Horoscopes and the Antibiotic Apocalypse

Pisces (2/19 – 3/20):  I'm so curious about how others spend their time, from the most minute detail all the way up to the biggest things, I wonder how others are structuring their minutes, their days, their lives.  Maybe because I have giant blankets of unstructured time and a big-ass to-do list, but they don't always seem like a match.   (Is blanket a unit of measure?)   I've noticed, for example, that I lie in bed thinking I should get up, and then suddenly, it seems like there's no volition involved, and I'm up.  Sort of blows my mind every day.  How did THAT happen, I'm upright!

This week, I scrapped my, "set the alarm for 8 minutes and try to stay on task for at least that long" strategy, and started a new method where I treat my day like a shitty first draft that needs serious editing.  But you edit the day before you begin.  It's a cross between time travel, Steven Covey, and The Moth, if that makes any sense.  So far, it's more fun than having the stupid alarm going off 7 times an hour.  Pisces, live your week like an excellent short story.  If there's a rifle on the mantle on Monday, etc.  

Aries (3/21 - 4/19):  I read an article about purity balls, the creepiest thing ever. They're father-daughter dances, where the young teenage girl agrees not to have sex 
until she's married.  Ok, people, would our culture even for ONE MINUTE promote mother son dances with the same goal of virginity?  I think not.  Regardless, super creepy. But Aries, do people actually have balls anymore?  Even as a figure of speech, not to mention the kind with gowns and pumpkins?  See what you can do about that.  

Taurus (4/20 – 5/20):  I got a message from the Khan Academy saying that together, we've solved 2 billion math problems.  Can we make it 10 billion by next year, they ask?  Um, Taurus, that's not a real cause.  Why would it matter?  Although I will confess that for a minute, I was all, "YEAH, WE CAN DO IT."  And then I remembered that all it means is me sitting in front of the computer too much solving for x and such, and the only thing I have to show for it is a bunch of messy scratch paper.  But you, my Taurus friends, have good causes, and real actual problems.  Go for it.  Reducing the problems, increasing the goodness.

Gemini (5/21 – 6/21):  About twice a week on my way to my booty call job, I drive by what I call "Throw Up Corner", a wide pull-out on the highway where, over the years, I've seen maybe 6 people pulled over throwing up.  I may have even had to pull over for a vomiting child once, I'm really not sure.  But I sometimes pass a friend going in the opposite direction, and we pass TUC and wave wildly, and life is good.  It's good when the community makes space for those who are throwing up, and also for those who are waving.  Wouldn't you agree, Gemini?

Cancer (6/22 – 7/21)
:  I've been thinking about health insurance lately, maybe because mine is so lame.  (I was going to say it's catastrophic, but for some reason, the word "catastrophe" is kind of funny, but catastrophic is grim. Is that true?)  Cancer, you've already got the grim name for your sign, so I was truly trying to avoid catastrophes too but anyway.  I digress, as people say when trying to recover from all the looking-at-watch behavior going on.  

The actual point:  Here's how insurance works.  I buy a prescription that's normally $20.  My insurance company tells the drugstore that they can only charge me $16, but don't make up the difference.  For this, I pay nearly $400 a month.  It's almost like my ailments have joined a labor union.  I picture my Morton's neuroma and lame thyroid smoking a cigar with Jimmy Hoffa in a sleazy bar in Detroit.  Sheesh.  Oh Cancer, I see you looking at your watch again.  Enjoy your week, even if it seems way to crowded for joy!  Find the space.

Leo (7/23 – 8/22):  I've been thinking about bees a lot, and one of the fascinating things is how community-oriented they are.  Each has their role, and they couldn't exist without the whole hive.  I know, cliche, but we're like that too.   Everyone has a unique and essential role, and without one another, we couldn't exist.  Some people grow food, some people build shelter, some people tend the young, some people heal, some people review building permits.  Oh wait.  One of these things is not like the other, Leo.  People are always claiming things like, "Without bees we could only live for 4 years!" [not true] or, "without farmers we couldn't live for long at all [absolutely true], or "without thankless permit reviewers, the world would come SCREECHING to a halt.  (People are always saying tht, right?) But Leo, you bring the essential ingredients of kindness and generosity into the world.  Keep it up.

Virgo (8/23 – 9/22):  I used to think the quintessential example of a freak accident is when a tree falls on a moving car, smooshing the inhabitants.  But lately, as I drive under these sketchy leaning cottonwoods that are choked with ivy and rooted in super-saturated soils, a few times every single day, hmm, I don't think it would be freaky.  It would be plausible, maybe inevitable.  But Virgo, flip that around and find the freak random good thing; make it plausible.  Inevitable, even.

Libra (9/23 – 10/22):  Astronaut John Young, also a Libra, smuggled a corned beef sandwich into space in 1965, but alas, the results were disastrous, and he got into big trouble.  Crumbs and odor everywhere.  I learned about this because I was researching corned beef sandwiches, since I ate my very first one last week.  But back to NASA.  With only two guys getting onto a space ship, how does that happen?  "Oh, don't mind that big deli bag I'm carrying, look away!  Look at the other guy for a minute while I slip into my spot in the rocket...."  And more importantly, why are humans always the deciders of who and what gets to go into space?  Libra, let the other species decide for a change.

Scorpio (10/23 – 11/21):  Also in 1965, which appears to be the pinnacle of the space-smuggling era, Walli Schirra smuggled a harmonica, whiskey, and cigarettes into space.  Really? The other amazing thing I learned is that there's a little piece of Velcro on the inside of space suits for itching one's nose.  The point here, Scorpio (do you like it when I use your name like that?  Does it make you want to buy stuff?), is to be prepared!  Your nose will itch this week, no doubt about it.  (The other point, of course, is how just eating a corned beef sandwich has created a tiny irrelevant research train for me, GRRR.  Ding ding ding!  Seven minutes later....)

Sagittarius (11/22 – 12/21):  Sag, you know how to love well, how to be vulnerable and confident and generous, and the world is so much luckier with you in it.   May this week be merrier and brighter than last week.

The fish before they got on their bikes
Capricorn (12/22 – 1/19):  This actually happened:  a friend is helping me learn to fish, and set me up with a stocked trout pond, a baited fishing line, and a bench.  All I had to do is sit on the bench and drop the line into the water.  But alas, I cast wildly, causing all the fish to get on their bicycles and zoom away, re-settling into new and dangerous electrified waters, creating all manner of complication.  (Well, it was exactly like that, but with bees.)  Capricorn, why were all those bicycles lying around anyway?  

Aquarius (1/20 – 2/18):  Have you been worrying about the antibiotic apocalypse?  We've over-used and mis-used antibiotics for so long now that we've cultivated resistant strains of so many things that the simplest procedure could turn out to be life-threatening.  Fact:  more people (8,000) died in Canadian hospitals last year due to resistant infections than died from a bunch of other causes combined.  I can't remember all of the causes but they might include breast cancer, drunk driving, and hypothermia. Although I'm not sure I'd classify hypothermia as an actual cause -- you don't see groups and armbands asking you to rally against getting chilled, literally, to the bone.  I'd place it more in the category of the Khan Academy trying to get more math problems solved.

Aquarius, do you see now why Pisces asked to go first for a while?  


  1. Betsy, your writing is SO entertaining, and yet ... I always learn a bunch of new stuff. Are you secretly a teacher? A really, really good teacher? I like learning from you.

    And I want to thank you for using "I digress" in an original way - not a common occurrence these days :)

    1. Thanks Jennio! Be careful or there will be homework. (Hey, remember the science fair?)

  2. Really? It's not true that if all the bees die out we won't die out too in four years? But do we want to live in a world without bees? I just don't know.
    As for the antibiotic apocalypse- scares me shitless.
    Oh, Betsy. I love your mind.

    1. Oh, there are other pollinators, and other strategies for pollination. Not that I want the bees to die out! (And, dammit, I was hoping you'd love me for my body! :-)


  3. Here's hopefully the beginning of a healthy trend for the bees (and everyone else too!): http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/eugene-oregon-first-in-the-country-to-ban-honey-bee-killing-pesticides/

    And speaking of time . . . you might enjoy the movie "About Time". It's possible that it got me at just the right place/time, but it was more than I had expected.

    1. Oh, I did see that movie. And thought it was fun and sweet, and the to-do list strategy a little bit based on it. (If I had today to do over again...but actually, I don't have it, so I need to get it right the first time...) I hope all is well w/ you! xo

  4. Well, I feel better knowing that we won't die without the bees. I thought we would. I am sorry your neuroma is bothering you. I can so relate. And don't you think that Chastity Ball is sort of a oxymoron?

    1. Yes, we won't die without the bees. But still. . . Yes, I should ask you about the surgery. Worth it? I have such crummy insurance that iI think I'll wait until the last possible moment.

    2. Ultimately, yes. But there's stuff your surgeon won't mention, like your feet will never feel the same afterwards. Email me at allisonmohr at sign yahoo period com and we can discuss when you're ready to contemplate it. Are you currently using metatarsal pads? Those are your first line of defense.

  5. For some reason, I'm so happy to see bug drawings here. I pretend I live in a forest because I come pretty close, greenbelt in my back yard and all. And I think about bugs, all kinds of bugs, living their buggy life out there. And I am at peace.


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