What Your Horoscope Says About How Climate Change Will Kill You
by Sara Starsayer
Benedictions, star children. The fate-drenched skies speak to me today of tragedy and suffering. Impending geologic disaster awaits us in a myriad of forms, but I will not let you go into that future unprepared. Read on to learn the truth of your own mortalities.
Aquarius (January 20 — February 18)
Because of rising pollution levels, the world powers agree to suspend all commercial air travel until the air has lost 90% of its pollutants. You personally have only been on a plane once, but you are sure that this decision inconveniences someone somewhere. You mobilize a protest on the capital. “Fight for the right to fly!” you cry. “No plane, no gain!” The attempted revolution is suppressed instantly and you die of pneumonia while awaiting sentencing.
Pisces (February 19 — March 20)
An unusually intense monsoon season is announced. You have an epiphany: a rain festival. Over three million people travel to Aquapalooza for four days of water slides, mud wrestling, and glow-in-the-dark water polo under a banner of hallucinogenic drugs. The event is a smash hit until the final night’s headliner, when (thanks to someone’s faulty planning) the main tent collapses and unleashes fifty thousand gallons of rainwater. Standing backstage, polishing off a plate of sushi, you are electrocuted and die instantly.
Aries (March 21 — April 19)
You are in charge of alternative energy development for the city of Los Angeles. When the smog grows so thick that solar panels can no longer capture ultraviolet light, you order that every household must use a generator that produces electricity from human waste. This decision initiates an E. coli outbreak that kills over two thousand people. Angry citizens mob you and drive a broken piece of one of their precious solar panels through your jugular.
Taurus (April 20 — May 20)
Despite predictions of a sandstorm that will destroy half your city, you are reluctant to leave your family home, largely because you cannot face abandoning your four-hundred-count silk sheets — and because this episode of Spirit Hunter is, like, really good. Finally, you gather the energy to leave. As you descend your front steps, a herd of angry bulls rounds the corner of the deserted street. You are trampled to death within seconds.
Gemini (May 21 — June 20)
Hitchhiking away from your hometown after it is destroyed in an avalanche, you meet a circus mime who convinces you to move to Portland. You two are publicly performing your Apocalypse Box routine for the first time when — to the self-congratulatory awe of New Yorker readers everywhere — the Juan de Fuca plate in the Cascadian subduction zone rebounds. The ground splits between your feet. Unable to choose which side to leap to, you are torn in half. Your left half is flattened by a collapsing skyscraper. Your right half curtsies silently to the applauding audience.
Cancer (June 21 — July 22)
After drinking contaminated groundwater, you develop liver cancer that metastasizes to every major organ. You return home to die in your super adorable cottage, surrounded by loved ones and your six pet rabbits. Tears, hugs, sentiment — it’s the perfect time to remind everyone how they’ve wronged you over the years. Two hours into the list of grievances, fed up with the whining, your sister preempts the cancer and throttles you to death.
Leo (July 23 — August 22)
Since the mainland has no food left to offer, you spearhead a mission to repopulate an uninhabited island. For two months, coconut juice and rum flow happily, and your subjects — I mean, comrades — just so happen to chant your name whenever you walk into the compound. If a few people need to get beheaded here and there…well, it’s not your fault you’re a natural leader. Unfortunately, in the third month of your reign, the island reveals itself to be volcanic and you die in a fiery flood of plasma, roaring your own name until the bitter end.
Virgo (August 23 — September 22)
You hear on the television that a meteor will crash the next day and the entire world will be destroyed. You’re sitting stunned on the sofa when you hear a knock at your door. It’s your high school boyfriend. He says that since the world will end tomorrow, will you please, please, finally have sex with him? This isn’t the first time he’s made this argument, but it’s the first time he has proof behind it, so you go along with it. Bye, virginity. The next day, the meteor uneventfully passes the planet by. Two months later, you die of a deadly STD you contracted from that motherfucking douchebag.
Libra (September 23 — October 22)
You are trapped in a tornado shelter with two friends, five cans of Coke, and a gallon of milk. Your sheltermates want to share the milk and Coke so you can each survive four extra days. But how will you divide five cans in three? To avoid the scene, while your friends are sleeping, you open the cans and create a milk-and-Coke painting on the floor. “I have a surprise for you,” you say when they wake up. “My final masterpiece.” Enraged, they kill and eat you. Your heart tastes especially tender.
Scorpio (October 23 — November 21)
You work in a medical research laboratory, where you genetically engineer humans and animals more suited to survival in the ecological wasteland outside. The job has its perks: plenty of super-attractive clones for sexual satisfaction, all the pharmaceutical drugs you could ask for, and a retinal scanner to keep out the CIA operatives that are tracking your every move. But when the Dangerous Specimens terrarium breaks, your laboratory is swarmed with flesh-eating insects. Your pet project, the purple-tailed scorpion, is the first to reach you. Its bite is as vicious as you engineered it to be.
Sagittarius (November 22 — December 21)
Endlessly curious even in your inevitable doom, you volunteer for one of the first missions to establish viable life beyond Earth. You know the risks, but you’ll be able to make a killing off reselling freeze-dried ice cream once the colony is fully established. One lightyear into the voyage, while touting your navigational credentials to the rest of the ship’s crew, you accidentally reprogram the spaceship to divert to a nearby star. You and your $3 billion mission are all consumed in stellar fire.
Capricorn (December 22 — January 19)
With natural resources at almost nil, you try to save your country by running for president. With your managerial mind, it’s no surprise that you win the primary, but then you call your electorate “classless hooligans” on television. You’re getting a Botox treatment and stressing about your dwindling poll numbers, when suddenly the surgical unit shakes. “What’s that?” you ask the doctor, panicked. “Did you feel that?” She never gets the chance to reply. The entire world explodes from the inside out and everyone dies immediately. You totally saw it coming.
Sara Starsayer accepts the fate the skies have ordained. Her ozone fallout shelter is at www.sarasligar.com.