For the week of: 8/6-12/2001

    "It is the bright day that brings forth the adder."

Shakespeare's Julius Caesar [II.i.14]

Shakespeare's Julius is nice in that the character does depart from strict historical veracity. This action is called "poetic license." Just have to make your poetic license is up to date. Mine is, but I am a professional. Want my take on your astrology chart? Don't want to spring the big bucks for a real reading? Stop on by the last South Austin event this year, and you can get a quick astrology answer to your questions. Not in South Austin? There's always an order form with a plethora of readings, right here. [The money gets handled by a secure server, but I've never been clear about how self-aware that machine might be.] In honor of the Pluto-Saturn thing getting easier, this is supposed to be "National Armadillo Week," according to an old poster, "Hats off to Armadillos!"

Aries: I stepped into a Thundercloud sandwich shop, just the other day, to grab a quick bite to eat. In keeping with the tone of the times, I was getting a vegetarian version of a sandwich with vegetarian cold cuts on it. As I was standing there, the guy behind the counter -- "Sandwich Engineer" by his name tag -- asked if I wanted some water or something. Apparently I was doing something a little bit more than glistening with sweat. Dripping might have been the correct phrase. Likewise, you're dripping with sweat too, and it doesn't matter whether you're in the Texas heat or not, because this is astrological heat you're feeling. Use it. Feel the burn. Embrace the power. And like that sandwich I ordered (vegetarian deluxe with a couple of strips of bacon for flavor, and a double dose of peppers), it's a little extra spice. Put that extra spice to work for you.

Taurus: There is always just one little tough obstacle, one little thing that doesn't make sense, one little problem which appears to be just that, one small problem, but inside, there is a huge problem struggling to escape its confines. You can decant just a bottle of double-trouble if you so desire, but I'd advise against it. Sometimes, the better part of valor is just ignoring the problem in the first place. Bubba started working on his truck one morning, he was going to fix the starter. As it was, it had gotten to a point where he would have to park on a hill, an incline of some kind, in order to get the motor going. It was either that, or push start the truck. But to get the starter motor, you have to pull out the radiator, then loosen up some motor mounts, and there were problems with both operations. By the end of the afternoon, a case of beer later, the various parts were strewn across the parking lot, and the new starter motor still wasn't installed. Watch how you attack little problems -- don't let the bigger ones get out, too.

Gemini: Let's work with some definitions here. The adder is usually a snake. And the snake usually lives underground, which might make him more of worm than a snake. While I find nothing repulsive about snakes, they are scaly, not slimy, you might not agree. But the bright sun, and while we're at it, that old favorite of ours, Saturn, is shining a bright light into the snake's [Pluto] hidey hole. So like Shakespeare's character suggests, the bright day is going to bring forth the adder. Gemini's are absolutely the worst at keeping secrets. Be prepared for one of your secrets to see the light of day. You know, there's a way to hide this secret, too. You can't hide in its hole anymore, but you can use a little-realized Gemini trick: hide it in plain view. In other words, use a torrent of words to slip this one into place. As long as the secret is getting discovered, just keep piling on the background noise, something you can be good at, and use that a plausible cover for our little secret. I promise, I won't tell.

Cancer: "To heck with it all!" is a familiar cry around the Cancer trailer here in Shady Acres Trailer Park. You can argue, cajole, whine, moan, make noise, make a joyful noise, do just about anything, but it's still the same thing. And instead of complaining too much, let me suggest another trick: party. What you need is a good, late-summer blow out. Or a middle of the end of the summer blow out. A pre-back-to-school keg party type of thing. Get the idea? And instead of trying to contain this in your own trailer, as it spills out onto the lawn, the backyard, the front yard, and even into the neighbor's parking spaces, just sit back and enjoy the happiness you've created. One caution: make sure you have some sort of control on the more rowdy elements of your party. By my standards, it's not good party unless the police are called, but not everyone agrees with my standards.

Leo: Find the Cancer party, and go enjoy yourself. In fact, you have nothing whatsoever to worry about. Nothing. Not one thing. Zip. Nada. Not a care in the world. Of course, one particular Leo [I'm not naming names, but you know which one I'm talking about] is going to write a quick e-mail extolling all the problems, the hassles, the downfalls, and how nothing is going right. That's why I suggest you find the Cancer's party. Nothing like a good blow out to make you feel like everything is okay again. Besides, it's still Leo Party Time, as observed in the traditional astrological calendar -- means the sun is in Leo -- so use that as an excuse to have some fun. Better yet, let someone else have the headache of trying to clean up after it's all over. Leave that to someone else. The only headache you should have is from too much fun the night before.

Virgo: I know this one Virgo, and this particular person worries about things ahead of time. The "what if?" questions get a little carried away, if you know what I mean. To be fair, when the truck breaks down on the side of road, this particular Virgo not only has a phone with her, she also has a huge purse with a little set of tools, perfect for fixing some of the problems with the truck. "One can never be too prepared," she admonishes. Those tiny little multi-blade tools which fit on a key chain? They work perfect in a purse, too. And you'll be surprised what you can actually fix with one of those devices. I helped retrofit a rent house one time, for a Virgo friend, and I used nothing more than one such tool. Plumbing, some electrical wiring, even used it to cut linoleum for the new floor, all of that was done with my one little pocket tool. Likewise, you can get a lot done with one such tool, especially right now. If you're worried about the week, then just be as prepared as possible. And it never hurts to have the portable phone charged up, too.

Libra: Luck's a gamble, but trouble's a sure thing, is an apt way to look at your upcoming week. I was going to borrow from a particular English poet, but I'm tired of fancy literary allusions, and so are you. There's a hint, a suggestion, a chance to finish up an old project. Consider putting the final touches on your epic masterpiece, consider wrapping it up. In software terms, consider it golden and it's time to ship. Time to get on with it all. Wrap that project up, get out of the hands of the developers, get it off the drawing board, or, in my special case, get the car down off the blocks and make it roll again. At one time, I used to work in motorcycle shop, and a bike would show up -- dead solider in the back of truck -- and the work order was a simple message: "Make Go." So whatever it is that you've been working, just make it go. Pull it off the jack stands, or blocks, or whatever it is that you use to prop this project up with, and get ready to roll it out. For now, just make it go. Details? We'll get to them later.

Scorpio: Choices, you always have choices. And that's one of the problems facing you right now. Is the glass half empty or is the glass half full? To the average Scorpio -- wait, no Scorpio is ever average -- but to the median Sun Sign Scorpio, that glass is going to appear to be nearly empty with no hope of ever seeing it filled it up. Remember the concept that you've got choices, and think to your Scorpio self, "Self, there is some fluid in the glass, it looks like a delicious beverage I was just enjoying, and...." Then I suggest you drain the glass thereby ending a lengthy philosophical discussion about whether it's half empty or half full. You just drank it all. It's empty now. Rather than wait around and talk about it, just do something. You may not always make the right choice, but I'll promise, for a change, you get to have the final say in the given situation.

Sagittarius: One august August, not unlike what we're all experiencing right now, one hot summer night, I came home from my evening's revels, and I found the cat prostrate in front of the beleaguered AC unit, tongue lolling out, water dish dry, and the AC was blowing marginally cool air. It was a simple compressor problem, and a good kick to the unit got it all working again. The cat began to purr, as did the AC unit, and all was well. But it was significant because it was one of the hottest days of the summer, thus far. And it was significant because it meant that the particular AC unit was on its last legs, just too tired to be cool anymore. Notice that this always happens when it's really hot? Under a same astrological influence, the heater quit working on one of those rare winter nights when it does get really cold, well below the average of 60 degrees [only 30 degrees above freezing, I might point out]. It might not be your climate controls, but something similar is bound to give up. Just kick it, and hope that works for now.

Capricorn: There's a particular men's magazine, as it likes to call itself, and this one publication runs what it considers as a column of letters from their readers. Prurient interest letters about impossible combinations and situations which, frankly, seem a lot more like bad pulp fiction rather than anything really resembling reality. Now, why would I talk about this to you? Because something like one of those epistolary pieces of fiction is about to happen to you. "You're kidding, right? I haven't had a date in days/weeks/months/years, much less a singular experience like that!" Before the week is up, though, you could be sitting down to describe, with the best journalistic integrity you can muster, that very sort of letter. "Dear [publication's name], I never thought I would be writing letter like this but when the three college cheerleaders ...." You get the image? Realize that your version might have to be tuned for your own tastes a little, but dare to dream. Times like this, I wish I was a Capricorn.

Aquarius: Life would be ever so much easier if you just didn't fight it. Know what I'm talking about? Quite taking on certain problems that clearly, obviously, don't belong to you. I've got a good buddy, and he takes it upon himself to own every trouble he can find. We'll be sitting at the diner, early in the morning, sipping coffee (more like slurping), and he'll exclaim about some outrage in the newspaper. This is clearly an issue that won't affect him, but he still gets rather indignant at the whole problem, the whole situation. I'll agree that he has a nifty solution to the problem, but the chance of a world leaders listening to some guy with a little bit of a "biscuit belly" hanging over his belt is pretty slim. I usually have some rather sage wisdom for him, "Hey you can't fight City Hall," but that doesn't always get through to him. Howsoever, since you're reading this, then maybe you'll listen. Insert your own, favorite cliché and figure that some battles aren't worth the Aquarius bandwidth right now.

Pisces: Skip the work issue right now. Sure, that's a big deal, but just skip it. I know, I know, you feel like it is a big hassle and it's something you should be attending to at this point, but it is the heat of the summer [here in Texas] and even if it's not summer where you are, you still have certain planets in certain places, and I'm not going to name them but Venus and Jupiter are worthy of your considerations. Tear yourself away from work for a little while, and see about spending some of you attentions on romance. Either you are the romancer or you're the romancee, but in either case, why not take this as a little bit of a summer break from the work issue, and turn towards the romance thing. The trouble with work will always be there. There's always another day when you can deal with it -- I've found that work piles up whether or not it gets the attention it rightfully deserves so let's both ignore it for a little while. Go with the romantic notion and suggestion for the time being. Get a break. Or take a break. Work will always be there next week.

(c) Kramer Wetzel, 2000, 2001

About the author: Born and raised in a small town in East Texas, Kramer Wetzel spent years honing his craft in trailer park in South Austin. He hates writing about himself in third person.

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