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July 2020

By Brook Bhagat

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Capricorn (December 22 - January 20)

As the saying goes, you “can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” You can basically expand this to include a pet turtle of any age. I hate to break it to you, but “Shelly” isn’t heading out front to bring you the newspaper and then forgetting why she’s out there. She’s trying to escape. If you love her, set her free!

Aquarius (January 21 - February 18)

Do you find yourself getting bored with the same old routine? Do you feel kind of average and ordinary, with nothing special to set you apart from others? One inexpensive way to pass a lot of time and really stand out in a crowd is to develop a phobia. For example, I can think of a lot of advantages to ablutophobia (fear of bathing) and ergophobia (fear of work or the workplace environment). More exotic phobias include chaetophobia (fear of loose or falling hair, or just hair in general) and omphalophobia (fear of belly buttons). Arachibutyrophobia, the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth, is technically a made-up phobia, but the human mind is a powerful thing. If anyone can do it, Aquarius, you can. Peanut butter is disgusting!

Pisces (February 19 - March 20)

One fine morning this month, you will discover a small sprout in your garden with a strange iridescence unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. Curious, you let it grow, and when you return the next day it is nearly two feet tall. The neighbor’s cat is stretched out on her belly beneath it, calmly nibbling one of the leaves, wearing a small pair of sunglasses and reading what looks like a cheap romance novel. When she notices you and invites you out for a drink with a particularly degrading pick-up line, you temporarily forget the amazing fact that the cat is speaking and reading pulp fiction and storm off in a huff. When you come to your senses and go back out to the yard, both the plant and the cat are gone, but upon investigation you find a few remnants of the sparkling leaves. Use them wisely.

Aries (March 21 - April 19)

This month, stop trying so hard to impress people. Instead, put some effort into improving your fish’s opinion of you—he thinks you’re a jerk.

Taurus (April 20 - May 20)

You are going through a period of great change, either outwardly, inwardly or both. Try to trust the process, have patience and be gentle with yourself during the transition. Remember that even though, as the butterfly enters the cocoon, it doesn’t know if it will make it out alive, deep inside, it already knows how to fly, whether it realizes it or not. The best guidance for you during this powerful transformation will probably be cartoons. Yes, you will be all right, but you need to watch lots and lots of cartoons.

Gemini (May 21 - June 20)

Are your family members stuck in a rut, lacking mystery and excitement in their lives? You can help bring that spark back this month by removing the labels to all the canned goods in the house. Surprise!

Cancer (June 21 - July 22)

It’s always a good idea to make a kind of emergency kit to keep in your car in case you get lost or stuck somewhere which, this month, is pretty likely for you. Essentials you should pack include water, dry noodles, matches, first aid supplies, and a purple crayon.

Leo (July 23 - August 22)

This month, in the depths of confusion or despair, or simply out of curiosity, you ask for a “sign” from above. After making your request, you look out your bedroom window, and an adorable little brown dog you have never seen before runs into your yard and looks directly into your eyes. There’s something familiar about him, like an old childhood friend. Your heart races and time seems to stand still. Fascinated, you watch as the almost magical animal looks up to the heavens once, then back at you; panting, he looks to the street, and then to the ground. Finally, he looks again into your eyes, and it feels like he’s looking straight into your soul. His gaze continues as he arches his back slightly, scratches the grass twice and proceeds to leave a sign for you on your lawn.

Virgo (August 23 - September 22)

Sometimes, the answers you are looking for are hiding inside you, and all you need to do is be quiet enough to hear them. In your case, you can probably just follow those big green signs on the highway.

Libra (September 22 - October 22)

Do you know someone who pronounces something just a little bit wrong, like saying “new-kya-ler war” instead of “nu-cle-ar war” or “lie-berry books” instead of “library books”, and you kind of wince every time you hear it? Well, now is the right time to get it out in the open and help that person stop embarrassing themselves. To be gentle, preface it by saying, “If you were making a fool of yourself on a regular basis, would you want to know about it?” If the person says yes, well, there you go—time to do your good deed for the month and watch the thanks roll in!

Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)

This month, you will deepen your friendship with a tree near your house. New experiences will come when you sit in silent communion with your tree, bringing bliss and, eventually, the ability to leave your body and travel astrally, beyond space and time, to other worlds. You will get a glimpse of the next universe and learn that the old saying, “The early bird gets the worm,” isn’t always true. On the other side, it’s the early worms who get the bird. In all fairness, though, most worms on the other side are horrible drivers, especially when they have to get up early.

Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)

This month, you will be inundated with a record number of telemarketers calling on the phone and door-to-door salespeople offering you a dizzying array of household cleaning products, religions, and newspaper subscriptions. You will become so annoyed that, when you have eaten exactly two bites of your dinner one night and then find yourself in the position of explaining for the fourth time on the phone why you don’t feel like you really need another 25% interest credit card, a vein in your forehead will burst and splinter into seven directions, activating a formerly undiscovered area of the brain which will become known as the telemarkacampus. When this happens, you will instantly become enlightened, and from then on, you will be one with the universal consciousness. Your life will become a garden of bliss and joy, and suffering will be a thing of the past. A flower of compassion will blossom in your heart, and, although you will have seen beyond all worldly desire, you will yearn to share your bliss with others. Logically, you will share it door-to-door, right at dinnertime.

About the author

Brook Bhagat

Brook Bhagat’s work has appeared in Monkeybicycle, Empty Mirror Magazine, Anthem: A Tribute to Leonard Cohen, and other journals and anthologies, and she is the winner of A Story in 100 Words’s nature writing contest. She and her husband Gaurav created Blue Planet Journal, which she edits and writes for, and she is an assistant professor of English at a community college. Her poetry collection, Only Flying, is due out in Nov. 2021 from Unsolicited Press. See more at Brook Bhagat or reach her on Twitter.

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