well be; you’re so busy avoiding stinking messes that you’re completely missing the insanely beautiful experiences you’re actually moving through. Look up, already. Accept that you’re going to step in a little shit along the way. Once you get a look at what you’ve been missing, you’ll realize wading through crap is no big deal; it is, in fact, worth it.

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

You’re as prickly as a cactus this week, but so what? Most people find cacti cute, even lovable—provided they’re not surprised by a painful puncture. If they’re properly made aware of your barbed state, they’ll still be quite pleased to have you around. They might even admire your self-containment and resourcefulness. The worse thing you could do this week is succumb to your deeply-ingrained habits, and pretend to be as cheerful and sociable as ever. That’s dangerous bullshit. People don’t need you to be perky and happy all the time. Be real. You’ll see that people appreciate that more than a good mood.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

You’ve got this idea that you’re limited by things you learned as a child, or that society subtly hard-wired into your brain. Re-writing that shit isn’t all that difficult; the challenge is actually coming around to the decision that a major edit is necessary. It’s scary to decide that a marriage doesn’t have to include sex to be viable and worthwhile, or that you don’t need a regular job to survive, or that raising your children with more than one other adult is a good idea. However, I think some of the “radical” ideas you’re considering could improve (and yes, complicate) your life considerably. You can’t put off your commitment to them forever. This week, decide, one way or the other, if you’re going to rewrite what you’ve been taught, or stick with that lesson for good or ill.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)

Your usual strategy to deter predators and competition—roar and brandish teeth and claws—isn’t likely to work this week. Your current adversaries know that you generally never have to back up your aggressive song-and-dance with actual action. In other words, they’re not going to be scared off, and you’re not in a position to actually rip them open, so a new tactic is called for. Think of the pufferfish, which, when in danger, rapidly inflates itself with water until it’s many times its usual size. In other words, when you’re threatened this week, don’t respond with threats of your own; simply make yourself too big for anyone to get their teeth around.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

January’s persistent gloom is depressing, I know. The lack of sunlight is a bit grueling, and can make you feel basically lackluster and unlovable. Screw vim, vigor, or enthusiasm; just getting the job done is a huge accomplishment at the moment. Besides, everyone around you is more or less in the same boat, so no one’s going to notice your low-level misery. Go ahead and be glum. Just don’t fall into the trap Virgos are notorious for: beating yourself up about it. Being blah is part of the winter cycle. Please don’t make it worse by feeling shitty about feeling shitty.

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)

Your once-dainty rose-colored shades have become beer goggles. Everyone imposes filters—consciously or unconsciously—on their perception of the world around them. But occasionally this escalates to the point where your observations are no longer even remotely valid, because they’re just so distorted. People count on you for your uncanny insight and keen perception of the big picture, so when you venture into the realm of outright delusion, everyone around you feels a bit lost. Do what it takes this week—even if it’s painful—to strip illusions from your sight and see, as much as possible, what’s really there.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)

Some outside influence—maybe your spouse, boss, or neighbor—has forced you to act contrary to your natural inclinations. They may have made an ultimatum or simply imposed subtle boundaries on your behavior over time. Anyway, this week those artificial limitations are likely to crumble, dramatically. Let them. You’re too stubborn and powerful to be walled-in by the will of another, no matter who they are. Only you can decide, ultimately, to permanently alter your conduct. Measures imposed by others are, at best, temporary. Shrug off the yoke of external threats or nitpicking, and let those who’d control you know that only compelling reasoning and rational argument—enough to sway your own mind—could possibly do the trick.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

I expect you to navigate this week with the metaphorical equivalents of a flag of truce in one hand and a machine gun in the other. You’re going to require both your ability to impose order on chaos, and your talent for generating pandemonium in too-structured situations. No one’s got it exactly right, neither the violently self-righteous assholes on one side, nor the well-meaning, prissy rule-makers on the other. We’d be drowning in blood or bureaucracy if either faction prevailed. So use your perversely contradictory talents wisely this week: tame the vicious and incite the faint-hearted, until they’re able to meet, and talk, somewhere in the middle.

Celebrity Birthdays

Bradley Cooper: Jan. 5, 1975

Norman Reedus: Jan. 6, 1969 (pictured)

Blue Ivy Carter: Jan. 7, 2012

Stephen Hawking: Jan. 8, 1942

Kate Middleton: Jan. 9, 1982

Rod Stewart: Jan. 10, 1945

Mary J. Blige: Jan. 11, 1971

To contact Caeriel send mail to [email protected]

By Caeriel Crestin | For Weekender

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To contact Caeriel send mail to [email protected]

Celebrity Birthdays

Bradley Cooper: Jan. 5, 1975

Norman Reedus: Jan. 6, 1969 (pictured)

Blue Ivy Carter: Jan. 7, 2012

Stephen Hawking: Jan. 8, 1942

Kate Middleton: Jan. 9, 1982

Rod Stewart: Jan. 10, 1945

Mary J. Blige: Jan. 11, 1971