Groundhog Day never works out right

Well, it’s happened again, or more like failed to happen again. Another Groundhog Day has come and gone, and, *sigh*, once again I woke up in the Third of February. I’m not going to lie, every year there’s a part of me that hopes that I’ll go to bed at the end of a Groundhog Day, and I’ll wake up the next morning and the clock will tick over to six o’clock and the radio will play “I Got You Babe”.

Hasn’t happened yet, but I keep hoping.

Those of you who haven’t seen Groundhog Day will be forgiven for being a little bit confused. On the other hand, you will *not* be forgiven for not having seen the movie. Honestly, has anyone not seen this movie? I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to call it a cult classic. On the radio yesterday, I heard a story claiming that Groundhog Day gets a lot of play as a sort of parable across a broad spectrum of religious groups.

Doesn’t surprise me. Say it with me, people, “I’m not the God, I’m a god.”

I’d love to have a few hundred attempts at the same day. There’s a stack of a couple dozen math texts that are sitting on my desk that I never manage to get to, and hundreds of non-mathematical books highlighted on my list. There are problems I know I could solve in a few hours at the whiteboard that never quite happen. I’d spend some whole instances of Groundhog Day just watching movies with my daughter, or crawling around with my son, or spending time with my wife. There are a thousands things that it kills me that I don’t have time for, and

I know that, in the movie, Groundhog Day in Punxhatawney is Bill Murray’s penance. But it sounds like paradise to me. I’ve got a good thing going here, and if I could loop one of these tracks for a while, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

Because what’s happening now is that time is just blowing by me. That’s how it seems. Wasn’t it New Year’s Eve about a week ago? And here we are four-plus weeks into the new semester — is it even the “new” semester anymore? — and the first midterm’s in a week and a half. My son’s a year old — I know I’ve said that already, but part of me keeps thinking that I’ll realize we were counting wrong and he’s really just six months. And my daughter’s three or four. And I’m twenty-two. And my little sister, who just moved into a gorgeous little apartment in San Francisco — I saw it when I was in town for the Joint Mathematical Meetings — is, I’m pretty sure, still eight years old. A couple weeks ago I drove up to Saginaw Valley State to grade the Michigan Math Prize Competition. To grade it? Really? How am I allowed to grade it? Wasn’t I competing in that one just a year or two ago? According to my calendar, which I’m less and less sure I can trust, it’s been more than a decade.

In the time it took me to type this post out, my son probably learned to juggle. It all goes by so fast.


While we’re on the subject of vintage Bill Murray, What About Bob? anyone? Baby steps? Death therapy?

Makes my lips numb just thinking about it.


One Response to Groundhog Day never works out right

  1. taniamccue says:

    Hmmm. At the risk of you cutting me off entirely, I have to admit that I hate the movie Ground Hog day, and that the idea of being trapped in the same day over and over sounds like my personal hell. That movie gave me nightmares.

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