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In the stars

Some people are just interested in my palate.

And I don't mind it a bit.

When word first filtered in about a planned chili, stew and soup cook-off in Dearing, I secretly hoped someone would call and ask me to be a judge. (I do look the part of a food judge, don't I? Plus, it was for a really good cause - fighting cancer.)

So, when the opportunity did present itself, I was more than happy to oblige. I ended up on the three-man stew team, which meant I tested a couple of kinds of catfish stew, a couple of chicken stews, a beef stew variant and some pork hash.

For the most part, it was all good. And very filling.

But Bill Welch's catfish stew really stood out - so much so that I had three bowls during the test session.

After the judging, it was time to sample the sweets - cakes, brownies, fudge. It was more than enough to shatter that New Year's resolution I made to lose weight.

But - as my taste buds and expanding waistline will vouch - it was absolutely worth it. (Plus, I got an invitation to be a judge at the Dearing Mayfest's burger battle. That made the deal even sweeter.)

Maybe my weight is just fate.

It wouldn't be the only thing - according to a recent study - that is affected by the stars. The study considered the past six years of driving records of 100,000 North Americans and researchers sorted the drivers by astrological sign, according to a report from Reuters.

And I'm in the group at the bottom of the barrel: Libras.

According to the study, people born between Sept. 23 and Oct. 22 are the most likely to have an accident or get a ticket.

Now, I've been lucky: My driving record is fairly clean, only blemished by a couple of minor accidents and a speeding ticket - all more than 10 years ago. It just goes to prove, you can't believe everything written in the stars.

Still, Aquarians - those birthdays between Jan. 20 and Feb. 18 - are next in line and should be careful, too.

There could be a chunky Libra speeding toward a chili challenge near you.

Meanwhile, a former Thomson High Lady Bulldog is tearing up the court at Brewton-Parker. Senior Monique Martin has racked up all kinds of accolades for the Lady Barons this season. The team improved to 16-3 on the season last week, as they scored 59 points in the second half to beat Columbia College 102-66.

Monique had a double-double - 37 points and 13 rebounds - in the game. She's been praised for her leadership on and off the court, and stands as another great example of the kinds of young people produced by local athletic programs.

Web posted on Thursday, January 25, 2007

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