The Big Mood: Mercury goes direct

One week, one mood: Moya Lothian-Mclean’s deep-dive into the feel of the week.

Great news! Mercury is no longer in retrograde! As of 31st July 2019 it went direct”.

What does this mean? Nothing. Absolutely fuck all.

Oh alright, I’ll play along. Retrograde”, in astrological terms, means when a planet appears to go backwards in orbit. It is an optical illusion but, according to astrology, ensures that for the duration of the apparent retrograde, whatever aspect of life that planet supposedly controls will also be going backwards” too.

And don’t we know it.

Mercury rules travel, communication, contracts, codes – you know, those incredibly specific little details in life – so while it’s in retrograde, these may be fucked up for you. Going direct”, so to speak, just means things are back in order. Apparently.

Of course for the next two-weeks, Mercury is still in retro-shade” so no fear, you’ve got another 14 days in which to blame absolutely everything that goes tits-up on the whims of a large ball of gas. After that… well it goes back to being your own fault, you feckless loser (“that’s another kind of retro-shade’,” she snapped).

Mercury retrograde, Mercury direct, Mercury getting down in the DMs… apportioning responsibility elsewhere and avoiding individual agency is not just the mood of the week (although Boris Johnson dropping an investigation into the Tory MP who choke-slammed a woman because it was a matter for the previous PM” makes it horribly relevant) it’s the mood of the millennial generation.

Understandable, isn’t it? We’ve been birthed into a well-oiled socio-economic system that ensure our paths are, for many, mapped out to a great degree, no matter how unfair that seems. We would love to claw back some free will, some ability to direct our fates but in lieu of that, we’ll take the stars.

Much more romantic to believe our lives are decided by the movements of the universe, rather than man-made structures of oppression. To have faith in a narrative that transcends the grubbiness of humanity lends our existence much greater meaning and keeps us going when obstacles seem insurmountable.


There’s a time limit on shitty experiences when you adhere to astrology; Mercury retrograde lasts about three weeks so just get through the three weeks. There’s an end in sight. And if that end doesn’t materialise, well here’s the explanation: retro-shade. Just hang on a little longer and it will all be fine.

But remove those beliefs and you’re left with no hope; just endless bleak horizon, stretching to infinity. Ain’t that a kick in the head! So you know what, have your retrogrades and risings and planetary returns. Maybe we all need a little astro-magic. Big mood.

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