Of the four canonical seasons, the one which throws me the wackiest emotional curve is autumn. I'm not entirely sure why, though I'm going to try to figure this out on the way to the end of the page.

The most obvious factor, perhaps, is that my birthday falls in the fall, and I've had a lot of birthdays. Admittedly, I was just one of five siblings; then again, three of them were born in the fall. (Two Scorpios, one single Sagittarius, if you take any stock in that stuff.) This suggests some, um, habitual behavior on the part of the parental units, who got married in, yes, mid-February.

Speaking of "that stuff," I once had an expert in such matters run a complete chart on me, which apparently required an ICBM address for my birthplace and standard time to the minute. While the printer — yes, astrologers use printers — was whirring, it was explained to me that the aspect known as the square, in which planets (or stars, or whatever) are 90 degrees apart, is not exactly favorable, but everyone has at least one square, and "Squares always indicate tension, motivation, and action, and they are perceived as uncomfortable influences." I should, therefore, not be troubled if I have one or even two squares on my chart.

I have eleven squares.

Beyond that, things get meteorological. The heat of August is mostly dispelled, though I've seen some pretty dire Septembers. While I won't miss the summer heat, the nastiness of winter is never quite far away: I've seen snow here on Halloween. And Halloween isn't any fun anymore: my kids are grown and far away, and I'm no longer able to come to the door for the neighborhood ghouls without major difficulties. Fall storms don't seem to be quite as numerous, or as ferocious, as the spring variety, but they're perfectly capable of wreaking havoc, and I no longer find myself shrugging at havoc being wrought.

At work, the summer hiatus has all but melted away, but things still pick up in the fall before the post-Thanksgiving lull. I haven't gone back to see if fall 2017 is likely to be in any way comparable to, say, fall 2007, but there is one thing I can always count on: as things get busier, tempers get shorter. And mine's barely measurable these days.

Then again, maybe it's not just me. At the start of this piece, I went out to YouTube to find just the Autumn segment of Le quattro stagioni, the Four Seasons. Lots of Winter and Springs, and plenty of complete sets. But I'd drilled down to page four before I hit a solitary Autumn. So I think I will close with that.

The Vent

  1 September 2017

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