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Astrology Charleston, West Virginia men Writings

James’s Slut Transit (Pluto opposite Venus)

One cool thing about astrology is you get so caught up in the symbolism that by the time you catch your husband in bed with a dwarf you are practically happy about it.

Oh my god- this is perfect! The dwarf had red hair! They were doing anal!! Can you think of anything better for Uranus in Aries?!?

The past year or so James (husband) has been having a transit which is supposed to make men irrationally attracted to skanky hoes who express something of their own repressed sexuality.

Since I had been majorly shook by a number of transits in the past 10 years, I wasn’t in the mood for the stars to defeat me again. I decided to take the bull by the horns and announce that he was entering a slut transit on facebook. (Sometimes I imagine that telling enough people about something BEFORE it happens will magically keep it from occurring.) And every day since then, I’ve asked him “So have you felt attracted to any skanks yet? Any nasty hoes caught your eye?” Occasionally I will drop a reminder that anyone he likes during this time probably has a cocktail of STDs as well, which is true. (Unless they have a prison record or are a geologist.)

And so far, I have not sensed any attraction to cumdumpsters. This transit (Pluto opposite Venus) has to work through the unconscious. If the idea of sexual obsession with Jezebels is put into the forefront of his mind and linked to a transit, it makes it harder for the dark magic to occur.

So yay, I outsmarted the stars.

Still it’s almost hard not to feel disappointed that the transit didn’t go as planned. All his other transits- in which I did not interfere- were textbook. But this time I prepared myself, made public announcements and now he is basically standing me up at the altar. I had mentally set aside a couple years of life to wage this war on skanks and now there are no skanks in sight. Never a quitter, I eventually started encouraging him. Why don’t you friend some skanks on facebook? Maybe you’d enjoy a trip to the gentlemen’s club? But no. Being a slut because your wife wants you to isn’t Pluto’s way. The taboo is what arouses him. He wants to defy people’s expectations to show them- and himself- that he can’t be controlled. He wants to do something which will make others hate him or cause him to hate himself.

But why, Pluto, why?

For starters, Pluto is the planet of intensity. Sometimes we cut off so much from our darker self that we just start to feel less alive. Sometimes a journey to the dark side is just what it takes to tap into deeper wells of life and emotion. Feeling negative emotions can be preferable to feeling nothing at all.

Secondly, Pluto goes dark to gain power. Nice guys finish last. Pluto crosses lines other people aren’t willing to cross and reaps the rewards. During Pluto transits he challenges us to question our own boundaries. Are we willing to sacrifice one pound of goodness to gain 5 pounds of power? Are we willing to push our neighbor in front of a train to save a bus full of children? Many times, during Pluto transits, we realize we are.

Thirdly, Pluto does bad things to create boundaries. To show himself (and sometimes others) that he can’t be controlled. That there are no rules for him and only his own will reigns supreme.

Lastly, Pluto trespasses to expand his mind. On one level, Pluto is really about the ability to have our own mind which can function independently from the group. People with pronounced Pluto in their chart frequently seem normal on the surface, but deep in their mind is a sort of existential autonomy that the average person lacks. They see life through their own eyes and don’t need social support to trust their own perceptions. So during Pluto transits we want to question the rules we have previously taken for granted. We want to gain psychic & psychological freedom.

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Basically, Pluto is our reptilian mind. It likes to operate in darkness, secretly controlling our behavior while our conscious mind is busy attributing shinier motives to ourselves. Pluto shrinks away when the light is shining directly on him. He does not want the whole world watching him, waiting for him to get an astrologically sanctioned boner.

Still, I have read enough Greek myths to know what happens to those who brag about outsmarting the fates. And there is still a year left of this transit to go. So we’ll see what happens. Maybe whores will end up having the last laugh. Just like they always do.



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Feminism and Me

Feminism is not something I resonate with. Had I lived in the 19th century, I would probably have been a feminist, and if I lived in a Muslim country, I might be one as well. But in 21st century America, where women already have the same rights as men, the idea of getting still more “rights” feels a bit threatening. I don’t want any more rights, especially when these rights seem to entail having a job, paying half the rent, joining the army, lifting heavy boxes, and being fascinated by science. I would rather just decorate cookies and leave the extra rights for somebody else.

In a way, I like where gender relations stand at the moment, how ambiguous they are. I don’t want to go back to a time when women were expected to wear high heels and have dinner on the table when their husband came home (if such a time existed), but I also don’t want to go forward to a time when women have all the pressures and burdens of men on their shoulders. Is there another alternative?

Do you ever think of a nation-state as a living organism? I do. And sometimes I feel that feminism represents our nation’s desire to have all of it’s population involved in taxable labor, and all of it’s population available for the draft, in order to double it’s power.  After all, equalizing men and women was always a big focus of communists movements. It meant that no one was exempt from the government’s needs and desires.

Regardless, it is hard for me to see feminism as anything other than a social engineering campaign “encouraging” women to embrace more masculine aspirations. And it hard to see, in a nation already overflowing with masculine aspirations, how funneling more humans into the rat race will make life better for anyone. Do we really need life to run faster and harder, with no one sitting on the sidelines to watch and reflect? Do we really want more lawyers and fewer homemade cookies?

I can see why women don’t necessarily want to stay home and bake cookies, though. We are a nation of masculine values and we respect masculine qualities much more than feminine ones. In the movies, the “strong” female characters tend to be rocket scientists who love to shoot hoops on the side.  A “good role model for girls” means a female who puts her career first and rapidly rises to the top. The external self, competing and receiving awards, is placed high above the internal, subjective self.  The “office” is the place where you can fulfill your potential. Home is a place to recover from the office, a place where you’ll rot if you linger too long.

To me, women represent the home, and the home represents the inner self. Many aspects of feminism make me feel that the inner self is under attack, being urged to spend more and more of itself seeking external validation. A society can’t tip too far in the direction of the masculine without becoming mechanical, robotic, unable to reflect or decide what has value. Life becomes a game, a game we can never stop playing even when it ceases to be fulfilling.

Sometimes I wonder what it means to be a woman. I think of all the women I have known, mean and aggressive, sweet and kind, cunning and malicious, nurturing and caring… what do they all have in common? So far I have thought of only one thing. They all like to decorate. Maybe cookies, their home, hair, greeting cards, scrapbooks, makeup, flowers, clothes, weddings and theme parties… I have yet to think of a female who doesn’t get a bit giddy when given the chance to express herself aesthetically. Some like to knit, and some want to glue rhinestones to their phone, but they all want to make something pretty. Selecting new towels for the bathroom, making fuzzy teddy bears to hang on the Christmas tree- I like to think these are powerful and important actions, little magic spells that vibrate outwards, setting a course for the future, travelling back in time to rewrite history. In my fantasy, women are the magicians of humanity, and men have traditionally protected them for a reason- because they are valuable.

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Now I’d like to get petty for a moment, and list some of feminism’s current sentiments which I do not share.

1. Some feminists are concerned that preteen girls tend to lose interest in math and science.

Good for them, I say! If they are losing interest in math and science, they are probably gaining interest in other subjects, like art and literature. That is the way life works- we all bend towards our own sunshine. In my opinion, the real problem is believing math and science are more important than the subjects girls tend to favor.

2. Some feminists are concerned that women account for only about 5% of the CEOs of Fortune 500 Companies.

This seems like a reason to celebrate! After all, what percentage of humans truly want to devote their life to climbing the corporate ladder? If there are fewer women at the tip tops of these ladders, it could be because they have more opportunity to escape from the pressurized, regimented lifestyle that so many humans feel trapped in. Perhaps this is a sign of chivalry- husbands gallantly allowing their wives to climb down from the punishing ladders while they stay behind to toil.

3. Some feminists are concerned that women are discouraged from being bossy.

I wish! But unfortunately, mean and bossy women are all around me, showing no signs of discouragement. Take a moment to think back through all the people you have known, and- if your life has been anything like mine- you will realize there a quite a few more bossy women in the world than there are bossy men.  If women are being discouraged from bossiness, it clearly isn’t working.

4.Some feminists seem to equate female empowerment with promiscuity and self-objectification.

In my women’s studies classes, for example, people would empower themselves by entering “hot legs contests” and that sort of thing.  Why do I think this is a bad idea? Because it makes you attractive to the worst sort of men. Some say it’s always flattering to be found attractive, but I disagree. Humans are attracted to all sorts of things- from dead bodies to men’s butts. To feel good about yourself because a sex predator finds you gorgeous is a dangerous habit. Same with being a slut. Sluttishness gets a bad reputation, because it puts the slut in physical and emotional danger. Could it be a decent lifestyle for the Indiana Jones, bungee cord jumping sort of female? Maybe. But generally, people get hurt.

5. Some feminists believe, when a rape has been committed, we should believe the victim.

In this case, I would like to agree, because look around- victims are frequently punished for speaking up while their perpetrators go on to win golden medals of honor. Ugh. But, once again, look around- some women are tricky. And playing the victim is the psychopathic female’s most common method of attack. A rape is like a murder, we have to dig and peer behind the curtains until we find the real truth. We can’t safely assume anything.

6. Some feminists (like Russell Crowe) do weird things like stick the words “#he for she” on their heads with post-it notes.

At first I felt flattered by this. Wow- Russell Crowe likes me! I even imagined myself calling him to borrow twenty dollars in a time of need. But then again, he is also on the side of every cruel and malicious female who ever walked the planet. I imagined one of them calling him to say he shouldn’t give me twenty dollars. And so he didn’t.

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Still, I don’t want you to think of me as someone incapable of feminist sentiment. I don’t like it, for example, when women in movies are portrayed as empty shells with nothing living inside.  I even stage my own mini-feminist riots by writing these movies one-star reviews on Amazon.

At the same time, being portrayed in a devaluing light isn’t always a bad thing. When people cast us in a positive light, it is all too easy to wallow in that blissful glow and develop the deadly habit of sourcing our self-esteem and self-image from the outside world. When people demean us, at least it makes it a bit easier to cut loose and go our own way.

In the end, I guess I don’t really believe in changing the world. The world is a burrito-  try to change it, and you’re just going to end up with an enchilada, a chimichanga… maybe some soft tacos. What’s the point? But if you become yourself- then you are bringing a new ingredient to the table. And eventually, new ingredients will lead to radically new dishes.

 

 

 

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R.I.P. Forgotten songs

Behold! He has made the grave a holy place!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a monument to all those songs that have been forgotten, or somehow left behind, in my endeavor to record all the songs I have written. A moment of silence, please, for Blackbeard, Bring Back the Sun, Beaverlick Clothes,  The Day 1,000 Flutes had to Die, Mama Can I Make Love to a Plant?,  and others whose names I cannot even remember. In some cases, the lyrics have been forgotten, in other cases the melodies, but there is one I feel especially guilty about, “Down and Free” because technically I have both the melody and the words, but cannot bring myself to sing it.  Why?

Well, the official reason is that I cannot figure out the chords. It is one of the first songs I wrote and I didn’t know many actual chords back then, just string formations that I would settle upon through endless trial and error, making it very hard for me to replicate what I was playing.

The unofficial reason is, due to references to nudity, I cannot bring myself to sing it! As I’ve mentioned before, my husband grew up as a Jehovah’s Witness, and although he is no longer practicing it is still hard to watch a movie without him screaming, “Harlots!” at the point when a couple kisses, or “Man-whore!” when a man takes off his shirt to mow the lawn.

Although truly, I must say he has never made me feel like my songs were spawned by the “whore of Babylon” (one of his favorite expressions). His notion of “sluts and sodomites” seems to have more to do with a person using sexuality- or things like money- to hook and control others for selfish reasons. I grew up with the idea that you are supposed to manipulate the world for your own gain, in whatever way you can, or else you are an idiot, so it stretches my brain at times to see things from his point of view. Still, it does occur to me that you never know who might be working the pearly gates on the day you arrive, so even from a practical perspective, taking what you can from others may be an iffy proposition in the long run.

But to return to the point, the truth is that my husband does approve of my songs, even ones that contain the word n-k-d, but still, exhuming so much of my past has been hard work, and I am tired, so just this once I am going to let myself off the hook.

So rest in peace, forgotten songs. Songs lost in the sands of time, songs struck down by the hand of man,  may you rise in a better world and be sung again.