Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ground Hog Day

This morning, I got stuck in the driveway. I had to drive the car Tim bought me for Christmas that I immediately turned back over to him. My Intrigue with 200,000+ miles on it shows no sign of stopping, so it eases my mind to know that he's driving the better car. His drive is longer and takes him through far more remote country than I travel, and in the dark, too. Anyhow, I was very encouraged as I drove the 'good' car down off the hill (a hair raising trip that involved a lot of fervent prayers...) to hear the radio reporting the news from Punxsutawny, Pennsylvania. You see, I am fortunate enough to live in a state that is known for Punxsutawny Phil, the prognosticating ground hog who pops out on February 2nd (Ground Hog Day, coincidently enough) to tell a breathless world (or maybe it's just an American thing...)whether spring is on its way or whether winter will be sticking around. So Phil stuck his head out of his hole and did not see his shadow, which means we will have an early spring. (good news because I'm just about sick of winter...) I also read that this is Phil's 125th year of predicting the weather. 125 years. Dang. I did not know that ground hogs lived that long. (I don't imagine that something that old would be worth cooking...)

Interesting trivia: How much wood could a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood? Dunno. But a wood chuck and a ground hog? Same critter. You might also hear them called a whistle pig.


BUSH BABE said...

Cool. SO many things I didn't know in this post. Although I DO know about Bill Murray;s version of events!

A Novel Woman said...

Oh, we sure pay attention up here in the Great White North. We wait for Phil's forecast and we also have two groundhogs of our own: Nova Scotia's Shubenacadie Sam and Ontario's Wiarton Willie.

I'm happy to report that despite the blizzard like conditions, they all came out in agreement on the early spring prediction.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a driveway to shovel. How much snow could a NW chuck if a NW could chuck snow?

Anonymous said...

Here in the Atlanta area we have "Beau" - General Beauregard Lee, instead of Punxsutawny Phil. Thankfully he did not see his shadow either! I moved down here 35 years ago from the Washington, D.C. area and let me say I LOVE the fact that our really cold weather doesn't last too long. Come on spring!!!!!

Debby said...

Well, now, that's pretty cool! I didn't know that we had all these different groundhogs. Any others out there?

Kelly said...

No groundhogs (or woodchucks) in my area.

You know....Phil and his keeper kinda resemble each other in a way. Just saying.

Brianna said...

I'm just hoping the little critter's right! I would hate to find out that a rodent seeing his shadow-or not, as the case may be- is not a scientifically accurate way of predicting the weather, LOL! ;D

Lori said...

I certainly hope it's an early spring. I am so very tired of winter!!

Jayne said...

We got a special news report on Phil and his lack of shadow here the other night - knew you'd be impressed with no shadow ;)

Whistle pig! I like that!

quid said...

All this lifetime, and I never knew a wood chuck and a ground hog were one and the same!


Bob said...

You're always full of interesting tidbits!

R Phillips said...

According to a Wall Street Journal article, New York State wildlife expert Richard Thomas found that a woodchuck could chuck around 35 cubic feet of dirt in the course of digging a burrow. Thomas reasoned that if a woodchuck could chuck wood, he would chuck an amount equal to 700 pounds.

Read more:

You can find just about anything on the internet these days