I’m one of those people who likes to dabble in bubblegum voodoo. That’s what I call
popular cultural trends that determine your personality traits and life path. The
word “voodoo” refers to mysticism and magical thinking, while “bubblegum” connotes
childlike innocence and not taking things too seriously. Bubblegum voodoo is pink.
Bubblegum voodoo is gooey. And before its approval by the FDA, bubblegum voodoo
caused mad cow disease in laboratory rats.|
One of the most well-known aspects of bubblegum voodoo is astrology, inspiring the
famous pick-up line “What’s your sign?” I’m a Taurus, which, according to the
charts, proclaims that I’m a stubborn, bull-headed rose-sniffer who overeats and
listens to Mozart.
Despite my affinity for flowers and Wolfgang, I wasn’t too happy with this analysis,
so I found out what the Chinese have to say. According to the Chinese Zodiac, I was
born in the Year of the Rooster, which means I like to primp in front of mirrors, go
shopping and tell everyone else what to do with their lives. That’s more like it.
I also get a kick out of those personality quizzes in magazines and online. There’s
something intriguing about answering a few multiple choice questions and discovering
that because you prefer mashed potatoes over French fries, you’re a fiery extrovert
with anal tendencies who would do equally well as a blackjack dealer or a marine
A few years back, color analysis was the big thing. To succeed in life you needed to
know which “season” you were: Spring, Summer, Autumn, or Winter. According to the
experts, each person looked best in the colors that matched his or her skin tone and
hair. As a “Winter,” my colors were, among others, red, white and blue. I couldn’t
wear an orange pantsuit, but drape me in an American flag and I was good to go.
And let’s not forget numerology. This ancient art determines your Life Path by
assigning you a number between one and nine. By calculating the numbers in my
birthday, I learned that I am a nine. This means I’m generous, artistic, passionate
and spiritual. Cool. But it also means that I have the managerial skills of a
As a psych major, I studied handwriting analysis. Loopy letters meant the writer was
friendly and creative. Angular letters depicted someone who was methodical and
exacting. My handwriting varied between perfect penmanship and psychotic scribbling.
To this day I’m still trying to figure out whether I’m more like Martha Stewart or
“To sleep, perchance to dream.” The first time I read a book on dream analysis I was
hooked. The interpretations were so correct it was eerie. My dream of a polar bear
storming through my kitchen looking for scrambled eggs obviously meant that my
purchase of plaid Bermuda shorts was a huge mistake. You better believe I took them
back the next day for a full refund!
And just when you thought a coffee table was just a coffee table, along comes Feng
Shui. Who would have guessed that the arrangement of the furniture in your home
affects your success and well-being? According to followers of Feng Shui, your front
door is the portal of positive energy, also known as “chi.” The chi must be allowed
to flow around your home unhindered. Mirrors will deflect the chi. A heavy sofa will
stop the chi. A chipped plate will anger the chi. Best advice: hang wind chimes to
soothe the chi. Afterward, make the chi a cup of hot cocoa and tell it a bedtime
Don’t worry; the chi is polite. It won’t stick its bubblegum on the bedpost before
it goes to sleep.