DeAnne Smith and the New Zodiac F.A.Q.

Greetings, starshine.

If you’re like me, you’ve heard the internet kerfuffle about the new zodiac and you’re somewhat confused. Not that it matters or anything, but you’re probably wondering how this shift affects you. I mean, you don’t really believe in that stuff anyway but sure, yeah, you’re a person, you’ve flipped through a few Linda Goodman books in your time and maybe, in a moment of weakness, you’ve Googled the astrological compatibility of you and that girl you’ve talked to a few times and think maybe you could see yourself with. It’s just antiquated silliness, but you’re like, vaguely aware of your moon sign and your ascendent and your house and the astrological sign of your cat. But it’s not like any of that is really real. No big deal.

Personally, I’m not fussed about the new zodiac. Sure, I used to be on the cusp of Cancer and Leo, and I considered myself a very special type of person called a “Cleo.” So what if a few different friends who dabble in astrology told me I had the sensitivity and insightfulness of Cancer combined with the confidence and magnetism of Leo? It doesn’t matter. It’s all hogwash.

In the new zodiac, I’m thrown firmly back into Cancer and that’s fine. Now I’m a sensitive, moody, clingy, emotionally unstable home-maker type. I don’t mind that I’m part of a group that’s named after abnormal, malignant cell growth and also known as “crabs,” which happens to be the same word as those parasitic insects that feast on human genitals. Who cares? It’s not like it’s real. There’s no reason to have a tiny existential crisis about it and do a lot of internet research and ultimately conclude that, thank God, it’s fine because Rob Brezsny said so. (There’s even less reason to have an even tinier, parenthetical existential crisis about whether or not you’ve applied the term “existential crisis” correctly, which reminds you that if hard-pressed, you’re also not exactly 100% sure how to define “irony,” which you suspect is ironic in itself but — perhaps ironically– will never know for certain.)

So, like I said, we’re all intelligent, rational people here. And it’s not like it actually matters but, if you’re curious or something, here’s a quick F.A.Q. about this new-fangled zodiacs.

Q: What’s the deal?

A: A community college professor, Parke Kunkle, gave a newspaper interview in which he talked about the Sidereal Zodiac (which is based on constellations) and that fact that, thanks to a wobbly axis, the Earth’s constellations aren’t in quite the same place as they used to be. They’ve shifted the signs around and added a thirteenth one to square it up.

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Q: Seriously? That’s insane! Is that true?

A: As far as I can tell. However, it is based on information that’s over 2,000 years old, so it’s not exactly news.

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Q: No, I mean is that guy’s name really Parke Kunkle?

A: Yes. Yes, it is.

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Q: What’s the new sign they’ve added to the zodiac?

A: Ophiuchus.

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Q: What’s its symbol?

A: A half-naked man with a snake between his legs.

Q: Hot.

A:

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Q: But why are they doing this? Why are they doing this to us?!

A: I don’t know. I think it also has something to do with magnetic fields or the moon’s gravity or something.

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Q: The moon has gravity?

A: Of course. What do you think causes the ups and downs of ocean tides and your girlfriend’s moods and/or sex drive?

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Q: Natalie Portman.

A:

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Q:

A: Pardon me?

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Q: I thought Natalie Portman caused the ups and downs of my girlfriend’s moods and sex drive.

A:

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Q: Back to the tides. How does the moon affect ocean tides?

A: Let’s use a metaphor. Let’s say Lindsay Lohan is the moon, and Samantha Ronson is Earth. The moon is super attracted to Earth, so it tries to pull at anything on Earth in order to bring it closer. It’s like if the moon was always @-reply tweeting Earth, writing inside-joke kind of things and obviously trying to get a response from it even though Earth never @-replies the moon.

Sometimes, in desperation, the moon @-replies truly crazy and twisted things to Earth, then later deletes them. But instead of @-replies, it’s gravity and instead of Twitter, it’s the cold emptiness of space.

So the moon tries and tries, but Earth itself can’t be pulled closer. The water on Earth can, however.

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Q: What does water become in this metaphor?

A: I’m not sure. Maybe questionable life choices.

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Q: Anything else?

A: Well, everyone wishes they could reach the moon and give it a hug because it’s so beautiful and it has so much potential and it was so good in Mean Girls but it’s too far away, surrounded by shiny stars that are dead inside.

Q: Yeah.

A: Yeah.

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Q: Is this new zodiac thing a sign of the apocalypse?

A: No. The fact that Sarah Palin is now quoting Dr. Martin Luther King is a sign of the apocalypse.

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Q: I thought I was a Gemini but according to the new zodiac, I’m a Taurus. Do I have to change? I’m not changing my sign!

A: That stubbornness is so Taurus.

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Q: I was an Aries, but now I’m a Pisces. What am I supposed to do with my ram tattoo?

A: If you weren’t so impulsive, Aries, you wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place.

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Q: I’m still a Pisces. So, that’s good, right? Would you say that’s a good thing? What do you think?

A: Sure, if you’re into codependence and being overemotional and gullible.

Q: So it’s a good thing then?

A: Yes, Pisces. Yes.

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Q: I’m a Leo.

A: Do you have a question?

Q: No, I’m just really proud of being a Leo.

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Q: This is all fine and good, but WWRMD?

Q: Is Rachel Maddow changing her sign?

Q: If Rachel Maddow thinks something is cool does she actually use the phrase “awesome times ten thirteen hundred?”

A:

Q: I used to pick people up with the old classic, “Hey, baby, what’s your sign?” What am I going to use now?

A: Try the new classic, “Hey, baby, I’d like to Parke in your Kunkle.”

Q:

A:

Q: Did you actually just write that?

A: Yes. Yes, I did.

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Q: Shouldn’t the signs stay as they are?

A: I’m going to hand this one over to “Ashley,” commenting expertly in an internet forum:

Ashley: this is so retarted whos the moron that came up with this do u know the billions of people that r gonna be like w*f? the signs should stay as they are why should things change cause of the earths movement idiots as far as im concerned im still a proud stubborn great lover aries lol yeyyya!

And, for a balanced perspective, let’s hear from “Kaitlyn,” also commenting in the same forum:

Kaitlyn: GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!!!!!

Q:

A:

Profile photo of DeAnne

I care a lot about my hair. Unrelatedly, I say short, funny things at www.twitter.com/DeAnne_Smith.

DeAnne has written 21 articles for us.

76 Comments

  1. Thumb up 1

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    This is all based on info from a community college professor. Shouldn’t we wait until someone from a 4-year school has confirmed this? A state school would do.

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    Even if the snow stops falling and my human ecology class does NOT get canceled and I have to take that quiz that I was going to study for last night but then didn’t because some friends wanted to drink after work and there happens to be an adorable waitress at the bar we go to, I will still be totally happy with my day because of this:

    “Well, everyone wishes they could reach the moon and give it a hug because it’s so beautiful and it has so much potential and it was so good in Mean Girls but it’s too far away, surrounded by shiny stars that are dead inside.”

    Thank you for completing my day at 9.33am.

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    I am relieved that it at least shifted backwards so that I don’t have to be my least favorite sign (Leo).

    I’m a Gemini now and I’m not sure how I feel about that. Perhaps it would best be expressed through a monologue?

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    I’m Taurus instead of Gemini now which is fine with me because Taurons are badass motherfuckers and the Gemenese are, well, not. The zodiac was created after a bunch of people sat down and watched Battlestar Galactica, right?

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    This continues to be the oldest “news” I’ve ever heard. And I’m going to vent about it again even though I’m sick of venting about it. Procession of the equinoxes is not a new discovery! Ophiuchus didn’t just pop up out of nothingness last year – didn’t anyone play Final Fantasy Tactics? The reason why most astrologers don’t kick up a fuss about these things is because they choose not to.

    The latest thing I’ve heard about this that makes me want to defenestrate things is “it only applies to people born after 2009.” I just- I have no words any longer.

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      P.S. Cancer is the sign of overreaction and blowing up computers.

      Or a Gemini “new style”, but that’s not so bad because it was already my ascendant? Unless that changed too I don’t even know

      I imagine this is like switching from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar, only incredibly irrelevant in every way.

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      I agree. I feel like this is one of those things that every once in a while uninformed people (I’m looking at you Kunkle) decide is breaking news. Like when my cousin learned that Columbus was just a d-bag or when my aunt declared at Thanksgiving that “Angelina Jolie used to date another woman!”

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      THANK YOU. But on the other hand this is sort of inevitable, isn’t it: astrology can only really, IMO, coexist with the kind of basic lack of knowledge that Q possesses (or … doesn’t possess … double negatives?) like not understanding, you know, gravity/tides. It’s the same people who think that summer comes when the Earth is closer to the sun.

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        I don’t listen to South Asian astrologers because I think astrology is nonsense, but you might be right with respect to the dreamcatcher crystal aura magnet bracelet crowd though.

  6. Thumb up 0

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    I went through the same “OMG Leo is the best and cancer is a disease and the worst” freakout. I immediately followed that freakout with a “Holy shit this means Harry Potter isn’t a Leo” freakout.

    I talked to my biffle Scott about this zodiac nonsense because he believes in it (ikr!), and this is what he had to say (stolen directly from his facebook, a very reliable source): So, before the world explodes, let’s clarify this zodiac stuff. There are two different zodiac “methods”, if you will. There’s tropical, which we in the West adhere to, and sidereal, which mostly just the Far East uses. This new 13th zodiac sign ONLY effects sidereal astrology, which we don’t use, because Western tropical astrology is based on seasons, not actual constellations. Our signs WILL NEVER CHANGE!

  7. Thumb up 0

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    All of this is headache inducing. The zodiac stuff, I mean… the article’s great!

    I’m apparently still a Virgo, and out of everyone I know, the only one whose sign didn’t “change.” I just feel bad for people I know who got zodiac symbol tattoos and are freaking out now.

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    So I know there is now some debate as to if the signs actually changed or not. I really hope that they have actually changed because I would hate to have to explain to my mother that when I told her I was a Virgin I was just talking about astrology

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    If Rachel Maddow stood in front of me, looked me dead in the eyes, and told me that I was no longer a Gemini, I’d gladly change my sign to whatever she wanted it to be. Even if it was that …interesting… man with a snake.
    But until that magical day, I am not changing my sign.

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    Okay Deanne, you’re amazing and I love you, but I have to correct some incorrect assumptions you’re making about tides and the Moon’s effect on Earth…

    Since I have already written about this years ago (yep, that’s me!) I’m just going link what I’ve already written.

    So basically with your LiLo/SamRo metaphor, the water on the side of the Earth closest to the Moon is highly attracted, the Earth itself is only mildly intrigued, and the water on the other side of the Earth doesn’t give a shit.

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    So apparently I’m the only person who is thrilled that her sign changed. I mean, my self-loathing virgo self (not that I believe in this shit, but whatever) is all kinds of glad to be a leo now…maybe….like sometimes. But whatever.

    But this is where I almost peed myself laughing.

    “No. The fact that Sarah Palin is now quoting Dr. Martin Luther King is a sign of the apocalypse.”

    And then I cried a little on the inside because…holy shit.

  12. Thumb up 0

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    “(There’s even less reason to have an even tinier, parenthetical existential crisis about whether or not you’ve applied the term “existential crisis” correctly, which reminds you that if hard-pressed, you’re also not exactly 100% sure how to define “irony,” which you suspect is ironic in itself but — perhaps ironically– will never know for certain.)”

    My life.

  13. Thumb up 0

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    “Greetings, starshine” made me smile.

    Someone explain to me WHY Rachel Maddow couldn’t teach any of the science classes I’ve ever been in? That is longest I’ve ever fully paid attention to a scientific concept in awhile. My brain just doesn’t work that way.

    I don’t know why I have such an attachment to being a Sagittarius considering the fact that I don’t even read the my horoscope in the paper. I did read somewhere that the new sign and dates only applied to those born after 2009 (& I guess if you follow the Eastern tradition). I don’t know. It’s actually really weird (but not surprising) that everyone is up in arms over this, but could care less about all the important, pressing issues we need to deal with.

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    i dont wanna be a geminiiiiiiiiii.. i’d like to stay as a “part of a group that’s named after abnormal, malignant cell growth and also known as “crabs,” which happens to be the same word as those parasitic insects that feast on human genitals,” you know, i kinda like it there

  15. Thumb up 0

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    ugh. I am still a taurus. How did the whole zodiac change and I still manage to overshoot Aires by two days?

    whatever, myers-briggs is way more important.

    and way more gay.

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    I have always been on the cusp of Aquarius and Pisces (not quite sure how to name mash that), but now I am very firmly an Aquarius. I always fancied myself a bit more Pisces.

    I guess for me, to quote The 5th Dimension, “this is the dawning of the age of Aquarius.”

    Also, how to the people who have changed to that weird half naked man with the snake feel about all this?

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