Uranus is Afoot

Let’s get one thing straight: I’m not a real astrologer. I just play one for this column.

A town that traffics in mystery lights deserves nothing less.

Let’s talk Mercury retrograde: timely, as this transit begins today, lasts three weeks and ends November 20. I hear the echoes of angst from the believers, and the roaring eye rolls from the skeptics. For those angsters, I offer a fix. For the skeptical, ignore sage advice at your own peril.

Mercury is the Roman god of eloquence, travel, commerce, and cunning. He is a messenger, communicator. Mercury the planet is speedy, zipping around our sun in just 88 days. But three or four times a year, from our vantage point on Earth, it appears to slow and reverse course, before resuming its normal easterly path.

So what’s the worry? Turns out Mercury is a trickster. When it goes retrograde, these transits are afflicted by miscommunication, misunderstanding,

travel delays, computer malfunctions, transportation travails, and in general, disruption of your best laid plans. Sure, such problems occur year round.

But they are concentrated during these periods. So what’s the cure?

Simple. Work with Mercury’s energy, not against it. To do that, think of thoughts, behaviors, and activities that reflect words beginning with “re-“:

review, revise, revisit, remind, recalibrate, recalculate, restructure, reconsider, restore, reboot, repair, reconnect, refurnish, refurbish, rekindle, reinvent; renovate and resurrect.

Now before you regurgitate, trust me: this is good medicine. You’ll be productive, happy, and tranquil while your heathen brethren will be in a state of frenzied frustration.

But we’re not out of the cosmic woods just yet. There are some actions you must avoid during these times: don’t start a new project, don’t sign important contracts,

don’t take a bet. Don’t forget to dot your tees and cross your eyes. Document everything – pretend you’re White House counsel or a State Department diplomat (not to worry, it’s only for three weeks, three or four times a year). Be careful with all your communications. And if you must travel, bring a good book to keep you company while you age on the tarmac.

The above suggestions are all well and good, but let’s Marfalogize them, bring them closer to home. We’ll call it Marfastrology. When Mercury goes retro:

*  don’t make new art – just make your old art better

*  reapply for that grant / revise the internship application / rethink that video installation

*  re-list your ex brother-in-law’s floating duck blind on Airbnb

*  repair the vintage Beetle / restore the adobe wall / [re]mend your fences

*  renew your subscription to this paper

*  get your vehicle reinspected / get your vehicle reinspected / get your vehicle reinspected

In the quantum world, uncertainty reigns supreme. But in the macro world of astrology, there is one thing that is certain: change. The heavens are always in motion. Next time we chat, Jupiter will exit Sagittarius to enter Capricorn. Neptune will turn direct. Just before Thanksgiving, a new moon arrives. We’ll get jiggy with it. Stay tuned.