Her Name is Radha! Let’s Get a Groove on 1992 QB1
SERIOUSLY, what is it with these annoying astronomers? Sometimes they’re in a big hurry; sometimes it takes them forever and a few light years to get the simplest things done. In fact, if astronomers ran astrology, there would be no such thing as a daily horoscope. By the time it went through the peer review process, you would be reading about aspects from three years ago. And about the only thing these people can do consistently every day is eat lunch.
Even that takes them 90 minutes. But that’s because they’re discussing all these way-out theories about the 14th dimension and all of space being the shape of Saran wrap stretched over a watermelon that are so complicated even they can’t understand what they’re onto — so imagine how long it takes to explain to somebody else.
However, we have seen that these fine, well-educated people know how to shake their bums when they’re claiming a new discovery. Over the past few years, Varuna, Sedna, Quaoar, Xena, Ixion, Chaos and other newly discovered planets have made actual news. You have read about all of them here. I admit to feeding the hype. Give me a break, I’m just trying to sell a few newsletters.
We were told that they were the first things ever discovered beyond Pluto, and that finally there were some new planets after an exceedingly long delay since 1930, when Pluto showed up. They got names in 15 minutes flat. Certain scientists who we will not identify here to protect their reputations cheated and announced the proposed names of their discoveries before they had approval to do so. News conferences were called and press releases went out. And the names stuck.
As this happened, these so-called scientists could not even agree on the definition of a ‘planet’. Is it a huge blob of gas with 46 moons? Is it a toasted marshmallow of a rock with a half a trillion craters? Is it our world teeming with life and beauty and war mongers? Or is it a scrap of ice the size of Milwaukee, like most of these discoveries?
Meanwhile, certain astrologers instantly went wild trying to figure out what they supposedly meant — the ice cube brigade, I call them — and came up with all manner of dumb-ass ideas way before they had any business doing so. Suddenly the ‘bits in space’ movement had credibility. But can you really say that a particular planet has an association with Aquarius because you sprained your ankle on the day it was discovered?
In the midst of all of this, a huge injustice is being perpetuated. The first planet ever discovered beyond Pluto, 1992 QB1, is still an anonymous bit of organic material floating namelessly in the silent void of space. No school child has ever wondered enrapturedly about this mysterious faraway world, or imagined the life there, or drawn an astronaut bouncing around on its surface. Why? Because nobody has ever mentioned it to them.
1992 QB1 was no ordinary discovery, either. First of all, it was first seen on the Aries Point, that is, the very first degree of Aries. I am not just making this up to impress you; it’s actually true.
Second, as the first planet beyond Pluto discovered, it became proof that something called the Kuiper Belt actually exists. That’s right, before Aug. 30, 1992, the Kuiper Belt was just considered the fantastical imagining of that delusional psychopath Gerald Kuiper, who figured out that’s where short period comets come from — until QB1 showed up and proved his theory probably right. I mean, where else do they come from? Fed Ex?
For years, I’ve researched the meaning of this planet, and cast it into thousands, even millions, of horoscopes. I have raised the discussion at the finest astrology conferences in the world. I have intended to do the right thing and start a cult devoted to it. I have the business plan, the investors, a large tract of land in Oregon, a rockin’ spiritual manifesto and numerous products, all ready, right now. But I can’t get anywhere because astronomers won’t give it a name.
The wheels of the scientific bureaucracy have turned halfway, and it’s got a Minor Planet Catalogue number — 15760. That means it has a properly documented orbit and can get a name, if only somebody would bother to give it one. Of course we could just call it 15760 — that would be sexy.
Bitch as I may, it’s not just astronomers who are playing possum. No matter how hard I try on discussion groups, astrologers won’t even talk about the issue. Go ahead and try it, write a post to one of the minor planet lists and say, “Hey, what about the name of 1992 QB1? It’s been a while.” Then listen. It’s like tossing a penny down a well.
Also, the great irony is that 1992 QB1 gets things named after itself, even though it doesn’t have a name of its own to begin with. Half the things ‘out there’ that get discovered are called Cubewanos (Q-B-1-oh), because they have similar properties as 1992 QB1.
Many other astrologers have become one-hit wonders with books about the one planet that they claim explains absolutely everything. But at least their planets had names. For marketing, it’s a lot easier if you’ve got something catchy to call your bit of junk from the pre-history of the solar system, like Pluto or Chiron. Then somebody wants to take your self-study class for two grand, buy your DVDs and all the rest of it. I mean, would you max out your credit card to sign up for a course on something called 1992 QB1? Well, who knows, maybe a lot of people would. I know I would.
Plus there is this little issue of ambiguity. A lot of other things are starting to collect the names QB1, such as (5322) 1986 QB1, (7026) 1993 QB1, (31114) 1997 QB1, (36447) 2000 QB1, and (52468) 1995 QB1. I mean, just when I get the cult of 1992 QB1 going, somebody’s going to come along with the cult of 2000 QB1 and everyone is going to think that’s more modern. Or they will open a Canadian imitation and try to confuse everyone.
So please write to the International Astronomical Union today and demand, well okay, insist politely on a real name for 1992 QB1. We have all waited long enough. Most people did not even know they were waiting, which is doubly unfair.
Oh, and in my opinion, it’s supposed to be named after a goddess. There are enough planets named after lords and dudes and philanderers out there. I say we call her Radha. Radha rocks, she rolls, and she is what you would hope to find once you get a little past Pluto. To express your opinion, please click this link and use the comment form.
Astrologers to Launch Own Space Telescope
ANNOYED by scientifically biased photographs from the Hubble Space Telescope and Earth-based observatories, astrologers have taken up a kitty to loft their own telescope into orbit. The telescope will be called the Robert Hand Astrological Observatory. The observatory will be trained to see Arabic parts, house cusps and Sabian symbols, as well as progressed planets. Mission control will be Kepler College in Seattle, the world’s only astrology college, where astrologers will wear lab coats and use pocket protectors.
MIT President Resigns
MIT PRESIDENT Susan Hockfield resigned last week after reading a newly published book by astrologer-historian Richard Tarnas, called Cosmos and Psyche. “I cannot go on. Science is nothing more than a lie, a soulless farce on the divine majesty of the universe,” Hockfield said in a hastily arranged press conference on the campus’s main quad, crowded by student supporters. “I must now devote my life to the unfolding paradigm shift.”
Eric Francis Spotted in Five Cities One Day
ASTROLOGER-investigative reporter-publishing entrepreneur Eric Francis was spotted in London, Toronto, Paris, Brussels and Calcutta last Thursday. All witnesses said he was seen in a Chinese restaurant eating duck with sauteed vegetables, and had not bothered brushing his hair. However, Mr. Francis said he was really in Amsterdam, but agreed that he had not brushed his hair since the early 1990s.
Aries Birthdays: About Your Cousin Bill
I’VE BEEN waiting more than six months to say this, but Aries readers born this week, it’s time you started paying more attention to your cousin Bill. You may be asking how I knew to write this, but I am asking how it is you predicted that I would do so this very week. In any event, no matter who predicted whom, it’s time to pick up the phone and call your cousin Bill.
It’s true that Bill has a Pisces Moon, and that this makes him a kind of sentimental mush ball when you would much prefer to associate with people who can take a little good-natured head banging. It’s true that he’s a Capricorn and he acts all goat-like for about five minutes, until you see that fishy tail dangling off behind him and you realize, no, this guy is just a slippery old fish and if I say one thing a bit too whatever, his feelings are going to be hurt beyond consolation for the next six months.
But have you thought that you need to be a little more, you know, SENSITIVE? I don’t mean that you have to bring Bill flowers. Just ask him how he’s doing, mention his wife and kids, and don’t forget not to mention his horrid boss who still drives him nuts. So try it and see what happens.
In other news, this is the year you’re finally gonna get a new dryer. We all know you’re a fire sign and that you love flirting with danger, particularly fire, but it’s not exactly smart to have a gas dryer that doesn’t turn itself off any more. Admittedly, the switch costs $195 and a whole new dryer only costs $250, so they don’t exactly make it appealing to fix.
However, the time you get back from a three day weekend and the thing had been turning continuously for 72 hours with three towels in it about to spontaneously combust, you’ll get the message; go directly to Sears. Fortunately, that’s Labor Day and it’s coming up soon. Just remember to move all the stuff away from the dryer before you leave, because that’s a fire hazard.
In other news, I see you’re debating the big decision between visiting your family in New Jersey, or meeting that really excellent guy in Hawaii. Okay, I see you’re going through major guilt (you have a Vesta in Capricorn, it’s normal), but do you really need my advice on this one? Seriously?
I know you like me to be blunt. I know you like me to tell it like it is and not pussy-foot around the important issues. I have to remember to keep changing the tone of the birthday report every month. So let me get into the full swing of spring here. Okay, ready?
FUCKING GO TO FUCKING HAWAII, IT WILL BE A LOT FUCKING MORE FUCKING FUN THAN GOING TO BORING NEUROTIC OLD TEANECK. IN FACT, GO TO HAWAII FOR TWO WEEKS. YOUR BOSS WILL NOT CARE BECAUSE WHEN YOU’RE NOT THERE HE GETS TO SLACK OFF A BIT. AND IN FACT, HE’S KIND OF PARANOID THAT YOU’RE GOING TO GET A BETTER JOB, SO YOU MAY AS WELL MAKE IT THREE WEEKS! GOT THE PICTURE? GOOD.
Oh yeah, about that better job. Well, a big promotion is on the way. But don’t take it. Once you do the math, it amounts to a pay cut. So if you’re all hooked on being promoted, leave your calculator home that day. But if you want to slither out of this one, you will have to learn how to be very un-Arian, whereas what they like about you is that you’ll pretty much do anything as long as it doesn’t take more than two hours.
In fact, this is where your slippery, fishy cousin Bill comes in. This is his specialty. He may be unambitious, but in reality he has a talent for avoiding promotions. This is how he gets to band practice two nights a week. Call him, you won’t regret it.
Eric Francis Weekly Horoscope # 604 – April 1, 2006
By “Jonathan Cainer”
ERIC FRANCIS WRITES: This week, I’m taking it super duper easy, doing nothing special and just kinda kicking back and enjoying life. Ah, yep. Given that so many of you have written to my private email account or called my above top-secret cell number and asked when Jonathan Cainer is going to stand in for me, I thought I would give that a go. Jonathan, my British colleague of some repute, has a number of qualifications that I distinctly lack. For example, he actually went to astrology school. His website gets more hits than mine. He has driven a car on four different continents whereas I endanger my life the moment I try to cross a street in London. He doesn’t take things nearly as personally as I do. And, what can I tell you, he’s a lot more optimistic than your average Pisces such as myself who can think about nothing but karma, karma, karma. Jonathan will be standing in for my column today. To visit his extremely interesting, positive, optimistic and, moreover, supremely successful web page, go to http://cainer.com/
THOUGHT OF THE DAY
ERIC has popped off to Calcutta for the weekend unexpectedly and has left me at the helm of his weekly horoscope on five minutes notice, which is more than enough time for me. Like everything, I see this as an opportunity to spread good vibes and get a few thousand more people to make the most of life. However, confidentially of course, I must share something that’s always bothered me about the zodiac: it’s made up entirely of animals. Astrology is an animal product, an issue about which I have not breathed a word in 20 years of being the world’s foremost vegetarian astrologer. What the world needs now is a vegetarian horoscope, and since I have you to experiment on this week, and since nobody is going to believe it’s really me writing this, I’m going to see if I can have a go at that. I dare not say anything like this in my own column, since many of my readers are so very fond of beef and kidney pie. But since Planet Waves readers are accustomed to Eric Francis mouthing off about every social injustice under the Sun, this seemed to be the place to let my hair down.
Aries (March 20-April 19)
Now you know what it feels like to take a ride in a peashooter. You just sit back, relax, take it easy, and then: phhooooo! Suddenly everything changes. A total solar eclipse shows up in your birth sign. In a moment flat, you’re careening across the universe at a speed far greater than nature ever intended for you; you have travelled further than you ever imagined you ever would in less time than you ever dreamed possible. After all, you’re a pea, and you were not designed to go more than approximately zero miles per hour. Flying this fast is, for you, the vegetable equivalent of propelling a human being at three times the speed of light. But don’t worry, because soon enough, you’ll land, you’ll settle down, and you’ll start to grow and many more peas will begin to appear all around you, and you’ll just love it. Sometimes, if you want to do everything, all you have to do is nothing. You think you know what you want! We know what you really want! Call 0900-000-0000 to find out what it is.
Taurus (April 19-May 20)
If yours is the sign of cows, bulls and steer, it must also be the sign of grass. This makes perfect sense, since Taurus is an earthy sign and the grass grows right from the Earth. So on the deepest level, yours is the sign of sod — that soft, luxurious stuff that feeds the true ‘sodding’ beast you are deep inside. Cows that eat grass are healthier than those that eat other animals, and they run no risk of getting ‘mad cow’ disease. The way things have been going lately, it would not surprise me if you’ve felt a bit like a herd of mad cows on a stampede; so, I suggest you find yourself a little green turf, pack a big salad in your deluxe, four-star picnic basket, and veg out under a tree for a while. That awesome apartment you were looking at last week came through, but the guy lost your phone number and couldn’t call you back. We’ll connect you, just call 0900-000-0000.
Gemini (May 20-June 21)
All Geminis are natural born vegetarians — you live on coffee. And if you don’t actually live on the stuff, you act like you do. I don’t mean to be too much of a health food purist, but coffee is not what you could properly call a vegetable. In fact, it makes you act kind of like an animal, but then, if the world didn’t have your relentless, high-energy, 17-hour-per-day multitasking capabilities to rely on so dependably, absolutely nothing at all would get done. Just remember, you’re secretly a tea person. No matter what you accomplish or how long it takes or how many days on end you have to work to get there, you relish that moment when you can settle down for a perfect pot of Earl Grey on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Just remember, don’t squeeze the bag into the cup. Last night I was talking to myself and that reminded me of you! Call 0800-000-0000 for the exciting details of the conversation!
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Recently I was opining on how, 20 years ago, nobody would ever have believed that gone-off milk could have become a multi-million pound industry, namely in the form of yoghurt. The thing is, nobody would ever buy yoghurt if they knew about how it’s made. The milk sits fermenting in a warm vat populated with these jelly-like mushrooms (the culture), which slowly consume it. Then, the resulting mush is strained, processed, flavoured, and packaged in brightly coloured packages saying how healthy it is for you! Since yours is the sign of milk, I propose you take the suggestion that whatever may happen behind the scenes, what counts the most is what you show to the world. And don’t believe anyone who says you’re not going to be a smashing success, even if you have to ferment for a while first. Nobody likes plain yoghurt! Find out what flavour you should make yourself! Call 0900-000-0000 for the shocking truth!
Leo (July 22-Aug. 23)
Recently, I sponsored a project at the London Zoological Gardens (that is, the zoo), which was to make an enquiry as to whether lions will eat tofu burgers. So I specially ordered several hundred extra large, King of the Beasts size soy patties, and after several weeks of negotiation with the administration and careful consultation with several veterinarians, we tried them out on Marvin and Hilda, an African lion and lioness pair that’s lived all its life on freshly killed meat. After one week, the pair refused to go back to the big hunks of steak they had lived on for a decade. And, as it worked out, they came along to Rainbow Gathering with me where, quite fortunately, they did not eat any of the other vegetarians who were there. The moral of the story is, there is hope for humanity. Soy is so extremely bland. But we have those Leo recipes you’ve always wanted! Just call 0900-000-0000 and touch 7!
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
Did you know that Virgo is the sign traditionally associated with grain storage buildings? Personally, I had not heard that bit of trivia, which dates back at least to the mid-1600s, but I was searching the archives of Planet Waves looking for something interesting to say to you and that’s the first thing I found. Normally, we associate you with hard work, extreme focus, selfless service, taking care of your health, okay, maybe smoking a few cigarettes and having a few drinks every now and then, and — now we know, things like silos where wheat is kept. And, nobody could ever confuse grain with meat! Unless of course you’re a lion! Well, er, Eric, who is a lot better at writing for Virgos than I am, will be back next week! Let us keep track of your bills, PIN codes, passwords and important appointments. Call 0800-000-0000.
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23)
NOTE: I could not think of anything to write for the Libra horoscope, so I have deferred to my esteemed colleague, the eminent Sally Brompton of the Mail on Sunday, who will stand in for me standing in for Eric Francis this week. Sally writes: “It matters less what you eat, and more that you actually like what you eat. In fact, you can eat whatever you please. You can even pick it up and eat it with your fingers; what business is that of anyone else? Your sign is known for politeness and etiquette, but also for balance, which means not taking anything too far in any one direction. When was the last time you had a big, juicy hamburger? One is waiting for you at Burger King right now.” I really hope you don’t fall for that nonsense. Last night I recorded a whole long missive about why you really don’t want to eat at Burger King. Just call 0900-000-0000 and you’ll hear it loud and clear.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
So, the one strawberry says to the other strawberry, “If you weren’t so fresh last night, we wouldn’t be in this jam!” I use this fruit related joke to help explain the carnal nature that is often associated with Scorpio in plant-related terms. Also, I want to demonstrate that the way to communicate effectively with a Scorpio is to use a little humour. Also, to make the point that in reality, people born under the sign of the Scorpion, er, the Eagle, um, the Snake, well you know, your sign, are really sweet, like strawberry jam. And also, susceptible to flattery, because more than most people it really helps you if you feel like people like and approve of you. But as for that jam — if you stick around for coffee, butter and toast in the morning, you might discover that you’ll want to stick around a little longer. If you thought this horoscope was funny, you will definitely want to hear more of my jokes. If, on the other hand, you didn’t think it was so funny, you should still call anyway because like all Sagittarians, I’m always infinitely more creative when I’m rambling without a script! 0900-000-0000!
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22)
ANOTHER NOTE: I felt that because I am a Sagittarius, my objectivity is compromised and I cannot properly write this horoscope. So, instead, I have deferred this particular sign to Rob Brezsny of Free Will Astrology — who everyone now knows was the inspiration for my Jonathan Cainer Daily Horoscope. Rob writes, “What ARE you doing prancing around with that bow and arrow, Mr or Ms Sagittarius? Is it for self-defence? Is it for hunting, which is not the kind of thing you’d expect a vegetarian to do? Or is it just because you like to frolic around the planet in the most dangerous possible ways? Remember, as godlike as you are, in Egyptian, Greek and Roman cultures, the bow and arrow symbol is associated with the Goddess. And the Goddess is mysterious, if nothing else. So keep that bow and arrow in your pocket and just remember, it’s there if you ever need it.” For some of that laid-back, everything is groovy California-styled astrology that I made a smashing success in England (go figure), you can call Rob directly at (415) 555-1212.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20)
As a Capricorn, you probably find it perfectly outrageous that organic tofu costs as much as filet mignon. Yes, it’s true, there used to be a time when one of the benefits of being a vegetarian was that you could save a few quid every week. Meat used to be expensive, but as part of the corporate conspiracy that I’m only going to mention here in Planet Waves, it’s subsidized by the government, and they try to force everyone to eat it against their will. And now with a simple plate of rice and lentils costing as much as rack of lamb or crown roast of pork, you will have to apply your superior reasoning and find other rationales for not eating flesh. How about: all the astrology books say you’re the sign that lives the longest. But what they don’t say is that you’ll age a heck of a lot better if you stick to nuts, berries and watermelon steaks. For some sound business advice about investing in bean sprouts, call me personally at 0900-000-0000.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)
I know an Aquarius who describes himself as an “opportunivore.” This is a clever, intellectually witty way of saying he will eat anything. Well, you know what he means — anything as long as it’s food. Ah, but herein lies the mystery. What, of all the things that we call food, is and is not worthy of the title? For example, is anything that is made of petroleum derivatives actually edible? Or marshmallows, which I will not ruin your day by revealing the ingredients of here? Now, I know that not all Aquarians are scientists, despite the fact that yours is indeed the sign of science and technology and many great inventors and inventions have had strong Aquarius in their charts. And while you are good at figuring out the meaning of extremely long words, I would leave you with this little bit of astrological advice: If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it. To find the true pronunciation of Bengan Bharta or Malai Kofta, pick up your satellite phone and call 0900-000-0000. I’ll also tell you about vegan marshmallows.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
I’m sure it bothers you how many supposed vegetarians eat fish. Or, come to think of it, perhaps it doesn’t bother you a bit. No matter, as far as I am concerned, the question is, “Is fish a vegetable?” Let’s see, fish have eyes; they breathe (water, but it’s still breathing); and they swim around, unlike seaweed which just kind of hangs out. While they’re technically mammals, dolphins and whales are fish-like enough for any Pisces, and these critters actually talk to one another, bear live young, and so on. So, what do you think? A similar debate has been raging for decades about chicken. Many vegetarians are convinced that chicken is a vegetable. Well if it is, then it’s a pretty darned quick vegetable. The same holds true for turkey. To find out more about what I am getting at in this horoscope, try my phone line! Call 0900-000-0000 and we’ll give you a few more crossword clues.