Everyone is having a panic attack over Mercury Retrograde. In distressed women’s terms, the planet Mercury is moving backwards; thus, ruining the modern woman’s life with missing keys, expired milk, bad hair days and ice cream that melts too fast. In this emotionally straining period from May 19th-June 11th, we’re presented with a brilliant excuse to blame the unexplainable disappointments of first world living on Mercury Retrograde. While we’re silently coping through the confusion, paranoia and anxiety, here’s everything bad that you can go ahead and blame on Mercury’s decision to move backwards. Ugh.

Bad Hair Days

Bad hair days are a product of baby-soft washed hair, humidity and MERCURY RETROGRADE. It’s going to happen to you, so you better prepare yourself for a significant spike in bad hair days that will destroy your life and make you feel like a monster with an angry cowlick. Rest assured, you can count your stars that your hair will not cooperate no matter what kind of heated force or extra hold hairspray you administer to it. Curly haired women will go into bloody street combat with frizz. Straight-haired goddesses will give birth to split ends. Women with pixie cuts will lose all hope in the lost volume of their once voluptuous styled quaff. Fly-aways will break free from the high-security prison of expensive hairspray and wind will blow from all directions. Whatever evil hair demon you’re dealing with – do not internalize it. Blame it on Mercury Retrograde.

Paranoia will make you want to die inside

My paranoia is stemmed from three things: spelling mistakes, media events and angry-worded emails. In the rush of the second-guessing, I always try to do the right thing but usually end up shooting myself in the foot. While Mercury is two-stepping backwards, your paranoia is going to reach a new level of crazy and weird things will happen to you. You’ll doubt the spelling of celebrity names, re-think the Oxford comma and read emails the wrong way. For the purpose of healthy emotional psyche, do yourself a favour and visit Google for good ol’ double-check spelling therapy. If you receive an angry email from someone you’d rather not deal with, do what you should do anyway and kill them with kindness. Extra smiley faces, exclamation marks (!!!) and questions about the weekend or comments about the beautiful weather will help. Keep your cool, and don’t let Mercury Retrograde make you doubt your grammatical confidence and emailing capabilities. You’ve got this.

Decision-making will melt your brain away

Every woman can relate to this feeling: I’M NOT IN THE MOOD FOR ANYTHING RIGHT NOW. Going out feels like a menstrual cup, work is boring, concentration is on the fritz and the safest option is to stay in bed, watch Her and download a movie soundtrack with a nice piano riff. If you can’t stay in bed and follow through with your restlessness to do nothing, this becomes problematic. Forced into social appearances, birthday parties and dinners, decision-making becomes a burden. Dressing for dates becomes a matter of group text voting, choosing a lipstick shade becomes life and death and feeling sexy is impossible. While decision-making heats up, keep your head in chilled areas. The last thing you need is a melting brain in the heat of Mercury Retrograde. Yuck!

Technology will destroy your confidence

Last week, I broke my boss’s stapler and decided not to tell him. I was defeated by a $25 stapler that refused to reload with staples. The arm was jammed, the staples fell out and there I was, fighting with a stapler for twenty minutes while I prepared for a blood-shed battle against a pile of disorganized invoices. In the heat of the poking, turning and twisting, I declared the stapler broken, only to question my human existence and capability as a full-grown woman. How had I made it this far in life? Why had I lost a battle against a stapler? If I can’t reload a stapler with staples, what on God’s beautiful planet CAN I DO?! Nothing. That’s what. And I blame Mercury Retrograde. And you should too.

Chocolate bars will become your best friend and only weapon against fate

Chocolate bars are equivalent to pepper spray during Mercury Retrograde. You carry it with you in your purse in case of danger, distress and anxiety. With Mercury Retrograde ruining your life from all angles, take a moment to buy a chocolate bar and eat it, very slowly. For a moment, you’ll forget about the bad hair day, the Rogers bill, the stained t-shirt or the bruised banana. The sweet, caramel filled square in your mouth will transport you to a place filled with sugar, creamy chocolate goodness and melting euphoria. This is the only tool you can really prepare yourself with during the next three weeks, so choose your chocolate weapon accordingly. I recommend Caramilk, Hershey’s Cookies ‘n’ Cream and/or Cadbury’s Fruit & Nut bar.

Everyone is going to sleep with each other

Okay, well this is happening all the time in Toronto anyway. But for the next three weeks, at least you can blame it on Mercury Retrograde.

Horrifically Long Commutes & Missed Streetcars

Missing the streetcar by a second is the worst thing next to spilt coffee and burning the roof of your mouth from a taco. You think you’re ahead of schedule, feeling entitled and smart, because you woke up twenty minutes earlier than the rest of the world so you could guarantee a stress-free solo spot on the aisle of seating by the window. Just like that, in a matter of a few seconds, you miss the streetcar. By the time you get on, thirty minutes later, it’s loaded with other sleepyhead commuters and you can’t move to save your life. Some dummy is standing on the steps, egg sandwich lingers in the air and a stranger’s coffee breath is infiltrating your personal space. In case you haven’t noticed, the TTC is on its own Mercury Retrograde schedule and that means that wait times are going to be longer, rides are going to smell rank and short turns will be inevitable. Prepare for the worst – bring a book and an oxygen mask.

Run-ins with exes, old colleagues, one-night stands and assholes

Great, as if these run-ins were any better before, now the awkwardness is magnified x1000. In the next three weeks, prepare to run into everyone you’ve ever tried to forget, erase or destroy from your memory. This includes ex-roommates you abandoned half-way through rental leases, ex-boyfriends who dumped you after watching the Blue Jays game, colleagues who made you feel stupid for misspelling a subject line (EVIL), and one-night stands you met while standing in line for a hot dog, still spinning in circles after a night at Dance Cave. All those awful, awkward and terrible run-ins are going to happen whether you like it or not. Force a smile, cringe inside and pretend like you’re in a rush to do laundry or something. Laundry is the best excuse of all time btw.

Now breathe. Let the countdown to June 11th begin, when the world will go back to normal, beautiful hair will be possible again, and everyone is still sleeping with each other. Until then, blame EVERYTHING on Mercury Retrograde.


  1. Cheryl Ramage
    May 29, 2015

    Emily Ouellette

  2. allstaradele
    May 29, 2015

    shedoesthecity I did eat a fruit and nut and a caramilk after realizing this was all because of #MercuryRetrograde

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