I slammed my cat-shaped paperweight, its extended paw graced by a dainty butterfly, into the paper box sitting on my desk. It was followed by a flood of papers and an ‘Employee of the Month’ mug filled with half-empty pens and one dried up highlighter. The drawers were next, emptied with vicious efficiency until all that remained was a newspaper, freshly harvested that morning and the catalyst of this whole fiasco. I violently crumpled it up and threw it into the already overflowing trashcan, filled to the brim with discarded drafts of my grant proposal, all found to be lacking and incomplete.
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After a frustrating few weeks of feeling tongue-tied and misunderstood, clarity (and sanity!) returns. Starting today, Mercury is back in your sign, offering a rare chance to clear the air and get a project back in high gear! Between now and April 10, trust that you can speak your truth without burning any bridges.
That’s what my horoscope had said that morning, read by my purple-haired roommate, and I couldn’t deny it had a certain accuracy to it. If it wasn’t my supervisor demanding edits, then it was the finance or manufacturing department making last minute changes and causing a complete redraft. When more alterations and a potential revaluation of the entire framework were proposed in the weekly meeting, I had to quickly choose between losing the will to live or voicing dissatisfaction. Inspired by Astra’s infectious, purple-haired enthusiasm that the stars were on my side, I reminded them the final draft had already been submitted for proofing, and if we had any hope of getting approved before the next millennia, we needed to submit as soon as possible.
The division head, identified as my archenemy to close friends behind closed doors, took the opportunity to loudly remind the entire room that this was a team effort, requiring everyone on board. In retrospect, that should have been the time to see my victory simply as the act of speaking up, achieving a moment of personal growth and character building, but my horoscope had assured me that now was the time to clear the air with no adverse effects. I calmly set aside my pen and told him in detail where he could stick his proposed changes.
The only thing that ended up being cleared that day was my desk.
Unfortunately the box I had been given wasn’t big enough to carry the rest of my shattered dignity out with me, so I left it in a heap on the meeting room floor, positive I’d never need it again. The rest of the box’s contents was crammed into the back seat of my car and roughly deposited on the couch as I slammed the door of our small apartment.
“You’re home early,” Astra called from the kitchen.
My only answer was a loud burst of derisive laughter followed by glaring into the refrigerator. Astra, who had been typing hurriedly on her laptop covered with crescent moons stickers and neon star signs, finally looked up. “Whoa, I’m picking up some negative vibes here. What happened?”
Deciding organic almond milk wasn’t going to cure my woes, I slammed the door and related the vaporization of my so-called untouchable bridges.
“What’s his sign?” was Astra’s immediate response.
“How should I know?!”
Astra insisted, and I searched my memory until I recalled last spring’s stale cake and weak punch served in tiny paper cups liberated from the bathroom. An online repository of horoscopes was referenced, and Astra nodded knowingly. “That’s your problem.”
Ready for a professional power surge? Today, Mercury returns to Pisces for a second lap — and now with the mental mammoth jetting ahead AND firing up your work mojo, you’re back to full strength and a force to be reckoned with!
“Why do his jets overpower my clean air?!” I demanded, slamming cupboard doors as I decided to see if a cup of tea would do what the almond milk couldn’t. “You said my project would be back on track!”
“Well… without you, it might be. The stars don’t lie. We just don’t always want to hear what they have to say.”
That applied more to Astra than the stars at the moment.
“I’m never listening to you again!” The tea kettle slammed onto the stove. “This is as bad… no, this is worse than the time you told me my star signs aligned with the guy working at the deli!”
Astra responded with an indignant gasp. “That was a match literally made in heaven.”
“He lived in his minivan!”
“The stars don’t have to qualify his innate love of travel!” she argued.
The list of wrongs done to me by the advice of the stars and their purple-haired messenger was not exhausted yet, and I took great care to recite them all chronologically, my anger soon underscored by the harsh screeching of the kettle.
“You know, I can’t focus with all your—“ Astra waggled a hand in my direction, “negative chi up in here.”
“Well, guess what?” I snapped, spilling hot water onto the counter as I carelessly filled a mug decorated with dancing cats and the phrase ‘you’re a-meow-zing.’ “I don’t have a job anymore, so you’re going to have to deal with my negative chi a whole lot more now.”
Astra turned back to the computer, clicking a few times before sighing. “I should have seen this coming.”
Your home life might feel more like an amusement park than a peaceful oasis. You might have felt like everything you said came out wrong or was lost in translation. Whenever possible forgive, forget, and move on!
Astra clicked her computer shut and jumped to her feet. “I get it. You’re clearing the air, and I just have to forgive you for that.”
The purple-haired astrologer bounced out the door with a vibrant smile and an air kiss, leaving me in the kitchen as steamed as my fresh tea. I opened Astra’s computer and left a… personalized horoscope for her.
March 17, 2020: Mercury is retrogradable, and Saturn decided to take a vacation. Where? Nobody knows. You might find yourself in a few uncomfortable situations today, but don’t distress. Jupiter is still out there somewhere doing God knows what, and that might turn out well for you. It’s a good day to be nice to your roommate and replace the chocolate ice cream you ate last week. By the way, you’re paying my rent until I get another job.