ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Jackie Hope: Put it on repeat

Did you see your shadow yesterday? OK, the real prognosticator, Phil the Groundhog, lives in Punxsutawney, Pa., and is a national celeb. Phil gets his 15 minutes of fame once a year, every year. Except in the movie "Groundhog Day." Phil gets his ...

Did you see your shadow yesterday? OK, the real prognosticator, Phil the Groundhog, lives in Punxsutawney, Pa., and is a national celeb.
Phil gets his 15 minutes of fame once a year, every year. Except in the movie “Groundhog Day.” Phil gets his 15 minutes of fame over and over and over in “Groundhog Day.”
Remember that movie? Where Bill Murray acts like a jerk day after day after day, reliving the same day in an endless feedback loop. Until he finally figures out how to be a nice guy. Personally, I thought he was funnier when he was being a jerk. But then the movie would have continued on and on and on, in an endless loop, if Murray had not ground to a halt and reformed.
The groundhog was the real star of that movie, though. According to IMDb.com, which is always right because it is a shirttail relative of Wiki, a whole family of groundhogs was raised specially to be actors in the film. And Murray was hog-bitten twice during the filming. He had to have anti-rabies shots because the bites were so nasty. Wow, what a diva. The hog, that is, not Murray. Maybe Murray, too.
Here’s another IMDbite: There were 38 days covered in the movie. The website Obsessed With Film speculates the movie story actually would have taken 12,403 days, to account for all the skills Murray acquired. And that little factoid says more about the Obsessed-Film website geeks than the movie. What obsessive loop were those guys caught in?
The philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, was the first guy to think about being groundhogged into a repeating day. In “Die frohliche Wissenschaft” Nietzsche wondered whether it was good or evil for someone to endlessly repeat the same day. Ol’ Fred must have gotten it figured out to his satisfaction - or maybe he just gave up -because one of his next books was “Beyond Good and Evil.”
Philosophers are strange that way. They think about stuff way more than the rest of us do. Bet they think about stuff over and over and over, day after day after day. That’s the way I think about chocolate.
Getting stuck on a groundhog-go-ground might not be half bad, if you have to relive an epic day.
Like, say, your 11th birthday. When your mom made you a whopping-great angel food cake with fluffy 7-minute frosting. And she stuck a brand new Barbie down the center hole, so the cake looked like a haute couture/cuisine Barbie skirt. With a whole gallon of chocolate ripple ice cream. And you had a monster party where you got two multi-packs of Play-Doh. Which were two multi-packs of Play-Doh more than you’d ever owned before.
But, things being things, you’d probably get to groundhog the day after your 11th birthday. When the empty gallon ice cream bucket had been repurposed to hold two multi-packed-together packs of coagulated Play-Doh, which had become an alarming shade of breen. You know, that shade between brown and green. And you spent most of the day picking no-longer-fluffy 7-minute frosting out of your new Barbie’s hair.
No, it was not a first-gen ponytail Barbie. I wish.
That goody-goody Jayne brought a ponytail Barbie to school in fourth grade. Sigh. The rest of us had coiffure-challenged Barbies. Or those cheap knock-off Midges, who were Barbie’s best friend. Bet Midge was a goody-goody, just like Jayne. Turned out Jayne had jacked her older sister’s Barbie. So there.
Anyway, you gotta wonder how often Punxsutawney Phil correctly predicts the weather. The weather scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have records dating from 1887, kept by the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club. They say the hog has seen his shadow 101 times since 1887. The NOAA guys have been closely monitoring the Groundhog Day weather since 1993, and they claim there is absolutely no correlation between shadow sightings and the length of winter. And they are scientists, man, so back off. They think even harder than philosophers.
Wonder what scientists think about the possibility of there being a repeating-day time loop. Is there a repeating day somewhere, where the Minnesota Twins continually win the last game of the 1991 World Series? Yeet!
Did you see your shadow yesterday?
Did you see your shadow yesterday?
Did you see your shadow yesterday?

Hope is Our Town’s resident comedian and waxes poetic (and sometimes not-so poetic) about the lighter side of current events in Dickinson, the Oil Patch and the world.

What To Read Next
With HB 1205, Reps Mike Lefor and Vicky Steiner would prohibit "sexually explicit content" in public libraries. Facing an uphill battle, the pair remain united in their commitment to see it passed.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.
City accountant reports increases in oil impact, sales tax, hospitality tax and occupancy tax revenue during the Jan. 24 meeting, commission approves two policy amendments.
Testimony to the top House committee from a convicted attendee of the Jan. 6 rally focused on the "inhumane" treatment of Jan. 6 defendants. The committee rejected a resolution on the matter 12-0.