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Rockie Horoscope

The 2002 holiday season officially begins on Friday with the onset of solar Sagittarius. While militant Mars and aerodynamic Uranus form a supportive trine in air signs this weekend, consider getting away while the getting is good. Venus'recent turnaround in sexy Scorpio will eventually bring your love life back up to speed, but in the meantime, try to trace the track of these tears: Venus, ruler of romance as well as the New York Stock Exchange, went retrograde on October 10, did a forward flip yesterday and should regain the ground it lost by December 21, the winter solstice. Mmmm, interesting?

Aries

Before sitting down for Thanksgiving dinner, you'll know if your recent "play fair" approach when dealing with relatives, neighbors and friends is working out. Regardless of whether you're the one responsible for their care and feeding, this week you're scheduled to be a big success with them. But if the anticipated kudos don't come, simply wait for December to set in. That's when your take-charge Mars ruler leaves tactful Libra and starts pulling Scorpionic strings, manipulating people and situations to suit your own ends.

Taurus

Let matters you're supposed to be handling and relationships that don't pertain to love fend for themselves. Now until Christmas is the best time to focus on exploring the depths (or the heights) of your romantic feelings. That's because your affectionate Venus ruler is finally moving forward at the same time that passionate Mars is preparing to join her in Scorpio, the sign ruling your cosmic mate. You couldn't ask for a sexier atmosphere for the entire holiday season than this happy coupling of planets.

Gemini

Solar Sagittarius is more than another frantic party season for the Twins. It's the four weeks when you're encouraged to integrate your wide range of intellectual interests with a schizophrenic social life, when you can reveal at least two sides of your personality to more than two people at a time. In other words: showtime. Opening night starts this weekend with a rewarding trine that embraces steadfast Saturn in your sign, ardent Mars in your house of romance, and Uranus springing surprises on you and your audience. Rave reviews.

Cancer

Congratulations for successfully skirting a problem dramatized by the recent lunar eclipse; also for not getting dragged into someone else's emotional abyss. Your reward is to gain psychic strength so you can dominate from now until the solar eclipse next week wipes the slate clean. For some Crabs, this new moon will focus on children, recreation or a new romance; for others, on providing what the neediest truly need for the holidays. Hard workers get to cook their little claws off, catering affairs and having one, too.

Leo

Once the holiday season begins, the temptation to get something going with a neighbor or to come on to a distant cousin might loom large. It's a matter of timing, and since Venus and Mars, the girl and the guy planets, hook up around Thanksgiving, the timing seems right as rain. You could try sublimating a mutual attraction by aiming for domestic bliss or a tarted-up version of same: decking the halls, painting the walls, gilding the lily. Just tiptoe gently on December 4 while your sun ruler is totally eclipsed by the moon.

Virgo

It's subtle but substantial: Family pressures mount during Sagittarius. Blame it on the Thanksgiving reunion, Hanukkah gelt coupled with Jewish guilt, or pre-Christmas planning. Whatever and whoever pushes your buttons presses hard and long. Thankfully, this year there are ways to blow off steam before you reach the boiling point. Making lots of lists, checking them twice, buying stuff that's naughty and nice - these tactics might seem trite, but they work. Also, avoid dredging up the past and pointing fingers.

Libra

It'll probably be the same old song at this year's Thanksgiving table: See no, hear no, speak no evil. While nebulous Neptune rules the family roost, glossing over whatever is passing for reality among your cast of characters is the way to go. This year, you'll tend to march down that road at a quicker pace, thanks to energetic Mars in your sign. However, instead of performing one ritual after another, consider doing something totally untraditional for the holidays. No matter where you go, romance will still be in the air.

Scorpio

A rare and wonderful phenomenon is about to occur. Sweet, adorable Venus and your sexy Mars co-ruler join up in your sign and remain together well past Christmas. If you don't maximize a zillion opportunities to be dearly beloved or a pure object of desire, you're not the ever-alert-to-the-main-chance Scorpio the rest of us admire. Because Sagittarius governs your house of values and valuables, you're poised to see more action in that area, too. Just be aware that the new-moon eclipse on the 4th may affect a big money matter.

Sagittarius

Undercurrents of lust and intrigue may throw you into the arms of a total stranger. Chances are the limbs will belong to a friend of a friend who's also attending one of the holiday festivities you're at. Maybe this person is your surprise birthday present! Although you might not be strongly attracted physically, as long as Mercury is in your sign, you'll be turned on intellectually. Plus, high-spirited fire signs generate lots of excitement when the fiery sun is in their sign, as it is now, providing all of us with yet more reasons to celebrate.

Capricorn

Since Capricorns are usually found high up the executive ladder, it'll be a neat trick if you zero in on someone higher up to flirt with at this year's Christmas party. But since the planets oozing sex appeal are congregated in your career midheaven, perhaps you'll be the one who'll get hit on. Social intercourse, group activities and questions of leadership can become the main topic of your peers after the Sag new-moon eclipse takes place. Who did what with or to whom, and will there suddenly be more room at the top?

Aquarius

The call of the wild is calling you. Whether through a unique adventure abroad or a visit with an iconoclastic classmate, Aquarians are ready to respond to the allure of the unfamiliar and the unpredictable. Tradition may have its place - this is Thanksgiving, after all - but home and family don't figure prominently in your holiday forecast. Until the Chinese New Year arrives, your "citizen of the world" persona, perhaps with one eye scanning potential career possibilities, is the you the rest of us will see.

Pisces

What a perfect time for an affair, or an operation! Having both feminine Venus and masculine Mars merging in your house of sex, death (or transformation) and other people's money suggests that you can pretty much get away with murder, and get paid for it. During Sagittarius, when the pressure to achieve is peaking - i.e., when planets crowd into your career midheaven - is usually when Fish make the moves that enhance their reputations in the community or cause their families to wring their hands and complain. Carry on.


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