Monday, January 31, 2011

Astrology Angst

The recent news story that the zodiac signs have shifted due to the earth's wobble, and that the stars are off by about a month in their "alignment," have thrown my astrology-believing friends into a twitter on Twitter, and a Facebook fluster.

Until this news hit, I didn't realize that I had so many friends who believe that astrology is credible, or that my friends who post their daily horoscope on Twitter and Facebook weren't doing it just for entertainment, but because they feel it has predictive and/or prescriptive value.

Watching their distress as the news that they may not be born under the zodiac sign that they thought they were is both amusing and confounding.

"I don't know who I am anymore," a friend wailed. "I thought I was a Gemini, but I'm really a Cancer?!" 

Another friend was defiant: "I know I'm a Scorpio, and no silly astronomer is going to change that! There's no way in hell that I'm a Libra!" 

"I'm an Ophiuchus now? I don't even know what an Ophiuchus is! And my horoscope doesn't give insight or advice about Ophicucus. Now what?"

The biggest shock though was the post of a friend who turned out to be a practicing astrologer. He wrote:
Learning astrology was difficult enough the first time around, I refuse to relearn any of it. As it was, astrology was already too easily dismissed by many as superstitious nonsense, and this is only going to exacerbate that kind of disrespect for this ancient tradition. Are they going to rewrite every Ephemeris from the past couple of hundred years now? 
Myself, on the whole, I'm actually rather pleased with the Zodiac changes. Until now, I'd thought I was a Capricorn, which was fine with me. Didn't the Capricorn traits "practical, prudent, careful, ambitious, disciplined, patient, humorous and reserved" describe me perfectly? OK, maybe not patient. And not always so disciplined. Although, admittedly I'd always wondered what was wrong with me that I wasn't even close to being either "miserly" or "pessimistic" as a Capricorn is supposed to be.

But now...I find out that I'm really a Sagittarius! I'm "optimistic, jovial, freedom loving, honest, intellectual and philosophical"! Yes!!! That makes more sense. Now those traits describe me perfectly. But oh-oh, my optimism is "blind optimism"? That's not good. And I'm "irresponsible"? Well, hell of a time to find out now. I only wish I'd known when I was a lot younger. I seem to have wasted a lot of potentially fun years being terribly responsible. OK, admittedly I am sometimes "tactless," but I've been trying so hard not to be. Do I have to quit trying? And I'm "careless" too. Really? I don't even think I know how to act carelessly because I've been posing as a careful Capricorn all these years. I guess I need to take some careless lessons. Any Sagittariuns out there who can give me some pointers? Heh. I guess that may be my typical Sagittarius tactlessness showing there.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Email spam: The Almighty Bible

I don't know if I've recently been added to some unfortunate spam list, or whether my spam filters just aren't catching everything they used to, but I've started receiving spam on two previously spam-free email accounts. 

None of the recent spam has been the typical "enlarge your penis" or "refill your male sex medications" spam. Instead, the spam all seems to be ads linked to websites for a wide variety of products--but, just like the more typical spam, not a single one so far seems to be targeted to my needs or interests.

For example, this ad:

Ah, yes, just what an atheist whose atheist children are now adults would buy. Although I am a little tempted to send for the FREE Book of Genesis, which The Almighty Bible promotion site assures me is "PERFECT FOR ALL AGES!"

At least the ad admits that the books are "graphic novels," and doesn't claim they're non-fiction "as dictated by God," and that the books are only "biblically accurate," not, you know, "factually accurate."