My Cousin’s Questions Part 1: “He is so similar but annoyingly different.”

For reference my cousin and her husband are monogamous. My cousin is A and her husband is K. To my horror, they were fighting over the greatest game on earth – Baseball! Ok, so the fight wasn’t specifically about baseball, just about tickets to the home team’s season opener. K had tickets for him and their son and the tickets, the timing, the logistics, and the feelings of other family members was making the use of those tickets very complicated. 

The shortest, simplest version of the argument was this:

A thought K shouldn’t use the tickets.

K thought he should.

… at some point A was explaining her perspective and what K had told her of his own perspective. So let’s make the argument a little more complicated.

A thought K shouldn’t use the tickets because the game K wanted to go to was on Friday, which meant rearranging work for both people, they were all already going to a game on Saturday with A’s parents (who were feeling jilted by the Friday tickets), and going to two games was financially irresponsible.

K thought he should because the tickets for Friday were free, rearranging work, while inconvenient was manageable, and it was a once in a lifetime chance for him to share something with his son in the way that only baseball opening day games could provide. (Plus ITS BASEBALL- don’t tell A, but I would have done a lot to use those tickets too…)

My cousin said, “I don’t get it. I don’t get how he can focus on this so much that it’s a dumb fight now. We are so similar sometimes and then… How is he so different?! Its annoying…”

To all of this I said, “Well, it makes sense to me.”

Flabbergasted, my cousin asked, “How?”

I said simply, “He’s a Sagittarius.”

Thankfully she didn’t hang up on me. I explained that Sagittarius’ (K) have very different values than Capricorns (A).

Here is a summary:

Sagittarius- likes freedom and travel. They are wanderers looking for experiences. They don’t like being constrained, confined, or being reasoned with because it’s boring.

Capricorn-  likes fulfilling responsibilities, tradition, reason, having their finances in order, and family. They don’t like… well they don’t like- full stop, I guess.

Then I re-framed her argument with him.

A thought K shouldn’t use the tickets because the Friday game seemed irresponsible with regard to work and money, hurt A’s family, and disrupted the tradition of going with their parents to the game.

K thought he should use the tickets because he values the  freedom to do what he wants, especially if that thing is exciting and has the potential to help him bond with someone else. And he can’t understand why A doesn’t feel proud of him for getting free tickets (which he thought she would like since she is always worried about money), and can’t understand why she is bothering him with boring details.

She made some skeptical sounds so I cited two other Sagittarius’ in our family: our mutual cousin who just got back from Egypt- a place he went on a whim without word to anyone else, and my mother- who will disappear into the woods for hours at a time without telling anyone.

I concluded, “of course he sees it differently because he is different… and so are you.”

“What if I don’t believe in star signs,” she added just to be pointy.

I shrugged, “You don’t have to believe in it. It can just be a framework for understanding someone who is different and gives you a language to talk about it in. We do it all the time… not because we are invested in the ideology, but because we found a way of describing ourselves that makes sense and allows us to understand each other.”  

I explained with a simple story.

E is a Cancer, which are notorious for being nostalgic and sentimental. In being such, he has a gazillion scrap-booking things (my man saves every movie ticket!). Well L and I are not Cancers, we are the other water signs, so we really can’t even get into that frame of mind most of the time. Without knowing that E values the materials because he values nostalgia and sentiment, I probably would have seen it only as junk or a waste of materials. But because I learned he is a Cancer and agree with that description, I can look at those things from a different angle and then feel differently about it myself.

My cousin only grunted- which is her way of saying “D, you might be right but I am not going to admit to that.”


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