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Entertainment is not always to be desired

I read everything in the paper. When the local paper and a weekly news magazine are your only sources of information from the outside world, you don’t want to miss anything. Occasionally I even read my horoscope, not because I give it any credence but because sometimes it’s funny.

Last week I read my horoscope and found this: “You will be entertaining and attract a lot of attention. Criticism can be expected. Answer questions with honesty and integrity.”

Oy! The third issue is a give-away since I never could lie convincingly. And I can handle a little criticism as long as I’m permitted to cry during the process. It’s that first statement that concerns me. I’ve known astrologers, psychics and healers that are obviously what they claim to be. I’ve even had a few psychic experiences of my own. But I know that bulk predictions based on birth date are as substantial as political promises.

Nevertheless, it stirred the cauldron of memory and I felt myself writhing in remembered embarrassment recalling some of the ways in which I’ve been entertaining and attracted attention.

These days I usually entertain only Shadow cat and wildlife, but now and again I get publicly tangled in my own confusion. Recently I looked over my shoulder while pushing a shopping cart. Shopping carts can be cantankerous, but this one had a sense of humor. The tower of paper towels nearly buried us and entertained lots of people, but no one was hurt and nothing expensive was damaged.

It was on the stage of the Crescent Elk auditorium that I first demonstrated my ability to be entertaining at my own expense. It was Christmas season and the first grade angels filed onto the stage before beaming parents and grandparents. As we did our little shtick I stepped on the hem of my gown, sprawled flat and nearly slid off the edge, causing front row parents to surge forward to catch me.

It was the beginning of a lifetime pattern. If three guilty kids were proclaiming our innocence over the cookie jar incident, I’d drop mine.

Back in the days when I gave public presentations to various groups I was always nervous but knew my best hope was to open my mouth and trust Great Mystery to handle the details.

That led to my beginning an address to the Methodist Women’s Friendship Circle by blurting, “About 20 years ago I had DTs in the drunk tank just across the street.” I have no idea what else I said since I can’t hear when I talk and I was stunned at my unplanned revelation. But they laughed a lot and afterwards fed me and kindly said it was a great speech.

So you can see why the threat of being entertaining makes me nervous. I’m thrilled to announce that my opinion of syndicated horoscopes remains unchanged. I didn’t make a public spectacle of myself last week and all is well in my world.

 Reach Inez Castor, a longtime Triplicate columnist, at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

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