Free Will Astrology: Have the Patience of Peter Parker, Libra
Mar05

Free Will Astrology: Have the Patience of Peter Parker, Libra

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The men who work on offshore oil rigs perform demanding, dangerous tasks on a regular basis. If they make mistakes, they may get injured or befoul the sea with petroleum. As you might guess, the culture on these rigs has traditionally been macho, stoic, and hard-driving. But in recent years, that has changed at one company. Shell Oil’s workers in the U.S. were trained by Holocaust survivor Claire Nuer...

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Free Will Astrology: Search Out Your Ghost Towns, Sagittarius
Feb26

Free Will Astrology: Search Out Your Ghost Towns, Sagittarius

ARIES (March 21-April 19): On September 1, 1666, a London baker named Thomas Farriner didn’t take proper precautions to douse the fire in his oven before he went to sleep. Consequences were serious. The conflagration that ignited in his little shop burned down large parts of the city. Three hundred twenty years later, a group of bakers gathered at the original site to offer a ritual atonement. “It’s never too late to apologize,” said...

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Puerto Rican Evacuees Receive Trauma Relief Through Acupuncture in Springfield
Feb22

Puerto Rican Evacuees Receive Trauma Relief Through Acupuncture in Springfield

The Springfield Family Resource Center of Gandara  is located in a modest building at 18 Gaucher Street in Springfield’s Pine Point neighborhood, and upon arrival it’s clear that this social service agency is a community lifeline. Inside, the narrow reception area teems with clients seeking services, and the staff are friendly and efficient. There is order in the chaos, however; case managers busily take information in a room directly...

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Free Will Astrology: Aries, It’s Wild Card Season for You
Feb19

Free Will Astrology: Aries, It’s Wild Card Season for You

ARIES (March 21-April 19): When you’re playing poker, a wild card refers to a card that can be used as any card the cardholder wants it to be. If the two of hearts is deemed wild before the game begins, it can be used as an ace of diamonds, jack of clubs, queen of spades, or anything else. That’s always a good thing! In the game of life, a wild card is the arrival of an unforeseen element that affects the flow of events...

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Free Will Astrology: Check your old pants for winning lottery tickets, Virgo
Feb06

Free Will Astrology: Check your old pants for winning lottery tickets, Virgo

ARIES (March 21-April 19): British athlete Liam Collins is an accomplished hurdler. In 2017, he won two medals at the World Masters Athletics Indoor Championships in South Korea. Collins is also a stuntman and street performer who does shows in which he hurtles over barriers made of chainsaws and leaps blindfolded through flaming hoops. For the foreseeable future, you may have a dual capacity with some resemblances to his. You could...

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Pole Fitness: From adult entertainment to an Olympic sport
Jan31

Pole Fitness: From adult entertainment to an Olympic sport

Holly Woods has always loved the art of dance. When she was a young girl in Manhattan, her mother rented an apartment above Alvin Ailey’s studio. “I would go downstairs and hangout and watch the ballet dancers perform,” she recalls. “You would see Debbie Allen and all these people coming and going. It was like Fame; I was fascinated by it.” When her family later moved to Apalachicola, Florida, she did the same thing at the town ballet...

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Free Will Astrology: Hidden Treasure Awaits, Aries
Jan29

Free Will Astrology: Hidden Treasure Awaits, Aries

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In all of history, humans have mined about 182,000 tons of gold. Best estimates suggest there are still 35 billion tons of gold buried in the earth, but the remaining riches will be more difficult to find and collect than what we’ve already gotten. We need better technology. If I had to say who would be the entrepreneurs and inventors best qualified to lead the quest, my choice would be members of the Aries...

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Free Will Astrology: Watch the Price of Eggs, Virgo
Jan22

Free Will Astrology: Watch the Price of Eggs, Virgo

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Anders Haugen competed for the U.S. as a ski jumper in the 1924 Winter Olympics. Although he was an accomplished athlete who had previously set a world record for distance, he won no medals at the games. But wait! Fifty years later, a sports historian discovered that there had a been a scoring mistake back in 1924. In fact, Haugen had done well enough to win the bronze medal. The mistake was rectified, and...

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Astrology: Libra, open your heart and go for the win-win!
Jan16

Astrology: Libra, open your heart and go for the win-win!

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Many American women did not have the right to vote until August 18, 1920. On that day, the Tennessee General Assembly became the 36th state legislature to approve the Nineteenth Amendment, thus sealing the legal requirements to change the U.S. Constitution and ensure women’s suffrage. The ballot in Tennessee was close. At the last minute, 24-year-old legislator Harry T. Burns changed his mind from no...

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Free Will Astrology: It’s Leo Makeover Season!
Jan08

Free Will Astrology: It’s Leo Makeover Season!

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I’m happy to inform you that life is giving you permission to be extra demanding in the coming weeks — as long as you’re not petty, brusque, or unreasonable. Here are a few examples that will pass the test: “I demand that you join me in getting drunk on the truth”; “I demand to receive rewards commensurate with my contributions”; “I demand that we collaborate to outsmart and escape the karmic conundrums...

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Editorial: Taking Up Running to Slow Down
Jan02

Editorial: Taking Up Running to Slow Down

I’m in my mid-30s, and “getting fit” is something I think about more now. It took me a long time to come around on the idea of exercise for exercise sake — but it has become something that I actually enjoy (even if I don’t do it as often as I should). In middle school, if memory serves, I was literally the last person to finish our required “mile run” in gym class. I don’t remember my time, but I remember walking for most of the...

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Changing Lives While Living With Chronic Illness
Jan02

Changing Lives While Living With Chronic Illness

Erica Verrillo of Whatley has written more than half a dozen books and launched a non-profit national organization, all while being partially bedridden for the past three decades. Verillo has Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.), a chronic and fluctuating neurological disease characterized by extreme exhaustion, muscle weakness, sensitivity to pain, confusion, forgetfulness, a weak immune system, and a lack of concentration. In 1998,...

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Fat freezing: Non-surgical process said to eliminate flab that’s hard to lose
Jan02

Fat freezing: Non-surgical process said to eliminate flab that’s hard to lose

There is a way to actually to get rid of your fat while lying down. It’s a method called CoolSculpting and it’s a machine connected to a hose with a plastic suction cup that hums as it vacuums up and freezes fat. Patients recline on a table as the cold kills the fat cells, without harming the surrounding tissue, says Dr. Katherine White in Northampton, who has had a dermatology practice in the area for over a decade. It’s an...

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Free Will Astrology: Fly Your Freak Flag, Aquarius
Jan02

Free Will Astrology: Fly Your Freak Flag, Aquarius

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In 2018, your past will undergo transformation. Your memories will revise and rearrange themselves. Bygone events that seemed complete and definitive will shimmy and shift, requiring new interpretations. The stories you have always told about how you became who you are will have to be edited, perhaps even rewritten. While these overhauls may sometimes be disconcerting, they will ultimately be liberating....

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Free Will Astrology: Pisces Theme is Secret Freedom
Dec26

Free Will Astrology: Pisces Theme is Secret Freedom

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “I need more smart allies, compassionate supporters, ethical role models, and loyal friends, and I need them right now!” writes Joanna K., an Aries reader from Albuquerque, New Mexico. On the other hand, there’s Jacques T., an Aries reader from Montreal. “To my amazement, I actually have much of the support and assistance I need,” he declares. “What I seem to need more of are constructive critics,...

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Free Will Astrology: Your Mission for 2018
Dec18

Free Will Astrology: Your Mission for 2018

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Your life in the first half of 2018 will be like a psychological boot camp that’s designed to beef up your emotional intelligence. Here’s another way to visualize your oncoming adventures: They will constitute a friendly nudge from the cosmos, pushing you to be energetic and ingenious in creating the kind of partnerships you want for the rest of your long life. As you go through your interesting tests and...

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Free Will Astrology: Don’t Listen to Mozart, Scorpio
Dec11

Free Will Astrology: Don’t Listen to Mozart, Scorpio

ARIES (March 21-April 19): According to a Sufi aphorism, you can’t be sure that you are in possession of the righteous truth unless a thousand people have called you a heretic. If that’s accurate, you still have a ways to go before you can be certified. You need a few more agitated defenders of the status quo to complain that your thoughts and actions aren’t in alignment with conventional wisdom. Go round them up! Ironically, those...

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Wellness: The Importance of Exercise at Every Age
Dec04

Wellness: The Importance of Exercise at Every Age

On a blustery and cold November morning last week, people inside the Northampton Senior Center were keeping warm in a group exercise class and in the fitness room. Stan Plaza and his wife, Darlene Plaza, try to come to the Fitness Center a few times a week to use the exercise machines in addition to participating in outdoor activities. Stan Plaza was using a machine to do arm curls while Darlene Plaza used an elliptical. “It’s a good...

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Free Will Astrology: Don’t Sell Out, Aries; You’ll Get Rich Quicker
Dec04

Free Will Astrology: Don’t Sell Out, Aries; You’ll Get Rich Quicker

ARIES (March 21-April 19): You may get richer quicker in 2018, Aries — especially if you refuse to sell out. You may accumulate more clout — especially if you treat everyone as your equal and always wield your power responsibly. I bet you will also experience deeper, richer emotions — especially if you avoid people who have low levels of emotional intelligence. Finally, I predict you will get the best sex of your life in the next 12...

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Free Will Astrology: Leos Probably Won’t Date Models or Millionaires
Nov27

Free Will Astrology: Leos Probably Won’t Date Models or Millionaires

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I hope that everything doesn’t come too easily for you in the coming weeks. I’m worried you will meet with no obstructions and face no challenges. And that wouldn’t be good. It might weaken your willpower and cause your puzzle-solving skills to atrophy. Let me add a small caveat, however. It’s also true that right about now you deserve a whoosh of slack. I’d love for you to be able to relax and enjoy your...

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Free Will Astrology: Don’t Hang Dildos from your Christmas Tree, Gemini

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In alignment with the current astrological omens, I have prepared your horoscope using five hand-plucked aphorisms by Aries poet Charles Bernstein. 1.) “You never know what invention will look like or else it wouldn’t be invention.” 2.) “So much depends on what you are expecting.” 3.) “What’s missing from the bird’s eye view is plain to see on the ground.” 4.) “The questioning of the beautiful is always at...

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Free Will Astrology: Don’t Lose Your Lotto Ticket, Sagittarius

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “Many people go fishing all their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after,” observed Henry David Thoreau. The spirit of Thoreau’s observation is true about every one of us to some extent. From time to time, we all try to satisfy our desires in the wrong location, with the wrong tools, and with the wrong people. But I’m happy to announce that his epigram is less true for you now than it has...

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Free Will Astrology: Pimples Are Your Friends, Taurus
Nov06

Free Will Astrology: Pimples Are Your Friends, Taurus

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Adriana Martinez and Octavio Guillen got engaged to be married when they were both 15 years old. But they kept delaying a more complete unification for 67 years. At last, when they were 82, they celebrated their wedding and pledged their vows to each other. Are there comparable situations in your life, Aries? The coming months will be a favorable time to make deeper commitments. At least some of your reasons...

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Wellness: Your friendly gut bacteria
Oct30

Wellness: Your friendly gut bacteria

Madeleine Vanstory was visiting her sister, Melissa Redwin of Westhampton, when they decided to come to Nourish Wellness Cafe in Northampton for lunch with Melissa’s newborn, Lucena. “I finally made the connection, after decades of bad eating, (between) how you nourish your body with food and how you feel,” said Vanstory, a physician and health consultant in Oregon. “And I just know that I feel better when I eat things that require...

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Free Will Astrology: Johnny Cash Didn’t Take Voice Lessons Either, Scorpio
Oct30

Free Will Astrology: Johnny Cash Didn’t Take Voice Lessons Either, Scorpio

ARIES (March 21-April 19): America’s Civil War ended in 1865. A veteran from that conflict later produced a daughter, Irene Triplett, who is still alive today and collecting his pension. In the coming months, I foresee you being able to take advantage of a comparable phenomenon, although it may be more metaphorical. Blessings from bygone times, perhaps even from the distant past, will be available to you. But you’ll have to be alert...

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Free Will Astrology: What the Stars Say You Should Be for Halloween
Oct23

Free Will Astrology: What the Stars Say You Should Be for Halloween

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I share Vincent Van Gogh’s belief that “the best way to know life is to love many things.” But I also think that the next twelve months will be an inspiring time for you to be focused and single-minded in your involvement with love. That’s why I encourage you to take an approach articulated by the Russian mystic Anne Sophie Swetchine: “To love deeply in one direction makes us more loving in all others.”...

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Free Will Astrology: Stick with Garfunkel For Now, Scorpio
Oct16

Free Will Astrology: Stick with Garfunkel For Now, Scorpio

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “I am my own muse,” wrote painter Frida Kahlo. “I am the subject I know best. The subject I want to know better.” Would you consider trying out this perspective for a while, Aries? If so, you might generate a few ticklish surprises. You may be led into mysterious areas of your psyche that had previously been off-limits. You could discover secrets you’ve been hiding from yourself. So what would it mean to be...

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Free Will Astrology: Thrillseeking Snails Ride on Turtles
Oct09

Free Will Astrology: Thrillseeking Snails Ride on Turtles

ARIES (March 21-April 19): In his book The Logic of Failure, Dietrich Dorner discusses the visionaries who built the Aswan Dam in Egypt. Their efforts brought an abundance of cheap electricity to millions of people. But the planners didn’t take into account some of the important effects of their innovation. For example, the Nile River below the dam no longer flooded its banks or fertilized the surrounding land every year. As a result,...

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Zapping Depression
Oct02

Zapping Depression

Armené Margosian, 52, of Greenfield, sat waiting in a medical chair at Achieve TMS East’s Northampton office on Pleasant Street, her hands holding a pillow alongside her car keys. Her head was covered in a dark blue cap, while strapped into a metal, robotic-looking helmet. A magnetic pulse the machine delivered 36 times over the span of two seconds caused her right eye to twitch, but didn’t cause her any pain. Margosian is...

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Free Will Astrology: Follow Samsung By Transcending Dried Fish
Oct02

Free Will Astrology: Follow Samsung By Transcending Dried Fish

ARIES (March 21-April 19): You wouldn’t expect a five-year-old child to paint a facsimile of Picasso’s Guernica or sing Puccini’s opera, La Boheme. Similarly, you shouldn’t fault your companions and you for not being perfect masters of the art of intimate relationships. In fact, most of us are amateurs. We may have taken countless classes in math, science, literature, and history, but have never had a single lesson from teachers whose...

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Free Will Astrology: Pink Underpants, Not Purple, Taurus
Sep25

Free Will Astrology: Pink Underpants, Not Purple, Taurus

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Conceptual artist Jonathon Keats likes to play along with the music of nature. On one occasion he collaborated with Mandeville Creek in Montana. He listened and studied the melodies that emanated from its flowing current. Then he moved around some of the underwater rocks, subtly changing the creek’s song. Your assignment, Aries, is to experiment with equally imaginative and exotic collaborations. The coming...

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Free Will Astrology: Emily Dickinson Knows The Size of Aquarius Brains
Sep18

Free Will Astrology: Emily Dickinson Knows The Size of Aquarius Brains

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Psychologists say most people need a scapegoat — a personification of wickedness and ignorance onto which they can project the unacknowledged darkness in their own hearts. That’s the bad news. Here’s the good news: The coming weeks will be an excellent time for you to neutralize that reflex and at least partially divest yourself of the need for scapegoats. How? The first thing to do is identify your own...

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Free Will Astrology: Move Forward Like An Emu, Aries
Sep11

Free Will Astrology: Move Forward Like An Emu, Aries

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Two animals are pictured prominently on Australia’s coat of arms: the kangaroo and the large flightless bird known as the emu. One of the reasons they were chosen is that both creatures rarely walk backward. They move forward or not at all. Australia’s founders wanted this to symbolize the nation’s pledge to never look back, to remain focused on advancing toward the future. The coming weeks will be a...

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Acupuncture Becoming More Mainstream, But Still Not Fully Covered
Sep05

Acupuncture Becoming More Mainstream, But Still Not Fully Covered

Northampton resident Bob Flaherty, a radio personality on WHMP, was practicing for a golf tournament earlier this year when he missed the ball and hit the dirt. Pain shot through his arm; he thought he broke it. “I couldn’t do anything,” he said. “I figure I’m not going to do tennis, golf, kayak. Riding a bike is the thing I do most, and I couldn’t even make the brakes work. My arm didn’t work.” Flaherty wound up seeking acupuncture...

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Third Eye Roaming: So Over THE Yoga Body
Sep05

Third Eye Roaming: So Over THE Yoga Body

Google yoga images and you’ll find a sea of thin, white women who look as if the road rises to greet them. Their bodies are ideologically perfect. Their yoga attire and accessories are meticulous. They are serene and smiling. Gee — if they’re so perfect, then do they even need yoga? Of course. Even those who ascribe to society’s view of perfection need yoga. Everybody does for better mind and body health. That’s a philosophy that most...

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