Friday, October 9, 2009

Astrology

Author's (Hey, that's me!) note: The following post does not necessarily represent my current opinion. It’s just fun to ridicule anyway. Enjoy.


I’m happy to buy into reincarnation, reflexology, biorhythms, UFOs, astral projection, possibly even low-carb diets. But I have trouble with astrology. You’re asking me to believe that the star alignment when I was born means I’m either a patient but stubborn animal lover or a witty but impulsive teetotaler? Honestly, that is so Pisces-rising of you.


A recent National Cancer Institute study just added to previous findings, which get their name from having been found, that your birth month predisposes you to particular diseases later in life.

Reportedly adults born in January and February have the highest risk of brain cancer. Being born in February or March ups your chances for schizophrenia. Multiple sclerosis correlates with births in April, May, and June, and epilepsy is most common in December-through-March birthday celebrators.

I can just hear horoscope hawkers saying this proves that there really is a connection between your birth month and your characteristics, whether physical or mental. But I have more evidence against astrology being a good predictor of personality than a Sagittarian has selfishness. I just made that zodiac connection up. Why not? In fifty newspapers half the Leo horoscopes will say “don’t make important decisions today” while the other half say “go ahead—take the plunge.”

You can’t beat that for specificity. “Hey, this ‘plunge’ must mean I’m either supposed to finally take a baseball bat to that hornet’s nest in my front yard, or else buy $100,000 of stock in the new tropical-flavored Spam.” What could go wrong?

Astrologers say that given the exact time and location of your birth, they can tell a lot. They can tell you where your profession should fall along the spectrum from rocket scientist to Sesame Street muppet. They know what zodiac signs you should get romantic with. Excuse me, but there's no way that paying attention to a potential mate's birth date is helpful, because I've failed in relationships with every sign. Although I did have a particularly horrific breakup with a guy who was born when the seventh house of his fourth moon was in its sixth cycle when Orion relieved himself in the Big Dipper.

I’m sure the big believers will be deflated to hear the prevailing theory about why this disease/birth month link is statistically significant. The theory is that the seasonal organisms you’re exposed to as an infant change your future health map. Looks like we can blame this one on spores instead of stars.

The scary part is that if I've unfairly trashed astrology, I know for a fact that I’m due for a meteor strike next week. My horoscope says so.