Tim Stephens.cover.J#7B6373

ALL TIMES/DATES ARE PDT (Pacific Daylight).

START NOTHING: 10:58 am to 4:30 pm Mon., 4:27 pm Wed. to 3:29 am Thurs., and 6:10 am to 4:08 pm Sat.

In the 2020’s people will say the world is ending, the people who always say such things. The 20’s will be marked by a careful yet wholehearted shift to the practical. Money, property and status will knit the overriding weave of society. It will attract a queen, clad in black.

Remember how I wrote that Obama’s “we’ll attack ISIS” speech was uttered during a “Start Nothing” period? Now, two weeks later, the media report ISIS has not only not been beaten back by the coalition air strikes, they’ve actually expanded and conquered 4 new cities/towns! Ah, well.

Eccentricity is one of the most stubborn traits of humanity. It survives centuries, wars, famine – as long as mankind lives, a slender portion of our population emerges as eccentric. It’s no surprise then, that eccentrics themselves tend to be stubborn – or, perhaps more correctly, cling to or maintain their eccentricity in an unyielding fashion. One of the qualities by which we recognize eccentricity is its refusal to adapt to the environment. A lady who wears five-foot wide hats with fruit hanging on them, will wear those hats no matter what government is in power, no matter how fashions change, no matter how many people scoff.
I think eccentrics are very resistant to – or perhaps oblivious of – influences, arguments, approval or disapproval of the people around them. This helps not the eccentric, but eccentricity itself, survive. (I suspect the fixed signs – Scorpio, Aquarius, Taurus and Leo – contain more eccentrics than most.) Everything in life has a purpose, a role to play. What, then, is the purpose of eccentricity? We can guess the purpose of criminals, murderers and thieves, and why they are valuable to mankind – it is because, I think, they preserve a kind of gene, or a genetic variation, that humanity might well need someday. Without the characteristics of violence, ingenuity, duplicity and solitude which criminals contain, our gene pool might gradually weaken to the point where we are all sweet people with lousy survival prospects.
Some Amerindian tribes, my friend Bob once told me, isolated their warriors and made them live in semi-exile in their own encampment a mile or two from the main tribe. But when war broke out, they were quickly enlisted to do the fighting. As a result (I am supposing) the warrior gene was kept out of the main tribe. However, when war did break out, and women of the tribe were possessed and raped by enemy warriors, the warrior gene was re-introduced. However, under most circumstances this isolation of violent men might have caused such tribes to become more and more peaceful as hundreds of generations passed – which could explain the lack of armed resistance many tribes showed toward the Caucasian invaders of the Americas. They did not always send their “warrior contingent” against the invaders, perhaps, because the Europeans did not invade as other tribes had – the Europeans, right back to the Pilgrims – did not generally arrive with guns blazing, but with largely peaceful intent – they wanted to plant their seeds, erect shelters, live and grow families. Perhaps the amazing conquest of the Aztecs and Incas, in which a handful of Spaniards conquered millions of natives – always rationalized as a religious phenomenon – was partly due to a reduction in warrior genes across the general population. We know, from Viet Nam to Iraq to Afghanistan, that the most sophisticated, powerful, technologically advanced armies in the world cannot defeat a peasant population determined to fight back. The U.S. lost these three wars. Lost them, and retreated. So it probably was not superior fire power that pushed the Amerindians back and decimated their population.
So much for the violence gene. (I’m using “gene” here as a catch-all word for any process of reproducing characteristics. In actuality – though I’m not certain – I think eccentrics do not tend to have eccentric offspring. So the process of transmission might be of an entirely different nature. It might even be a virus.)
But the question remains: what is the use, the value of eccentricity? It must have some. I suspect the eccentricity gene preserves, in the general population, the ability to think differently (“out of the box” is our present phrase) and, even more important, to stand up for our “different” thoughts in the face of general disapproval. (For overall, humanity is not kind to the new, or to genius. – Genius, by the way, does not mean a high IQ, it means, in a sense, a new “genus,” or species – a new root, a new seed, from which a whole new species of thoughts or actions might follow.) (I can remember several instances in grade school when I was chastised – once, threatened with expulsion – for holding a different viewpoint than the accepted one, or displaying knowledge that the teacher had not before encountered. However, I don’t have the stubborn courage of an eccentric. When they threatened to expel me for criticizing my English teacher’s English, I broke down and cried. Brave soul!)
Teachers, being representatives of the general society and being afraid of stepping too high, too low, or too far outside “normality” (a rather easy self-containment) are in a sense tasked with rejecting any divergent intelligence in children. God must have foreseen this and said, “Ah, ha! I’ll inject humanity with an eccentricity gene, then, so creativity has a chance.” Is it simply coincidence that art students and young artists dress “outrageously” or messily, or whatever? It is as if they are trying to gather to themselves the durability and courage of eccentricity. (Lord knows they’ll need it, since most art ends up in the trash bin, and most artists end impoverished.)
Oh yes, I promised to re-write, in my own language, some of the “luck forecasts.” Next week?
Aries.svgARIES March 21-April 19
Start nothing major or important for two more weeks. Instead, reprise situations from the past (especially partnership situations) or protect ongoing ventures from mistakes. An ex-spouse or ex-business associate, or a former relocation opportunity, might return.If it was good before, and broke or didn’t complete due to circumstances, go ahead, grab it. If it ended due to incompatibility, poor luck, argument, etc. – then leave it alone. This is a good time for international travel, higher education (not writing papers) religion and publishing – IF you’ve “been there” before. E.g., go to France, if it’s a “return trip.” Sunday/Monday bring errands, visits, calls, emails – all’s smooth, but don’t argue Sunday night. Home, family, property, security and retirement dreams call you Monday eve to pre-dawn Thursday. Be cautious Tues./Wed., as problems and barriers outnumber solutions. Your romantic, creative, speculative and pleasure-loving side emerges Thursday morning to Saturday – a great few days – you could fall in love. But it’s the end that matters: you might have to shoulder a burden or make a sacrifice if love ((or a creative pursuit) is to win. (E.g., maybe he’s got 28 children.)

taurus weekly forecastTAURUS April 20-May 20
Tackle neglected chores. Don’t start any big new ones, though, and be careful with machinery. You might have to replace or repair a tool, but DON’T buy big new machines/tools. (E.g., washing machine, chain saw are “big.”) Despite a few snafus, co-workers remain pleasant, and you feel good in the work-place. Your loins might be fired up all month, but the scent of sex is a cosmic lure until the 26th, so be patient. Start nothing major before Oct. 25. Sunday/Monday bring money, earnings, shopping – stick to routine items, save your receipt. Pay and collect outstanding bills. Casual friends, siblings, errands, communications and short travel fill Monday eve to Thursday pre-dawn. Be cautious in speech, driving and with tools. Wednesday morning’s best (PDT). Your home and family, real estate, nest egg, security, nutrition, soul, Mother Nature and retirement factors grow important Thursday daw (PDT) to Saturday – it’s a great run, so get things done here, contact old family members, etc. However, don’t push others to aid or co-operate. (This area, home and real estate, et al, is very lucky for you now to next August.)

Gemini.svgGEMINI May 21-June 20
This is generally an easy, flowing week, Gemini. Remember, don’t start anything before Oct. 25. That said, romance, love of children, joy at children’s abilities and progress, creative and speculative surges, pleasure, sports/games and nature’s powerful beauty – these fill your hours and days. You’re riding a winning streak, especially with things returning from the past. For instance, an old flame might appear – if it ended, back then, for any reason other than incompatibility, give it another go. Despite your affectionate outlook – or perhaps because of it – others treat you assertively all month. Some of these are friends, so grin and welcome them. Some are “open” enemies, and not afraid to declare it. Give these types a wide berth. Your energy and charisma soar Sunday/Monday – use it to find solutions, gain co-operation. Chase money, pay and collect old debts, shop carefully, Monday eve to Thursday pre-dawn. Lots of barriers here. Best time: Monday night. All year, your travel and communication abilities are lucky, and bring some sort of expansion (e.g., better pay). The people you interact with now, in romance, creativity, etc., including those who treat you impatiently and assertively, could later help you turn those travel/talking abilities to profit or reward. Thursday to Saturday show this, offer numerous clues. Glad hand, say hello!

Cancer.svgCANCER June 21-July 22
Remember, start nothing new and important before October 25, Cancer. Protect ongoing ventures from delays and mistakes (double-check) and reprise one or two former opportunities that might reappear. The main accent lies on kids, home, parents, real estate, gardening, nutrition, stomach and soul. A former real estate bargain might materialize, or a prodigal relative might return. Steep yourself in nostalgia. Get plenty of rest – nap in the afternoon. Your work place is intense, might even contain conflicts, arguments that break out like unexpected fires. Instead of fighting for victory in employment arenas, pass this zone by, at least until the 25th. (Argument, criticism, conflict, especially those germinating in ambition, career or business areas, are a subtle yet firm trap now to November 2015.) Lie low, rest and contemplate Sunday/Monday. Your energy rises Monday eve to Thursday, but life offers such complex situations and touchy people that you’ll do well just to apply that extra energy to solving and soothing. Chase money, pay and collect old bills, Thursday dawn to Saturday –all’s well, you might even get a bit of a sensual rush from someone…but this isn’t a “mate” prospect.

Leo icon, Luck ForecastLEO July 23-Aug. 22
Remember, don’t start anything important before Oct. 25. (Buying groceries is not “important,” but buying a bicycle, clothes, backhoes, etc., are.) This is an easy, easily lucky week, Leo. Popularity, light, flirtatious romance, social delights, optimism, wish-fulfillment and entertainment fill Sunday/Monday. (Not a good time to start a new romance if you want it to be “big.” Not that it won’t be big, but that, once developed, it will neither leave you alone nor satisfy you.) Retreat Monday eve to Thursday dawn – this jumpy, rocky period is best contemplated from a nice, cosy place of contemplation, rather than plunging into a current of conflict. Your energy, magnetism, cheerfulness, friendliness and luck soar to a monthly height Thursday morn to Saturday. The only discordant note is your home, and the work to be done there. Leave this awhile, get out and play – others admire, compliment you! (Still, start nothing major – stick with the past, old friends, old lovers. You don’t need advice this week.

Virgo.svgVIRGO Aug. 23-Sept. 22
Remember, start nothing new/important, projects nor relationships, before October 25. The general accent lies on earnings, shopping, possessions, memory, and sensual attractions, “easy sex.” However, buy nothing important. (Despite my cautions, money is mildly lucky now.) Pay on, and collect from, old bills. A former money source, a lost possession, or a comfortable but not exciting “intimate partner” might reappear. All these were problematical last week, but are fine this week and next. Family members might be argumentative or impatient: grin and bear it. Why jump into an argument that will just go in circles in future? Be ambitious Sunday/Monday: start no new projects, but work hard on ongoing ones, speak up, show your skills. Midweek (Mon. night to Thursday pre-dawn) your mood will rise to a happy optimism, a friendly joy – which is good, because actual events won’t be very lucky. Ah, well, struggle on. (In truth, you’re okay, friends are struggling.) Retreat, rest, contemplate Thursday morn to Saturday: be spiritual, charitable, catch up on government obligations – almost everything goes well.

Libra.svgLIBRA Sept. 23-Oct. 22
Remember, start nothing important before October 25 – that includes relationships. Your energy, charisma and clout sail toward a yearly high. (The peak is likely Oct. 21-23.) You could attract an old flame, perhaps a Gemini. There is someone you chat with often, just in passing, casually. This person has a lot of the qualities which signal a viable mate (for you). However, be patient: it might be 2016 before this person can “join you.” (From Feb. 19, 2014 to Nov. 13, you can chase love, sex, friendship, friends with benefits, etc. – but don’t marry, and never marry anyone you first meet during this period.) Sunday/Monday are sweet, mellow, and boost your understanding of the world. Attend cultural venues. A Gemini might make you laugh. From Monday eve to Thursday pre-dawn, be cautious yet ambitious. Don’t start new projects, but do your best to further old/ongoing ones. The bosses know about the problems you confront: any successful handling of them will earn you valuable points. (Be careful with authorities, also. Police might need placating.) Your hopes, popularity, and joy in life burst happily forth Thursday morn to Saturday. You can see the future – but don’t chase it. Link up with a group. A flirtation could make your heart soar.

Scorpio.svgSCORPIO Oct. 23-Nov. 21
Start nothing important before October 25, Scorpio. Protect ongoing projects from delays and mistakes. Reprise a past project if it “nudges” you (and has no fatal flaw). Mostly, remain quiet, contemplative; rest, avoid competitive situations. Interface with government, institutions and head office. Study a “group” at work and mull over: how could they be more efficient? Much money flows to you in October – bank it, don’t spend it. Show higher-ups you’re eager to advance and will hold up your end. A Libran might aid you. Protect your health. Be charitable, spiritual. Sunday/Monday tempt you with secrets, financial opportunities, intimate doorways. Good luck abounds, but how will it work in the long run? Wisdom, gentle love, a broader understanding visit you Monday night to Thursday pre-dawn. There are more barriers than solutions here, so step cautiously. Sign nothing, and avoid legal matters. Best time: Monday night. Your career, community reputation, prestige relations and worldly position are featured – luck walks with you! The only barrier is yourself – self-doubt, perhaps. But don’t worry, this will fade, and the luck will stay, over the year ahead.

Sagittarius.svgSAGITTARIUS Nov. 22-Dec. 21
Remember, start nothing new and important before October 25 – especially in career, relationships, dealings with the public, and relocation. (Something or someone from the past in these areas might return – and have a worthwhile suggestion.) So, focus on past and ongoing situations. You’re assertive and friendly now, romantic also. But now to Nov. 2015, you’re wisest to deal with or chase light, friendly romance; deep, heavy stuff will constantly elude you, waste your time before 2016, even affect your job. Relationships fill a smooth, happy Sunday/Monday. (Be cautious about 10 pm PDT Sunday.) Mysteries, secrets, and the sirens of money and lust call you Monday night to pre-dawn Thursday. Your best period will be Monday night; otherwise, solve problems rather than try to expand. Thursday morn to Saturday features international affairs, higher learning, publishing, far travel, law, ideas, philosophy – everything you love – and a bonus, these things are steeped in good fortune until next August.

Capricorn.svgCAPRICORN Dec. 22-Jan. 19
Remember, start nothing important before October 25. The general accent lies on ambition, community reputation, prestige relations, career . Bosses like you now, it’s easy to get approval – but more in a general sense than for a specific project. Remain cautious of dark alleys, tight places, belligerent people. A former career role or opportunity could return this week or next – if appropriate, grab it. (If you’re happy in your present position, leave this “returnee” alone.) Tackle chores Sunday/Monday – all’s smooth, productive (except for minor glitches/delays). Relationships fill Monday night (good few hours) to pre-dawn Thursday. This is a very jumbled period, so don’t expect good luck – work on solutions instead. One solution is humility, co-operation. Life’s mysterious side opens up Thursday morn to Saturday – investments, health diagnosis, sexual attraction are all lucky, as long as you’re not starting a new venture here. (There’s no rush – these zones remain hugely fortunate to August 2015.) Research and investigation reward you.

Aquarius.svgAQUARIUS Jan. 20-Feb. 18
Friends are talkative all October, and you enjoy their company. Many ideas, idealistic views swirl around you. So will notions of travel, internationalism, higher learning, publishing and philosophy, law, and cultural endeavors and social rituals (e.g., weddings). These zones are blessed for you until Nov. 2015. Relationships and relocation are double-lucky until August 2015. Put these together and you can gather clues to your future: for instance, lucky relationships and a wedding is blessed; or, internationalism and relocation make an intriguing pair. Remember, start nothing big and important before October 25. After this, the world’s your oyster, if you can co-operate and encourage others. Sunday/Monday are romantic, creative, pleasure-oriented. All smooth. Tackle chores and protect your health with sensible action/habits Monday night to pre-dawn Thursday. Be cautious, practice safety, this road’s bumpy. Those lucky relationships I just mentioned? They’re highlighted Thursday morn to Saturday. Welcome everyone! A fine, happy week.

Pisces.svgPISCES Feb. 19-March 20
The general accent lies on life’s depths and mysteries: sexual yearning, intimacy and consequence, pregnancy, investment, debt, lifestyle changes, health diagnoses. While these are favoured, and the recent rejections in these areas are over, stick with what you’ve already started (September or earlier) or reprise anything here that returns from the past. (An ex-lover, ex-investment, etc., is sure to appear and hang around, even if only in your thoughts.) Start nothing important before Oct. 25. Sign nothing. A gentle, sweet and mildly lucky focus is on your home and family, property and security Sunday/Monday. Have a wee house party or family gathering. Romance, passion, creative and speculative surges lure you from Monday night to pre-dawn Thursday. If you want to act, do so Monday night – the rest of this period is jumbled, conflicted. Tackle chores Thursday morn to Saturday – you’ll get loads accomplished. Protect health: eat, dress sensibly. Bosses are impatient until the 26th, so do get that work done.
The End.