The HIGH TIMES weekly astrological forecast, complete with strain recommendations!
Ripped from the headlines: Jetpack firefighting system showcased in Dubai! It’s called the ‘Dolphin’ and it’s exactly what you might imagine: a jet ski and a water jet pack that allows the firefighter to raise themselves up to the height of a bridge in order to douse the flames. This way they are guaranteed an endless stream of water and never to be stuck in traffic on the way to the emergency. Leave it to Dubai to come up with such an expensive solution, and one that seems only useful for the rare fires that occur right next to bodies of water. Still, there’s ingenuity at play here, which I admire. Plus I imagine the hardworking firefighters might enjoy the bit of fun it affords. This frivolous approach to solving a real problem is a cosmic example for you this week. A light-hearted take on a nasty issue might be just what you need to turn the tides. Strain recommendation: Chiquita Banana
Ripped from the headlines: Bullfighting returns to India! In the state of Tamil Nadu, the practice of bullfighting (a.k.a. Jallikatu) is considered part of the Tamil cultural traditions and a key element of their harvest festival. Animal rights groups appealed to the Supreme Court, which banned the sport in 2014, but recent massive protests have led the central government to overturn that decision, declaring a temporary lift on the ban. This isn’t the first time culture and social change have butted heads, especially when respect for life confronts respect for tradition. No matter your personal opinion, the lesson to be taken from this example for you, is that fighting for what you believe in can create change. This story, plus the global protests happening this past week, should hopefully be enough to finally inspire you to speak up. Strain recommendation: Snow Bud
Ripped from the headlines: Iraqi Kurdish fashionistas create a gentleman’s gathering group called Mr. Erbil! Some 30 or so men in war torn northern Iraq are trying to change their peoples’ image and effect some social change along the way, by adopting the more modern Western hipster fashion trends, mixed with styles sported by their traditional landowning class, the effendis. Fitted coats, gloves and ties, tight pants and manicured beards are all the trend, as are shout-outs to local ladies fighting for women’s rights. Fashion and politics are strange bedfellows, though this is not the first time their pairing has been used to great advantage. Their message is spreading; the group now has over 25,000 Instagram followers. This spirited and joyful way to hype change has been chosen to inspire you to do the same; think outside of the box on how to get your mission statement out, to preach beyond the converted, to outstretch the typical haters, to reach those unlikely supporters waiting on the outskirts of your natural environment. Strain recommendation: Silver Bubble
Ripped from the headlines: In Wuhan, China, 19 buildings were demolished in 10 seconds using 5 tons of explosive! It’s a remarkable thing to witness on video, but the thing that really stuck out to me was that the second to last building didn’t seem to fall. Perhaps that’s why they say 19 instead of 20? It seems unbelievable that it wouldn’t topple over when surrounded by so much destruction. Perhaps it falls after the video finishes or maybe it was never meant to fall, but to me it appeared to me like that little flower that makes its way up through the cement cracks to reach sunlight on the sidewalk. This is your chosen symbol for the week, Gemini; be that little survivor, beat the odds, don’t give up. You can thrive in the midst of this soul-crushing madness. Strain recommendation: Blueberry Silvertip
Ripped from the headlines: Ants use Sun to navigate! Despite the teeny tiny, pinpoint brain size of the ant, their navigational skills are very sophisticated compared to the rest of the insect world. Apparently, no matter which way they face, they can use celestial cues to make their way home. Understanding this behavior has inspired scientists to model the neural circuits of robot systems on the ant’s brain. This all goes to show that you can find much of life’s knowledge in the natural world, even insight into man made technology. I encourage you to do the same: study your pets or the local fauna to gather some insight on tackling the human made dilemma facing you. Pay special attention to the silent cues they offer new acquaintances, there is much to be learned by the way they inform strangers exactly the way they want to be approached. Strain recommendation: Space Bomb
Ripped from the headlines: Russia’s rage rooms help relieve stress! Rage rooms, places where you can rent an hour’s worth of time to destroy everything within it using a sledgehammer, are popping up all over Russia. 60% of the clients are young women, some psychiatrists bring groups there, and 75% of the proceeds go to charity. Now that you know the facts, are you ready to smash some shit up? You could use a little tension reliever this week, and crushing computer monitors or throwing plates might be your way through it. If you don’t have such means, I’d suggest folding a piece of paper 6 times and then try ripping it, or maybe making a Jackson Pollack-type painting with foodstuffs. You need release and to exercise your muscles—if not, the lid might just prematurely fly off this pressure cooker. Strain recommendation: ACDC
Interesting historical fact: The longest war in history lasted 335 years and had no casualties, while the shortest war lasted 38 minutes and had 501 casualties. You’re not exactly fighting a war this week but you have been living through some pretty arduous times. Even though it might feel like a familiar old battle, try to remember that each experience is different and you have no idea if this bout will be long or short, damaging or not. Try to be patient with yourself. If you really embrace the idea that no two moments are the same then all the worrying and anticipating is for naught. Strain recommendation: Ewok
Interesting historical fact: Kim Jong Il wrote 6 operas. It shouldn’t come as a great shock that a dictator also had artistic aspirations. He wasn’t the first and he won’t be the last. It shouldn’t be a surprise, but it actually is. We have a pervasive, irrational belief that artists are more sensitive people and therefore less likely to display cruelty. Logically there is no sense in this but we learnt it as kids so we rarely confront weird ideas like that until the universe forces us to. For example, there is no reasonable excuse for you feel unworthy of genuine love, but sometimes you struggle with it. This is another mistaken belief you adopted at a young age. Well, here’s your chance to challenge it before the cosmos force you to reckon with it. Take this hint and explore how this thought stops you from moving forward. Strain recommendation: Jr
Interesting historical fact: Lord Byron kept a tame bear as a pet while studying at Trinity University! The bear lived with him at his lodgings near Cambridge. Apparently, he found the ‘no dogs’ rule at school so draconian that he challenged it by bringing the bear. He won his case, and was known to walk his bear on the grounds on a leash, as if it were a dog. Take a page out of Byron’s book this week and face down any rule you find outdated and unfair. Don’t let the bureaucrats and officious managers stop you. Flaunt your modern ways before the naysayers and let them clutch their pearls if they must. ‘No more’ must be your mantra. Strain recommendation: Red Dragon
Interesting scientific fact: Outer space has a smell. It’s a mix of diesel fumes, gunpowder and barbecue! Supposedly, this comes from the fumes of dying stars. While we might imagine encountering the soundless infinity of space with a majestic awe, we, in reality, could find ourselves simply reminded of July 4th in small-town Kentucky. Our expectations are rarely correct. Even when they are surpassed, we can still experience a slight disappointment because we were so prepared for another outcome. It is time for you to finally put aside this childish behavior of creating anticipation and then being let down. There are other ways to get excited about a new person or challenge. If you allow yourself to live in the present, even a typical situation can become fresh and stimulating. Strain recommendation: Alien Wrench
Interesting historical fact: In 1912, a Parisian orphanage held a fundraising lottery and the prizes were live babies! Sounds horrible, but considering that otherwise they would have been doomed to a dire existence in a dilapidated state-run children’s home or left to care for themselves on the streets, a give-away to wanting parents might not be such a bad idea. It’s all about context. Are you seeing yourself in context? Try, if you can, to identify yourself in an imagined crowd of your colleagues: where do you stand in relation to them? Are you the king of the castle or the dirty rascal? Getting some outside perspective could be useful now. If you are surprised by how far ahead you are, will you ease up on the self-battery? If you are further behind, will you be motivated and not discouraged? The cosmos urge you to stay positive, no matter where you find yourself situated. Strain recommendation: Obama Kush
Interesting scientific fact: Some cats are allergic to humans! Sadly, they can’t tell us that our mere presence makes them ill. We adopt them, keep them in our homes, and cuddle them constantly: all the while they are sneezing their furry little faces off. Someone in your life is making loving them difficult. Similar to these poor cats, you are a bit trapped in their life, so avoiding them isn’t an option. You do have genuine affection for this person but these itchy feelings of displeasure and coughs of irritability won’t go away unless you find a remedy. Try connecting to other similarly afflicted folk. You’ll discover you aren’t the only one being driven up the wall here, and maybe a combined effort of compassionate group pop-psychologizing might help this person to reduce their allergen producing ways. Strain recommendation: Space Queen
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