Thursday, February 02, 2012

When did Groundhog Day go mainstream?

There was a time, long ago, when I'd really pay attention to Groundhog Day, but that was when the relative absurdity of the celebration seemed worth appreciating. Also, that was before the Bill Murray film came out. I'm not saying the movie put the holiday on the map, as it did receive modest attention in the media before that, but it probably put the 2nd of February and a forecasting rodent more in the public eye (at least more than I noticed prior, but it's entirely likely I may not have noticed it as much back then). I suppose there was something that seemed to be out-of-the-norm to liking Groundhog Day outside of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania that made it worthwhile.

However, in the era of the internet and Twitter, etc., it's clear there's lots of attention heaped on Phil and whether he spots his shadow, and frankly, any novelty has long since worn off.

Sure, that suggests the reasons I liked it were not good ones, and it's best that I essentially outgrew it thanks in part to the greater opportunity to notice to what the larger world is paying attention. Still, much as the 'net allows for communities to develop among people who are geographically distant but of a similar mindset, it also can completely undermine the pathetic ways one considered oneself to be distinct.

Sometimes seeing the shadow of others being the same brings not an early spring but a cold six more weeks of psychological winter.

Or maybe it's just that the ability to delude oneself about such things necessarily wears off as one gets older. It could be that as well.

The real lamentation probably lies in missing that youthful skill at delusion.


I should have stayed in a hole, shouldn't I?

1 comment:

  1. I agree, mass communication and technology do much to destroy the cultural distinctiveness of a place. Plus, if everyone's doing something, then it's not fun and quirky anymore.


So, what do you think?