Sunday, October 31, 2004

October 2004

"Accident of birth." Have you ever stopped to think on what that means? We all know how significant date of birth is, but place of birth matters just as much, you know; the stars rule our destiny, but the map does too. Jograffy is important, when you think about it - after all, you wouldn't want to put weeks of effort into digging out the Number 3 upshaft only to discover that it comes out on the bottom of Lake Zlobenia! This month we're going to look at what you might have been like if you'd been born under the same Sign, but only, say, a few hundred miles Turnwise...

The Adamant Hedgehog 21 Mar - 20 Apr

Your alternate self: Tezuman priest

Feeling a bit low this week? It's not surprising: that shortage of sacrificial virgins is only going to get worse until the 16th. Find something to do with your hands, like polishing that set of NeverDull(TM) obsidian knives your auntie gave you last Quetzovercoatl Day. The week of the 21st is good for travel, and may bring you the pleasant surprise of a fresh party of foreign explorers. The second week of the month will be a creative, mentally stimulating time, with your deductive powers at their highest; consider inventing the wheel. Beware of parrots.

Gahoolie, the Vase of Tulips 21 Apr - 21 May

Your alternate self: Hublands barbarian

By Clom, this will be an exciting month and no mistake! Your lucky stars will lead you to the best demon-haunted abandoned temple of your career, and a jewelled idol that makes the Eye of Offler look like a dodgy-grade Ankhstone. Unusual movement of Great A'Tuin's left rear flipper will bring your moon into alignment and guarantee some of the best swordfights of the working year. What's more, in the second week you've a great chance of scoring with that hot hussy Red Scharron - no more need to pilfer sacrificial virgins from the Tezuman Empire. Protect your voonerables with a hippo-grease poultice, and be sure to eat your horse cheese. The 27th is a creative time; consider learning to read.

The Two Fat Cousins 22 May - 21 Jun

Your alternate self: Genuan socialite

The colour purple will bring you luck this month. Not before time either, since you've been wearing it all these years. The first two weeks of the month are favourable for travel to large foreign cities, and for meddling in the affairs of princes; it's also a good time to write to your favourite nephew, and to send him a gift of some of those nifty new poisons you've been working on. The 19th looks good for romance, especially with dashing Watchmen. Any ball given after the 21st will be a sure success. Take up knitting again; your high speed needle-throwing could do with some practice. Beware of mysterious ladies with a penchant for mirrors.

The Wizard's Staff and Knob 22 Jun - 22 Jul

Your alternate self: Uberwald mine supervisor

Don't bother getting out of bed tomorrow morning - that promising new seam will turn out to be nothing but pyrites. But in the middle of the month the stars will favour you with a rich unexpected seam of silver, just the ticket for your new customers in Bonk. Send your daughter to the blacksmith on the 11th to get her beard trimmed. An unsettled time on the 22nd means you'd best count your gold even more carefully than usual. Don't forget the 29th: "Today is a good day to dig." Tell the missus to lighten up on the catbox tailings in this month's baking.

Bilious, God of Hangovers 23 Jul - 23 Aug

Your alternate self: Agatean squishi chef

Danger, Will Robbing Sun! An unfortunately leaky blowfish could spell the end of your career this month! A short and nasty end, too, so take exceptional care when preparing that banquet platter for the Grand Vizier's tea party. But Bilious smiles upon the Earth Dragon this month, so play your mah-jongg right and you may well get that position in the Emperor's kitchens. The third week of the month will be a creative time; consider inventing peasants' rights. A mysterious stranger from the West will fill your life with excitement. Offer him your wife, and some horse cheese.

Mubbo the Hyena 24 Aug - 23 Sept

Your alternate self: Klatchian camel driver

Be of great joy! The shifting stars will harmonise with the shifting sands this month, bringing cool oases, refreshing winds, and good trade prices at the souk. On the 12th, pay careful attention to the spittings and scratch-marks of your lead camel: they'll contain the solution to all your water conservation calculations. Your dreams of a deep double waterhole will come true halfway through the month, when following the line of an unusual rock formation will show wadi, wadi. Also, the 17th is a good time to burnish your burnoose. Don't sell any camels or any daughters until the 30th. Watch out for lizards.

The Small Boring Group of Faint Stars 24 Sept - 23 Oct

Your alternate self: Quirmian cheesemaker

Blessed are the cheesemakers! And there's no more star-blessed time for laying down a new run of Brassica Blue Vein than the first week of this month. The 10th favours curd cheese and yoghourts. Hard cheeses will be difficult until the 22nd, and making Quirmembert is a bad idea until much closer to Hogswatch. Sto Lat Runny is right out. However, any time after the 15th will be good for experimenting with those new low-fat cheeses for the Nouveau Uberwald restaurant craze. The 26th is a creative time: consider inventing the milking machine.

Okjok, the Salesman 24 Oct - 22 Nov

Your alternate self: Borogravian innkeeper

Great news! In a few days, a party of valiant soldiers will be stopping by for a week's bivouac, Nuggan be praised! So stock up now on cut-price socks and shatterproof beer steins, and put up some new opaque curtains on the shower shed out in the stableyard. Don't bother sharpening the complimentary razors, though. Mid-month will bring a decisive time for local brewers, so lay in as many barrels of Duchess Heavy now before they decide to raise prices again. There will be a short shower of garlic and chocolates on the 13th; be kind to vultures and albatrosses. The second week of the month is your most creative time; consider inventing women's rights.

Great T'Phon's Foot 23 Nov - 21 Dec

Your alternate self: Ankh-Morpork street vendor

You're having a wonderful run now, what with all those pre-Hogswatch sales, but beware - T'Phon's Toe moves into the Occluded Hangnail position this month and can adversely affect your customer relations. Now is the season to scrimp less and cut fewer corners, if you don't want to spend the festive season hiding out to avoid certain, erm, unsatisfied clients. The 14th is a good time for selling pies. The 18th is a bad time for selling elderly sausages. Snow-globes will be a popular item from the second week onwards (the public has a short memory sometimes), but be very careful where you get them. Avoid crocodile products, especially on the hoof.

Hoki the Jokester 22 Dec - 20 Jan

Your alternate self: Fourecksian bushranger

Life has been a bit dry and flat lately, but that will change this month. Hoki will smile on you in the form of a long-hidden cache of beer - follow your heart and look for kangaroo-sign and you'll be laughing. The 21st is a good time to move your secret hide-out, because they'll be reopening that old opal mine. A wizard may lead you to riches on the 16th. Be kind to tall, burly women in floaty exotic clothing; you never know when you might need a pair of stilettoes. The 25th will see a rain of sheep, which is almost as good as a rain of rain. The last week of the month is your creative time; consider inventing truth in politics.

The Rather Large Gazunda 21 Jan - 18 Feb

Your alternate self: Brindisian opera singer

Oi! Wake up! Here's a nice plate of squid and pasta, that will help. Now pay attention: under no circumstances should you travel abroad this month. Beware! Especially beware of touring large urban centres. Your stars are dangerously unsettled at the moment; if you do sing abroad, say in Ankh-Morpork, you will surely happen upon disturbing old ladies, murderous ghosts, and upsetting foreign foods such as pork pies and clootie dumplings. Not only will your life be turned upside-down, but you may become a different person altogether, with a different name, a different language, a different family -- oh, you've fallen asleep again. I don't know why I bother.

The Flying Moose 19 Feb - 20 Mar

Your alternate self: Llamedosian bard

The first half of this month will be good for rain, but poor for human sacrifices; it seems the stars favour Hublands barbarians' sacrificial virgin-rescuing powers. The 11th is the best time to begin and bless new lutes and such (remember when you preserved the skin of Hywwllll, the Druid who said he hated music? - well, this is a good time to make a lyre of him). If you want your standing stones to remain standing, don't erect any new ones until after the 23rd. Romance is in the air from the 15th, so brush up on your marriage ceremonies (the ones that don't involve sacrificing virgins. That's the groom's job). On the 29th, sweep out and exorcise that underground solstice temple, so as to be sure that Elvish has left the building. The second half of the month will also be good for rain.