Monday, May 20, 2024

Ten Years After: Oprah Buys Zodiac Sign

CHICAGO—Ten years ago today then-talk-show-host Oprah Winfrey celebrated her 52nd birthday by purchasing the Aquarius sign of the zodiac from the International Star Registry for an undisclosed sum reputed to be in the high eight figures. Ms. Winfrey of Montecito, California; Lavallette, New Jersey; Telluride, Colorado; Maui, Hawaii; Chicago, Illinois; and Fisher Island, Florida, said she gave herself the unusual gift because “at some point you have to start thinking about your legacy, and what better way is there to be remembered than by owning your birth sign?”

Ms. Winfrey announced her purchase during a special by-invitation-only Sunday taping of Oprah. She swanned onto the set to the strains of “The Age of Oquarius™” sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, which Ms. Winfrey had rented for the day. She wore a flattering white robe and a halo suspended just above her head.

“I did it!” Ms. Winfrey yelled to her delighted audience, all of whom were Oquarians™. “I bought my own damn zodiac sign and renamed it after myself. Happy birthday to me!” Then she screamed, “What does the girl who has everything give to her favorite audience on her birthday?”

The answer: charm bracelets that contain the gemstones associated with Oquarius: garnet, amber, amethyst, aquamarine, lapis lazuli, hematite, and turquoise. Every gemstone on each of the three hundred bracelets features a hand-carved likeness of Ms. Winfrey wearing a unique designer outfit and hairdo.

Ms. Winfrey also drew cheers when she announced that she had purchased Uranus, her sign’s ruling planet.

“I’m changing the name of that sucker, too,” said Ms. Winfrey. “From now on it’s going to be known as Myanus™.”

Helen Gurley Brown, Yoko Ono, John Travolta, Burt Reynolds, Mia Farrow, Joe Pesci, Garth Brooks, Fabian, Alice Cooper, and other celebrities in attendance rose to their feet and gave Ms. Winfrey an ovation.

Before her guests left the studio, they were presented with these “fun” horoscopes written by Steadfast, Ms. Winfrey’s personal astrologer.

Oquarius™ (1/20-2/18): The most common myth of the “former” sign of Aquarius involves this pretty boy named Ganymede, who was kidnapped by Zeus and is sometimes cited for bringing rain to Earth. Makes you wonder what the Age of Aquarius was about. Still, that’s no reason to rain on anyone’s parade. Smile, mon, Bob Marley, a fellow Aquarian, loves you. Let Bob be your umbrella.

Pisces (2/19-3/20): Proctor and Gamble, the twin gods of discord, have rewired the thermostats in all the appliances in the constellation of Amana. Will Amana’s sacred hound, Algorithm, be able to reset the thermostats in time to save the Festival of the Swisher King and restore harmony to the zodiac? Only Oprah knows for sure.

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Aries (3/21-4/19): Troubled by crank phone calls, you install caller ID, only to learn that the person calling you at 3 a.m. and reciting obscene limericks in an electronically altered voice is your mother, whom you thought was in a nursing home nine states away. You’re in for an even bigger surprise if you trace the number to the place where your mother is living.

Taurus (4/20-5/20): Two of your assets—an outstanding singing voice and an sensitive palate—are also your greatest liabilities. If you don’t believe the kind of trouble they can cause, check out Luciano Pavarotti. Lay off the singing and the snacks for a while. Avoid friends to whom you have recently given bad advice, especially bad financial advice. Also avoid revolving doors.

Gemini (5/21-6/21): Your gemstone, Topaz, is named for Topazios, an island in the Red Sea. Topazios is the Greek word for guess. The island was often covered in fog. When sailors approached it, one invariably said to another, “Is that Topazios?” The other would reply, “I guess.” That’s why Gemini ranks second in the production of chess masters, but last in the production of poets.

Cancer (6/22-7/22): Pluto, your guiding moon, is in traction; Sirius, the Dog Star, has been impounded; and a cross-dressing psychopath is masquerading as Lady Luck. That aside, there’s still hope for the end of the week—if not for the weekend. In the meantime learn to appreciate near-life experiences.

Leo (7/23-8/22): Because of an unusually wet spring, a friend’s garden will produce astonishing loads of zucchini this year, and you will find yourself the beneficiary of her largess. The only way to stem this tide is by leaving a bag of peanut-butter-and-zucchini sandwiches on her doorstep, setting the bag on fire, ringing the doorbell, and running away.

Virgo (8/23-9/22): Your next door neighbors will return from a vacation to Sun City, Arizona, convinced they were taken into a space ship while diving through the desert at night. They will also be convinced that you are the aliens’ representatives on Earth. That’s good news if your neighbors thought the aliens were friendly. It’s time for a food taster otherwise.

Libra (9/23-10/23): Instead of walking into a party like you were walking aboard your yacht, you walk like a yacht trying to do the bossa nova. This is the curse of Librans, a curse visited upon Eleanor Roosevelt, Emily Post, Mickey Mantle, Ed Sullivan, George C. Scott, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. None of them could dance either.

Scorpio (10/24-11/21): I see a determined yet obsessive person in your future. This emotional but secretive individual will raise the specter of duality and adjectives in your mind. Is this person someone to revere or just another toothpaste ad looking for a smile? I’m sorry, this is my lunch break. Let me transfer you to one of our operators.

Sagittarius (11/22-12/21): On an upcoming surprise trip to Bermuda, you will discover that money can, indeed, buy happiness. The trouble is, you don’t have that kind of money. The Bermuda gig was a supermarket giveaway. Don’t try to get rich by placing the right kinds of ads in newspapers. Send away instead for the Turn Your Psychic Abilities into Cash home study course. Then place the ads.

Capricorn (12/22-1/19): A chronic tendency to mix metaphors may cause embarrassment in the latter stages of the current lunar cycle. Isn’t that a fine kettle of meat? You could wind up between a rock and a sweat unless you chew your words carefully. Remember, it isn’t how you slay the game, but whether you’re too thin or too rich.    

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