arteejee

A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Location: Southeastern, Pennsylvania, United States

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Kill Phil!


In my last post, I declared January to be a bitch because of several high accumulation snow storms that occurred. At the same time, I welcomed February in the midst of a most spring like weekend when temperatures climbed into the mid 50s. Now Monday comes, and true to predictions we got another 4-6 or 6-8 inches of snow.

I now declare the month of February to be Queen Bitch!

During this last weekend, our collective gazes were focused on Gobbler’s Knob in Punxsutawney, PA for the annual Ground Hog Day celebration, or the annual rousting of the critter from its den and forcing it to tell us what the weather will be for the next six weeks, despite the fact that we are technologically advanced and spend about a gazillion dollars a year on this technology that tells us what to expect for our weather in the foreseeable future. Yes, we have the intelligence and the wherewithal to predict whether we should dress comfortably when it is sunny, or crawl back into our holes when the snow is falling at the rate of an inch an hour. Despite this, we look to a hapless rodent to do our bidding.

This year, Groundhog Day was prefaced with a report that Phil’s predictions have not always been accurate. The bad news: Phil is correct only 39% of the time when he predicts a shortened winter season. The good news: Phil is correct only 39% of the time when he predicts a longer, colder winter. It’s another case of the glass being half full/half empty, or, in this case, a glass 39% full or, um, 39% empty.

Fun Phil Fact: Punxsutawney Phil is not a certified meteorologist.

If you think this is confusing, think of poor Phil. One minute he is sleeping off a winter nap in the comfort of his den, and the next minute he is literally dragged out and held aloft to the adoring mantra of thousands of people who obviously have a twisted notion of organized religion. It’s at this point that they demand a weather report. And we do this without offering him so much as a Grand Latte from Starbucks!

He probably thinks these people are seriously effed in the head! Praising a groundhog? Wow, talk about spiritual starvation!

These same people are probably cursing Phil this week as more storms hit the northeast. A few more aggressive individuals may go a bit further than cursing out Phil, and may fantasize what they might do if they happen to ever meet our bewildered beast. I dare say that these same people might peruse the Internet for cooking recipes which require the meat of a woodchuck or whistlepig. The bad news for Phil: there is no shortage of groundhog recipes on the Internet.

You can stew him, slow cook him or shred him into bite size chunks mixed with teriyaki sauce. The recipes all start - or so my friends tell me - with the same instructions: skin and soak the meat in a brine/vinegar solution for a few hours, or, even better, overnight. This points up the fact that groundhog meat is not marketed by any of our supermarket chains, neatly weighed and packaged between Styrofoam trays and cellophane wrap.

Diplomatically speaking, these recipes would be found under the heading delicacy. Now we all know what the meaning of delicacy is. It is synonymous with what we would stereotypically consider to be good eatin’ in the Ozarks and the more rural parts of West Virginia…or so my friends tell me.

Fortunately for Phil, he has what I believe to be a full time security detail to protect him from what is probably becoming an annual threat to turn him into croquettes. Yes, he will live another year and perchance make our lives miserable or happy next February. In the meantime, we have joker prognosticators who seized upon one weather computer model last weekend and disseminated the prediction that this coming weekend we’ll see a blizzard dumping 24 inches of white crap on the northeast. Accredited meteorologists (are you reading this, Phil?) have discredited that prediction. 

Unfortunately, there is a dearth of recipes on the Internet calling for the meat of Internet jokesters. Pity…

(Thank you for reading. Whistlepig serving tip: the best wine to serve with your woodchuck casserole is Coors!)

11 Comments:

Anonymous Janey said...

Groundhog tastes like chicken-- so my friends tell me... :-)

February 5, 2014 at 3:53 PM  
Blogger David Jeffreys said...

I have a friend, Ruby, who grew up in Punxsutawney, PA, and was very proud of her town's claim to fame. On the way home from Canada one year, I drove through Punxsutawney and could not determine what the fuss was all about. It was a one-stoplight town with a three story Hotel Pantall (http://cdn.hotelplanner.com/Common/Images/Hotels/532367_1.jpg) at the downtown crossroads. I decided that I did not want to stay there and wondered if they filled it up once a year? Never did see Phil, but it was June, so he was probably out woodchucking. Probably should have looked on the menu at the cafe to see if they serve any portions of that big hairy rat, but I doubt it, because they hold him in such high esteem.

February 5, 2014 at 10:35 PM  
Blogger David Jeffreys said...

Having grown up on a farm, Janey, I have been told that almost any wild creature (possum, raccoon, squirrel) tastes like "chicken"! That is so you will taste it. More than likely, it tastes like roadkill. The only "delicacy" that does taste like chicken (only better) is froglegs. Now that is some good eatin'! Rabbit is not bad.

February 5, 2014 at 10:42 PM  
Anonymous Janey said...

MMmmmmmm.... roadkill! Thanks for the warning, David! :-)

February 6, 2014 at 8:39 AM  
Blogger David Jeffreys said...

Anne Marie is uncharacteristically silent on the blogs. I fear from the news reports that you are without electricity. Perhaps you are on that trip to kill Phil!

February 6, 2014 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger anne marie in philly said...

HERE I AM!

we have power. and if I wanted to kill phil, I would just lie in wait for one of his cousins who lives under my sunporch. the cousin is currently hibernating. but in a few months...WHAM!

:)

mind, I DO NOT subscribe to harming animals. I live and let live the wild things found in my back yard.

February 6, 2014 at 8:08 PM  
Blogger David Jeffreys said...

So glad to hear that you have power! The news says that a lot in your area lost power and won't have it back before the weekend.

We had a bad sleet storm last week, but that was only ONE storm -- not storm after storm with two storms some weeks like you have been having. It is truly The Winter Of Our Discontent.

February 6, 2014 at 8:58 PM  
Blogger Nadege said...

Ground hog meatballs might not be bad if well seasoned! We finally have some weather here as it is lightly raining, enough to create a mess on the roads, but not enough to make a dent in our drought. 24 more inches of snow in the Northeast? That is insane.

February 6, 2014 at 10:20 PM  
Blogger todd gunther said...

Thank you all for your comments, although I am bit concerned about Anne Marie in Philly. If I only had a nickel every time I heard her utter, "I hate life," or her favorite, "People are so stupid!"

As for resemblance to chicken, let me add alligator, which visually looks like spongy white meat. I'll agree that frogs legs could easily pass for chicken drumsticks. The one time I ate rabbit was okay at the late lamented Trolley Stop in Skippack (surely you remember that dinner, Janey), but its taste was not memorable. Two delicacies I will never touch again: caviar (tastes like diving head first into a sand dune with your mouth wide open) and jellyfish (so not chicken).

February 8, 2014 at 5:30 PM  
Blogger David Jeffreys said...

As long as we are talking about "delicacies," in the 1960s (before it was outlawed because they are endangered) I stopped at the Green Turtle Inn & Restaurant in the keys on the way to Key West. I can attest that Green Turtle is absolutely delicious. It tasted like fat-free country-style steak, only much better.

I've also had venison a number of times, because the hunters have shot them on my farm and shared. It is OK, but needs to be tenderized as it has so little fat that it is tough.

Escargot? I tried 'em once and washed them down with a lot of wine. Don't plan to order them again.

February 8, 2014 at 5:50 PM  
Anonymous Janey, Lover of Rabbits said...

Ah yes, RTG, I miss our dinners at Trolley Stop. You and AnneMarie took me there several times for my birthday. Thanks! :-)

It was also the closest thing Skippack had to gay bar... Now, there are no gay bars in Montgomery County...

Although I was often intrigued, and came close to doing so while In Paris, I have never tasted rabbit...

February 9, 2014 at 9:27 AM  

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