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Reflections on astrology and dogs
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I’m often accused of being a political junkie, as indicated by most of my  writings for the Southern Standard and beyond. I am, of course, guilty on all charges, with ample evidence to convict me.

This week, though, I’ve decided to slip the surly bonds of politics in favor of things a little more light-hearted and maybe even whimsical.

For example, did you know that 2018 is known as “a year of the dog” in Chinese astrology?

Me neither, until I saw something about it while channel surfing the other day. It reminded me of my college days in Omaha where I artfully avoided taking astronomy in a bespectacled and boring professor’s class.
In case you’re wondering by now, I do know the difference between astrology and astronomy.

Astrology is the study of the movements and relative positions of celestial bodies and their supposed influence on human affairs. Astronomy is the science of celestial objects, space, and the physical universe. The former is called “pseudo-science,” the latter simply “science.”

So, which one is followed with avid daily interest by millions of Americans and many more around the world? If you answered “astrology” you are correct, no matter what your sign is. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve cast a wishful eye at the astrology page in this paper, say, three times a week. Not that I actually believe what it says about Leos like me, but to paraphrase a certain billionaire celebrity recently in the news, I find the advice ‘intriguing.”

The truth is I’m much more interested in dogs than “years of the dog.” Still, I find comfort and joy in reading about the “Personality of the Dog” in Chinese Zodiac sources. I agree dogs are our most loyal friends. They’ve befriended, guarded, and protected their owners for eons. We see them now, all across our nation and beyond, extending a friendly paw to one and all.

 As my attentive readers are well aware, I love dogs. Always have, always will. On the cusp of 80, I remember all the dogs I’ve ever had, and fondly so. Sometimes, late at night, they come to me in dreams, so real that I can see their shining eyes, and feel their tender touch, so soft upon my skin.

Now I’m doubly blessed with my two oft-mentioned “canine-Americans,” Big Dog and Buddy.

They are my close and constant companions, always friendly and always fun to be with. And they’re as glad to see me when I come back from the mailbox as they were when I came back from California.

I love “Dog People” as well. You know who you are, and I do too.

Even if I don’t know you personally, I know what you stand for. And that’s good enough for me.
Retired Army Col. Thomas B. Vaughn can be reached at tbvbwmi@blomand.net.