Sign Language

'What's your sign?' Whether you believe or not, it can be helpful to reflect on traits and tendencies.

Do people still ask, “So, what’s your sign?” on first dates (or first messages on dating apps)? I’ve always tried to avoid the question. As a Gemini, I apparently have dual personalities – trust me, that’s not the best thing to say when you’re trying to impress someone. 

Zodiac signs, moon rising, mercury in retrograde … I’ve never paid attention to what this all means for humankind. But I have to admit: I learned my primal zodiac sign over the holidays and it continues to be a great conversation starter. The sign is based on your birth date and year, it represents your instinctive nature, and outcomes range from T-Rex to leafy sea dragon.

According to primalastrology.com, I’m a great white shark. The overall description is spot on, even the not so flattering traits. It says members of this sign are the most restless of the primal zodiac and need a constant stream of new experiences to keep them mentally healthy. They never tire of new people, places, and adventures. 

In January, after traveling to four cities in Ohio, including my alma mater for a girls weekend, I flew to Phoenix for SGIA’s Congress of Committees; Long Beach for Impressions Expo; Los Angeles to meet with Big Picture’s new textiles columnist, Kathryn Sanders; Las Vegas for EFI Connect; San Francisco to remind myself (and my fiancé) we still live there; and wine country just north of Sonoma for a friend’s birthday. I’m writing this letter from Clearwater Beach, Florida, as I attend the Wallcoverings Association Annual Meeting. For some, that’s enough new people, places, and adventures to last a decade.

“Aren’t you tired?” ask my friends, family, peers, and hotel staff when I check in at 6 a.m. from a red-eye flight. The answer is always yes. Of course I’m tired, but the exhaustion leaves my body the second I’m learning something unique about our industry, catching up with a board member, discussing women in print, or having a glass of wine with loved ones. (Coffee helps, too; I’m only human.)

In a more aggressive description of a great white shark, the site states the animal must keep moving constantly or it will suffocate and die. If you don’t change, you die, right? Now, I don’t think I’m going to keel over if I say no to a conference or a weekend getaway (although I will have major FOMO), and I know I don’t need a website to tell me who I am, but it’s fascinating to take a look at these traits and see if there’s a connection. 

It will come to no one’s surprise the suggested job description for a great white is one that combines travel with human interaction, like writing and reporting. I’m still not sure how much I believe in astrology or if I’m going to dive any deeper than the one-page descriptor, but it’s somewhat validating that how I feel is echoed in some way. For me, being stagnant mentally and physically isn’t living. 

So, what’s your sign? Perhaps uncaging your “great white” will allow you and your company to swim to greatness.

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