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Rockie Horoscope

We're operating on innovative Aquarius new-moon energy, tempered by aspects from Venus and Mercury to stabilizing Saturn. A combination of the new and the old is an appropriate way to begin the Chinese New Year of the Monkey. Those of you who will turn 24, 36, 48 or 60 in 2004 are said to be highly competitive, extremely curious, particularly shrewd and never at a loss for words. They can't all be Geminis, can they?

Aries

You won't have to buckle down and do a whole lot of work to pull off a career coup this week. With quick-thinking Mercury in your midheaven, you could easily come up with a clever solution to a problem puzzling everyone else. Technical know-how can be another way to go, so keep in touch with colleagues who can pass for state-of-the-art artists. Coming soon, if you would only be a bit more patient, a well-deserved period of popularity as magnetic Venus approaches the border of Pisces and Aries.

Taurus

Every now and then, stop what you're doing and remind yourself that while your Venus ruler transits compassionate Pisces, you could all too easily slip into martyr mode. Making a string of sacrifices is basically non-toxic and, if you're emulating Mother Teresa, appropriate behavior. However, if all you intend is to be a good friend, you're probably giving too much of yourself. How soon before you regret such generosity of spirit? Maybe when the illusion is shattered next weekend. Maybe sooner.

Gemini

A joint financial arrangement, e.g., child custody, taxes, a 401(k), could become the center of your world this week. Go ahead and make the necessary adjustments before you get caught up in a vision of how fabulously successful your foray into the future will turn out. Typical Gemini duality: On one hand, you can be incredibly perceptive and practical about a truly imaginative project; on the other, you might easily go ape over a distorted picture projected by the delusional sun-Neptune conjunction.

Cancer

One circle reaches completion this weekend as Mercury in your Capricorn marriage house returns to the point at which it went retrograde in mid-December. Mercury can symbolize a youthful mindset, a younger partner, travel, trade and the exchange of information, etc., but no matter how the planet's energy manifests, know that its effect on your development has been considerable. Look at the changes that have taken place over the last six weeks! If you get a feeling that events you're currently involved with will lead to a trip when Mercury flips in April, you're probably right.

Leo

While nothing of major significance is scheduled for this weekend, cosmic forces are building toward a dramatic display of extravagance midweek. Ebullient Jupiter conspiring with affable Venus can fill you with a sudden desire to stun everyone on your gift list, to graciously provide what they didn't get for Christmas. You can play at being the best Santa ever or you can use a modicum of intelligence and zero in on what those loved ones really need to fulfill their potential. Either way, they'll be elated.

Virgo

Is there no way to convince you that having Jupiter in your sign for the next nine months is something to be excited about? Will that ingrained Virgo skepticism prevent you from checking out the best opportunity for long-term growth in ages? Take your time deciding what to do; lucky Jupiter beams blessings to your Mercury ruler at the same time the giant planet is being seduced by loving Venus. One of the appealing alternatives is a romantic, expensive but cyclical fling; the other rewards intelligence and foresight.

Libra

If you haven't been distracted, and are still on course, then you should look forward to an extremely enjoyable weekend with an assortment of witty, well-heeled, well-educated friends and, perhaps, an adoring admirer. Try not to take advantage of folks who will go to extremes to keep your attention focused on them. And, as appealing as it may sound at first, it's not the best idea to let an artistic relative talk you into redoing your home. Although the Aquarius aesthetic is hip and imaginative, it quickly goes out of fashion.

Scorpio

What about those siblings and neighbors? One of them is being pressed, or is putting pressure on you, to resolve a difficult situation. Since your Pluto co-ruler is in your Sagittarius house of assets and acquisitions, a significant amount of money may be involved. Be realistic; there might not be a settlement until the Pisces sun activates Pluto in mid-March. Until then, don't be too proud to accept the favors generous friends, sympathetic loved ones, maybe even your landlord, offer up on your behalf.

Sagittarius

It may seem like you're merely taking baby steps, but making a crucial adjustment in your game plan, or giving yourself more leeway on a New Year's resolution, could be a more effective tactic than you suspect. And result in a more successful outcome. Although you're hardly lacking self-confidence, this week you may have a harder time marshaling the support you've come to rely on. Some of your allies can be cranky, some may have overstepped their limits, and some might not be the good guys you think they are.

Capricorn

This is the week that many Capricorns get their lives back on track. If yours went awry in mid-December when Mercury turned retrograde, you'll be relieved to learn that the little devil has finally returned to where it was then. Now you can proceed with all due speed and make significant inroads into your future. But try to accomplish that without investing a whole lot of money; wait until you see which of your fantasies materializes when the sun and idealistic Neptune meet next week and which go up in smoke.

Aquarius

The sweetly sad, not the silly, love songs that you can't get out of your head are the music underscoring this week's scenario. While Venus supports your romantic inclinations, the more attached you feel to a loved one, the better you could feel about yourself. Invent reasons to celebrate the Chinese New Year; each festive event can become a fond memory in your shared history. This is also the time when cherished ideals and spiritual longings will have a powerful influence on your everyday life; it's when the Aquarius sun and mystical Neptune marry.

Pisces

After the latest disturbance, the recent surprise, feel free to settle down, make yourself beautiful and wait for lucky Jupiter to arrive. When the "Greater" benefic lines up with Venus, the Lesser, in your sign, all sorts of goodies - stuff, compliments, educational opportunities, even money - will pop up. Some of the gifts or the donors might stress you out, some may seem excessive, but because generous Jupiter won't be in Virgo forever, make sure you follow up on every offer that a partner, past or present, presents.


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