A few weeks ago, worried about the impact of the super flower blood moon lunar eclipse, I called up my friend Audrey Wells. Audrey's been surfing the skies for years.
Audrey cut straight to the point: “Navigating this won’t be for SISSIES, Latham.” She went a step further to provide actionable, down-to-earth advice: “Tequila does help.”
Last but not least, she let me know she had some spare diapers on hand, in case I needed some.
Confident I was in the hands of a practical, rubber-meets-the-road type of apprentice astrologer, I gave her my birthdate, time, and place so she could cast my chart, and we made plans to talk.
In the interest of productivity and planetary safety, we agreed to fortify ourselves with adult beverages prior to and during the Zoom call. If you want to find a fresh glass or bottle or chalice of your favorite edge-smoother to help harmonize the vibe, feel free to do so now and I’ll wait…No judgment. Like my sister’s ex-husband said, “It’s either drink now or go crazy later because you never dealt with it.”
Full disclosure: I know exactly fuck-all about astrology, so I started our boozy astro-chat by lobbing Audrey a super-basic softball of a question.
JL: You’ve got my birthdate, time, and place. What do you do with that info? Another way of saying that is, what all is in an astrological chart?
AW: Lemme’ start with this, uh, disclaimer, of sorts. I’ve been Surfing the Skies since the 70s, Latham. Like, pre-disco era, practically but definitely flowers-in-my-hair, hippy-beads, and crunchy-granola, Fuck-You Nixon, days… of course, I was a mere child.
Anyway, now that I’ve shocked myself by mostly sticking with my peace and love lifestyle all these decades later — and astrology and the skies were always there like a map in my back pocket whenever life got weird or too complicated for me to wrap my head around — I’m at a stage of life where not only has my life gotten pretty freakin’ weird, but I’d say the country and world at large is pretty out of whack, so now I’m diving deeper and getting more serious as a Student Surfer who’s spent a long time paddling around on my board.
JL: Awesome. Let’s go! [hits marg]. Start me off with something easy. Strictly shallow-end.
AW: There are twelve signs and twelve planets, and the planets rule the signs.
What a full natal chart, based not only on your birth date but also on the time and place where you were born, reveals is why no two Aquarians are exactly the same, aside from the general characteristics.
Where and when you were born is used to take a snapshot of exactly what was happening planetarily at the exact moment you popped out of the womb on planet earth.
There are three significant planets that can define you in a general way, and they’re your Sun Sign, your Moon Sign, and your Rising, or Ascendant.
JL: I’m with you so far, I think.
AW: Your Sun Sign defines character, personality, how you show up. Your Sun is your adult; the boss of your chart, so to speak. And you’re an Aquarius, Latham. You can be unwilling to follow the beaten track which makes you a bit of a rebel, but you can also get stuck and fixed when it comes to doing things your own way. You’re not always quick to adapt. Open to change in theory, but not always in practice.
JL: Yeah, that sounds right. I’m with ya. Keep rollin’.
AW: I’m an Aquarius, too. I was born on Groundhog Day. So I know. As go-with-the-flow as we can be, the shit we get stuck on is like a fresh turd on the bottom of your tennis shoe. It’s jammed all up in there and you’re tracking it everywhere.
Me personally, I’m like a pitbull once the jaws clamp down. Shit, I exhaust myself [laughs].
Oh, and Aquarians don’t necessarily make the best parents when their kids are babies or really young. I think it’s because we’re kind of more brainy than cuddly — but once the kids get older — we can all have a laugh and a good time. Especially father-daughters.
JL: Huh. That fits with my daughter and me.
AW: Nice! How so?
JL: I don’t usually broadcast this, but she’s not my biological daughter. I adopted her when I married her mom. She was nine when I met her, so I didn’t know her as a baby, but we just clicked right from the get go.
AW: Totally fits. You two seem as thick as thieves.
JL: Oh yeah. She’s the best. Just the other day she convinced me to finally get rid of my hard copy dictionaries.
AW: The other thing your chart really revealed is you’re meant to be a writer. You’re pragmatic and logical in your reasoning and you’ve got good walking-around common sense — but what drives you is indulging your artist romantic. The writer and the need to express your inner nature really came through in your chart.
JL: Comes through on every personality test I’ve ever taken, too. The wandering creative type.
AW: Me too [laughs]. Let me look some more at your chart…Okay, this is out of order, but your Rising sign is Scorpio. And, yep, that too, totally makes sense.
AW: Our Ascendant or Rising sign is our nature. It’s how we show up socially — it’s more about how people see you and how they take you in, if that makes sense. Scorpio is mysterious, intense, and a bit secretive. They’re usually romantic in a French film kind of way. They’re also loyal.
JL: You’re talking about the part of myself I keep hidden.
AW: Sure, you can look at it like that, but our Rising sign is usually more hidden to us, in that we don’t always know how people are experiencing us.
JL: You and I met because of writing, so this might sound weird to you, but I don’t really publicize the fact that I write to the people I know in the rest of my life. At work and so on.
AW: Well that’s not just weird, it’s odd, but not if you’re a Scorpio Ascendant. And — your writing is very Scorpio.
JL: Why? Because so much of what I write is emotionally fraught?
AW: But sparse. Precise. Intense.
JL: I’m usually going on about something, but trying not to go on about it [laughs]. Sometimes I remind myself of a Flathead lyric.
AW: A what?!
JL: A band and I went to see when I lived in Tempe called Flathead. Kinda twangy. Anyway, the song goes, Talking don’t mean a thing, crying means even less/Singing about it, I guess that’s okay, as long as it’s not about yourself.
Sometimes I get myself in such knots trying to say things using about no words reminds me of that line and I have to laugh at myself.
AW: OK, let’s hip you to the rest of your chart, Mr. Mysterious.
JL: What is the rest of my chart again? These Cutwater margs run twelve and a half percent, so I’ll have to get it off the recording.
AW: Cutwater margs? Are you having a flashback, Latham?
JL: I don’t think so [looks up, twiddles fingers in front of eyes]. Nope. All good. Lay it on me.
AW: Okay, so your Sun Sign is Aquarius and your Rising is Scorpio. We’ve still got your Moon. And your Moon is a doozy.
JL: Lady, I’ve got Scorpio rising. I can handle anything.
AW: Your moon is in Libra, my friend! Which means destiny always brings you back to Art. It’s your heartbeat. You’re drawn to it, it’s what gets your motor running, and it’s how you see life in general — looking at it through an artistic lens.
How cool is that, Latham? Your Moon sign is your innermost being — it kind of hides in plain sight, quite frankly.
JL: Drags me back to art no matter how many times I try to be chickenshit and run away from it…What are you drinking?
AW: You know me, so it’s a healthy beverage, naturally. Casa Amigos Blanco and Kombucha, baby!
JL: And you’ve got it in a grown-up sippy cup. You know, I hate straws. Every time a drink comes with a straw in it, I take the straw out. Do you have anything to say about that, astrologically?
AW: Oh hell, Latham. That’s easy-peasy, buddy. That’s YOUR SUN speaking, my fellow Aquarian… aka: Aqueerians [not in the LGBTQ, way… but could be and if so, groovy] are like that…because we’re a pretty quirky set of Meat-suit People.
JL: Meat-suit? I just learned the word meat world.
AW: Latham, hush. Your straw compulsion/aversion sounds perfectly normal to me. Especially if one almost took your eye out or something… yea…As a gal, I’m rather fond of straws because I like to wear red lipstick in the good old days of full-face make-up for fun and frolic, and I really hate lipstick marks on the rims of glasses or coffee mugs… or even the top of the Starbuck’s to-go cup, EW.
Or is it PTSD from my days as a barmaid?
JL: I’ve never nearly blinded myself with a straw, but years ago I worked in a medical supply warehouse in Illinois with a Ukrainian guy who told me an endless joke about a Russian spy who was forever giving himself away to the Ukrainians by putting a straw in his eye or closing his eye in anticipation of jabbing it with a straw, and I just didn’t get it. My buddy Vadim was laughing harder and harder, at me and the joke, and I finally just decided it was a Ukrainian thing…Just so you know, I already hated straws by then. The straw thing is not a reaction to feelings of inadequacy from not getting the joke.
AW: Touchy, touchy. Overcompensate much?
JL: Ha. Ok, so, recapping, I’m an Aquarius, which takes me off the beaten track, yet I can be a stick in the mud. My Libra moon sign means I’ll always come back to writing, and my Scorpio rising tracks with why I write what I write. I think I’m getting somewhere.
AW: Not bad, Latham, not bad.
JL: Wait, shit, it just occurred to me that I’ve totally hijacked this, like some kind of horrible blind date where the guy only talks about himself. What about you? Moon? Rising? I’ll just drink my wonderfully straw-free drink and shut up.
AW: Hey, I’m a willing hostage. That said… I’m a garden-variety Aquarian warrior for justice and eccentric weirdo with Sagittarius rising giving me traveling-shoes syndrome and an inability to adult with ease. Children and animals are my besties. Yet my Cancer Moon makes me kind of a Mother Earth-type on the verge of domestic who can be a bit moody and hyper-sensitive to her environment. I insist on making sure even the worst road-trip hell-hole feels zen.
And that’s what we call A WRAP, Latham!
JL: Hell yeah! Until next time, Miss Audrey.
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