America's most inexplicably trusted rodent, groundhog Punxsutawney Phil, saw his shadow Monday morning, predicting six more weeks of winter. But while Phil's predictions would seem to be of use only for those individuals too confused by the layout of Weather.com to check out the actual weather report, in reality, this perplexed little woodland creature (who almost certainly has no idea why everyone is always looking at him and prodding him and feeding him magical groundhog immortality punch) actually produces weather reports that are roughly as accurate as those produced by most meteorologists. Yep, this a part of a proud American tradition going back over 100 years.
First celebrated in 1887 in the intriguingly named town of Gobbler's Knob, Pennsylvania, Groundhog Day is modern adaptation of the ancient Christian tradition of Candlemas, where random candle lengths were used to predict the length of the winter, because oh my god winter is so sad and bleak and you'll do just about anything to trick yourself into believing that it is almost over, including pretending that candles or tiny mammals have magical psychic powers and are somehow privy to weather-related knowledge that eludes the rest of us. Hey, it's probably better than just drinking at noon, right?
This all got us to thinking: why should the length of winter be the only terrible thing that Phil is responsible for informing us about? Why shouldn't he weigh in on some of our other sad, desperate life predicaments? I mean, Phil spends every other day of the year pampered by a group of men in top hats who refer to themselves as the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club's Inner Circle and one time, he met Oprah. Don't you think he could stand to be pulling a little more weight around here?
In that spirit, here are seven more of our most pressing and depressing questions that we demand that Phil answer.
When Am I Going to Get Laid Again?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: As soon as you get it together to actually start leaving the house on the weekend again. Meeting new people isn't that bad, you know. Besides, no one's going to just show up at your door, begging to have sex with you (unless you pay them, but let's cross that bridge when we come to it).
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: Not until May, so no reason to change out of your tomato sauce-stained Wizarding World of Harry Potter sweatpants or shower regularly until then. I guess you could start in mid-April, if you want a few weeks to practice not having food stuck in your hair all the time.
Was Grad School a Mistake?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: No, it wasn't; you were unsatisfied at your job, and it's worth whatever temporary stress you're feeling right now to work towards a brighter future where you'll feel more fulfilled by your work and your life. You took a risk, and it's going to pay off if you just stick with it!
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: Of course it was a mistake. Why did you take out $100,000 in loans to study 17th French court dance? What were you trying to prove?!
Will All My Pinterest Projects End Up Looking Like Something A Dog Barfed Up Again This Year?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: Pinterest images are all taken by professional photographers photographing the work of professional chefs and professional craft bloggers, and its ridiculous to try to hold yourself up to those standards. You don't need to bake a picture-perfect cake for it to be delicious, or even for you to have a good time making it. Just have fun with it!
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: You are a failure, and everyone in your life is embarrassed on your behalf.
Is S/He Ever Coming Back, or Did I Finally Do It This Time?
If the Groundhog Doesn't Sees His Shadow: Aw, you really messed it up this time, now didn't you? But if you really clean up your act, and commit to doing things differently this time (and close down that secret poker shack in the woods, for god's sake), then maybe you stand a chance.
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: Aw, you really messed it up this time, now didn't you? Didn't I tell you this was gonna happen? Between your secret poker shack in the woods and that counterfeit American Girl doll business you've been running out of the garage, I'm surprised s/he didn't leave you sooner. All you can do is chalk this one up to experience, champ. I really am sorry, though.
Will I Get Some Hobbies Besides Snacking and Masturbating?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: Sure! Maybe this is the year you finally finish knitting that scarf you work on for two days every winter.
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: Nah, you're busy enough already.
Should I Send My Ex a Really Vague Text Saying I've Been Thinking About Them Lately?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: Sure, what's the worst that could happen?
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: I thought we talked about this last year.
What's The Age When New Music Will Stop Making Sense to Me?
If the Groundhog Doesn't See His Shadow: Life is always full of opportunities to keep growing and exploring the world around you, no matter what others tell you. So there's no need to stop learning about new music just because you've reached a certain point in your life. So what if everyone at Coachella kept asking you if you were there looking for your child? That totally sick Skrillex set made it totally worth it.
If the Groundhog Sees His Shadow: 27.
Images: Fotolia; Giphy (12)