Friday, January 14, 2011

Zodiac Fuss!


So, the internets are all abuzz about the so-called "new Zodiac" signs. It's quite crazy considering how many people claim not to believe in "that sort of thing." Apparently, there have always been two different Zodiac systems – Tropical and Sidereal – and people are just now copping on to this fact. This is the biggest thing since sliced Beatles. People are weird.

Typically, I reserve knowledge of my sign for browsing the Horoscope sections of out of date magazines when waiting for the dentist twice a year (of course, this happens less and less now due to the constant companion of my iPhone, but I digress) and then gasping in astonishment at how accurate the prediction was based on what I remember happening 3 or so months ago. Now I'm having conversations left and right about this "new" Zodiac: people want to know if my sign changed, tell me if theirs has or hasn't, and then discuss the impact of these changes.

But what I find really strange is that I am oddly bothered by the fact that if I were to take store in the "new" or Sidereal Zodiac, I would not be a Leo anymore. And I can't really figure out why I'm bothered by this. Astrology is not something that I have ever invested that much in and I rarely think about my sign unless asked... But I guess over the past 27 years, it has become unwillingly part of my identity.

When people ask me my sign or when my birthday is, they tend to nod and smile understandingly, like "Oh, you're a Leo! That all makes sense now." And, sure, when you look at the characteristics of a Leo, some do fit me quite well. Is this why they have come to partially define me – other people's response to this information? That seems pretty likely.

The one thing that has always bothered me, however, are those people who, when meeting your Significant Other, always want to know both of your signs. They then proclaim how wonderful the math is, or else, shake their heads as if they have some greater understanding of your relationship than you do. I just don't why the fact that I was born at the end of July would make me incompatible with someone born in, say, September. Funny how these things work and ingrain themselves into your brain... I do tend to look up that sort of thing when I'm bored...

According to Wikipedia (which, you shall see, is pretty much my go-to source), the difference between Sidereal and Tropical Astrology (Tropical is the one we've all been going by) is in the opinion whether the system should be fixed to the seasons, i.e. the orientation of the Earth relative to the solar system, or to the background stars, i.e. the orientation of the Earth relative to the galaxy. Tropical Astrology chooses the former, Sidereal the latter.

And according to Sidereal, I am a Cancer not a Leo.

This may also be arbitrarily accurate in the same way the Leo traits seem to fit me. I have always thought of myself as more of a Water sign rather than a Fire sign. When I think of what kind of super powers I might have, I always picture myself with Magneto-type powers, only instead of metal, it would be with water – the ability to manipulate water and move quickly through it. I feel free and relaxed in the water, more so than anywhere else... maybe I've secretly felt like I was a Cancer all along? Though, it probably helps that my birthday is very close to the Cancer/Leo cutoff even on the Tropical Zodiac...

None of this really impacts my life much either way.

So, if at the end of all this, being a Cancer means that in some crazy way me and Boyfriend, who's birthday has stubbornly kept him a Virgo, are more "compatible" then I'm on board with whatever crazy system everyone wants to fashionably believe in.

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