Saturday, February 1, 2014

Groundhog Day 2014 Will Phil See His Shadow?

       President Obama talked about shovel ready projects which he failed to deliver; here is an example of private sector ingenuity that creates jobs with not federal involvement or waste.  Punxsutawney Phil is a famous groundhog so named by the city fathers of Punxsutawney, PA. who is wakened from his winter slumber on Groundhog Day to predict the coming of spring. If he sees his shadow, six more weeks of winter and if not an earlier spring. 30,000 people descend on Punxsutawney for this event, obviously spending money and creating a mini groundhog boom. Given the fact that the Super Bowl and Groundhog Day fall on the same day, I am astounded the NFL did not pay the city a million for the rights to have the famous furry weathercaster come out of his burrow just before the coin toss to start the game, sip a Budweiser, nibble on some Doritos, call his agent on T-Mobile, smile at the models for Go and munch on some pistachios, all to the ovation of the fans and makers of the products just endorsed by Phil. Enjoy the game, hope Phil sees no shadows as a good part of this country has had one too many Arctic Vortexes and would welcome an early spring.


We all converse about the weather and in all conversations seem to complain,
Too hot, too cold, too dry, too humid, too much snow, not enough, a drought or a deluge of rain,
No matter how much we try, we cannot control or, worse, with accuracy forecast.
Every prediction with computer models arrives well and does not last.
There are satellites in orbit and weather balloons by the score,
And weather ships close and others far out from shore,
Radars and computers with models so varied, complex and complete
Predict the exact time the snow or rain will fall to wet your feet
In the end we cannot control and we rarely can with conscience try to predict,
Our weather knowledge is like the fragile flame hiding from the wind on a candle wick.
As we as taxpayers seeking the weather altar file slowly to pay the weather bill,
There is a more accurate choice known as Punxsutawney Phil
A furry groundhog who on February 2nd, Groundhog Day,
Knows the weather forecast, knows the proper way,
Out of his burrow to briefly and quickly shadows seek,
If one is seen, clearly winter has another six more weeks.
Millions spent on technologies usually late or usually wrong,
A groundhog pops up and does it for less than a song. 
Punxsutawney Phil, we look to you in awe on your Groundhog Day,
Shadows seen will tell whether spring is soon here or winter will for longer hold sway.
For those fellow Americans trapped in the Arctic Vortex blasts
Praying that this winter does not have long to last
Do not fool with Mother Nature and Phil by with a tarp try to end shadows by blocking out the Sun!
She looks after Phil’s win streak and will be in a major snit, and your winter will have many more months not weeks to run.

                                                 Michael P. Ridley
                                                 aka the Alaskanpoet  
                                                 © February 1, 2014

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