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Old 02-01-11, 06:56 PM   #1
jeneralist 
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Spring: Taking matters into our own hands.

Some call February 2nd "Candlemas". Some call it "Imbolc". Probably the most common name for the day (other than "February 2nd", of course) is "Groundhog Day." If you like in the US or Canada, you know the legend: if the groundhog sees his shadow tomorrow, we're due for 6 more weeks of winter.

Punxsutawney, PA probably has the most famous groundhog in the world; Wierton, Ontario has the most famous one in Canada. But my house is home to not one, but two of these magic marmots.

Meet AppleRoozer.roozer.jpg

AppleRoozer has been my motorcycling companion for about 15 years now. I don't quite remember how we met, but once we did, it just made sense to have someone whose ability to forecast the weather is, well, legendary along on my tours. He's been with me on several long (4000 mile) trips. He's found a comfortable spot on my bike, where he can feel the wind in his fur.
roozer_ensconsed.jpg

After I'd been riding a motorcycle for a few years, AppleRoozer introduced me to his cousin, Douglas.
douglas.jpg

Douglas isn't much for motorcycles, but he loves bicycles. You can see that he's proud of the pins he got from our trip along the GAP and C&O Canal this past September. He, too, has found a comfortable place to ride -- even if it does increase our wind resistance a little.
douglas_ensc.jpg]

So AppleRoozer and Douglas have a bit more interest in when spring comes than the average groundhog. Sure, Wierton Willie and Punxsatawney Phil have fame; but Douglas and AppleRoozer have skin in the game.

Complicating matters, my household also has a cat.
umbra2.jpg
They all get along pretty well, 364 days of the year, but there's a problem on Feb. 2: the cat's name is "Umbra". That means "Shadow" in Latin.

So the groundhogs have the deck stacked against them if they want to get through tomorrow without seeing "their Shadow". They asked me if I would help them improve their odds.

So...

first, the blindfolds.
blindfolds.jpg

Then, the snuggly blanket.
snug.jpg

Finally, wrap it all up in a peek-proof groundhog burrito.burrito.jpg

Spring WILL come to Manayunk soon!
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Old 02-02-11, 05:04 AM   #2
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Thanks for your help in trying to get spring here quicker. I'm sick of the cold weather, and hate the 15+ inches of snow that we got the last 24 hours. (I know that's not a lot of snow to people who live in snowy regions, but that is a lot for Missouri!)
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Old 02-02-11, 05:15 AM   #3
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"Okay, campers, rise and shine, and don't forget your booties because it's cold out there today."
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Old 02-02-11, 05:33 AM   #4
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Well, I just got back from my 5AM ride in shorts and a T-shirt; 69 degrees. Just rubbing it in. Hi Punxsutawney Phil!
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Old 02-02-11, 06:27 AM   #5
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very cool, i will cast a few spells myself help the spring along, thanks for the inspiration. i miss the c&o and the gap..
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Old 02-02-11, 06:27 AM   #6
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I have it on good authority that Willie ain't seeing any shadow today, we are under a winter storm watch, conditions are so bad, near Willie's lair that they pulled the plows off the road, due to poor visibility. Phil just gave his on the telly, and he did NOT see his shadow either, so looks like an early spring.

It's now official, Wiarton Willie agrees with Phil, early spring....

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Old 02-02-11, 07:13 AM   #7
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They had to cancel ground hog day here. Blizzard last night and they can't find his hole...
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Old 02-02-11, 08:01 AM   #8
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My favorite Groundhog Day was 27 years ago. That's the night my son was conceived.
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Old 02-02-11, 08:38 AM   #9
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Well, I just got back from my 5AM ride in shorts and a T-shirt; 69 degrees. Just rubbing it in. Hi Punxsutawney Phil!
You suck , it 18 below hear in WY.
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Old 02-02-11, 12:07 PM   #10
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They had to cancel ground hog day here. Blizzard last night and they can't find his hole...

They have cancelled the rest of the days festivities here, due to the dangerous road conditions, and most of the highways being closed. They picked up the garbage, but not the recycling, that will be on Friday.... There is a guy with a backhoe (snow blower in place of the hoe part), he did the driveway, there is over 3' of drift across the walkway though....
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Old 02-02-11, 12:18 PM   #11
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he he.

I always enjoyed the movie, but then part of that is I've sort of had the hots for Andie MacDowell.
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Old 02-02-11, 12:27 PM   #12
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Currently there is frost on the bayou.... sucks!

I'm glad to hear spring is coming early. I'll take Ground Hogs over the Weather Channel any day.
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Old 02-02-11, 12:45 PM   #13
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Y'all be careful in snow and ice land. I still have family in IL, they said high of 14 today, low of -6. BRRRR!

We are feeling the brutality of winter here as well. It's only going to get up to 64 today.
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Old 02-02-11, 01:44 PM   #14
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They preemptively closed school today because of the expected weather. When i got up this morning maybe less than an inch had fallen and it was 40F. Of course wet snow is no fun and there were some icy spots, but not really necessary to close things.

And Jeneralist, you're weird...

...and it's cool with me.
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Old 02-02-11, 08:07 PM   #15
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And Jeneralist, you're weird...

You're just noticing that now? Huh. I must not post enough.
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Old 02-02-11, 09:30 PM   #16
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Is it possible to be weird in this group? Kinda depends on if you're on the inside looking out or the outside looking in.
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Old 02-02-11, 09:43 PM   #17
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We've had clouds, fog, rain, hail, sun, wind and snow today. Who the heck knows what to expect tomorrow. I'm glad the furry little basta_d (Phil) didn't see his shadow this morning.

Judy
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Old 02-02-11, 10:57 PM   #18
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I needed a good laugh! Love the kitty too.

Gah! I hate winter! I tried to play nice with it this year but I've had enough. C'mon spring!
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Old 02-03-11, 12:52 PM   #19
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I needed a good laugh! Love the kitty too.

Gah! I hate winter! I tried to play nice with it this year but I've had enough. C'mon spring!
I thought Canada had two seasons; Winter and those other 2 months.
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Old 02-03-11, 01:32 PM   #20
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I thought Canada had two seasons; Winter and those other 2 months.
Except for Toronto, there the seasons are winter and construction....
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Old 02-03-11, 11:09 PM   #21
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I do miss the smell of hot tar.
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Old 02-03-11, 11:17 PM   #22
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I'm just grateful that the start-time temp for our Saturday ride has moved up from 40F to 50F.
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Old 02-04-11, 06:40 AM   #23
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I do miss the smell of hot tar.
Yes and all those Orange cones that seem to block the sidewalk and the bike lane (if your lucky enough to be on one of the .000001% of Toronto streets that even have a bike lane), but leave the car lanes unscathed.... I find it funny, there is a bike lane from Mar, just North of Wiarton here, all the way to Tobermory along Highway 6, I figure as they do highway repaving over time, this will get extended more and more. Something I have long thought needed, all highways should have bike lanes....
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