If you know your ascendant, read it too.

GENERAL FORECAST: The gathering storm might blow over for now, but what occurs during the destructive Mars-Pluto conjunction this weekend will affect us through the summer. Follow the numbers: On Saturday powerful Pluto turns retrograde at 15 Sagittarius, it flips forward in August at 13; in May fiery Mars heads backwards at 29 Sag and goes direct in mid-July at 15, the same degree the two planets are in now. A quick glance at major political figures' charts shows only John McCain with anything -- in his case, protective Jupiter -- at 15 Sag. Dick Cheney's Mars is at 17, L.A.'s Saturn is at 13 in our money house. (In case you hadn't noticed we've been on an economic downturn for months and the strikes haven't even begun!) There is a sunny side to this gloomy forecast, and that breaks through as loving Venus trines horny Mars and passionate Pluto in the last days of Pisces. Spring arrives Tuesday, the 20th at 5:31 a.m. PST. Celebrate, watch a fresh egg stand tall.

ARIES (March 20-April 19)

Any adventure, romantic or otherwise, will provide a lot of pleasure this weekend. Rarely are you in such a sweet spot (astrologically speaking) or pointed in such a rewarding direction. If you feel about to be swept away by a powerful wave of emotion, go with the flow. Also give yourself permission to follow the path your mind is taking, because the desire for more meaningful life experiences and intellecutal growth is at an all-time (if you were born after 1969) high. If born before, remember when?

TAURUS (April 20-May 20)

Sex, secret information and what to do with other people's money are among the subjects that'll make this weekend so special. While your Venus ruler in courageous Aries is being rewarded by adventurous Mars and regenerative Pluto, also in a spirited fire sign, you can aspire to the heights or descend into the depths of assorted life experiences. It all depends on the company you're keeping and your current philosophical outlook. What's good, what's bad is up for reevaluation as long as Venus remains retrograde.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20)

Your Mercury ruler finally gets back to Pisces, the sign it was in when it turned retrograde at the beginning of February. While some Twins might consider the last six weeks a total bust, with no forward progress to speak of, others have learned a lot during the retrogression. Some may simply be thankful that they didn't have to perform with customary Gemini agility and speed, that other people's expectations were lowered. However, now that you're all on the same page, let the competitive games begin again.

CANCER (June 21-July 22)

Finally, the job you may be aiming for and the career path you hope to get on are in synch. No more marking time, working at cross purposes or watching challenging opportunities go up in smoke. Not that the rewards will come easily, but no matter how many adjustments in your daily routine are called for, you'll make them with a fair amount of enthusiasm, for a Crab, that is. Will you also allow a friendly, attractive person smoothe your transition or will pride get in the way?

LEO (July 23-August 22)

Lions are in line for good fun and/or great loving this weekend. Simply by being here, you may receive enormous amounts of affection, even adoration from Aries, Libra and Taurus natives and more than the usual passionate comeon from an intense Scorpio or a devoted Sagittarian. You don't have to expend much effort, make promises or pick up the tab. However, you might have to get dressed and leave the house, but even that can be circumvented if you invite willing players over for a "game night" to remember.

VIRGO (August 23-September 22)

Read for Gemini. Not that you have a Twin to compete with, but the movement of your Mercury ruler certainly affected you, whether you tried to accomplish things or laid back during its recent retrograde and let things fall apart on their own. Now that Venus is moving backward and Pluto is about to flip, will you encounter more delays? Not in your comings and goings by mail, phone, fax, land, sea or air; but your love life and home life could suffer some setbacks. However, not this weekend when so many people -- Virgins, too? -- are so hot and horny.

LIBRA (September 23-October 22)

Don't blame me if you're not as sought after or as deeply in lust this weekend as I envision. Sometimes I let my imagination get the better of my judgment and predict things that only happen in R-rated movies and romance novels. But the tell-tale signs are open for your interpretation, too. Your Venus ruler, goddess of love, beauty and the feminine principle, forms a rewarding trine to macho Mars, ruler of all things hunky, as well as to passionate Pluto, ruler of the secret stuff you tell nobody, except your hypnotherapist, about. So, what do you see?

SCORPIO (October 23-November 21)

"Single-minded" is hardly strong enough to describe the way you can feel during the once-every-two-year convergence of Mars and Pluto, your two co-ruling planets. As if Scorpios weren't determined enough, you can now get what you want in record time thanks to a rewarding trine from loving Venus, and experience near total satisfaction. Venus' warm heart, gentle manner and love of beauty insures that you don't act like an overbearing despot, consumed by various passions and your will to power.

SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21)

Read for Scorpio. Once again you guys are on the same track heading in the same direction. The only difference is that enthusiastic Archers can get so fired up by the Mars-Pluto conjunction in your sign, that you may burn out too quickly. The favorable trine from Venus in your Aries house of risk and romance gives you an edge, because, even if you don't get your heart's desire before you burn out, you'll continue to be the flavor of choice for months to come or until Labor Day weekend and the first NFL game of the season.

CAPRICORN (December 22-January 20)

While other signs favor high drama and sweeping statements, you only have to do what you feel is necessary to achieve your goal. Because the sun sextiles your Saturn ruler this weekend, you can reap a reward from a decision you made at your birthday. One nice thing about cycles is that they always come around, but segments of them do come to an end. Sorry, but these are the last goodies you'll get from Saturn's transit through friendly Taurus. By Earth Day, Saturn will have moved on to airy Gemini and an abundance of choices.

AQUARIUS (January 21-February 18)

This weekend Mercury exits your sign, leaving behind the confusion its trip forward, backward and forward again may have caused. Hopefully, you learned a lot so that next January, when Mercury goes retrograde in Aquarius, you'll be prepared. Right now, clear and present pleasures lie ahead, all you have to do is show up. While the fire signs are engaged in a torrid lovefest, air signs like yours benefit simply by being the necessary element that keeps the flames going, the heat rising as casual friends and neighbors connect.

PISCES (February 19-March 19)

The last of the birthday good wishes are coming to an end, but don't feel we've abandoned you, yet. Once Mercury reenters your sign Friday night, Geminis and Virgos, who are ruled by Mercury, will find your conversation fascinating, your poetry inspiring, and your latest ideas utterly incomprehensible to their way of thinking. Have fun explaining. Money and career concerns can procede nicely if you don't interfere with the creative process. How you deal with a bully of a boss is up to you.


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