Are You An Annie or a Jane? The Full Quiz

Annie, ready for action {{PD}}

Annie Oakley and Jane Canary were two women of the American Wild West who made an unforgettable mark on the cultural landscape, each in her own unique style. As carriers of the Archetype of Venus (as all women carry this Archetype) they met relationships, especially romantic ones, with radically divergent approaches. One inspired abiding loyalty and admiration from the partner, but may have sacrificed spontaneity of expression, and may have avoided sampling a variety of life experiences as well as a variety of relationships–she may have settled for ‘good enough,’ for the nice guy who loved her, rather than sought out the partner that epitomized her ideal; the other repeatedly acted spontaneously, acting out with little care for the impression her choices left or the consequences they created, following her primal inclinations and yet allowing her image to be so wild (and anti-attractive by societal standards) that she may have blocked some relationships she longed for. In one case control of the Self and the image brought fame, stability, loyalty, high regard–but did it compromise the desire nature, or the romantic one? In the other case behavior rooted in the impulses and wants of the Self created an adversarial relationship with society that at once excluded and awarded a special, peripheral place–but that place was largely unable to fulfill intimate relationship needs and desires, so much did it contradict what was held up as appealing, and this makes us ask, Did the desire nature truly suffer, or did the outsider position allow a stance of unrequited love that, in a sense, allowed her to ‘have her cake and eat it too’?

Jane, also ready for action {{PD}}

Now the question becomes, Which prairie dame are you most like, in terms of love life? Do you sabotage what you want, do you ‘settle,’ do you act out, do you remain rigidly in control? Let’s see . . .

A. When you meet a new potential paramour, you are most likely to . . .

  1. buy him or her many stiff drinks (or other intoxicant of choice), and at some point in the evening, either literally or figuratively, punch him or her in the face
  2. directly compete, and persist until she or he rolls over and submits
  3. be too shy to even make eye contact; you simply hover and hope they notice
  4. behave in a very lady-like (or modest-manly) fashion, following all the formalities
  5. introduce yourself, act like an adult, and avoid games all together
  6. flirt shamelessly, pushing all the while for an ‘instant relationship’

B. Courtship for you typically consists of . . .

  1. rough stuff
  2. going about your business
  3. losing your boundaries, inhibitions, and/ or mind on a regular basis, and telling the object of your affection exactly how you feel
  4. allowing him or her to worship you, possibly only from afar
  5. assessing how good a match you are, and proceeding at a reasonable rate to date, initiate physical intimacy, become engaged, and marry
  6. flirting shamelessly, and pushing for more and more commitment

C. Which do you find most attractive? (Use real life as a guide)

  1. Someone unavailable
  2. Someone steadfast
  3. Someone who keeps your relationship a secret–it makes it more exciting
  4. Someone who’s more in love with you than you are with them
  5. Someone your equal in social station, education, religious belief, and with a similar life agenda
  6. The guy who gets you pregnant/ the girl who gets pregnant, or the one you quit your job and moved for

D. Your ideal date would be . . .

  1. a wild night painting the town red, most of which you won’t remember
  2. a quiet dinner, maybe with celebrities, and early to bed
  3. a night around the campfire, getting to know each other, then sharing a bedroll under the stars
  4. early dinner, target practice, then half the night spent traveling to the next town, or your modern-day equivalent–you never stop working

E. What do you really want?

  1. Love
  2. Success
  3. Whatever you can’t have
  4. Security

F. Do your love relationships tend to be . . .

  1. an aggressive mis-match?
  2. a situation where you are admired and adored, and your feelings are just a little cooler than your partner’s?
  3. unrequited?
  4. guarded, and carefully controlled?

The quiz, of course, isn’t in any way scientific, nor does it necessarily make sense! Your answers will, however, say a little something about how you approach things–so, take both questions and answers with a sense of humor and a figurative tongue-in-cheek, and know that though not everything in each answer will be right about you, some part of it will apply. For A, B, and C, 1. is 6 points, 2. is 5 points, 3. is 4 points and so on; for D, E, and F, 1. is 4 points, 2. is 3 points, and so on. And the conclusions are . . .

27-32 points: Though you’re trying hard to get what you want, more often than not relationships end in shambles, with every encounter almost certainly topped off by screaming, crying, vomiting, and/ or a general level of Self-sabotage that would astonish someone sober. It’s not your fault that your emotions are so compelling; the problem comes when you try to disguise or ignore them and they leak out anyway. Lack of acceptance of both yourself and your desires is the root of this extreme behavior, even if your extremism is manifesting in the opposite, a too-controlled affect. Try to cultivate healthy emotional expression and good manners, as there’s certainly a deficit of one, the other, or both.

22-26 points: You may get along very well socially, but closer inspection of your habits would show that you either pathologically don’t care or that you are afraid: of crazy actin’ in relationship, of emotional disorder, of what you see as the untidiness of love, and you particularly don’t want it to derail your career or life plans. A little loosening up in the activities department, plus a reminder that others have feelings, too, and you could be stepping on them inadvertently, will go a long way toward upping your social stock.

17-21 points: You are too cool by half; what you see as prudent may actually keep you from the warm interactions we all crave. Being a little more open, and a little more demonstrative, won’t hurt (though the fear of it doing so may be behind your regimentation and insistence on control). Try to relax and enjoy yourself–people like you!

13-16 points: behavior that is ghost-like may be the hallmark of your social presence; you may be overly sensitive and anticipate hurt, where others barely notice your modest input. Don’t be so shy, and realize that no one will reject you if you pretend to be invisible, but they can’t love you, either.

 9-12 points: You are all business–literally, relationships may be more like transactions for you. Let your heart out of its sad cage–I’m sure you have a wonderful smile, if you’d only dust it off and put it out for show.

6-8 points: You’re still waiting to grow up–meanwhile, stop dating and work on maturing your sense of obligation and responsibility. Learn a skill, make yourself attractive by pursuing your own interests.

FYI, I scored 22–and I do need to loosen up!  🙂

There’s another way to look at the quiz. Mostly #1 answers says you incline toward the Self-destructive behaviors of Jane; her drinking and her outsider acting out were just ways of dealing with overwhelming feelings of vulnerability and emotions that didn’t know where to go, while mostly #2 says traits are more along the line of the extremely disciplined Annie, with emotions channeled to the ostensibly positive and socially acceptable, though maybe too buttoned-down and possibly denying the wilder and more adventurous urges. #3 in majority implies the sadder, shyer side of Jane may be dominant; this is the persona that finds it painful to interact, and may take on the guise of wallflower, just to get by. A preponderance of #4 says that there may be far too much control, taking the Annie coolness and guardedness to a new high.

The first three questions have two more choices each; #5 hints that you may be taking following social convention too far, and #6 speaks of the need to extricate the Self from adolescent drama involving others.

Being in Love: Are You a Jane or an Annie? Part 2

Following on our discussion of frontier icon Annie Oakley, let’s look at another famous-in-her-lifetime figure of the Wild West, Martha Jane Canary or Cannary, better known as ‘Calamity Jane.’ I’ve already discussed Jane’s strong and unique manifestation of the Chiron energy in ‘Chiron in the Natal Chart’ Her birth data is seriously in dispute in terms of date and even year, though the place is not, but I chose to distill what is reliably known, including from her own remarks, and rectified her birth to May 1, 1852  3:59:24 LMT at Princeton, Missouri USA, with the event that drew my attention to her in the first place being her death within spitting distance (certainly a Jane-appropriate image!) of her Chiron Return.

In many ways Jane’s early life was a mirror opposite to Annie’s; Jane lost her mother at age thirteen and her father soon after, but even before the paternal death some accounts contend that she was literally abandoned by her struggling (and insensitive) father and brothers in Virginia City, Nevada. When her parents were alive Jane was barely able to attend school, spending her time instead caring for her many siblings (which she tried to continue to do after both the mother’s and father’s deaths), and though, like Annie, she learned to ride and shoot in childhood, she was very much on her own by adolescence, often working in whorehouses (likely as a cook, some say as a prostitute), moving from town to town, still dressing and living conventionally as a female.

There is some speculation that Jane suffered sexual abuse at many points in her early life, and this is bolstered by her own cryptic remarks later in life; it’s not unreasonable to see her flight to male attire and manners as a way to protect against such attentions. We know that she adopted male frontier dress when she broke once and for all with what remained of her family; this is also the time when she began to work as a scout for the US Army, and shortly thereafter her first major exhibition of bravery and skill came to light, when she swooped in on horseback and plucked up her commanding officer who had fallen from his mount in the midst of an Indian skirmish. It was widely acknowledged that without Jane’s rescue he would’ve been killed; it was the episode that began her legend, and is in character very similar to other instances when Jane went forward into dangerous circumstances in order to aid others. Other examples include her willingness to nurse the ill during a virulent epidemic in Deadwood, and seeing an out-of-control stage being chased by pursuing hostiles, climbing aboard at full speed, and guiding the coach into the next station, saving both passengers and the day’s mail shipment–and staving off attack by her unusual dress, once the pursuers recognized her–let me explain.

Jane’s man-costumes and cuss-like-a-cowboy mannerisms may have brought her ridicule and rejection by the society in which she grew up, but afforded her an unusual protection when traveling the plains and mountains of the West. Native tribes typically recognized those we would today term gay or transgendered as specially in touch with the unseen–it was considered a gift to have the body of one sex but the strong spirit of the other–and Jane was viewed this way, simply by her choice of clothing and her behavior. The Native Americans perceived her as someone who was not to be confronted or violated in any way, a kind of emissary for the spirit world who must be allowed to move about and act at will; as a consequence, the only violence or violation she experienced on her travels came from the society that made her, not the ones indigenous to the territory.

We don’t know whether she liked the ladies, but we do know she liked the men– in particular, the love of her life, Wild Bill Hickok, to whom she claimed to have been married, and with whom she claimed to have had a daughter, who was given up for adoption. This is widely disputed, particularly by those who want to keep Hickok’s image as squeaky-clean as possible; I tend to believe the claim, if only because it was one thing she stuck to and didn’t embellish. It seems to me a singular piece of truth, if one proclaims the fact of a relationship and offspring in the face of displeasing the very person on Earth (Hickok, in her case) you most love. The reality is that Hickok was a drunk himself, one who had even less success at making a living in his chosen profession (cards) than he would admit; his days as a gunslinger were long gone by the time he met Calamity, and it’s possible the two were together even as he publicly disavowed any relationship–after all, a marriage and child with a notorious alcoholic who violates every social rule of conduct isn’t the kind of thing Bill would’ve seen as glamourizing the ‘gentleman sharpshooter’ image he cultivated.

The Dude who captured Jane's heart: Wild Bill Hickok

Jane had a second child later, with her late-in-life, much younger husband; this child was another girl who Jane kept but saw little of, boarding her with a family while she continued to roam the West. Eventually she joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, but after many appearances dead drunk (and many disasters created in towns they visited) Jane was fired. She also worked for the Army, as a bullwhacker (one who drives a team of oxen using only a whip and their voice), and was for hire in a variety of capacities–and she made some money from a series of brief memoirs, and as well appeared as a character in many ‘Penny Dreadfuls’ of the era, pamphlet-novels of people and adventures of the American West.

Now honestly, doesn’t the nickname ‘Calamity’ clue you in that this person was in some major way chaotic? There’s even dispute about how she got this name in the first place, and it’s symptomatic of the way the facts of her life have been lost and distorted in Jane’s own unreliable reporting and the mythos building of any sparsely populated, wild, exciting venue where tall tales are a natural outgrowth of the loneliness and challenges of the environment. Jane, like all of us, seems to have dealt with her internal experiences and external interactions in the best way she knew how–and in her case, obscuring matters (Neptune) as well as being a one-of-a-kind (Uranus) seems to have met her needs in the best way she could manage.

For Jane, the Saturn/ Uranus conflict of energies we mentioned earlier does begin to explain things: they are conjunct each other in the 1st in Taurus, giving us a picture of wholly disparate inclinations–following the rules v. rebellion, individuality v. conformity, structure v. anarchy–that must be acted out physically by the individual (Earth placement, 1st House). These two also sit conjunct Pluto, Mercury, and the Sun, making for a complex that shows a powerful (Pluto) need to communicate (Mercury) the Soul (Sun) intents materially (Taurus)–this suggests that Jane very deliberately chose the messages she sent–there was nothing accidental about her path or her behavior.

What we may find even more striking, though, as we inspect her chart is that there are a number of ‘tells’ here that let us know a great deal about both the inner state and the importance of relationships to Jane–the Uranian independence and rebellion against reality (all Uranus/ Saturn conjunction effects) she exhibited hid a strong sensitivity to others. For starters, we have Libra on the 7th, as well as a Libra Moon; and yet there is also a Jupiter in Scorpio opposition to the Sun–did Jane feel both a need to transform herself in order to have a role in society, and society’s sting because of it? And this accompanied by the emotional need to connect with others, a literal need to interact (Libra). With placement of Jupiter in the 7th plus the opposition to the Sun/ Soul, it might have been very easy for her to project injury onto the social sphere, but with Jupiter ruler Pluto in the 1st conjunct the Sun, we see an energy closed circuit that fed a feedback loop that featured Soul needs v. society, at the very least inclining her toward change/ destruction of the Self in order to fit into society (and yet remain both separate from and rebellious toward–Uranus in the 1st).

We have seen, in the Libra connections, that Jane had a very basic need for relationship; we have many more relationship clues here, though, of a much more personal and definitive nature: Libra ruler Venus is in the 3rd in Gemini (need to communicate, to share and communicate love) sesquiquadrate Earth (the Material Purpose and the love and acceptance urge are continually trying to adjust to each other, unsuccessfully), conjunct Pallas (the natural inclinations as a woman are wise and should be followed, if they could only be known, see square to Sedna), and opposed Chiron (unconscious projection of hurt as coming from without; also the tendency to believe others may carry Chirotic skills that are actually her own). Venus is also square Sedna; could there be a more obvious indicator of one who doesn’t know what love really feels like, who doesn’t know her own worth as a woman? Jupiter conjunct the Earth means that every material encounter is likely to be not only exaggerated, but to carry the aura of being representative of the social order–something we know from the Sun/ Jupiter opposition Jane felt alienated from.

With Mars in Leo Jane’s ideal man was someone who put himself center stage–this fits Hickok–and with Juno exact conjunct Neptune at 10 Pisces in the 12th, Jane may have been totally deluded about what was truly empowering to her; as well, the partner image, shown by the sign opposite Juno, suggests that a man who was critical and judgmental may have felt ‘right.’ Pisces and the 12th probably only contributed to the tendency to long for connection and yet sabotage it through her feelings of rebellion and separateness. Finally we should note Chiron in Capricorn, opposed Venus, square the Moon (emotional hurt as a ‘given’ in life), trine Pluto (fueling the Self-destructive urges), Uranus (rebellion from hurt!), Saturn (conformity hurts too!), and Mercury (communication as wounding instrument)–though all of these in contact with Chiron could also promise support to the Capricorn-themed skills, once awakened. Chiron also makes a wide quincunx (more than 1.5 degrees, less than 2) to Zeus, which suggests that, at least mentally and emotionally (and perhaps stemming from early life sexual violations) Jane was continually adjusting to the sense of assault, and the ambitious wilfulness, of someone like Hickok, to her own detriment.

Jane was, if we look below the surface, a romantic, and a brave one, willing to risk her own well-being to accomodate the needs of others, though this caring attitude was carefully and deliberately hidden under confusion, Self-destruction, and personal discord. Where Jane was a maelstrom of emotion and conflicting attitudes, Annie was even-keeled, persistent, buttoned-down; the estimation of which set of choices is superior rests with whether you see freedom (and consequent rejection) as preferable to constraint (and consequent acceptance), or whether the discipline of Annie would’ve seemed stifling, and quickly made you want to join Jane in howling at the Moon.

Next, the quiz! And thank you for being so patient–unexpected challenges have made it tough for me to work on the blogs as much as I’d like (though this post was almost finished when I lost most of it about three days ago–it took me that long to get back to it!) but I should be around more often in days to come.

Picture is historical and widely available on the internet.

Being in Love: Ladies, Are You An Annie Oakley or A Calamity Jane?

Calamity Jane 2For those unfamiliar with the North American West and its history, Calamity Jane (left) and Annie Oakley (below) are two women who left a mark on the Collective consciousness through their unusual talents and choices. At a time when women were typically relegated to roles either as an accessory (the upper classes) or of toil (the lower), these two carved places for themselves in male-dominated areas of accomplishment. Both were crack shots who largely made their living from their ability with firearms; both dressed unconventionally; both were celebrities in their own lifetimes–but that’s where the similarities end. The two were radically different in how they conducted themselves, and in their relationships–and this is what we must look at if we’re to sort those of us who are ‘Annies’ from those who are ‘Janes.’Annie Oakley 2

Now, there’s nothing wrong with being a ‘Jane’ or an ‘Annie’; this is more about assessing essential approaches to life and relationships that we may mistake as freeing when they’re actually undermining to our intentions. This is the real difference between the historical characters: Annie turned her unconventional inclinations into a long, productive, and impressive show business career that demanded discipline and persistence and may have required a bit of an emotional straightjacket; Jane let her inclinations and emotions overwhelm her, leading to outstanding instances of bravery and compassion (likely flowing from that spirit of independence and emotional exuberance), interspersed with excessive, debilitating drinking and confrontational anger (expressed through words, dress, and all manner of Self-sabotage). Astrologically it might initially appear to be a stark Saturn v. Uranus quandary in the natal chart, and this does fit for both these women, but I would also include a look at Chiron and Neptune, specifically, as they apply to hurt that may be acted out, and the factor of illusion as it served or ruined the reputation and injured or benefitted the individual (as well as the obvious factor of escape via substance abuse).

Annie Oakley (13 August 1860 no time known Darke County, Ohio) learned to shoot young, in order to supplement the family income by hunting and selling game, and she was so successful that she paid off her mother’s mortage by the time she was 15. Frank Butler, frontiersman, showman, and entrepreneur, was with a troupe of traveling marksmen who challenged the local talent as part of the show; Annie took the challenge, and beat him, hitting 25 out of 25, while Frank only hit 24. Annie is throughout her life described as small, serious, tidy, self-contained, calm, modest, and appealing–Frank fell in love immediately, and the two married and traveled, performing trick shooting with various groups, and finally with a circus, which lasted for a year. Then they joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, the top show of its kind, and traveled North America and Europe for 16 years. They had no children, but they did have a beloved dog, Dave, that allowed Annie to shoot an apple from his head as part of the act. During both the Spanish-American War and World War 1, Annie offered to recruit and train a unit of female marksmen–and both times the government declined the offer. The after-effects of several train and automobile accidents finally caught up with Annie, and she died in 1926, with Frank refusing to eat after her death; he died 18 days later.

Annie has a strong chart, one that may have prompted her to choose her course early and stick with it. She has a Leo Sun conjunct Saturn, perfect for a serious showperson in a line that requires strict control and discipline–certainly, she embodied this configuration. The Sun is opposed Chiron, suggesting that she may have chosen very early to reject the idea of herself as wounded, or a victim, even though her early life was tough in some respects. Chiron is sextile Pallas–healing through use and development of skills–and sesquiquadrate Vesta–perhaps showing some discomfort with the unusual home situation for the times (always traveling, no children) and the unconventional image she presented. Her Sun is also trine Pallas–she was the epitome of the competent, adept warrior–and quincunx retro Mars–accomodating the Self to a more masculine approach, adopting firearms–and this suggests she could’ve been intimidated by them at first–she wouldn’t be the only person to have become very competent in an effort to overcome a fear. Sun and Saturn are quincunx Neptune–implying she may have had to adjust her dreams and fantasies to the reality with which she was presented; and yet Neptune conjuncts Sedna, sesquiquadrates Mercury, and squares Juno, again echoing some discomfort with the image presented, with what she was communicating, and there is the notion that, in fact, rather than having to adjust her dreams, she didn’t even know what they were! Perhaps they were suppressed so thoroughly (Saturn–through a sense of duty and necessity) that they never even broke through to consciousness (Neptune).

All this says that Annie was an almost archetypal incarnation of Pallas (in Aries) and Saturn energies, and that she both rejected (the negative) and raised to a high skill level (the positive) her Chiron attributes; Neptune shows as a repository for all she didn’t connect to, and yet she may have also served as a screen upon which Collective fantasies of an ideal female of the frontier were projected. This is in sharp contrast to Jane, about whom we’ll talk in part two, which will also include a quiz that will help you decide if you’re a Jane or an Annie, and what this might mean for your love life.

Photos are historical and widely available on the net.