Eight Gold Medals for Michael Phelps

I took a little drive today to pick up our cat and I heard the deejay on the radio say, “Maybe there’s something to this numerology business, because the Olympics started at 8:08 p.m. on 8-8-08, and now Michael Phelps has won eight gold medals.”

An interesting thought. I was going to rush home and work up an analysis on the U.S. swimmer who is being hailed as “the greatest Olympian of all time,” but Claire Courts at AstroRevolution has beaten me to the punch.

Claire is French so perhaps she can have an unbiased view of Phelps, who is a Cancer, the same sign as the U.S. Cancer rules the mother and an AP story I was just reading said that the Olympian’s relationship with his father is strained, but that many women, including his mom, have cheered him on over the years.

You can read Claire’s analysis here.

Mars Conjunct the North Node: Cannon Fire in the Backyard

I was born with Mars in Sagittarius square the North Node in Virgo. Medieval astrology says this aspect leads to “death by fire,” which may be why I’ve always gravitated toward aisle seats in movie theaters, auditoriums, and other crowded venues.

Today, Mars in Virgo is conjunct my North Node and it’s also squaring transiting Pluto in Sagittarius. Mars/Node contacts frequently bring contacts with large groups of men involved in martial activities. I grew up on army posts and forts and attended countless military parades, Boy Scout jamborees, and other Mars-oriented pageants. I’ve even completed a couple of marathons and attended a Winter Olympics opening ceremony (in Lake Placid, in 1980), which are constructive uses of my natal Mars/Node square, I believe.

Earlier this week, I was wondering what transiting Mars conjunct my North Node was going to bring. A military funeral perhaps? I attended a wake and a funeral this week, but the man wasn’t a veteran.

This morning, I got the answer to my question. My husband and I were awakened by the sounds of cannon fire. We’re staying in Vermont in a house that sits in the shadow of the Bennington Monument. Today, men dressed in Revolutionary War costumes are re-enacting the Battle of Bennington, which took place on August 16-17, 1777.

My natal Mars in Sagittarius rules horses, and my husband and I were talking about going to the racetrack in Saratoga Springs today. But it turns out that a martial spectacle came into my life without any planning on my part.

Unfortunately, many people in the world today have real war in their backyards, not just a colorful tribute to history.

As my nephew prepares to deploy to Iraq, I’m counting my blessings and praying for a time when mankind will beat swords into plowshares. Like John and Yoko sang: “War is over, if you want it.”

On the Road Again

I found myself driving Route 17 toward Binghamton, N.Y., last night for the second time in a week. My husband and I are in the Finger Lakes for a wake and funeral in his family so I’ll be offline the next couple of days.

If you ever find yourself in Skaneateles, N.Y., not far from Syracuse, don’t miss Doug’s Fish Fry. Doug’s is a Finger Lakes institution and uses peanut oil to deep-fry. It’s healthier, and the fried scallops, haddock, and shrimp come out tasting lighter than usual.

The steamers are also awesome. Last night my husband said, “I don’t know if it’s the steamers I like so much or the melted better.” Ditto.

He was in seventh heaven last night because when we walked into a restaurant in Auburn, N.Y., a picture of his high school basketball team was hanging on the wall, next to head shots of Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio. No one seemed to know how the 1967 Mount Carmel High School men’s basketball had earned such a a hallowed place in the establishment’s sports hall of fame.

No doubt a picture of Michael Phelps will be up on the wall soon after the Olympic swimmer won yet another gold medal last night. Like many of our national heroes, Phelps is a Cancer. Since the sign of the crab also rules food and sustenance, I’m getting a chuckle out of all the publicity the swimmer’s massive caloric intake — between 8,000 and 10,000 calories a day — is getting.

Julie Bain over at Reader’s Digest has a very funny post on what we all could eat each day if we consumed as many calories as Phelps. You can read Julie’s post here.

Speaking of food — with a Cancer Moon, it’s a main topic for me — I’m very excited because I get to go to Wegmans for the second time in a week. As far as I’m concerned, there’s no better supermarket in the world. Evidently Fortune magazine agrees with me, having several times named the Rochester (N.Y.)-based grocer one of the nation’s best places to work.

I’ve never worked at Wegmans so I can’t attest to Fortune’s ranking. What I do like about the store besides its produce is its lighting, which isn’t harsh the way it is at the Price Chopper I visited later in the day.