Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Poor Tobo

     Theodore stumbled into his apartment and let his keys drop to the floor. Still in full costume, he let out a heavy sigh and collapsed into his favorite armchair. His extra-large clown shoes flopped back and forth when he propped up his feet on the coffee table.
     Once again, his act as Tobo the Clown was met with contempt. It seemed like more people these days thought clowns were scary rather than funny. Kids used to laugh when a clown showed up at a party. Now they just cried and ran away. At the birthday he just left, some children actually threw toys at him when he tried to come close and give them a plastic flower. And almost every day now, Theodore heard another story about some adult who was getting therapy for coulrophobia—an acute fear of clowns.
     What happened to the good old days? When Theodore was a kid, Bozo was a hero and Ronald McDonald made everyone smile. The clowns were his favorite part of the circus, and he aspired to be just like them when he grew up. He spent long hours learning to juggle and make balloon animals, and his colorful outfit was complete with every classic gag from a squirting flower to a trick handkerchief. He even added his own special flair to make himself unique. Was he doing something wrong?
     Oh well, thought Theodore, I guess the times have changed. Maybe he should just listen to his mother and fall back on his accounting degree.
     With another big sigh, Theodore pulled off his fuzzy red wig and picked himself up. He went straight to the bathroom mirror to remove his fake fangs and red contact lenses. Then he began to scrub his face with makeup remover. The artificial blood he used looked incredibly realistic, but it was always a pain to clean up.

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