CANCER (any year: 21/06 – 22/07)

Do you want to take a closer look at Cancer? (careful - from the side...)
Do you want to take a closer look at Cancer? (careful - from the side...)

What does a Cancer do when he gets older? He cries. To be precise, he cries all the time. “Cries” doesn’t really cover it. We’re talking about endless crying. Like lots of springs gushing forth.

It’s about that one time his heart was broken, the time he came down the stairs at school all wrong, and she just took off for the bus stop. It's that “no” he got when he made a serious marriage proposal in front of the entire kindergarten, even in front of the teacher with the blond hair. And it’s those two-ply tissues that he ran out of, though he himself never seems to run out at all. How can he? His own nature is wet, and he drowns in it. Astrologists say he is a water sign, don’t they? Well, he is, but his life isn’t in the water, it’s through the water.

He is reborn through tears, he feels better through tears, so many tears that the owner of the nursing home asked him to fill the empty fountain, if he could. Probably thinking that since he was just crying all day, he might as well put it to good use, because the only thing to come out of this so far is the vertebra in the lower back of the woman who mops up his room.

In Cancer, the tendency towards sorrow is innate. Sorrow over the pain that others overlook. That's his role - to shine a light on the drama. That's his talent: to focus on everything bad that has happened. The bad things that happened. The bad things that are happening now. The bad things that are going to happen. But mostly, the bad things that might happen, if...

Like right now, there’s a birthday party taking place in the sitting room, and everybody has joy in their eyes and whipped cream in their mouth. But Cancer doesn’t want any part of it. With his eyes filled with tears, he stays in his room and recalls a time when he was offended at some birthday party, when he was served the tiniest piece of cake, and to add insult to injury, it was crookedly cut. That’s what it's like for him. He gets upset so easily.

And then, he starts to think about how, as everyone is having fun and enjoying themselves, and all is well, what if there were suddenly a huge earthquake with the epicentre right at the nursing home itself; what would happen? “Don’t even say things like that,” cried the head nurse in terror, knocking on wood, while he turned over to his other side. He just sat in bed, in his nest. Safe. His life was in there.

He eats in his room. He drinks in his room. He dances in his room. He reads in his room. He watches old movies, those film noir ones, in his room. His imagination runs wild there. He sleeps in his room. Well, everybody does that, so that wasn’t worth mentioning.

He senses things in his room. He feels things in his room. He even managed to bring love into his room. With an old mirror, he approached the balcony and turned it so he could see her reflection in the next room. He very much liked that lady with the flowery dresses, the pink sweaters and her hair pinned into a loose bun. He liked her and he kept his eyes on her like a hawk. From in there, of course.

He sent her a card with a big heart. He sent her a second card with two small hearts. He sent her lilies in a transparent box. He sent her chocolates filled with cherries and liqueur. He sent her his regards with the lady who comes and clears up. So she got up to meet him. Perhaps the man had a problem with his leg, or his hip and that’s why he couldn’t get up? Nope, his leg was fine, his hip was fine; the man is just pure sadness. Just sadness. From morning to night, he is just sad. How can you get mad at him, when look into his heart and it’s made of gold? You can’t get angry at him. First of all, he takes it very personally, and secondly, he doesn’t deserve it. He is so sweet, poor guy. And appealing. He is always very well kempt, with his colourful pyjamas and fuzzy slippers.

He is sensitive, compassionate, charitable. He has hung a sign outside his door that reads “Solace - 24 hours”. He is tender, romantic, artistic - in everything he does. He is the person who plays waltzes and the greatest arias ever sung at full volume. But God forbid, never during quiet hours. Only in the morning or afternoon, because he follows the rules, he is polite and well-mannered. He also keeps a fully updated calendar in his head that helps him keep track of name days, birthdays and anniversaries of every guest and employee at the nursing home, and even those of their closest relatives.

He also has the means to buy a little gift for everyone, for any occasion. From the e-shop, of course. Not saying that he goes out shopping or anything. He doesn’t even get up. The lady at reception accepts the deliveries. Usually cash on delivery. A little bit like his life, which, partly because of his sensitivity, partly because of his sixth sense, partly because of his insecurity, it seems he doesn’t live it in the moment, but a little before, or a little after. It’s almost like he doesn’t exactly live life head-on, but like a crab, he walks into it turned a little sideways.


By Konstantina Tassopoulou

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