Tuesday, February 21, 2017

WORDS (or, in this case, Word.)

Whenever we have cause to drive into our local hospital/medical providers complex I notice a hospital building with signage in large letters above the wide doorway: "PAVILION". I usually mutter to the husband, "Why do they call it a pavilion for goodness sake?" "Don't know" he responds. At last I've bothered to look into my wee mystery.

Pavilion, to me, indicates some kind of tent or marquee type impermanent structure with canvas walls - the kind sometimes used at weddings for housing the reception. Alternatively I recall a book by M. M. Kaye, also adapted as a movie some years ago : "The Far Pavilions". The pavilions in that case were, I think, the peaks of the Himalayas, which were to provide sanctuary.
"An epic tale of forbidden love during the British Raj. British botanist's son Ashton Pelham-Martyn is orphaned in India and raised to believe he's an Indian boy named Ashok. Anjuli is a neglected princess, condemned first to an unwanted marriage and then to suttee when her husband dies — but happiness beckons for Ash and Anjuli in the "far pavilions" of the Himalayas, away from the prejudices that have kept them apart.

Or...in Brighton, on England's south coast, there's an ornate building: The Royal Pavilion (see below)
Royal Pavilion
Eccentric, extravagant, extraordinary…
One of the most exotically beautiful buildings in the British Isles, the Royal Pavilion is the magnificent former seaside residence of King George IV. Its fantastic domes and spires make it an easily recognizable icon, to both residents and visitors to Brighton & Hove alike. The story of the Royal Pavilion includes parties, hospitals and flower shows, contains influences from China, India and France, and includes characters as diverse as fishermen, monarchs and soldiers. As a unique palace, with a fascinating history and breathtaking decorations to discover, the Royal Pavilion has also played a key role in the development of Brighton and its international reputation for over 200 years.

The Oxford Dictionary informs me: that the word's origin is Middle English (denoting a large decorated tent): from Old French pavillon, from Latin papilio(n-) butterfly or tent.
A building or similar structure used for a specific purpose, in particular:
1.1British A building at a cricket ground or other sports ground, used for changing and taking refreshments.
1.2 A summer house or other decorative building used as a shelter in a park or large garden.
1.3 Used in the names of buildings used for theatrical or other entertainments:
‘the resort's Spa Pavilion’
1.4 A detached or semi-detached block at a hospital or other building complex:
‘the form of alternating pavilions also allows the site to be developed in depth’
1.5 A large tent with a peak and crenellated decorations, used at a show or fair.
1.6 A temporary building, stand, or other structure in which items are displayed at a trade exhibition:

So, the orignal meaning of pavilion has been expanded and modified over the centuries. The word comes up in the bible on several occasions, in its original meaning of tent, tabernacle or dwelling.
"He made darkness his secret place; his PAVILION round about him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies. At the brightness that was before him his thick clouds passed, hail stones and coals of fire." ( Psalm 18:11-12 )

Pavilion Class is a very good and well-illustrated history of pavilions in the old meaning of the word.
Paintings exist illustrating tents and pavilions of various shapes and sizes through several centuries and numerous countries. This class will evaluate extant illustrations to glean what information we can about the types of tents and pavilions that were used, how they may have been supported and how they were decorated. The analysis will primarily look at tents and pavilions in the late medieval and the Renaissance time periods. Earlier than that, there are few illustrations and even fewer extant items available for research.

Pavilions were used for temporary living quarters, such as by noblemen on a military campaign and courtiers following the king on progress. It is likely that only the well-to-do with a significant train of their own servants would be carrying the large loads required to assemble and furnish a large pavilion. Lower classes in the campaign or progress would use simpler structures made by draping a large fabric over some rough sticks that were likely collected onsite. While a few simple shapes will be examined, most of the discussion on structure will apply to the more complex round pavilions seen in many of the illustrations.

I love the joy of mountains Wandering free with no concerns Every day I find food for this old body There’s leisure for thinking, nothing to do Often I carry an ancient book Sometimes I climb a rock pavilion To look down a thousand foot precipice Overhead are swirling clouds A cold moon chilly cold My body feels like a flying crane.
Han Shan

For after the rain when with never a stain The pavilion of Heaven is bare, And the winds and sunbeams with their convex gleams Build up the blue dome of air, I silently laugh at my own cenotaph, And out of the caverns of rain, Like a child from the womb, like a ghost from the tomb, I arise and unbuild it again.
Percy Bysshe Shelley

Monday, February 20, 2017


You remember how it feels after eating too many chocolates, or too much cream cake, too many curly fries? Queasy! That's how I feel reading around the net these days, or watching bits of late-night TV shows, live or via random video clips offered as...whatever.

TRUMP! Too much, far too much TRUMP!


Don't these people realise that, though some repetition assists in embedding an idea into brains, too much of it has the opposite result? I'm actually beginning to feel sorry for President Donald Trump. It's their fault! A year ago, even six months ago, I felt appalled that the position of President of the USA could ever be held by someone like Donald Trump. I was certain it would never be allowed to happen. It did. Sufficient numbers of We the People wanted it - and got it. Done. Deal. Under current US electoral law. Next? Day after day, week after week, month after month the same old same old from those who didn't get what they wanted.

Yes, we know he's unreliable, we know he tells fibs and tall tales, we know he panders, we know he's this, that and the other; if we don't know we've been down Alice's rabbit hole for 2 years. It feels that way in any case!

There's one lone voice out there, managing to remain focused and practical, on policies the country needs for the benefit of all: the voice of Senator Bernie Sanders. Headlines have continued to screech, causing hysterics among their readers, viewers, listeners, over one issue or another touched upon by President Trump, in Tweet, speech or a "he said/she said" (and there are a lot of those around).

For the gods' sake give it a rest people! We know, we know! You've become sickeningly boring and quite ineffectual through this constant parroting! We know how virtuous you all are, we get it but, as the Pythons once declared:

It's Music Monday: I really do wish I could've "made it more like the movies" for y'all, "some pretty Technicolor way it's never been"!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State

A look at the natal chart of the USA's new Secretary of State: Rex Tillerson, noting a few pointers from online sources as to the kind of guy he is, as perceived by those who know him.

Two key factors routinely mentioned by commentators are Tillerson's long career in ExxonMobil - at retirement at the end of last year he was the company's CEO; and that, via his Exxon career, he has crafted close ties with Russia's President Putin. Neither factor is seen as being beneficial by many Democrats. He does consider that climate change is real - that's an improvement on the ideas of some of his colleagues in President Trump's cabinet. However, he qualifies his belief: “The increase in greenhouse gas in the atmosphere is having an effect. Our ability to predict that effect is very limited,” he answered to a question posed in his confirmation hearing.

What little I've gleaned about Secretary Tillerson's personality from a handful of articles online tells of a man who quietly projects power, discipline and control (NPR). Those who know Tillerson consistently describe a disciplined and effective communicator with an engineer’s logical approach to solving problems and the ethical compass of a Boy Scout. “What you see is what you get,” said John Stuart, a longtime Dallas banking executive who has known Tillerson for a decade. “He’s a straightforward, honest, honorable person.”

Tillerson is an Eagle Scout himself, and a longtime booster and national leader of the Boy Scouts organisation. He helped to engineer a recent change allowing gays to join the Boy Scouts.

From Dallas News:
More than 40 years after Rynd and Tillerson met, the memories that stand out for Rynd surrounding his former housemate revolve around one central concept: work. The Tejas Club was an old house that needed many repairs, and Tillerson would organize the projects, then complete them.

“He wasn’t just a delegator. This sounds corny, but he led by example. There was no project that was beneath him or too hard for him,” Rynd said. “He was busy -- if not busier than the rest of us. ... If it needed to be done, Rex signed up and got it done.”

Tillerson graduated in 1975 and weighed a higher-paying offer at a steel company. But in Exxon, he found a company whose highly regimented approach mirrored his own.

“It’s very demanding and competitive,” said Coll, the author. “It’s a very rule-driven institution. But it also requires something on the dealmaking side, a little bit of a sense of subtlety and resilience because most of these places where they work, these things don’t come easily.”

Tillerson worked for Exxon’s upstream division -- the rough-and-tumble business of exploring and developing new resources. His early days found him in East Texas, a time he later described as “sheer joy” in solving complex problems out on the oilfield.

He steadily rose through the ranks and by the 1990s, he landed career-defining assignments in places like Yemen and post-collapse Russia.

Well....in theory that all sounds like good news! Does his natal chart reflect the above?

Born on 23 March 1952 in Wichita Falls, Texas. No time of birth known, chart is set for 12 noon.

Without knowing his time of birth only a sketchy outline is possible, Moon's exact position and rising sign cannot be established. First thing I noticed - no planets in Earth signs, I found that surprising. The unknown rising sign might provide an Earthy footing.

His lifetime career closely connected to oil is nicely represented by Saturn and Neptune close together, close enough to be termed conjunct, in Libra. Saturn links to career, Neptune links (among other things) to oil.

His natal Sun, Mercury and Jupiter are all in Aries, sign known as the initiator, with the Saturn/Neptune conjunction opposite, providing a balancing, steadying factor to any native Aries impulsiveness. Mercury conjunct Jupiter in Aries reflects the important part international travel (Jupiter) has always played in his career, and will continue to do so as Secretary of State.

I see that, in his natal chart, there are two challenging square aspects to Uranus, planet of the unexpected and eccentricity - in Secretary Tillerson's case this is no bad thing. We have quite enough eccentricity and unexpectedness emanating from President Trump - we need no more, and especially not from the Secretary of State! It's interesting, though, to note that transiting Uranus, at 21 Aries, is currently conjunct Tillerson's natal Mercury/Jupiter. Change is, indeed, visiting his life, both planet-wise and in reality!

At 12 noon on Secretary Tillerson's date of birth Moon was at 5 Pisces; for natal Moon to have been in Aquarius his time of birth would need to have been in the very early hours - not a lot later than 1 AM; it seems most likely that natal Moon was in early Pisces, reflecting a more gentle and imaginative inner-self than his dynamic Aries core-self.

Due to comments on his personality quoted above, I'd bet on a solid Earthy rising sign (Capricorn, Virgo or Taurus), alternatively Saturn in Libra sitting on the ascendant with Neptune close by.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Arty Farty Friday ~ Carrie Ann Baade

Carrie Ann Baade's surreal oil paintings, rich with allegory inspired by literature and art history are peculiar, discomforting but intriguing. The artist's own website, portfolio & archive is HERE. Or, for a quick look at some of her work see
The oddly disturbing royal portraits of Carrie Ann Baade by Ann VanderMeer. More examples, in one place, can be seen at the Google Image page HERE

As a single example, I like this one, it's one of the least depressing and easier to interpret:
Lady or Tiger

This 51 second video shows a few more samples of detail from her artworks.

From a piece at denversyntax.com - which also has a series of illustrations attached.

SNIP ....admittedly, her work is complex. It is rich with symbols and it speaks to traditions of the past. And when somebody is as hyper-intellectual as Baade – you can be certain that she has a wealth of commentary, both in her work and in her life.

Baade is not an erudite, even though she is a professor. She is not pedantic, despite her rich vocabulary, love of creating sniglets (made-up words) and knowledge about the history of art. She is not crazy, but she will admit to having lived a pungent and somewhat extraordinary life.

Working with traditional painting techniques, Baade is a steward of history. At times she employs the works of old masters in her paintings. In this she is interested in creating a meta-narrative of a work, commenting on its original context as well as its contemporary relevance.

For Baade, her picture planes are compact. And this is exactly her aim – to pack her canvases with as much information as is possible. At once hyperbolic and overly-dramatic (placing your head on the body of Christ certainly is just that), Baade has an astute interest in being a storyteller. And with her rich color palate, on her canvases and in her life – the aim is for something extraordinary. The aim is to live a life less than commonplace.

ASTROLOGY: A 12 noon chart only, for a brief look in relation to the artist's style - no time of birth known so Moon and rising sign will not be as shown.
Born on 18 February 1974 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

A Grand Trine predominates - in Air signs - linking Sun conjunct Jupiter in Aquarius to Saturn in Gemini and Uranus in Libra. An Airy circuit combining the two rulers of Aquarius, Saturn and Uranus = traditional and modern; that must give extra significance to this particular Grand Trine, bearing in mind Ms Baade's style does combine traditional painting style with modern/avant garde surrealist subject matter. Venus, planet of the arts in Capricorn (Saturn-ruled) echoes again the traditional link, Capricorn and Saturn have links to tradition, time etc. Venus is also semi-sextile Sun/Jupiter, hightlighting a kind of hybrid combination, which sometimes might be an uncomfortable link, but here has been cleverly combined - perhaps thanks to that Grand Trine in Air (mental acuity).

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Dennis Kucinich warns us to "Wake up!" (again).

'Wake Up!': Kucinich Says Intel Community Making 'Unprecedented' Effort to Upend Trump

Dennis Kucinich's is one of only two voices I trust in US politics, the other is Bernie Sanders'.
Whatever one's views on Donald Trump, Kucinich's words here need to be heard.

Do see the video linked above: Dennis Kucinich at Fox News (I know!) with his thoughts on the Mike Flynn affair.

A little light sleuthing on "Mike" Flynn's d.o.b.

News of Michael Flynn's resignation as President Trump's National Security Adviser sent me searching for his date of birth so's to do a quick check on possible astrological correlation. His date of birth, beyond month and year isn't available. "December 1958" in Middletown, Rhode Island is all Wikipedia and other websites reveal. 20th century Ephemeris to the ready, with a piece from The New Yorker, November 2016 to hand I shall do a little light sleuthing!

The Disruptive Career of Michael Flynn, Trump’s National-Security Adviser
by Dana Priest

SNIP only:

A lot of reporters and other civilians found Mike, as everyone called him, refreshing. A plucky Irish Catholic kid from Rhode Island, he wasn’t impressed by rank. He told his junior officers to challenge him in briefings. “You’d hear them say, ‘Boss, that’s nuts,’ ” one former colleague said. The colleague asked not to be named, as did others I talked to for this story, either because they wanted to maintain a positive relationship with Flynn or because they did not want to criticize the incoming Administration. “When he would walk in a room, they would look up like little dogs. They just loved him.”

Flynn broke rules he thought were stupid. He once told me about a period he spent assigned to a C.I.A. station in Iraq, when he would sometimes sneak out of the compound without the “insane” required approval from C.I.A. headquarters, in Langley, Virginia. He had technicians secretly install an Internet connection in his Pentagon office, even though it was forbidden. There was also the time he gave classified information to NATO allies without approval, an incident which prompted an investigation, and a warning from superiors. During his stint as Mullen’s intelligence chief, Flynn would often write “This is bullshit!” in the margins of classified papers he was obliged to pass on to his boss, someone who saw these papers told me...........
In December 1958 Sun was in Sagittarius, 8 to 29 degrees, until around 23rd, then moved into Capricorn. Mercury was in Sagittarius all month with retrograde motion included. Venus was in Sagittarius until 15th, then into Capricorn. Mars was in Taurus all month with retrograde motion included. Jupiter in Scorpio all month. Saturn in Sagittarius between 25 and 29 degrees. Uranus in Leo. Neptune in Scorpio. Pluto in Virgo.

From the above paragraphs, and from the full linked article, I got more of a Sagittarius "vibe" than Capricorn, though initially, and from his facial appearance I'd have guessed Capricorn. Even if his birthday were in late December with Sun in Capricorn he'd still have Mercury and Saturn in Sagittarius. I suspect that's most likely - birthday 23rd or later, Capricorn's staid solidity tempered by Sagittarian risk-taking, hot-headedness. If that be so, it'd also mean that transiting Saturn (restriction, limitation, career) currently at around 25 Sagittarius would likely be conjunct natal Sun. President Trump's natal Moon is at 21 Sagittarius, by the way - not surprising that both are, and recently have been experiencing challenges.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


"I don't understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine's Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon."