NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

February 8, 2013

Misplaced faith in a woodchuck

(Continued)

We have been skeptical of Phil’s prognosticating prowess in the past. More often than not, the skittery rodent sees his shadow, predicting six more weeks of winter. But statistics show that spring arrives early about half the time. Last year, the groundhog was dead wrong, as a warm spring arrived in March despite his gloomy forecast.

Perhaps we can rationalize away our disappointment in Punxsutawney Phil. Why, he may be right after all. He did predict an early end to winter — but surely he didn’t mean within the next week. Perhaps spring will come early — but not before winter gets in a few good licks.

So, batten down the hatches, we’re in for a blow. And as the wind whistles through the wires Friday night and the snow piles ever higher, think of pampered Punxsutawney Phil, back snug in his burrow, his work complete for another year. And pray that he was right.

We believe in Phil, not on the basis of any scientific evidence but because, when the snow falls and the wind howls, we must.

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