The Big Groundhog Game prompts reflection


Last updated 1/29/2020 at 4:08pm | View PDF

So the Super Bowl and Groundhog Day fall on the same day this year. How crazy is that?

Well, OK, not so crazy since it also happened in 2014 — although this is only the second such occurrence since the game was moved to a February date in 2002. Is it possible to properly honor both occasions, and not give one short shrift, like the fate that befalls those with birthdays near Christmas?

Frankly, we don’t care. For us, as serious matters convulse our society on a regular basis, the confluence serves as prime pretext to compile one of our not-so-serious interpretations of village happenings in recent months.

When it comes to football, team chemistry is key to success. Chemistry is also central to high school science, literally, since it fits right between biology and physics. That is, um, between physics and biology. District 86 residents have been picking sides as to the appropriate sequence of the classes. But perhaps the best solution involves moving chemistry to the front. Or to the back. Or, if English majors like us were in charge, right out of the graduation requirements altogether.

Local groundhogs are undoubtedly in the anti-5G camp, with the prospect of hundreds of new poles protruding into their subterranean lairs. Don’t be surprised if on Feb. 2 they stage a mass protest in town, carrying placards proclaiming, “We predict the sun never shines on 5G here!” We’re not sure about their penmanship skills or where they’d procure the poster board. But they’re also known as woodchucks. Just in case you didn’t know.

The opponents on Sunday are the Chiefs and the 49ers, names inspired by their regionally specific histories. That’s not always the case in sports, as the NBA’s Utah Jazz and Memphis Grizzlies exemplify. The proposed name for the proposed senior housing community on the old Institute for Basic Life Principles site is Clarendale. Perfect, as it lies near the Hinsdale/Clarendon Hills boundary. And it wasn’t even uniquely chosen for this project. That’s the national brand for the developer.

Alas, only problem is that it gives primacy to Clarendon Hills on a Hinsdale property. Is Hinsendon so bad? What about Dale Hills? We’ve got it: Hinsdale’s Clarendale of Hinsdale. Win-win.

It’s definitely been a rough stretch for the groundhogs as the village parking deck construction and Tri-State Tollway expansion have caused untold displacement. It occurs to us that the former home of the Hinsdale Humane Society stands vacant, if some animal lover was compelled to come to their rescue and partner with the village to offer safe haven. Just think of what Groundhog’s Day would become in the village as home of a groundhog sanctuary. So long Punxsutawney Phil. Hello Hinsdale Howard! Or Hubert? Just not Clarendale.


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