Tag Archives: weather

Phil, Protests & Winter Woes

Photo courtesy of Punxsutawney Phil’s Facebook page. Because, of course, he has a Facebook page.

For the past 133 years, the residents of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania have, without fail, every February 2nd, hauled out a chubby groundhog name Punxsutawney Phil to predict the end of winter. This year, right on schedule, here comes Phil, likely wearing his Pat Mahomes Kansas City Chief’s jersey, to check on the existence of his shadow and announce the prospects for spring. Since 1887, it’s really been a lot of fun and games … until the protestors get involved. Enter PETA.

PETA stands for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. (It does not stand for People Eating Tasty Animals. That’s a completely different group that likely hosts outstanding barbecues for members.) PETA is the world’s largest animal rights group with gaboons of members who actually do good things to keep lipstick off pigs and monkeys out of labs. This year, though, they took notice of Phil and clamored to have him replaced by artificial intelligence – a rodent robot.

To be clear, it’s not okay to replace humans at McDonald’s with kiosk computers, but it’s okay to rob this defenseless creature of his identity as a beloved weather icon deserving of his own nationally recognized holiday and replace him with a machine. Maybe he can get a job at McDonald’s.

The PETA people argue that a robot would provide a more accurate prediction. This year as he was proudly held high above the cheering crowds, Phil did not see his shadow and proclaimed the arrival of an early spring. So, you know what, I’m Team Groundhog all the way! I honestly would rather have a nocturnal, burrowing woodchuck tell me those sweet lies that I want to hear over some National Weather Service computer droid explaining why the jet stream, global warming and the El Nino doom me to winter that will last until early May.

Sadly, no sooner had Phil prognosticated (that’s today’s word to Google!) hope of spring and driven off with Bill Murray but it started snowing. Everywhere. The Texas panhandle was at a standstill while even San Antonio froze their fajitas. The Midwest got buried and Michigan has officially been annexed into the Arctic Circle. Which, I’m not going to lie, makes me want to strangle Phil. Fortunately for him, my hands are too frozen to actually follow through with that.

Spring is March 19th for those keeping score.

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Filed under From the Snow Drift

Cold = Texas Kryptonite

u-s-weather-be-like_o_4157581Texans are good at a lot of things, and, as a result, we have an impressive ego about how universally awesome we are, especially around Houston. However, we as Texans do have one weakness: the cold. We don’t do cold or ice or sleet well at all. A few hours of fluffy snow that melts within a few hours so we can go back to our shorts and sandals is okay every nine years, but not the hard core stuff. Cold is our kryptonite.

During this recent freeze, all Texans were like stunned sea turtles. Even the sea turtles were stunned sea turtles. Poor things had to be thawed out in warm water which probably gave them turtle soup nightmares. My nightmares, however, were caused by all the weather warnings and frenzied news channel weather people triggering off my Post Traumatic Storm Disorder. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one.

I noticed at least two of my neighbors had their windows open, which I thought unusual considering the sub-freezing temperatures. Then I realized they were airing out the wood smoke that had filled their houses. Don’t judge, we don’t use our fireplaces much around here, so I suppose it’s easy to forget to open the flue.

Personally, I spent the Ice-pocolypse binge watching Netflix. It was that show ‘The Crown’ about Queen Elizabeth so I rationalized that it was sort of educational and therefore not a complete waste of a day. And a night. And maybe part of the next day but whatever. It’s too cold to do anything else so, again, don’t judge.

To people living in colder climes, we just ask that you don’t laugh at us when we try to make sleet angels or google the difference between sleet and snow. Yes, we used the Whataburger gift card we got for Christmas to scrape our windows. What else do we have? Besides, Whataburger is Texas. They understand and will still accept it. And there’s no reason to smirk behind your mittens because we took three boredom naps, stress baked all the frozen fundraiser cookie dough, and cycled through all five stages of grief and loss during our one day at home for weather.

Face it, we don’t do cold, but, thankfully, winter is now probably over since it’s now 70 degrees outside again.

(thanks memecenter.com for the visual chuckle!)

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Filed under Much Ado About Nothing