Sunday, February 01, 2009

I Challenge This Groundhog Day Ruling as Prematurely Issued

Earlier today we took The Kids to Drumlin Farm. As we walked through the gates, we encountered a posted placard (to borrow a phrase from the airlines' in-flight safety recitations) that informed us Drumlin's resident groundhog, "Ms. G.," had (and I paraphrase) stepped out earlier this morning, said, "Screw this," and burrowed back down into her hole — thereby declaring six more weeks of winter.

Much as I love Drumlin Farm, and I really do — I can't think of a better place to spend quality time with The Boy and Girl — I have to reject Ms. G's ruling.
Now before the Sisters out there accuse me of sexism, I want to point out that my position on this matter has nothing to do with Ms. G's qualifications to do the job. Indeed, now that the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act is on the books, I would strongly advise the Audubon Society to check in with the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, to verify that whatever bribes and lures they use to get Ms. G out of the hole are comparable in value and tastiness to Phil's goodies. No, Brothers: they don't call it Groundsow Day, but they don't call it Groundboar Day, either — or even Phil's Day — so we should let the lady make her call.

That said, if Ms. G. is going to be allowed her say, and if we're going to put ourselves potentially in the position of receiving conflicting mandates on the Six-More-Weeks question, it's not unreasonable to ask that she wait until February 2 to do the work.

Look: I understand that Drumlin is closed on Mondays — and I see, too, that they put together a terrific program for the kids today to celebrate the holiday. Free hot chocolate, educational sessions with the animals, and so on. Even if they were open on Mondays, the kids would be in school tomorrow. So I understand the predicament they were in. They sorta had to do it today.

Still, though, they jumped the gun, and I'm not gonna swallow six more weeks of this abominable weather, just so a couple dozen third-graders can have an excuse to pound Swiss Miss. I know it's just one day, but one day can make a big difference here. I mean, geez: the temperature's gone up some 20 degrees since Ms. G. turned tail and made her pronouncement. Give us a frickin' chance here. Whenever it's due to come, spring surely will be a day closer tomorrow than it was today. The world outside could conceivably look a whole lot more hospitable to Ms. G. tomorrow morning. She might very well come to a different conclusion. I mean, hell — if it really is the shadow that frightens the groundhogs back into their holes, it's possible we'll have clouds after sunup tomorrow, and no shadows at all.

It just — it — well, it could be different tomorrow. I therefore demand a do-over, and I'll have one, even if I have to jump the fence at Drumlin and trudge down there myself with a Snickers bar to wave over this little furry seƱora's hole.

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