Editor evaluates validity of meteorological holiday

Groundhog Day is right around the corner, a time of year where families gather around their living room, so we can watch a psychic rodent tell us the weather for the next six weeks.

For the people who come from warmer areas of the world who do not know much about Groundhog Day, here’s a quick overview.

Not a lot of people actually enjoy winter, so once a year we pull the state groundhog out of his hole and watch him “predict” the weather for the next six weeks. If he sees his shadow, we have winter for six more weeks; if not we have an early spring.

In all seriousness – even though I’m usually positive that Erie, Pa., will have six more weeks of snow, cold weather and generally miserable conditions – it’s always fun to think about whether this groundhog will see its shadow.

Frankly, I could use that bit of hope this time of year.

For those of you who’ve had any sort of contact with me for the past two weeks, you will know how much this weather irritates me. I really don’t care whether people think snow is pretty; I hate it.

All winter does around Erie is make everything cold, make the roads slushy, the sidewalks icy, your socks wet and give everyone the flu. Plus after a few weeks, everything stops looking so pretty.

And winter has been like this for almost my entire life, as I grew up near Erie, so I find it a bit difficult to think that a groundhog isn’t going to see his shadow, or that not seeing his shadow would possibly make spring come early.

However, for me, there’s always that hope that this horrible weather will desist and I can continue on with my life without having to worry about whether I’m going to slip and fall because I have to go to my next class, which brings me to my next point.

When it’s snowy, cold and dreary outside, I, along with many other Gannon students, can think of many other things I would rather do than go outside and walk across four to six blocks of snow just to get to class. I would much rather bundle up and stay warm inside my apartment.

When it’s warmer out, the desire to do this is less prevalent.

I don’t understand why out of all of the places to live in the United States my family decided to live in one of the snowiest parts, but I guess Erie and the surrounding areas need some sort of population.

My whole point of this is not to say that Erie needs to start being warmer right now – no one can control the weather. However, I would like if for this year, if Erie did not get an early spring, we could settle for a less severe winter.

Who knows? Maybe Punxsutawney Phil won’t see his shadow and by some groundhog magic, winter will come early. But until that happens, consider me a skeptic.

If someday Erie won’t have a harsh winter season, I’m positive there will be construction on the roads year round in Pennsylvania, and that people will have more pressing matters at hand, such as the end of the world.

 

KHADIJA DJELLOULI

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