So I went out his morning looking for a groundhog. The best I could find was this gray squirrel.
It’s in the rodent family, right?
Those beady eyes have to be good for something other than creeping some people out (don't worry, Amy, I won't tell anyone about your bizarre squirrel phobia).
So why not use them as an organic meteorological predictor of seasonal weather patterns?
Makes sense doesn’t it? AND its compact size makes the squirrel far more commercially attractive than its outdated and cumbersome cousin. Let's face it-- the groundhog is so yesterday. Innovation is the answer!
I decided to set up camp and do some research. I needed to observe the squirrel in action to determine his accuracy and, more importantly, his likeability factor. If I intend to get people to buy the legitimacy of a Groundsquirrel Day, I'm going to need some verifiable results.
Not having small (and, some ((Ahem, Amy)) might argue "potentially evil") squirrel eyes myself, I knew I was going to have to look very closely in order to see whether this tiny tree rat could see his shadow or not. I also knew that these little nut hoarders could be a tad jittery, so I was prepared to be very still—and wait.. for as long as it took... or... until I grew bored or my hands got cold.
Thankfully, before too long I spotted him.
I sat motionless, awaiting a verdict.
Would he see his little squirrelly shadow, thus ensuring another, say, three weeks of winter?(Possibly less if we're talking straight squirrel to groundhog ratios here. I'm not sure about this as I'm still gathering data.)
I wish I could say the experiment was a complete success. Unfortunately, from where I was sitting, I couldn't see said squirrel's shadow, and he wasn't giving me any indication, through his expression, as to whether or not he had seen it himself.
(To tell you the truth, I don't even think he was looking for it!)
So, I started to move in closer, for a better view.
Instantly, the darn thing took off like a silver streak of 21st century, micro-technology, doppler-grade fluff. In less than two shakes of a bushy tail, my acorn-eating almanac was down the fence, across the sidewalk, up a tree, over the power lines and out of sight-- leaving me with no clue as to how much more winter to expect!
I guess this is the price one pays for progress.