December 12, 2012 | 09:21 AMSagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
I know you hate metaphysical mumbo-jumbo and mystical bullshit. For that reason, I attempt to simply tell it like it is. When you need a sincere pat on the back, I do my best to compliment you in a way you can hear. On the same token, I have no qualms about kicking your ass when necessary. But my favorite task (combining the two aforementioned duties) is my responsibility this week: delivering a playful spank. When you examine the rosy glow of your asscheeks later, I want you to think about what you've done. If you haven't a clue, here's one: your crime relates not to being naughty, but to not being naughty enough.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Stage an intervention for your chocolate-addicted friend. Driven to the brink by a slavish devotion to the dark stuff, hounded by horrible acne and an expanding waistline, she'll eventually be grateful to you for stepping in. Be firmly compassionate, without resorting to lame, reductionist strategies like: "Try carob. It's almost the same." Might as well give a heroin junkie Tylenol. Simply own that she's giving something up that's irreplaceably great, but ultimately not as great as the things it's keeping her from. Then use the same hard-nosed, tough-love attitude on yourself to conquer your own less-than-healthy habit.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
First imagine the lamest little girl fantasies you can: princesses, rainbows, unicorns. Now think of the sad, twisted corporate executives whose job it is to take those sickly-sweet visions and shape them into products those poor, naïve little women find irresistibly delicious—and their parents find palatable enough to purchase for them. This marketing strategy has resulted in some nauseatingly lame merchandise, and one of the illusions you've been swallowing. Carefully constructed to appear to your particular sensibilities as a scrumptious and nutritious meal, it's really as vacuous and simple as cotton candy. Throw it away, now that you know—before you take another delectably empty bite.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
Things you don't need: a box to fit inside, a square peg for your round hole, and a category to fall neatly into. Why do you insist on associating with people who offer only these options? There are others who recognize that cramming you in a toybox would only cramp your style. They possess a variety of multi-use pegs for every shape hole. And, since they're completely uncategorizable, they'll be thrilled to know someone else who transcends definition. Why settle for two dimensions, where only one facet of you is allowed to shine at a time?
Aries (March 21-April 19)
While you may not have the protruding brow and powerful jaw of humanity's "missing link" between our primate ancestors and the modern Homo sapiens, your Neanderthal attitude pretty much qualifies you anyway. Chill out on your bash-first, ask questions later approach. Lower your club, and back slowly away. If you don't, you're likely to get clobbered yourself. You can protest "Me have big stick!" all you want, but it's useless; These days, people use smarter weapons, like email viruses, media smear campaigns, and lawsuits. Better develop a more sophisticated offense, or else get used to not having it your way all of the time.
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
Don't waste time with useless stunts like stuffing your face with habanero peppers or lighting your farts. Take the brave, foolish streak you've been wearing this week and harness it to serve some constructive end. Don't risk your life jumping between rooftops to impress someone, not when there are more daring and impressive leaps to be made in your attitude. A tricky and dangerous emotional turnaround would go further towards getting you laid or loved than its physical equivalent. Save the bungee-jumping. Bounce back with a new idea and you'll never have to jump off the bridge in the first place.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Reincarnation gurus don't ridicule the many people who claim to be Cleopatra or King Arthur. They accommodate them instead, by inventing the possibility that those souls split and were reborn into many new incarnations. I know you share my cynicism. Why didn't Homeless Joe's soul fracture and find itself born again in 80 different people? You wouldn't give money to a pasty-faced medium with an infomercial so he could tell you about your life as Queen Elizabeth I. So why are you giving something much more important (part of your soul) to someone as conniving and pathetic? Next time he asks for a piece of you, laugh in his face. It's less than he deserves—in another life you'd have him beheaded.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Cancers brag. Not as often as an Aries, perhaps, but when you do, it's more ostentatious and obnoxious; it's tales of being hand-fed peeled grapes by scantily-clad attendants in a bathtub filled with real pearls and rose petals. It's epic descriptions of the grand adventure where you risked life and limb crossing shaky, fragile, crumbling rope bridges over hot spitting lava to return a dying culture's most precious talisman. That your gloating isn't quite this extreme is irrelevant; it sounds exactly that lush and extravagant to your exhausted listeners. Stop telling us how amazing you are. If you are that cool, those who need to know will figure it out all on their own.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Hachiko was a faithful dog. His friend, Eisenburo Uyeno, was a professor in a different part of Tokyo from where they lived. Still, Hachiko would accompany him daily to Shibaya Train Station, and invariably be waiting for him when he returned. Unfortunately, he died. Hachiko kept his vigil at the station for a decade. Regardless of obstacles, he always returned daily to the station to hopefully await his master. When the dog finally died, touched commuters had a statue erected in his honor, a testament to his devotion. It's a dog story for you, since you've been in the dog house lately. To get out, ironically, follow Hachiko's example—for nothing more than a bowl of kibble, show off just how patient and loyal you can be.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
You are what you do, like it or not. Anyone can resist, for a time, the influence of a job or activity; you don't become a corporate pawn overnight. But it's insidious, the way daily tasks creep in and take over your personality. You become what you despise despite all your resistance. The only solution, ultimately, is to do what you love more than you do what you hate. How's your balance of duty to passion? This week, do what it takes to tip it at least slightly towards the love of life—then set yourself up so it'll stay that way.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Prescription for reviving a slight "slowdown" in your sexual economy: 1.Take exciting risks, like racing around on a powerful motorcycle, clinging to a sexy stranger you barely know. Almost a guaranteed turn-on. 2.Lower the bar slightly. Your interest rates are too high. Don't sleep with anyone below your standards, but do consider everyone who approaches you. They may know something about you that you don't, yet. 3.Jack (or Jill) off. Get the juices flowing. Put it this way: If nothing's coming out of your libidinal bank account nothing's going to come in.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
The best prank caller I know got his dream: His new cellphone uses the old number for an obscure local museum. People calling are subjected to the museum's complicated hours ("We open at 4 A.M., close at 5:45 AM for 5 minutes, reopen at 5:50, then close again at 11:15 for a 15-minute cigarette break…"), detailed, realistic descriptions of the whale carcasses the museum is forced to sell to support itself ("Do you know how hard it is to keep a museum afloat?"), and bizarre exhibits ("The History of Lesbian Self-Absorption in California"). You, too, may get a chance to show off one of your more obscure talents this week. Milk it; it's only a matter of time before they change the number and the calls cease rolling in.
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