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I wanted to create a picture in music of what could be up there in outer space.
~ Joe Meek ~

March 21 - April 19 Aries
The Aries of the Week is Joe Meek, who was a record producer and songwriter posthumously acknowledged as a genius in the area of recorded sound production. Meek was born April 5, 1929 and died in 1967 under strange circumstances (he shot his landlady, then killed himself). But I digress. This guy was way off the hook. His best known work is Telstar by the Tornadoes, which was the first #1 record on American charts by a British group – in 1962. His story is strange and mesmerizing and it’s well worth watching this fascinating BBC Arena documentary about him (split up into 6 parts on youtube): part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, and part 6. Perhaps the most insightful comment comes from his brothers: he was an indoor boy and we were outdoor boys. This page has a number of Meek audio clips for your listening pleasure.

April 20 - May 20 Taurus
A Taurus of no small stature is Elizabeth Alexandra Mary, Queen of England. She’s one of the longest-reigning British monarchs to date, having been crowned in 1952. Read all about this interesting woman, including her early life, her interests, her wardrobe, a typical working day, and how to contact her on the newly redesigned Official Website of the British Monarchy. The site also has a bunch of great photographs and clips such as the Queen’s 21st birthday speech and her radio broadcast from 1940 on The Children’s Hour. “In wishing you all good evening, I feel that I am speaking to friends and companions who have shared with my sister and myself many a happy Children’s Hour,” then-Princess Elizabeth clearly and sweetly elucidates. “My sister is by my side and we are both going to say good night to you,” she closes. For more fun stuff, go to the Royal Channel on YouTube.

May 21 - June 20 Gemini
Geminis love music and therefore I thought you might enjoy knowing about a very special new website by Pete Harris of Harris Radio. The site is Violin Femmes, dedicated to ladies who play the violin in non-classical genres. The site features photos and information about a bunch of really cool string-pickin’ women from all over the globe. I’m thinking Mr. Harris never sleeps since he also operates GigApple, a calendar of indie music gigs in NYC as well as IndieSounds NY, a monthly publication and blog covering the New York indie music scene. All worthy of your time, so check them out!

June 21 - July 22 Cancer
Cancer is the Zodiac’s homebody. You love to feather the nest and just sit back and eat bonbons. Thanks to the internet, you need never leave your house again…yes, it’s true. You can now visit the famed Prado Museum in Madrid – in your jammies, at your computer. The Prado is the first museum to allow its collection to be shown via Google’s mapping technology. Take a cyber-tour to Spain and see amazing, up close, high res views of 14 masterpieces. The paintings include Garden of Earthly Delights by Bosch, The Annunciation by Fra Angelico, and Ruben’s Three Graces. Thanks to Google, you can get up close and personal right next to the canvas. Dios mio!

July 23 - August 22 Leo
If you’re a Leo, you’ve got a strong tendency toward liking independent films, documentaries, et cetera, n’est-ce pas? I’ve got an outing for you, oh lion-hearted ones. The 13th Annual Kansas Silent Film Festival is being held on February 27 and 28 in Topeka at the White Concert Hall on the campus of Washburn University. This year, the Festival hosts a restored formerly lost feature film as well as the Kansas premiere of a new documentary about Mary Pickford. Festivities begin Friday night 2/27 at 7pm with a Western double feature. Saturday the 28th Nicholas Eliopoulus will show his Mary Pickford documentary and talk about the film,  as well as take questions from the audience. Full schedule here. Though the festival is free, it’s well worth attending the fundraising dinner Saturday with special guest film preservationist David Shepard.

August 23 - September 22 Virgo
You know, whatever else they may say about you Virgo folks, they can’t ever say you don’t have the courage of your convictions. You probably experienced a frisson of sorts when President Obama, in his inaugural speech, acknowledged not only Christians, Jews, Hindus, and Muslims, but also non-believers. Not because you’re an atheist or an agnostic – it’s just the principle of the thing. (By the way, this is the first time in history a U.S. President has ever acknowledged that there are in fact non-believers). For the same reason, you’ll find it interesting that England just finished hosting an Atheist Bus Campaign. For several weeks, earlier this year, there were 800 buses trundling around the British Isles with a great big banner reading “There’s probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.” The campaign was the brainchild of 28 year old TV comedy writer and journalist Ariane Sherine. More about her here.

September 23 - October 22 Libra
Libra
, you urbane thing you. It’s unlikely that you’re aware of the Deke Slayton Memorial Space and Bicycle Museum so I am going to tell you all about it, thanks to the great folks at RoadsideAmerica.com. This museum came to be because its location, Sparta, Wisconsin, is the Bicycling Capital of America - and Donald Kent “Deke” Slayton, an astronaut on the Apollo-Soyuz mission in 1975, lived nearby on a farm. Sometimes it just happens like that. The Museum displays Deke’s spacesuit in a glass case, very 2001 (klaatu barada nikto, baby). It also holds a collection of hundreds of bicycles, because it is, after all, the Bicycling Capital of America. These things are, apparently, unrelated.

October 23 - November 21 Scorpio
If you’re anything like most Scorpios I know, you’ve occasionally had your share of toxic thoughts. And who hasn’t? Family therapist and shaman practioner Sandra Ingerman believes that our thoughts and emotions transmit an invisible energy that can affect mental and physical wellbeing. This interesting article on Beliefnet gives you ten simple ways to protect yourself from negative thoughts, and ways to radiate positive energy. Learn that you don’t have to receive negative energy; this article gives you some real alternatives.

November 22 - December 21 Sagittarius
Sagittarians tend to want things their own way, or the highway. Am I right, archers? Well, here’s something you can have your way: granola. Yes, mix your own, and they’ll ship it right to your door. You can even have it gluten-free! MeandGoji.com will hand mix your cereal from 30 plus all natural and organic ingredients, and ship it to you within a week in their special cereal capsule. The ingredients are healthy foods with vitamins, minerals, fiber, phytonutrients, antioxidants, and like that! Head to the office, classroom, field, court, pool, track, ocean depths or outer space knowing you have prepared your mind and body to perform at its highest level with more energy, sharper focus, and a clean conscience (at least in terms of your breakfast affecting the earth). Also, their cereal bases are lower in calories than regular off-the-shelf cereals and you can monitor the calories and other nutrients as you add each ingredient.

December 22 - January 19 Capricorn
Ambitious, practical, patient Capricorn. You love yourself some history and antiques, and your spirit soars over new books. So therefore when you’re in Topeka for the Silent Film Festival next week, here’s an idea: stop by Topeka’s oldest used bookstore, Dean’s Books. The store has been open since 1973 and has over 80,000 titles shelved by genre and author. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly. No megastore this with people working there that don’t know Shakespeare from Snoop Dog. The store is located at 1426 S. Kansas Ave., conveniently close to Washburn University, where you’ll be for the film festival.

January 20 - February 18 Aquarius
If a movie could have an astrological sign, I think Harold and Maude would be an Aquarius. This film has all the attributes of the water-bearer, I mean by that its way ahead of its time – its original and inventive – and its eccentric. The film was released in 1971 and directed by Hal Ashby. It’s the odd love story of self-destructive, rich, miserable Harold (Bud Cort), and 79 year old free spirited, anarchist Maude (Ruth Gordon). Watch the trailer here. And rent this movie immediately. You’ll be ever so glad you did.

February 19 - March 20 Pisces
Laissez les bon temps rouler! Cherie, it’s just about time for Mardi Gras, which is next Tuesday February 24Pisces take note. It’s your holiday this year, true dat. Mardi Gras is French for Fat Tuesday and is the last day of Carnival, the long day of fun prior to Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent. Celebrated in many Latin countries as well as European ones, even in India, in Slovenia, and of course in New Orleans, Mardi Gras is…well…Ça c’est bon! Read this fascinating historical timeline about how the holiday was established. And if you’re stuck in Le Grand Pomme instead of NOLA this year, here’s a great article full of ideas for where you can get your Cajun groove on.

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This post has 1 comment. Add your own.
anna - 22 Feb 09 at 11:00:28

When does that bus tour come to the Jersey Shore??