Mercury Straightens Out

We all know what happens when Mercury goes retrograde, right? All of our best attempts at communication go haywire. Computers crash, phones die, emails disappear — as does my vocabulary. We should all learn to sit on our hands for a few weeks whenever this happens. This is not to say that we should hide or lollygag, just that we should be still and let things sort themselves out.

Let me put it like this. As the Sun moves forward through the zodiac, sometimes Mercury moves its tiny-little-butt a little faster. A precocious bugger, Mercury gets ahead of itself. But the Sun is saying, “Hang on, it’s not time.” So, Mercury lags back for three weeks waiting for the rest of the cosmos to fall into line.

It’s kinda like a green horse. You know what happened to my mare and prolly wondered how long it would be before I went horse shopping again. Well, this week I sent The Eldest to look at a young green Warmblood. When I asked her how he was, she said, “He’s smart. Well-bred. But, you know, he’s four; his ass hasn’t caught up to his brain yet.” If you know horses, you know what I mean. Horses have this thing where – until they are about seven years old – they don’t realize that their behinds have to follow their front ends. Often, their backends will get ahead of them. It’s very silly to watch. Anyway, Mercury retrograde is a little like a green gelding. Smart, but has its backend all forward. This makes for an uncomfortable ride.

Because Mercury rules our conscious thoughts and rationale, during its retrograde, we might want to consider being reflective instead of reactive.

Quick review. Go on, get your calendar. I’ll wait.

Between July 14th and this past Wednesday, August 8th, did you “react” to something you should have “reflected” upon? How’d that go for you? I will bet Bad Money that after the dust settled on the whirlwind of your reaction, you said to yourself, “Well, damn. Can’t unring that bell, now can I? I might shoulda thought that through a little better,” or, “Maybe I overreacted.”

Did you “move forward” with something when you should have just sat tight a little longer? How’s that working out? Again, I’ll bet Bad Money that you are now thinking, “Crap.”

Like a horse with its ass all forward over a fence.

Don’t fret. Mercury straightened itself out on Wednesday and you should already be detecting a little bit of sanity creeping back into your life. For those bells that can’t be unrung, stones that can’t be unthrown, words that can’t be taken back, and acts that can’t be – um – unacted, there’s always the Blue Moon (conjuncted with Neptune = water) at the end of the month to try your hand at amending the situation. I wish you luck.

And if you are prone to tossing your behind over a fence like a green gelding every time Mercury goes retrograde, maybe you might consider sitting on your hands this November. Just sayin’.

Just in fairness, I’ll tell you about my dumb move and how that played out. You know that I went on vacation. Before that, I wanted to have all of my summer-ducks in a row. I wanted to have all of my courses set up, syllabuses written, and online information posted. So I crammed it all in before hopping on a boat to Mexico. Woo-hoo, right?

Well, having done all that work, I didn’t really pack properly and ended up buying a swimsuit in Montgomery, a toothbrush in New Orleans, sunscreen at the Port Authority, motion sickness accouterments on board, and bugspray in Cosumel. Now, those last two item would likely have gone unpacked as I had no prior experience with either The Bad Eldest on a boat or the insect life of the Caribbean jungle in high summer – but I might would have thought that through if I had given myself a minute.

Here’s the kicker. When I returned home, my course schedule was changed. (For the better, I might add. I’m *much* happier with the schedule I have now. Phew.) This means that all of the work I did online was no longer attached to *my* course but to the course of a third-year grad student. Sigh.

In the end, it all worked out. After a little dance with the edIT department, my work was transferred to my new course and the grad student got the opportunity to swipe (with my blessings) some much needed class materials. Plus, I had a minute to sit on my hands. In  said position, I came up with the coooooolest idea for a class project.

Typically my final project for a World Literature course involves having the students come up with a material representation of overaching themes, philosophies, etc. of each era. For example, one kid made candy-bars that represented each era, one made farm equipment, many make recipe books (this seems like a pretty easy task for that level), my engineers tend to build houses or vehicles. It’s awesome. But I couldn’t figure out how to make it work for Early American Lit which has much less variation than the entire freaking world.

In short, a conversation with a publisher about “a uniquely American Witchcraft” made my brain go – “Well, duh!”

That’s what happens when Mercury lets the cosmos catch up. The cobwebs clear and the lightbulbs go off.

This helped me to come up with this final project: The Early American Pantheon Project.Sure, sure. There is a rich mythos available in Native American culture, and I have no intention of coopting those ideas. Shucks, haven’t we swiped enough? I mean a pantheon for what America has become. I’ve seen a few folks take a stab at Yankee Pantheons and such, but none are done with the understanding of foundational philosophies. Most point to Marvel characters and twentieth-century business tycoons. I allow that these latter figures may wear the face of our “deities,” but I will encourage my students to develop Early American (Enlightenment/Revolution forward, not English/French Colonial) I’ve also seen others adapt the Greek pantheon to measure up to the “New Republic.” This is a worthy pursuit, however not my gig. I don’t know how it will work out. As ever, I’ll let you know.

This is all to say that when we sit tight during a Mercury retrograde, all things work out.

It just takes a few weeks for our asses to catch up with our brains.

Sit tight, the ride gets smoother –