149. That Dang Groundhawg

Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania is the home of Punxsutawney Phil, the world’s best known groundhog.  Today is his day. Groundhog Day. In four hours or so after I post this blob, Phil will step out of a burrow, see or not see his shadow, return or not return to the burrow, and thus make his prediction as to whether or not we’ll be having 6 more weeks of winter or whether we’ll have an early spring.

Unfortunately, Phil is a fraud.

1.  First of all, groundhog Punxsutawney Phil isn’t a hog.  He’s a woodchuck – a rodent.  If you don’t mind his buck teeth, he’s cute all right, but when the wood chips are down – let’s face it –  Phil is a rat.

2.  Phil is not very accurate.  Over the past 120 years or so, he’s only been accurate 39 percent of the time.  I’m sure Octo-woman can do better than that. Read her predictions further on.

3.  Phil operates under false pretenses. He doesn’t live in a hole in the ground that he dug himself like any self-respecting groundhog would do.  He lives in a library. He gets plenty of star attention each February 2 but the other 364 days of the year, America’s most famous furry forecaster spends his time not in the ground but in a climate-controlled enclosure next to the children’s section of the Punxsutawney Memorial Library. He shares his pad with his “wife” Phyllis and a couple of other groundhogs. So much for a groundhog’s natural habitat.  No wonder he can’t get his weather predictions spot-on.

4. The citizens of Punxsutawney claim that Phil is 124 years old. He must have had some work done.  He doesn’t look a day older than 6.   Living in a library may make Phil feel ancient though, especially if he’s frustrated by not being able to read very well. His less educated counterparts out in more “rural” areas only live for 6 or 8 years, perhaps due to lack of a good health care plan or membership in popular literary book clubs.

As far as “seeing his shadow” is concerned, it must be a challenge.  At 7:25 this morning, a group of corny looking gentlemen in their top hats and long coats, will transfer Phil into a simulated tree stump on a stage. Then following lengthy corny speeches and urged on by a bundled-up shivering crowd of many thousands, Phil will step out of the corny fake tree stump.  Blinded by banks of high octane TV lights and with flashbulbs popping, Phil probably wouldn’t recognize his shadow if it jumped up and ate him.  So whatever he predicts this morning — I wouldn’t bet the house on it.

But here’s one weather forecast you CAN bet on, because this is from Octo-woman. For the next six weeks, Octo-woman is forecasting that:

(1) the weather nationwide will be very cold except on days when the temperature rises above 50 degrees,

(2) there will be heavy snow on the North and South Poles.

(3)  The Superbowl game on Sunday will be either rained out, snowed in, or oversold due to warm sunny weather and plenty of free parking.

This weather prediction has been brought to you free of charge in case the one Punxsutawney Phil serves up later this morning leaves something to be desired.  But come sun, rain, snow, ice, sleet, or what-have-you, please enjoy the day.  It’s the only one we have available.

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3 Responses to 149. That Dang Groundhawg

  1. Linda Lewis says:

    And to think Phil can’t even talk and our favorite subject to talk about to total stangers is the weather. BTW I love it when the weather report says 30% chance of rain. 30% of what? 30% of the day, 30% rain or drizzle or what? For sure here it’s not 70% sunshine. So six more weeks of winter here is certainly not like what back east is getting. All I’m looking forward to is seeing all those rose bushes happily planted in your yard come spring early or late. And where you find the perfect videos to support your blogs is beyond me. I’m wondering…just how many hours each day do you spend writing your clever blogs??? You are my hero for sure. Here’s to you:

    This is about a great gramma named Pat.
    Everyday for a year she wrote as she sat.
    The words in her blogs brought laughter and cheers,
    And some were so tender they even brought tears.

    How sad we will be at her 80th birthday
    If it’s the end of her blogs, we say there’s no way
    ‘Cause we want her to go on writing her stories
    And sharing her secrets and all of her glories.

    At one forty nine, there’s a lot more to go
    We love each one and just want her to know
    The time it takes each day to compose
    Becomes immortal as everyone knows.

    So for everyone who does not know her blog
    They truly will always end up in a fog.
    I’m hooked on reading each and every one.
    So Thank You Pat, my heart you have won.

  2. Tim Fitzpatrick says:

    Uh well you were doing great until your 3rd prediction. Parking starts at $500 per spot, (best to car pool). And the game will be played indoors out of the way of rain drops and snowflakes.

    Other than that spot on!!

  3. Linda Lewis says:

    Here’s hot off the press:
    2/2/11
    Providing a ray of hope to those battered by the storm, the world’s most famous weather forecaster – with four legs – predicted an early spring.

    Punxsutawney Phil’s handlers told Groundhog Day revelers at Gobbler’s Knob, a tiny hill in Punxsutawney, Pa., that the groundhog had not seen his shadow, meaning winter will end within six weeks, according to tradition.

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