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Zodiac (English Topic)

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“The Zodiac” (Horoscopes)
The Zodiac” denotes
things, depending on whether one looks
at it from the point of view of astronomy
or astrology
. According to
astronomists, the zodiac is the ring of
that lie in the apparent
path of the Sun across the sky over the
course of one year. Astrologists, on the
other hand, use the term “zodiac” to
refer to the 12 astrological signs.
Astrologists believe that celestial
phenomena reflect human activity on
earth, and that people can find love,
luck, and fortune based on taking
advantage of the positioning of stars at
any given moment. Because each sign
of the zodiac represents defined days in a year, a person born during that sign's period is known as
“an Aries”, “a Pisces”, and so on. Astrologists try to advise people based on their sign and the current
positioning of celestial objects at the time. This is, of course, highly interpretive, and not at all based
on science. Let's take a look at the 12 astrological signs:
Aries (March 21
- April 20
is represented by the ram, and the element associated with it is
fire. He/she who is a Taurus is ruled by the planet Mars. Taurus (April 21
– May 20
is represented by the bull, and its element is earth. The planet
Venus governs this sign.
Gemini (May 21
– June 20
is represented by the twins, and wind is its element. Mercury
rules Gemini life.
ancer (June 21
– July 22
is depicted by the crab, its element is water, and it is ruled by
the Moon.
Leo (July 23
– August 22
, as its name suggests, is represented by the lion. It is ruled by the
Sun and its element, appropriately, is fire.
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Virgo (August 23
– September 22
is represented by the virgin and the element of earth. The
planet Mercury rules it.
Libra (September 23
– October 22
is known as the scales, its element is wind, and it is ruled
by the planet Venus.
Scorpio (October 23
– November 22
is represented by the scorpion, its element is water,
and it is ruled by the (former?) planet Pluto.
Sagittarius (November 23
– December 22
is represented by the archer and/or the
centaur. Its element is fire and it is ruled by Jupiter.
Capricorn (December 22
– January 23
is represented by the mountain goat and the
element earth. S
aturn governs it.
Aquarius (January 20
– February 18
is depicted by the water carrier. Its element is wind
and it is ruled by the planets Saturn and Uranus.
Pisces (February 19
– March 20
is also known as the fish. Aptly, its element is water, and it
is ruled by the planets Jupiter and Neptune.
What do the elements mean? Fire and air are considered positive or extrovert, masculine signs. Water and earth are considered negative or introvert, feminine signs.
In the United States, horoscopes are published in almost every major newspaper every day.
Horoscopes attempt to predict the future and advise people. Because each sign has a standard
“personality”, horoscopes often advise people of one sign to try to date people of another designated
sign. For example, during a certain part of the year, an astrologist may advice a Capricorn to date a
Leo, but never an Aquarius. Do you read horoscopes? Do you put stock
into the advice given in
horoscopes? Do you know of instances where the advice was good? Bad?
To denote
= [VERB] To mark, to indicate, to serve as a symbol or name for the meaning of; to signify.
[The 38
Line of Latitude North denotes the border between North and South Korea. It is strictly
= [NOUN] The scientific study of stars, planets, and other objects in outer space. [In
Astronomy class today, we learned about Jupiter's numerous moons.]
= [NOUN] The study (NON-SCIENTIFIC) study of how the stars and planets influence
people's lives and actions. [Jason's mother is really into astrology. She is so obsessed with it that
she won't even leave the house when Saturn is visible from the Earth.]
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Constellation = [NOUN] A group of stars named after the shape that they form. [The most
famous constellation is probably “The Big Dipper”.]
To put stock (into something)
= To believe in something; to consider something important or worth
believing. [I don't put stock into anything that Vladimir Zhirinovsky says. I think he's just plain crazy!]
To trigger (something) = To set off or initiate something; to cause something. [The hooligan's
fireworks triggered panic in the city square, as people mistook the exploding fireworks for a bomb.]
[Look at each sign's personality traits. Do you know what all of the listed traits mean? Does your
personality match your sign's traits? Which sign's traits appeal most to you?]
: A “mover and a shaker”, Curious, energetic, easily bored, forthcoming and direct, doesn't have
hidden agendas, competitive
: Stable, conservative, loyal, steady, reliable, rarely upset, stubborn, “knows his/her own
strength, but usually handles situations with dignity and self-control”
: Energetic, charismatic, communicative, witty, knowledgeable, good conversationalist,
inquisitive, intelligent, logical, has lots of nervous energy, has a dual personality, not consistent
: Deeply emotional but smooth and confident on the outside, sentimental, generous and kind
to others, good sense of humor, moody, sulky, can become irritable for no reason, Leo
: Ambitious, confident, independent, loyal, generous, warm, caring, “can become domineering,
bossy, and stubborn if not appreciated”, sensitive to criticism, rarely forgives others, can become
: Reliable, industrious, intelligent, practical, down-to-earth, family-oriented, “clean freak”,
commitment to excellence, critical of others, can become depressed when problems arise, Libra
: Refined, sociable, charming, strong sense of right and wrong, tactful, well-rounded, may try too
hard to please others, flirtatious, tends to gossip, Scorpio
: Intense, intuitive, complex, determined, a “straight-shooter”, has “laser beam mental focus”,
can be overly critical, most comfortable alone or with a small group of friends, introvert, Sagittarius
: A “free spirit”, easy-going, optimistic, inquisitive, very straightforward, cheerful,
spontaneous, idealistic, naive, not serious
: Stable, hard-working, practical, methodical, ambitious, “cool, calm, and reserved on the
outside”, stoic, “more than anything else enjoys power, respect, and authority”, can seem “arrogant,
unfriendly, or without humor” to outsiders, pessimistic, socially inhibited and uncomfortable in new
: Unconventional, eccentric, free thinker, “marches to the beat of a different drum”, idealistic,
lives life “outside the box”, brings about change, compassionate, kind, accepting, “more head than
heart” - may be considered cold or detached, only has a handful of close friends, creative.
: Patient, perceptive, spiritual,imaginative, considerate, sensitive to the feelings of others,
regal, tactful, compassionate, focused, can be obsessive-compulsive with respect to work ethic, can
internalize problems and live with lifelong problems and possible substance abuse.
Cancer (28 April 2010) – You are having a hard time deciding what's what today – but that's partly
because you're not fully trusting your intuitive
side. Make sure that you can access your deeper
Aquarius (28 April 2010) – You need an audience with someone important – but it's easier to get than
you realize. Serendipity may favour you, or you may be able to use a connection you only just
learned you have.
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Taurus (28 April 2010) – Your moods are legendary, and right now, you can feel yourself sliding into a
funk. You may be able to pull yourself out of it, but you are probably better off making the most of it
and turning it into art.
= [ADJECTIVE] Based on your feelings rather than on facts or evidence. [There is not
enough physical evidence to make a decision, so our ruling will have to be an intuitive one,
= [NOUN] The ability to make lucky, fortuitous discoveries while looking for something
completely unrelated; The aptitude for making desirable discoveries by accident. NOTE: Adjective
form = Serendipitous [In an amazing bit of serendipity, penniless Paula found a $20 bill in the subway
station while sweeping the station for $5!]
To slide into a funk
= To change from being happy and/or productive to unhappy and/or
unproductive. NOTE: To be in a funk = To be in a rut = To be in a condition/mood where you are not
happy and/or not working productively. [Sarah was the top seller in her company until her cat died.
After that, she slid into a funk and barely made her quota week after week.]
To make the most of (something) = To do one's best to get a positive result out of a negative
situation; “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade!” is a popular idiom meaning “make the most
of bad situations”. [
I was really mad when my air plane to the United States had to make an
emergency stop in Paris, but in the end I made the most of it and ate dinner at a delicious Parisian
Get ready for our weekly quiz!
: Oh, I am so tired due to my
exams and work! I need to relax.
Maybe for the May 1
holiday, I'll fly to
Turkey and spend some time at the
beach. Do you want to come with me,
: Maybe
: Okay, you can think about it, and
then later you can let me know. Oh, I
have an idea.....I'll look at the
horoscopes in today's paper, and maybe
there I can get some advice on whether
to go to Turkey or not. What do you
think, Alla, can I trust advice from the
horoscopes? Alla
: Maybe.
: Well, I know for sure, Katya. You can always bank on
the zodiac for good advice!
: Really? You think so? Vadim, I'm surprised. I wouldn't have pegged
you for someone who
believes in astrology!
: Well, I guess I'm just full of surprises! Isn't that a good thing?
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: Maybe. It depends on what kind of surprises......
: You're right, Alla. Let's see what my horoscope says.......oh no!
: What's wrong?
: Here it's written, “Take caution this month. Stay close to home and don't take risks.” Oh well,
I guess Turkey will have to wait for another holiday.
: Oh come on, Katya. It's not logical to base your vacation on some silly horoscope. If you go to
the travel agency today, you can probably get a good deal on a last-minute trip to the Black Sea. Katya
: Hmmm.....maybe you're right. What do you think Vadim? Vadim
: I think you need to listen to what is written in the stars! You can sunbathe on the banks of the
Neva! Alla
: Vadim, you loon!
It's too cold and there's not enough sun in St. Petersburg right now. Plus,
who sunbathes along the Neva anyway? Don't listen to him, Katya. Go to Turkey. It's fun.
: Okay, okay, Alla! Katya, if you can't find a good deal, we can always just go to a club or
something........what? one here wants to go to the club? Alla
: Maybe.
: Oh well, looks like I'll be clubbing alone this weekend!
To bank on (something) = To completely trust and rely on something. [
Because he could physically
move no further, the tired mountaineer had to bank on his trusty dog to deliver the message to the
town on the riverbank.
To peg (someone) as (something)
= To think of someone as something or in a certain way; to
consider someone a certain thing or having a certain characteristic, regardless of whether or not the
characteristic is accurate.
Susan pegged the new employee as a lazy worker after she noticed that
he took too many smoke breaks.
Loon = [NOUN] A crazy person. [
What's going on over there? What's with all the commotion? Oh,
some loon is running around the supermarket naked. Strange.
Just Speak!
Check out E
(where you can watch movies with subtitles)
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