So, on Tuesday, October 1, a lot of people (well, a lot of people who we follow on Twitter, so basically everyone essential) were upset about something very important being shut down. No, we’re not talking about the government (although many people were upset about that too! still are! because fuck all those Republican sociopaths who are doing things like making park rangers apologize for following shutdown orders); we’re talking about the fact that Susan Miller’s incredibly popular Astrology Zone website wasn’t working. This made a lot of people very upset. Especially because Miller had already been ominously hinting about really bad things to come in October. So what did all this mean? Was the world going to end? Should we not plan any big trips or make any important life-altering decisions like cutting bangs? Were we going to drop our phone in the toilet? What was going to happen???
Well, the news, as it turns out, was not good. Once Miller’s site was back up, it became evident that October was going to be disastrous. The government shutdown was just the beginning. So much more terrible stuff was destined to happen. And, so for the last two days we’ve been paying very careful attention to the news. And it’s true! Things have been crazy. First there was the news that Ronan Farrow is possibly Frank Sinatra’s son. Then there was the fact that Elizabeth Wurtzel released another essay unto us all, forcing us to decipher what the ideas (if any) were behind her flowery prose. And also, we’ve all been forced to talk about Dave Eggers way more than we’re comfortable with (which, that means at all, we’re not comfortable talking about him at all). But, you know, all that news was horrifying in its own way, but didn’t seem any worse than the beginning of any other month. And so we felt pretty secure in our feelings of skepticism and superiority and general condescension toward people whose beliefs don’t measure up with our own. It’s true. We’re jerks! It’s terrible.
But then? Well, then came news of this latest public shooting (details still coming in, but it appears to have been a female shooter who attempted to drive onto the White House front lawn, and then moved onto the Capitol building, but who knows? people preemptively report info long before it’s been verified*), and the accompanying immediate response by the Capitol Hill police (who are currently working without pay to defend the Republican assholes who caused this shutdown), and the tweeting of Republican representative Tim Griffin who subtweeted Obama and Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi for the shooting, and all of a sudden we thought that maybe, just maybe, there was something to this whole astrology thing. Maybe Susan Miller does have the answers. Maybe her horoscopes are always so ominous because the world is actually a terrible place. Maybe instead of praying (like virtually all politicians were urging us to do for them and the police, even though probably the police might like to be paid for rather than just prayed for), we should be reading our star charts. Or maybe not. Maybe we live in a chaos filled world and there’s nothing we can do to keep ourselves safe except wear bullet proof vests and flush the toilets with our feet. It’s a mad, mad, mad world.
*Update: It turns out there was no shooter. All shots were fired by police. The woman in question, who was with her one-year-old child, was unarmed. Everything surrounding these events is still unclear. Unclear, but tragic.
Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen