CAPRICORN DEC. 22-JAN. 19
You're a field mouse in a hawk's grip. You were careless the last time you crossed the meadow, and a sharp-eyed falcon swooped in and snatched you up so fast you barely had time to blink. Whether this was an honest miscalculation on your part (or perhaps part of you actively wanted something like this to happen), or simply fate, is irrelevant. There's nothing you can do about it now except relax and wait to be consumed-struggling won't free you, only grind your soft parts against razor-sharp talons. Fortuitously, this particular bird of prey doesn't have quite the stomach to digest all of you-with any luck it'll only eat the pieces you're better off without.
AQUARIUS JAN. 20-FEB. 18
You're a lab rat, this week, trapped in a maze. You know better than to believe there's any kind of reward (like cheese) other than escape. Whether the maze is your annual family holiday gathering, winter doldrums or some other unimaginable labyrinth, the worst thing you could do is slump despondently against a wall and wait for it to be over. Not only will that forestall your imminent discovery of the exit, it would have scientists (or overanxious parents, employers, etc.) prodding you and messing with you for weeks. Wouldn't you rather suffer a little now (and soon escape into the comfortably familiar privacy of your regular life) than suffer a lot later (and perhaps never get away)?
PISCES FEB. 19-MARCH 20
You'd be embarrassed if your parents learned about many of the things you do (or have done). But that's only because their value systems are comically outdated, right? Maybe. Maybe not. You're likely to have at least one of your ideas about Mom and Pop turned on its head this week, as you discover something about their reckless youths you'd never have imagined (or possibly even done yourself). This is not to say they're suddenly going to be open-minded sitcom parents who'll work their way around to understanding everything you believe and do, so don't be stupid and spill all your wisely kept secrets. But please be flexible. Railroading your parents into only being exactly who you thought they were would be a huge, very regrettable mistake.
ARIES MARCH 21-APRIL 19
Quit your junk-food diet, baby. Right now. Don't stop with merely tossing the Cheese Doodles. Renounce your addiction to sitcoms, trash fiction, comfortable lies and emotional shortcuts. You're badly in need of a diet; your beleaguered heart's valves are clogged with cholesterol, sentimental saccharine and the arterial plaque of dishonesty. It's not too late for a multipronged cure. Change your diet: Start devouring oat bran, intelligent literature, leafy greens and bitter truths. Work up a sweat, too: Unabashed honesty and a forthright distinction between desires and reality should raise your pulse rate. If it doesn't, you might not be doing it right. Try again, please.
TAURUS APRIL 20-MAY 20
With the prevalence of camera phones and other cheap recording technology, our lives are less private than they ever were. This is especially dismaying to you Taureans-not because you've got anything more to hide than anyone else, but because you value privacy for philosophical, perhaps even sensual reasons. Maybe you also realize that it's more of a luxury, these days, than a right (all political rhetoric aside). Luckily, you're in a position this week to do two very important things: one bold action that could help conserve and protect whatever privacy you have left, and another that could grant you the serenity to glide unperturbed through any intrusions you simply can't prevent. Good luck on both fronts. Do us proud.
GEMINI MAY 21-JUNE 20
Make plans this week. Actual plans; you know, real commitments it'd be hard to back out of. Flying by the seat of your pants is fine most of the time-it guarantees you spontaneous adventures that you adore. But don't be so selfish. Some of the people involved like knowing what to expect. You don't really need the thrill of surprise every time, do you? Carefully planned fun might be the only kind some of the people you know are capable of having. Indulge them, would you? No matter how thoroughly you schedule every minute of the coming week, I promise you're in for some surprises nevertheless.
CANCER JUNE 21-JULY 22
Be careful wielding your emotions. With the Full Moon in your sign intensifying their impact on others, you might accidentally fuck up your life with a randomly flung tear, comment or giggle. A burst of anger could set fire to your neighbor's Christmas tree, a fit of weeping might drown the cat, or the cackle of your zany laughter could shatter windows all over town. You've basically been handed a razor-sharp tansu sword. Swiftly demonstrate your supreme control over this much deadly power, before people flee in terror. You're fated to evoke one of two emotions in the people around you this week: panicked dread, or surprised respect. It's your choice.
LEO JULY 23-AUG. 22
Resist your impulse to hide under the bed until the week's over. Your urge to avoid life might feel overwhelmingly irresistible, but you simply can't afford to take a week off. Risk a nervous breakdown by participating as you know you should-it's worth the effort. You don't have to go out naked and utterly vulnerable into the cruel, harsh world, though. Give yourself buffers; shades, iPod and spiked mulled wine are all acceptable self-medication to help you get through the messiness. You can run around nude and unprotected next week, when you might actually want to.
VIRGO AUG. 23-SEPT. 22
Recall (or imagine) the moment when the umbilical cord between you and Mom was severed. Suddenly, ready or not, you were required to breathe and eat on your own. Since then you've proceeded-almost in a perfectly straight line-toward ever-greater independence and self-sufficiency. It's important to keep that profound first "step" in mind, because the one you face this week is much like that-something (or someone) you counted on can no longer support you. The umbilical cord's been cut. You're on your own. Luckily, you've been doing this all your life; it's second nature. It's as simple as opening your mouth and inhaling, deep.
LIBRA SEPT. 23-OCT. 22
Unfamiliar situations can be overwhelming. A new school might resemble an unfathomable labyrinth; the responsibilities of a promotion can induce sensations of drowning; being presented to your future in-laws makes you want to hide in their guest bathroom and overdose on pills filched from their medicine cabinet. Later, though, you'd navigate the corridors and social convolutions of your once-bewildering school with unconscious ease, forgetting that they ever confounded you; you'd breeze through once-nerve-wracking daily work tasks with time left over for an extended coffee break; you'd joke with your in-laws without a qualm. This is one of those times. No matter how fucked up and beset you feel now, you'll get over it-so thoroughly, that in three months' time you'll barely remember ever suffering any doubt at all.
SCORPIO OCT. 23-NOV. 21
In your mind, certain tasks-tending houseplants, cooking or interacting with kids, for example-fall under some kind of mystic subheading, comprising skills that either people possess naturally, or they don't have at all. That lets you off the hook, doesn't it, when your nieces run screaming, or the geraniums lose all their leaves? Fuck that. While these skills might come more effortlessly to some, anyone can learn how to keep a houseplant alive, cook a decent meal and at least not alienate or frighten children. So you weren't born with whatever aptitude's required. So what? Acquire it. You can.
SAGITTARIUSNOV. 22-DEC. 21
You're used to advocating unpopular viewpoints-you sometimes consider it your job. You're also accustomed to doing it solo, which is why you might not notice that someone is doing their best to aid and abet you this week, and you might miss out if you're not paying attention. This ain't some lame useless sidekick-Robin to your Batman. You've got, instead, a potential ally who's at least your equal. In other words, you both could go twice as far in half the time-if you manage to notice each other. That, my friend, is this week's task.