Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Astrobabble Quiz

What’s Your AQ – Astrobabble Quotient?

© 2010
by Joyce Mason
All Rights Reserved
April is National Humor Month. Of course, if you’re a regular reader of The Radical Virgo, you know that every month is humor month here. Witness Quotes for the Signs and Auntie Joyce’s Astro-Aphorisms, not to mention my general inability to pass up a good pun, no matter how serious the subject.

Donna Cunningham, on her fabulous blog Sky Writer, notes that the astrologically-inclined like quizzes. She is also an expert on the Tower of Astrobabble. English for Astrologers—No Astrologese, Please will give you a direct experience of what it’s like to be on the receiving end of such gibberish, clueless about a single word that's being spoken to you. I remembered Donna’s talk on this topic at a United Astrology Congress (UAC) in the ‘90s. That memory and her report about our astro-quizzical nature gave birth to the following self-test. Be painfully honest!

One point for each YES answer unless otherwise noted:

1. You have changed your name to Celestial, Starr, Venus or some other astro-inspired moniker. (2 points)

2. You cannot introduce yourself by name alone. It goes something like, “Hi, I’m Athena—double Aries part of a four-planet stellium, Grand Water Trine including Mars, Venus, and Uranus, Cap Rising … in my second Saturn Return.”

3. At astrology conferences, you can’t give it a rest, even at lunch or dinner. You throw out verbal chart details for people to project on the planetarium of their minds till they’re dizzy. By dessert, they’re nauseous with Information Indigestion.

4. You have the chutzpah to use words like quincunx and rectification in front of strangers you’ve never met, people who are highly unlikely to speak in star tongues. They're probably wondering if some of your lingo refers to other body parts. (3 points)

5. You refuse to talk to, much less have relationships with, people who don’t know their exact birth time. (3 points)

6. You don’t just go to Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB) to look up the stars in every movie you see; you go to Astro Data Bank to look up their charts. Then you talk about it to everyone you meet, as if they cared.

7. When friends have a baby, you can’t resist giving them your two-cents’ worth on the kid’s future, even if your information was (a) not requested, (b) they’re not particularly believers, (c) astrology might be against their religion, and/or (d) the kid’s a Scorpio and you don’t use filters to tell them what they’ve got in store. So what if you contained yourself enough not to say “my condolences.” (6 points.)

8. You don’t leave home during Mercury Retrograde, you blab about it for weeks before and afterwards to strangers on street corners, and you send all your friends the Murky Retro dates with your annual holiday letter so they’re prepared for the New Year.

9. You have never forgiven the State of New York (or wherever you were born) for not recording birth times—or your mother for not writing it down to the second in your baby book. If she’s still alive, you still remind her—often. (2 points.)

10. Your answering machine message includes the daily planetary positions. When Aunt Tillie calls, she thinks you’re “talking dirty” and in some kind of sex code with those positions, numbers, and funny words. She’s heard of that book, Men Are from Mars and Women Are from Venus! That’s why she hangs up without leaving a message,

Your AQ Score

0-2: You are a great astrological ambassador. You don’t pollute the air with a lot of astrobabble. You make star talk just intriguing enough that newbies are curious about learning the language of astrology.

3-6: You could afford to learn some empathy. Visit a neighborhood or country that speaks a language other than English or whatever’s your usual. Do not take a translation phrase book with you. And don’t be a wuss. You must, at minimum, ask directions, haggle at a market, and make small talk at a coffee shop.

7-9: You’re broaching the realm of giving astrology and astrologers a bad name. Go wash your mouth out with soap and start learning to translate all this crap into something John or Jane Q. Public can comprehend.

10-20: You ought to be ashamed of yourself. You make us look terrible! You are obsessed, possessed, and need to go to AA—Astroholics Anonymous. They offer a 12-Step program—and don’t even think about how that that parallels the 12 signs and houses, much less talk about it.

PS ~ See you at the next AA meeting!


Photo Credit: All Talk - Sign Series |© Mediaonela | 
Slightly astrologized by the author

Don’t forget the gift with purchase of Chiron and Wholeness: A Primer through April 30!


Anonymous said...

Just discovered your blog, by following the link from Skywriter.This is very very funny and made me laugh. I was little afraid to taking the test, but did anyway and thank God, I scored zero points (first time ever, I was happy to have a no -score), even tough I am tempted sometimes to talk astrologese. Thanks for reminding us that we can use simple words to explain things to clients. After seeing your questions, I kept thinking how many possible clients are turned off/afraid of scheduling a consultation with an astrologer due to the use of this bizarre "language".

Mandi Lockley said...

LOL - Joyce, you must have been going to the same astrology conferences as me - Ha! Ha!

Joyce Mason said...

AstroUnboxed--glad to meet you and can't wait to dig into your blog. My own score is low--but not quite zero. Kudos to you! I look forward to the day that more astro terms filter into our everyday vernacular. We must act as bridges to make it so. (There's my Chiron specialty talking again.)

Mandi, I go into overwhelm at astro conferences, and when you add the babble, I have to have my own room to retreat and recover. I suspect we all go to the same conferences--LOL! Yours is another blog I look forward to getting to know.

LB said...

Joyce – This is too funny! I’m especially guilty of number three on the list; my poor husband astonished me the other day when he reiterated to me how a square can eventually “trine out” – and he doesn’t even believe in astrology!!! We’ve also replaced the word postal with Pluto in all situations except those involving the actual mail; a common expression in our household is “don’t make me go Pluto!”

Your post gave me a giggle, plus it helped to remind me not to take it all so seriously, so thanks!

Joyce Mason said...

Hi, LB--

Thanks for another meaty comment. Remind me not to sit next to you at dinner during the next astro conference: (a) because I just turned vegetarian (those meaty comments) and (b) to avoid info indigestion from the babble. Still, I suspect that you'd be high on my list of favorite people who give me an astrobabble bellyache, LOL!

I am stealing "going Pluto." You can have our family's "Virgoing," what we say when we're cleaning and tidying up, especially for company.

Lightening up is more important than ever during these financially stressful, fast-changing times that demand us to morph at warp speed. I kiss all my mutable signs every morning. They come in hand nowadays!

Claire Chandler said...

Excellent article! Just discovered your posts. Will definetely pop back in the future.
Well done from one virgo to another.
I thankfully scored a zero.

Joyce Mason said...

Claire, welcome! I am glad to know you and to connect here and on Facebook. Glad you got a kick out of the post. I slip into a little 7(a) sometimes, the excitement of a new baby plus my love of the stars, but I would only count that as 1.5. I'm still in the Good Astro-Ambassador category, although any of us can slip up sometimes. :) Thanks so much for your comment. Come back often!

LB said...

Joyce - Just to clarify: dinner at my home is an astrology conference, only without the astrologers. The mere thought of discussing astrology with other people who are actually interested makes me giddy! I might even be willing to risk giving them indigestion.

BTW, I like your term “Virgoing” and will gladly use it; I do have a Virgo rising, after all

Lana said...

Dear Joyce
Serious wake up call for me! I thought I was doing O.K. then collected 9 points on habits 4 and 7. Is it possible for a character to reform?

Joyce Mason said...

Of course you can reform, Lana! :) But I hope you never stop being a character, LOL! (I love characters.) This is exaggerated for good fun, but I think it's a reminder for us to be aware that we may have the potential to turn people off with our over-enthusiasm about astrology. Especially when we start sounding like evangelists speaking in tongues! Or someone who hawks a health product and never stops marketing to friends, has a sign on their car, etc. I have Jupiter trine Mars, and Over-do is my middle name. While I wrote this tongue-in-cheek and have a lowish score on the quiz, I know my own potential to "go there," if I'm not careful. :)

Unknown said...

hahaha I am guilty as charged, especially of 5,6 and 7. My husband and I first met online and only agreed to meet each other after seeing the composite chart had a fabulous grand trine to balnce out all the mutable squares!
Worse still, I always offer to do baby's charts whether the parents want them or not and then don't even get round to doing them til the kids are teenagers...
...and last night I totally Virgoed out when the neighbours were coming to dinner as the house was a tip, and no one was doing anything about it, thank you so much for giving my behaviour/disorder a name.
Jude (a fellow radical Virgo)

Joyce Mason said...

Jude, thanks for dropping in on our AA meeting here! :) As you probably read in the comments, I have a 7(a) issue myself. I try to contain myself, but I don't always manage. New baby readings are so much fun to do. All that clean slate, and you can actually help the parents nudge the babe gently in the direction of their talents. (Oops! Am I trying out to play God again?)

One of my favorite things on earth is to compare the phrases of other English-speaking countries, astrological or otherwise. (Goes with the turf of being a Wordgo.) I love the expression the house was a tip. It's so vivid, like turning over a table. In the US, a tip is the gratuity you give the waitress for putting up with you. :)

Love the story about you and your husband, who is apparently also into astrology. You may even live in the Tower of Astrobabble! If you discover any new forms of babble we should avoid, please tell us at the next meeting.


Love it, love it! Can I be radical Virgo, too? I'm quite tidy, when I'm not playing out my messy Scorpio side. Just hate those astrological get togethers when every conversation contains a description of whatever planet/progression/whatever is currently transiting the speaker's IC or activating their mutable T-square.

PS Got zero on the quiz, thank heavens (although I did have to reflect for a moment or two about offering to do people's kids' charts and often have to stop myself asking, By the way - what was your birth time, exactly?)

Joyce Mason said...

Hello, LittleBrownDog! The designation Radical Virgo and the RV Club is open to anyone who resonates to my original article this blog was named for, also called The Radical Virgo. If you hate astrobabble, you must be one! Welcome!

Those who can't speak without spouting their current transits and/or progressions make me wonder how astrology could possibly draw so many unevolved Leos, LOL! Doesn't anyone get how self-centered it sounds? And when two people go at it together, neither hearing or caring about the other's chart details, it's nothing short of hilarious to watch. It's like someone let Robin Williams loose in an astrology conference and he's doing both roles in an impression of our lot that's not very flattering--but is it ever funny!

Come back often. You fit right in! :)

Anne Whitaker said...

Hi Joyce

this is such a fun post and the comments are great! I have just scored a big fat zero on your quiz... all that time in the Twelfth House has obviously worked....
Anne x

Joyce Mason said...

Hi, Anne--

This is one of the few times a big goose egg on a test is great! :) Your round-up of 12th House planets would certainly contribute to being compassionate about all things, including the construction of language barriers.

Glad you enjoyed the quiz. One of my mother's most sterling qualities was her ability to laugh at herself. We astrologers sometimes take ourselves way too seriously ... and I'm glad when I can "throw the light" on a little perspective.

Anonymous said...

Hey Joyce,

This is too flippin funny for words! You outdo yourself!

As i understand it; it is our god given right...uh...responsibility to change our names once we become astrologiers...see Im StarGypsy! And I know those strangers need to have there minds expanded and adjusted by getting a little astrology and they will see they need to sharpen up! So it's for there own good to talk astrology to them! And if astrology was good enough for baby Jesus, well don't we owe it to ordinary mortals to help there mothers understand them? Aren't we helping with the art of visualization when we explain that chart over dinner so 12 people can get that exercise at once? Sheeze Joyce all this time I thought I was helping out and now I find out why your always taking off for your room at the conventions!!!

Next convention I'm gonna take a chill pill and keep my mouth shut and let somebody else make a fool outta themselves! Thanks for showing me the error of my way! Wonder if it has something to do with my intercepted Yod? Loved the quiz; always a high scorer on test!

Love ya' with Bright Blessings,

Joyce Mason said...

Dearest StarG,

I was ROFL reading your comment. Good thing you were typing and not talking. You'd have choked yourself chatting with your tongue that far into your cheek! :)

Let me know your upcoming conference schedule so I can attend a different set. Actually, I'd love to meet you at one some day--preferably in the lounge. I'm sure we'd be falling off our bar stools laughing. If we put our two heads, a pen, and a napkin together, I bet we could write a stand-up astro comedy act.

Meanwhile, yod-a better not say that word if the language police come by or you might be intercepted.

Thanks for making my day for a month!


Mads Elung-Jensen said...

I totally blame my 12th house Uranus/Pluto conjunction for scoring Zero points. Nobody is allowed to know how lethally insane I really am. Happy Springtime, Joyce

Joyce Mason said...

That's top score, Mads! You know your sanity secrets are already safe with me. :) Happy Spring to you, too!