I predict that you will read this article.
I once went to see a psychic/astrologer on the South Shore named "L'Aura." People who had gone to see her said that she was a true clairvoyant. She could look through you and sense who you were, what you had done in the past and-most importantly-envision your future. I had read my horoscope many times before but this was the first time I had been to see an actual psychic; I was skeptical and worried at the same time. My critical mind doubted her mystical gifts-but what if her predictions would turn out to be true? What if she could glimpse into my future and she foresaw terrible events? Or, on the other hand, what if there were great things in store for me? I had to know.
There was a waiting list to see the wise and powerful L'Aura and, after nine months of anticipation, the day of our fateful meeting had finally arrived. L'Aura, a sickly thin woman sporting a mullet and acid-wash jeans, greeted me at her front door with a lit cigarette and a hacking cough. She led me through her house, which was a surreal landscape of cat figurines, crochet pillows and new-age dream catchers. I handed her $60 and she led me downstairs, to where our "reading" would take place. She wanted to know nothing about me, only my first name and date of birth.
Downstairs, a giant, fluffy stuffed animal looked directly at me as L'Aura began scribbling my astrological chart frantically on a piece of paper. She then spoke through her coughing fits, and conveyed to me that I had been hurt by love before, that I might go back to school to get a second degree, and that I was very close to someone named "Abe" who was going be very successful (my brother's name is Bram, which is short for Abraham) To top it all off, within the next sixteen months I was going to meet the love of my life. His name would be Brian. He would have a very pronounced forehead and, though he wouldn't be very good-looking, he would be very charming ... and, I quote, "He'll never need Viagra."
That was over four years ago. For months, I kept an eye out for Brian, my horny unfrozen caveman boyfriend; bus alas, he was never to be found.
Why do I want to know my future? Why does anyone? There's a certain comfort in believing that the universe has something positive in store for us. Life is unpredictable, frustrating and often random, and when we're going through tough or stagnant patches where the world seems bleak and unexciting, we want to feel hopeful that everything will turn out well. We have to believe in something, and if we decide that the alignment of the stars and planets will help us find love, get a raise, lose weight or achieve true happiness, then so be it.
Swiss psychologist Carl Jung called it synchronicity: the perception that events which might be seen as chance coincidences are actually significant-that human beings, along with all living things and the universe are intricately connected. Like Jung, astrologers, tarot readers and psychics tell us what we want to hear; that everything happens for a reason. We refuse to believe that our existence is just the random outcome of a series of chemical and biological accidents-it's all part of the master plan.
I don't think that anyone could have predicted how huge the modern-day business of astrology and fortune-telling would become. Even Jackie Stallone, mother of Sylvester, jumped onto the astrological bandwagon faster than a shooting star. She practices the ancient art of rumpology: studying peoples butts to predict their future. She claims that "the lines, crevices and folds in your rear end can, to the trained eye, reveal your personality, fate and future in luck and love." All you have to do is send a close-up of your ass (at least 800 pixels wide), along with $125 USD to the Star Power Publishing company, and voila!-Rocky's mom will solve all of your problems.
All things cheesy and new age are big-business everywhere and Montreal is no exception. The late-night TV roundup offers us a whole universe of infomercials-while the English channels advertise "The Sauna Belt" (a full-proof way to lose weight) and the "Little Giant" multi-purpose ladder, the local French channels specialize in astrology and tarot card readings. My favorite personality is Celeste on "Tele-Voyance." Set against a backdrop of a clear blue sky and ethereal looking clouds, Celeste offers her accurate readings for the low, low price of only $4.99 a minute (plus taxes).
Another popular astrological luminary is Susan Miller. Her widely read website, astrologyzone.com, boasts six-million readers and fifteen-million hits per month. Its predictions are so in-depth that they just have to be accurate. Here's a short excerpt from my March horoscope:
Thanks to a powerful solar eclipse in Aries on March 29, a new path will open up for you, dear Aries; one that will allow you to show others just how capable and courageous you are.
By then it will be clear that you've found your mojo, and with newfound optimism, you'll be raring to go. By month's end, you'll begin to see that your choices are unlimited, so direct this energy any way you please-into a relationship, friendships, career, humanitarian activities or fitness, to name a few.
Good news, my fellow Aries brothers and sisters-by the time you read this, we will have found our mojo and will be well on our way to total fulfillment. I'll make sure to mark the date on my calendar.
If you've read this through to the end, it means that I've already made one accurate prediction. Maybe it's because Uranus is in sync with the sun (but only until Tuesday when the moon is full). Hmm ... maybe I should look into a new career in astrology. I'd better study my celestial chart before I decide.