Wed. Mar 22nd, 2023
The new sign, "Ophiuchus," resources "Snake carrier." And who has two thumbs and likes snakes?  THIS GUY HERE.
Enlarge / The new sign, “Ophiuchus”, means “Snake Bearer”. And who has two thumbs and likes snakes? THIS GUY HERE.

According to a post on NASASpacePlace, everything we thought we knew about the heavens’ influence on our terrestrial lives has been thrown into chaos. NASA has announced that the celestial sphere above us does not contain twelve canonical constellations of the zodiac, But 13. The hitherto overlooked zodiac sign of Ophiuchus is said to guide and control the events surrounding people born between November 29 and December 17 — so if you used to be a Sagittarius, congratulations: You’ve got a new zodiac sign, baby!

The addition of Ophiuchus – the serpent bearer, in case you were wondering – has clear and far-reaching implications for the entire Western Babylonian-derived zodiac calendar. For starters, squeezing it means changing the effective dates of all other characters. According to Yahoo News, the new 13-character calendar looks like this:

  • Ibex: January 20 – February 16
  • Aquarius: February 16 – March 11
  • Fishing: March 11 – April 18
  • Ram: April 18 – May 13
  • Taurus: May 13 – June 21
  • Twin: June 21 – July 20
  • Cancer: July 20 – August 10
  • Lion: August 10 – September 16
  • Virgin: September 16 – October 30
  • Scale: October 30 – November 23
  • Scorpion: November 23 – November 29
  • Ophiuchus: November 29 – December 17
  • Archer: December 17 – January 20

The changes are as drastic as they are stunning. For example, I woke up this morning with a firm belief that I was an outgoing, courageous, independent, generous Leo. Now, though, I have to understand that I’m basically a stupid, petulant, inconsiderate, pessimistic Cancer. I’ve gone from lion to crab, and it weighs heavily on me.

Other Ars staff members suffered similar crises. “I became a goat,” explains Tech Culture Editor Annalee Newitz, “which is much worse than a crab.”

However, some seemed excited by the realization that new stars would determine their destiny. “I am an Ophiuchus!!!!” exclaimed senior IT reporter Jon Brodkin with four exclamation marks. He further commented, “YES!”

Still others seemed baffled. “The horoscope divides the year into 12 approximately equal parts,” explains Ars Buzzkill McDownypants Peter Bright. “It has nothing to do with the constellations anyway.” Soon after, Peter Bright was killed by a falling piano for not heeding the warning signs clearly written in the sky.

Farewell, brave and sociable lion.  I'm now a dumb, dumb crab instead.
Enlarge / Farewell, brave and sociable lion. I’m now a dumb, dumb crab instead.

A word for all seasons

So what should we do with the new board? How do we integrate it into our lives now that the celestial signposts through which we must make all important business and personal decisions have moved? Fear not: We consulted our own sources – including our stunned, angry Senior Science Editor Dr. John Timmer, who foolishly denies the influence of the stars on the daily goings-on of humanity and risks the fate of an infidel similar to that of Peter Bright. We’ve come up with some starter horoscopes to get you into the new age of 13 zodiac signs the right way.

Ibex: Stop digging out your yard to look for treasure – there is Certainly something down there. Grab a shovel and get to work. Seize the day!

Aquarius: This is the dawn of your age! Tell your boss what you Real think of him or her and be the change you want to see in the world! Also be prepared to accept the consequences of your actions.

Fishing: They know. They all know. Walk.

Ram: It’s time to invest in yourself by changing everything about you that you don’t like. And also everything you Doing like it. In fact, just become someone else entirely.

Taurus: Never settle for being a basic Taurus model. Embrace your inner SHO and blow the doors of life off!

Twin: True to your dual nature, it is possible that you do indeed have a second evil conjoined twin within you. See a doctor.

Cancer: You will get news that will be hard to hear, but look on the bright side: you don’t have to worry about it for long!

Lion: In the jungle, you roar tonight! The stars say your risk will be rewarded, so go out and take some! Hit a stranger in a bar! Go BASE jumping! The only thing stopping you is You!

Virgin: Ooh. Yes, this one is pretty bad. Rather stay indoors. Seriously, don’t go out for four weeks and Certainly avoid all Libras.

Scale: Great news! It’s open season on Virgos! Their sign has angered the stars and you are the hand of divine retribution! Go out and grab some while things are going well!

Scorpion: Signs point to financial blessings coming soon! Or… wait, that could be financial ruin. I can’t tell if I’m reading this thing upside down or not.

Ophiuchus: So do you like snakes? I hope you like snakes. Because… well, let’s say you have some snakes in the near future.

Archer: Your clumsy nature will soon make itself felt. This will either result in you bumping into the love of your life in a heaven-ordered meet-cute, or someone accidentally bumping into you on the sidewalk will punch you in the face.

Retrieving the pieces Fishing

Despite the undeniable effect that the position of the stars has on everything, certain members of the so-called scientific community continue to deny the effectiveness of astrology in predicting all events. “It’s not science,” NASA claims, despite the government agency spending billions of taxpayers’ money to study space. “No one has shown that astrology can be used to predict the future or describe what people are like based solely on their date of birth.”

Yahoo has a much more nuanced view of the state of astrology after the addition of Ophiuchus to the western zodiac: “You can now proceed with a full-blown panic attack.”

This is sound advice. Of course, even if you think you can make peace with Ophiuchus’ meddling in your calculations when you decide your fate, it doesn’t really matter. As noted by NASA, “Other cultures and traditions have recognized as many as 24 constellations in the zodiac.” The only solution is to subscribe to dozens of supermarket tabloid magazines from around the world and try to follow all the advice given in each of them. As a wise man once said: it’s the only way to be sure.

Frame image by YOYLO

By akfire1

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