The other night we enjoyed having Lulu home for dinner with three of her girlfriends, all in their early 20s, along with Sheerah’s best friend Z, who joins us for dinner roughly once a week. Lulu & her friends were talking about going to a psychic to have their palms read. Palm readers, as a species, always makes me think of the scene in “The Wizard of Oz” where the fortune-teller/wizard looks at the picture from Dorothy’s basket while Dorothy has her eyes closed:
Fortune-teller/wizard: There’s a woman. She’s wearing a polka-dot dress. Her face is careworn.
Dorothy: That’s Aunt Em!
Fortune-teller/wizard: Yes. Her name is Emily.
Dorothy: That’s right!
Since I now have two daughters in their early-to-mid 20s, I’m often reminded of what that time of life was like for me. There I was, newly released into the wild of “the real world” after 16 years of schooling, 17 if you count six months’ worth of half-day kindergarten: a freshly-minted adult, crisp and snappy like new money, and just beginning to see the flashes of light squeezing through the cracks between the sense of self that had been handed to me by other people and the sense of self I was developing as an independent “grown-up,” with my own place to live and my own bills to pay.
Our dinner conversation the other night about palm readers reminded me of the time in my mid-to-late 20s that my best friend M and I got our astrological charts done. I have long since lost both the chart and the cassette tape of the astrologer reading the chart and explaining it to me. Until then, I had only associated my being a Taurus with the daily horoscope, which I
has had always read along with the comics and Dear Abby.
Learning more about what we “Taureans are ruled by” was fascinating to me, because it was a whole new framework for understanding myself that seemed completely objective, or at least more objective than the self that my family, friends and teachers had projected onto me. Since I no longer have that (now antique) astrological chart, I consulted my friendly local Internet search engine to refresh my memory about people born under the sign of Taurus. Here are three headers from one website: “Tactile and Sensuous.” “Love of Music.” “Strong and Solid.” Check, check, and check. Curiously, missing as a header from this particular website was “Stubborn, Like Ox,” but that’s probably because, well, duh.
Of all the Taurean traits I’ve heard of over the years, the one that continues to be most revelatory is “Love of Music.” I’ve had a voracious appetite for music ever since I can remember, and all kinds of music was often playing in our house. From an old favorite Danny Kaye children’s album, whose lyrics are etched into my brain, to Rodgers & Hammerstein musicals, to The Beatles, Rod Stewart, The Rolling Stones, James Taylor, Fleetwood Mac, Yes, Elton John, Billy Joel, Gordon Lightfoot, Jesse Colin Young, the Jackson 5, Jimmie Spheeris, Tom Waits, John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Ella Fitzgerald, to symphonic works by Beethoven and Mozart, Bach partitas, and on and on and on.
The website I was reading this morning had this line under the “Love of Music” heading:
“Taurus rules the throat, giving a powerful, often beautiful voice. This could come in quite handy for Bulls who play bingo!”
I kid you not. Of course, the word “bingo!” was linked to some website where you can play bingo! on-line, probably without ever having to open your mouth to use your powerful, beautiful voice. More likely, all you have to open is your wallet, so you can use your powerful, beautiful credit card. Perhaps my legendary Taurean stubbornness is preventing me from seeing the link between having a “powerful, often beautiful voice” and playing “bingo!” Maybe I’m not as much of an outside-the-box thinker as I thought I was. But now that the Internet has connected these dots for me, I’d be crazy (or stubborn, like ox) not to see a whole new avenue of career possibilities here, since there are several churches in the area that are packed with bingo! players on a regular basis.
And that, my friends, is what’s called “burying the lede.”
Not surprisingly, there are many Taurean singers and composers to choose from. Today, we’ll go out with a song that’s been getting a lot of playing time on my iPod lately: “One,” sung by Mary J. Blige and U2. Mary (she lets me call her that) is a Capricorn, but the horns and hooves make her an honorary Taurus in my book. Bono is a Taurus (and probably a whiz at bingo!), The Edge is a Leo, Adam Clayton is a Pisces, and Larry Mullen, Jr. is a Scorpio. Listen to how they arrange themselves into a constellation of kick-ass. Yes. I just used kick-ass as a noun.