Sadly the Queen declined Nicky Haslam's invitation to attend his unofficial 69th birthday party on October 16 at Parkstead House - he tells my unpaid agent Fish (portrait below) that he has had HM's polite kiss-off framed. This is a coda to his current Vanity Fair interview in which he wonders aloud about having her over along with the 800 on his guest list. But perhaps he was unwise to add: "The trouble is, if Charles and Camilla come, you've got to have the sniffing dogs, and the security. That's a bore. But it would be fun, wouldn't it? I think she likes a jolly, the Queen." Far too familiar and revealing of HM's inner drives.
Parkstead House, on the edge of Richmond Park
Let's have a glimpse at Nicky's horoscope. Nicky was born on September 27, 1939, in Buckinghamshire: I don't have his clock time of birth so I can't calculate his ascendant. He's a very interesting Libran in that his Moon's in Pisces: improbable as it may seem this will tend to make him deeper than he appears. This combo always promises an advanced creativity; very occasionally, delusion. You never have an easy life with this Moon.
Libra draws him to aesthetics, to ideas of beauty; the Moon in such a philosophical or spiritual sign will make him fundamentally indifferent to what others think even though paradoxically he gives the impression of snobbishness and preoccupation with status. I should have thought that in his personal relationships separating the dream from reality was his life-long challenge.
The Sun in his 4th house (Cancer dominated) emphasises the importance of his family name - Cancer is associated with ideas of what is "home" - and this placement usually brings late maturity recognition. It's as well to bear in mind that only recently has he been treated a little more seriously as a writer and public figure: go back a bit and you just have a airy-fairy party pseud name-dropping his fellow guests and decor clients.
Venus in his 4th house (Cancer again) tells me - even if I didn't know this is Haslam's chart - of a life dedicated to socialising. Country interests are pronounced. His Saturn in the 11th house adds to the paradox: he may call 10,000 people "friends" but in reality he has very few. His basic nature is quite serious and selective. His Moon in the 9th house opens him up to spiritual ideas so that his few actual friends see and hear a very different Haslam. His face in repose is not a happy one.
Goodness. The things one learns through the irrational arts. His prejudice against cuff-links worn during daylight hours, however, remains utterly ridiculous.
The artist Fish