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Asteroid Sleuth: The Case of the Restaurant Refusal

On Friday evening, June 22nd, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her party of seven others were asked to leave the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, without being served. The owner, Stephanie Wilkinson, politely ejected Sanders after restaurant staff expressed discomfort at serving the premiere spokesperson for the Trump administration.


Naturally the incident created an online firestorm of controversy, and in due course the President weighed in on Twitter to support his employee and trash the establishment (apparently the doors and awnings aren’t up to his standards). Some decried the lack of civility in Trump’s America, with the irony of the situation apparently lost on the supporters of the Detractor-in-Chief. Others defended the owner’s right to refuse service, stating that shaming by ordinary citizens might be one way to activate the administration’s embryonic conscience.

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In a rare moment of support for an employee, Donald Trump tweets his disgust of the Red Hen’s appearance

Whichever side you come down on, the cosmos has its starry fingers all over this incident. We’ll be looking for asteroids Sara (already active that week with the Melania Trump Zara jacket story) for “Sarah”; Sanders; Stephania for “Stephanie” and Wilkins or Wilkerson for “Wilkinson” (the owner’s first and last names); Reddish for “Red” and Hahn for “Hen” (the name of the restaurant – “Hahn” is German for Hen, as well as being a close phonetic match); and Cook, for the objecting staff (also active recently with the Anthony Bourdain suicide), as well as Lexington and Virginia, where the incident occurred.

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White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, looking happy to be there

Let’s start with the victim, or villain, of the piece, depending on your perspective. Asteroid Sara at 20 Capricorn is exact with Pluto, suggesting some traumatic or transformative moment, with perhaps a whiff of scandal. This forms a Grand Cross via a square with asteroid Sanders at 18 Libra, accompanied by Photographica and Cook, at 17 and 12 Libra respectively. Photographica is actual pictures, photos or video, but also one’s image, in a more general sense, which was what the restaurant staff (Cook) were reacting to. These cluster meaningfully atop Sanders’ (born 13 August 1982, no time available) natal Saturn at 17 Libra, representing her career, but also the act of censure or reprimand, being “called on the carpet” to account for our actions.


The other square is to Eris at 24 Aries, which indicates grievance, strife, discord and the reactions of marginalized or disrespected persons. The opposition arm of the Grand Cross leads to Mercury at 18 Cancer, the “newsworthy” component, as well as representing Sanders herself as White House Press Secretary. Also here are asteroids Lexington, the town where the incident occurred, at 23 Cancer, and Hahn, for the Red Hen, at 27 Cancer. Sanders’ natal asteroid Niobe, which has to do with pride, is involved from 22 Cancer; it’s likely her pride was hurt by the refusal of service, as was doubtless intended.

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The Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, scene of perhaps the most famous refusal of service incident since the end of Jim Crow

Pretty clear so far. We should also mention in passing that transit Cook exactly squares Sanders’ natal Nemesis, that point of opposition or undoing, at 12 Cancer, which is still within orb of transit Mercury as well. Natal Pluto at 24 Libra is in the mix also, and Sanders is about to undergo her first Pluto square to itself, next year. There is also a sense, with the exact transit Eris opposition to natal Pluto, of the tension between the “common man” (Eris) and the “powers that be” (Pluto). And although transit Pluto dealt with them directly years ago, Sanders’ natal Lexington and Sara are involved in this pattern as well, at 12 and 13 Capricorn, technically both still within Pluto’s orb.


While we’re on that area of Sanders’ natal chart, let’s also note that right next to the Sara/Lexington combination is asteroid Wilkerson at 9 Cap, and Achilles at 6. 9 Capricorn is the degree of transit Saturn’s last retrograde station, in April, and 6 Cap is where it is right now; these exact hits have been stimulating the natal points with critical, penalizing, lesson-learning energies. So we’re seeing there a referent for the owner (Wilkerson) who imposed the penalty (Saturn), strongly activated by Saturn’s station, and the principle of a weakness or vulnerability (Achilles), activated by Saturn in real time.

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Stephanie Wilkinson, owner of the Red Hen, who ejected Sanders’ party after staff complained

All these points, Achilles through Sara, are involved in a remarkable natal Grand Trine with natal Whitehouse and Mercury at 6 and 8 Virgo (perfect for the eventual White House Press Secretary, the official mouthpiece of the president, no? Incidentally, Sanders got that job with transit Pluto exactly squared her natal Saturn, career) and a bundle of energies in Taurus, comprising Karma (the results of our actions) at 5 Taurus, and an absolutely stunning combination of Hahn at 11 Taurus with Cook and Wilkins (the alternate referent for Wilkinson), both at 12 Taurus, natally combining the restaurant, staff and owner for the scene of Sanders’ discomfiture. Currently hanging out in that cosmic neck of the woods is transit Nemesis, that point of obstruction and frustrated ambition, at 15 Taurus, and transit Wilkerson, the owner again, which at 6 Taurus not only conjoins natal Karma but is also involved with the ongoing transit Whitehouse/Uranus conjunction, at 2 and 1 Taurus, the source of so much controversy recently for administration officials.


To return to the day in question, the primary focus was the applying opposition of the transit Sun to Saturn, then at 1 Cancer and 6 Capricorn. This in itself can suggest a period of testing, or being called to account, of reprimand or punishment. Sanders’ natal asteroid Sanders at 3 Aries walks right into this opposition to create a T-Square, focusing these energies on her personally. With the Sun is transit asteroid Reddish at 3 Cancer, that second referent for the Red Hen restaurant, exactly squared natal Sanders. (Natally, Sanders has Reddish at 21 Scorpio closely squared the 20 Leo Sun, suggesting some importance in her biography; she also has asteroid Lie at 24 Leo, conjoining her Sun, so uttering falsehoods comes naturally to her, an invaluable asset in her current job.) With Saturn is transit Stephania at 0 Capricorn, for Stephanie Wilkinson, bringing together the punishment itself (Saturn) with the one who meted it out (Stephania). Stephania’s square to natal Sanders clearly shows the conflict between them. (Incidentally, asteroid Sanders is stationary in Sanders’ chart, establishing this point, her future spouse’s surname, as a major factor in her life; the other point at station natally is asteroid Stephania at 23 Sagittarius.)

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Sanders with her father, Mike Huckabee, former Baptist minister, Governor of Arkansas, GOP presidential candidate, and Fox News host

Transit Virginia, the state involved, falls at 2 Leo, where it pairs with transit Wilkins at 7 Leo, and together these square Sanders’ natal grouping of Jupiter, Mars and Troemper, at 3, 5 and 7 Scorpio. It was due to her role as the political (Jupiter) champion (Mars) of the President (Troemper) that Sanders came into conflict with (square) Wilkinson’s (Wilkins) staff, the confrontation taking place in Virginia.


This incident may seem trivial on its face, but the prominence of resonating PNAs in the sky and the birth chart suggests that it may have a profound impact on Sanders. Her natal asteroid Sisyphus, which relates to endless repetition and pointless effort, lies at 21 Libra, right in the midst of the Grand Cross and exactly squared by Pluto’s retrograde station last April. For Sarah Huckabee Sanders, this job may be feeling like just one damn thing after another.



Alex Miller is a professional writer and astrologer, author of The Black Hole Book, detailing deep space points in astrological interpretation, and the forthcoming Heaven on Earth, a comprehensive study of asteroids, both mythic and personal. Alex is a frequent contributor to “The Mountain Astrologer”, “Daykeeper Journal”, and NCGR’s Journals and “Enews Commentary”; his work has also appeared in “Aspects” magazine, “Dell Horoscope”, “Planetwaves”, “Neptune Café” and “Sasstrology.” He is a past president of Philadelphia Astrological Society, and a former board member for the Philadelphia Chapter of NCGR.

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