LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22) She inserts her quivering proboscis delicately between layers of gently yielding flesh, inching it between plump epidermal cells. She is so careful. She knows a giant slab of meat could slam into her any second, crushing her against her meal. At long last, she reaches the red gold, guiltlessly slurping it up in long, hasty swallows. She needs food, for herself?for her kids. It's so little, after all. At last, she elatedly buzzes off to a stagnant pool somewhere, leaving only the tiniest evidence behind. This wasn't written so you'd sympathize with mosquitoes, only so you might realize that everything has its own perspective and reasons, and most of them have very little to do with you. Even if you can't advocate the motivations of someone you disapprove of, at least make an attempt to understand where they're coming from.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) Self-deprecation is in poor taste these days. That was a fad that went out in the mid-90s, along with the Seattle grunge movement. The late 90s are more about being proud of yourself, even if you have nothing to be proud of. Whatever trend predominates in the new millennium, you'll be in vogue. Don't act clueless. We both know you have some deliciously shameful secrets hidden in that sexy subterranean mind. On the other hand, you also have some incredible accomplishments under your belt (ahem) that you can't help being proud of. Congratulations, Scorp. You win.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) For something I love so much, I have a deep aversion to writing. The minute I sit down and begin to type, almost any other task sounds intensely more appealing than cranking out words in front of a computer screen. At these moments I'd rather be doing endorsements for bladder control products on MTV, or carrying hot coals in my teeth for my fat aunt while she beats me with a wooden shoe, or testing experimental shaving cream in my eyes. Sometimes some of these tempting activities actually divert me from my true cause. But ultimately, I make myself sit down and do it, just as you ought to. You'd actually get somewhere if you'd just try.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) How many people can you wedge into one tiny Dodge Charger? In high school, this was one of my frequent experiments. Sliding arms around necks, thighs over knees, faces into armpits, feet into laps and butts into crotches, we had the makings of quite an orgy?if any of us could actually move. Likewise, you're in a potentially exciting situation, but there's not even enough room for you to spring a hard-on, let alone get any action. Make some space for yourself, but don't overdo it?you might end up having the whole bed to yourself for longer than you anticipated.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18) For months I'd sneak down to the creek and balance stones. Swimming nearly naked in the cool mountain water, I'd create eerily stable but precarious-looking towers out of the smooth, rounded stones I found there. On leaving, I'd look back and get a frisson imagining the reaction of the next person who'd wander into the whimsical faery village I'd built. Near the end of her term at the artist's colony, one of the painters (whose specialty was rocks and water) discovered me constructing my Xanadu. We were both delighted to meet the founts of our inspiration?I'd been informing many of her paintings with my towers, and just imagining her discovery had inspired me. You, too, are about to encounter one of the myriad sources of your creativity, face-to-face.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20) Decisions, decisions. You adore triple-fudge devil's food. You love pecan pie even more. Or was it the chocolate you liked better? As usual, you're torn between options?two tethered fish swimming in opposite directions is your traditional symbol, after all. I'm delighted to inform you: This week, and for as long as you're willing to make it work, you can have both your cakes, and eat them, too, on one condition. In this case, since the "cakes" are people, you might have to let them have a taste of each other. It's only fair.
ARIES (March 21-April 19) KAPOW! WHOOOOSH! That's the sound of you finally slamming into sixth gear, the gear you always suspected you had but could never quite find the slot for. In fact, you've stalled out quite a few times, foot on the clutch, grappling with the gearshift, searching for the position that would let you go even faster than before. Enjoying the wind gusting past your face and the sensation of a powerful engine throbbing between your legs? Might as well get used to it. This is just practice for when you get to the straightaway this fall. Compared to that, this is just a kiddie ride.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20) I love that feeling of lying in bed with morning wood, fantasizing about the day to come. The fantasies aren't even always about sex?sometimes they involve money, or fame or just having a cool day. You know the feeling?you're still all cozy in your sheets, the light filtering through the window is more deliciously golden than perfect toast. The clock radio erupts with a song you actually like, for a change. Sounds nice, huh? Imagine if you could extend that feeling to a good chunk of the rest of the day, and you have a decent picture of what your week is shaping up to be.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20) Hi Marcia! Er, I mean, Jan. Oh, sorry, I meant Bobby all along. That's right?this week ought to have more than a passing resemblance to an episode of that wonderfully tacky tv show. Even if things go wrong, they'll have no more serious consequences than getting a stern lecture from Dad, and the potential of turning into another zany Hawaiian adventure or another corny singalong in kinky retro outfits. So all that's left to decide: Which Brady will you be?
CANCER (June 21-July 22) Andy Goldsworthy creates art out of nature, literally. Using few or no man-made materials, he sculpts masterpieces out of leaves, reflections on water, ice, rocks, branches or dirt. Then he photographs them, because they're so ephemeral that some of them last only seconds. And what is art, without an audience? You've been creating some treasures of artistry yourself recently, and been disappointed by the lack of response. It's not because your work lacks quality, even emotional genius; it's because you haven't been presenting it to a wide enough audience. Get out there and sell yourself, beautiful.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22) Carefully stringing little pieces of bone and wood on the thin length of twisted leather, she makes art. The bones are yellowish and not all the same size, or length. She carved them herself out of pieces of people she knew, once. Sounds primitive? Well, I'm sure it's obvious that the modern world doesn't have all the answers?especially when it comes to honoring our dead. Sure, things like the AIDS quilt are amazing, but you can't carry it with you. This week, figure out a way to remember your ancestors, not so you can dwell on their deaths or your own, but so you can live with their memories.