When the funny Bill Murray film Groundhog Day was released in 1993 who would have believed that one central figure was real? It seems the U.S.A. is as eccentric as the U.K. In the movie groundhog Punxsutawney Phil predicts when spring will arrive. In Pennsylvania the real-life groundhog does just that, but this year he got it wrong.
So how does Phil predict spring? In February the critter comes out of hibernation. Whether or not he casts a shadow determines when spring will arrive, or at least it should do. In early February 2013 the groundhog forecast an early spring when we did not see his shadow as he emerged from hibernation reports the BBC
Prosecutors in Ohio's Butler County accuse the rodent of deliberately misleading the public and are demanding the critter pays the ultimate price, death. "Punxsutawney Phil did purposely, and with prior calculation and design, cause the people to believe that spring would come early," wrote Mike Gmoser, Butler County prosecutor, in an official-looking paper, adding that the wrong prediction amounted to a felony "against the peace and dignity of the state of Ohio".
Before you get set to stand up for Phil he does have a lawyer acting on his behalf. His representative said they will fight extradition to Ohio. In case you are still unsure these shenanigans in the U.S.A. are tongue-in-cheek.
The U.S.A has had a tough winter. Some states are still experiencing severe weather with a winter storm predicted for Sunday. Don't lose any sleep over Punxsutawney Phil as he is much loved in te States.
With heavy snow in the U.K. this weekend who can Brits blame for the weather?