02/02/2023 “A High-Five for PHIL!”   1 comment

It’s painfully obvious to me that the month of February is boring. The craziest solution to liven up February is to assign ridiculous holidays and commemorative days to keep us all from diving off the nearest bridge. The following list is only a portion of the things assigned to February.

February 1, 2023  – National Freedom Day

February 2, 2023 – Groundhog Day

February 9, 2023 – National Pizza Day

February 12, 2023 – Lincoln’s Birthday

February 12, 2023 – Super Bowl 2023 / Super Bowl LVII

February 14, 2023 – St. Valentine’s Day

February 9-20, 2023 – Chicago Auto Show

February 20, 2023 – Washington’s Birthday / Presidents’ Day 

February 21, 2023 – Mardi Gras Carnival in New Orleans, LA

February 21, 2023 – Fat Tuesday / Shrove Tuesday, Day before Lent

February 22, 2023 – Ash Wednesday


That being said, here is a reposting of mine concerning Ground Hog Day and the insanity of living in western Pennsylvania.

This holiday means only one thing in Pennsylvania and that is the appearance of our old friend ‘Punxatawney Phil’ on Gobbler’s Knob.  He’s scheduled to show his furry little face on the second of February every year to let us know whether we’ll have six more weeks of winter.

To reminisce a bit, way too many years ago I was a rookie state police trooper in Pennsylvania. To a newbie that means getting stuck with every crappy police detail they can find for you.  One of the crappier of those was being sent to Punxatawney to guard “Phil” and for crowd control in and around Gobbler’s Knob.  I thought they were kidding but they weren’t.

A few of us rookies were ordered to make the trek to Punxatawney, PA along with a veteran sergeant who must have lost the coin toss. We arrived in our cleanest and well pressed uniforms, met with all of the local politicians, and then were introduced to ‘Phil”’.  He was cordial enough for a stupid gopher, but we were well advised to keep our hands away from him.  He was a touch cranky and known to nip off a finger or two if provoked.

Believe it or not the crowds were huge.  I’ve never understood why every local politician from miles around flocks to that ceremony.  I guess they’re just hoping to get some free TV facetime or maybe even an interview with some of the local media. I met some mayors, some councilmen, and a few political hacks which unfortunately weren’t even as interesting as meeting ‘Phil’.

The only good thing I experienced that day was a rather buxom news reporter from a nearby town who took an immediate liking to my manly stature and my pretty uniform.  She was much less furry than ‘Phil’ which was a plus and she also paid for my dinner.  She even convinced me that dating her was the right thing to do.  So, I did.

It’s sad to say but we all know any relationship built upon a Groundhog Day Ceremony was doomed from the start.  She couldn’t understand why I didn’t care to drive to Punxatawney (a three hour round trip) every weekend.  I finally explained to her that long distance relationships just never work out no matter what.  It wasn’t her it was me.  I dragged out all of the old clichés I could remember and disappeared from her life.




One response to “02/02/2023 “A High-Five for PHIL!”

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  1. 💗 This was a really good one! Thanks for the PA shoutout. As for you, I guess you never forget your roots.
    Thinking about the lovely reporter that was so smitten by you(whoops, there’s one of those forgotten words). I can only imagine her eyes sweeping up and down your whole body and wondering if that was a gun in your pocket, or if were you just really glad to see her? You never were very good at “concealed carry”!
    As for me, I love Groundhog Day. I get excited and teary-eyed every year when that furry creature finds his way out of that deep hole. Have been watching the movie all day. Talk about comic genius…great story, great writing, great acting, and a little romance thrown in. Eat your heart out, Hallmark. This is one you can’t eff up!
    So Happy Groundhog Day! So looking forward to 6 more weeks of Winter…NOT! 💗

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