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Bernard Barrow:
What Foods Please a Capricorn?
Originally Published in Soap Opera Digest
(January 29, 1980)

When other children are making faces over their onions and carrots, do you have one child who gobbles them up with nary a peep? While his siblings meticulously pick the mushrooms off the pizza, does he eat his portion with gusto and eye the mushrooms left on the side of their plates?

Chances are the quiet one with the grown-up taste is a Capricorn. This little man (and he seems like a junior edition of an adult from birth), serious, mature, usually reserved, is endowed with what might be considered peculiar taste buds. He has a sense of what is good for him, for he's ambitious even as a tyke, and if spinach and mushrooms will make him strong for the task ahead, that's what he'll eat. Time is on his side, and he seems to sense that his success will not be the overnight variety, but a long pull with the rewards waiting for him later in life.

Bernard Barrow fits his Capricorn image. While his career started in radio in the '40s and he's worked steadily in the theatre and stock company productions ever since (fitting in a PhD in theatre history along the way and teaching at Brooklyn College since 1955), it is his past role as Dan Kincaid on The Secret Storm and now as Johnny Ryan on Ryan's Hope that have brought him material success.

As the avaricious Dan Kincaid, his ambition and ego lead him to the outskirts of crime and ruined his chances to become governor. He married a younger, beautiful-but-scheming woman to help his image, and Belle (Marla Adams) could be classified as a Capricorn, too. The Capricorn woman will work dutifully at the side of the man whom she intends will give her the success in life to which she aspires.

Currently, Bernie is the patriarch of the Ryan clan. In character, he seems more Cancerian, but tradition is ingrained in Capricorn as well. Even if Fate decrees he's not destined to reach the heights of accomplishment, he'll continue to work hard with his head held high, waiting for the eventually pot of gold at the end of the rainbow -- something Johnny Ryan may never see, but he will never give up trying.

It would seem unlikely, though, that a Capricorn would get himself mixed up in a scheme whereby someone like Delia would ultimately get the upper hand.

Oh, Capricorns do things big -- too big and too grand for their own good at times -- but they are also too shrewd not to realize the error at some point -- and land on their feet, albeit a bit wobbly. No, if Johnny Ryan be Capricorn like Bernie, he'll ultimately triumph over Delia's machinations. After all, he was wise enough to marry Maeve, who has a practical outlook on life and a thrifty knack in the kitchen to keep things going.

Bernie, who's married to actress Joan Kaye, likes to cook when time permits. He claims a mushroom and ham omelet has been his greatest success in the kitchen, but don't drop by his house a day or two after Thanksgiving. He painfully remembers a disaster: "I once cooked a turkey soup made from the carcass, but I ruined it by putting in uncooked rice ... far too much ... and there was no liquid left." Ah yes, one of those bloated, starchy dishes a lot of us know only too well!

If you want to please a Capricorn like Bernie, fix him a barbecue in late summer and serve steak, fresh picked sweet corn and salad, with fresh peaches and vanilla ice cream for dessert.

And while Capricorns prefer fairly orthodox fare, and Bernie’s sun seems to dominate here more than his moon sign, the Aries influence does express itself at times, for he does admit he indulges in "exotic, spicy dishes: Italian, Indian and Mexican" once in awhile -- all the hot, red dishes which Arians relate to.

Because Bernie was born on a day when the moon changed from Pisces (the fish) to Aries (the ram), if we had any doubts about which he possesses, his answer to which food he doesn't like settles the question. "Mild, unexciting dishes," he responds, "of all kinds, especially fish, i.e. sole. I do like shrimp, lobster, black bass, snapper and salmon, though." See? The sharper, tastier, red-tinged variety!

Ask him if he enjoys some of the typical Capricorn favorites and his answers vary. He avoids milk for caloric reasons. And puddings? "A pet hate. I never eat them. Especially rice pudding or anything chocolate...although I have enjoyed flan on rare occasions," he concedes.

Where soup is concerned, the Capricorn usually prefers them cold and Bernie agrees. "I like cold soup in the summer, like gazpacho." And spinach and eggs? "Quiche is great."

I'll bet he was one of those little boys who ate his spinach and never had to be told to clean his plate.

©1980 Soap Opera Digest
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