Out of the Outhouse and Into the Manure
Now we all know what happens the day after February 1st. It’s Groundhog Day.
It was a well known fact that Weazel Sneeze, and Podunk County, did not have a groundhog. Goof-off Sneeze, the founding father of the town, did a Saint Patrick. Instead of chasing snakes out of the county, he ran off all the groundhogs.
No one quite knew why he did this. Some suppositioned that it was because he did not want any competition with the ladies. You see, he looked like a groundhog. Being the only male above five feet, he was a natural choice if there were no groundhogs. The ladies in them parts were a bit near sighted. Let’s just admit. They were pretty near blind. So they were not able to distinguish Goof-off from a groundhog. We don’t really know if this was true but it’s a best guess.
Since Weazel Sneeze, or Podunk County for that matter, did not have a groundhog, the folks in them parts came up with a new tradition. The new mayor would be allowed out of the City Hall at sunrise. If the mayor saw his shadow, there would be six more weeks of winter. If the mayor did not see his shadow, spring would be springing right around the corner.
Now there was always a difference of opinion on this very important matter. There was another tradition in those parts. No one could partake of the shine in winter time. By Mayor’s Day, folks were getting mighty thirsty. Many were the mayors who had been put out of their misery over the years all because they saw their shadow. Boot Hill right next to Weazel Sneeze had a slue of them.
Back in the late twentieth century, folks around those parts were tired of losing mayors. So there was only one solution. Change the rules.
What came about was this? No matter the ruling, the Weazel Sneeze City Council declared the day as Get-a-snort Day. Thus it was allowed that this could be the one day of the winter that would be considered a spring day. It was kind of like Mardi Gras. The Mayor being The Mayor, he got the first snort, and the second, and the third and fourth if he was still standing. What he snorted was the best shine east and west of the Mississippi.
I’m talking Weazel Sneeze’s own “Doctor Pudding’s Home Brew”. Yep, you guessed it. It was none other than B S Pudding’s daddy who made the brew that made Weazel Sneeze Famous. It was the brew that was the brewski-est, the shine with the shine. You’ve heard of Baseball’s Opening Day. Well, February 2nd, Groundhog Day and Get-a-Snort Day, was like Baseball’s Opening Day. It was the day Doctor Pudding broke out the new batch. And the Mayor did the uncorking.
Mayor P F Sneeze did his duty. He appeared on the City Hall doorstep in the mayor’s hat, a top hat that was said to be once owned by Abe Lincoln. He used it when he was chasing the vampires. It was where he hid the garlic.
P F did not see his Shadow. If truth be told, the reason P F had been chosen was that he did not have a shadow. A loud cheer rang throughout Podunk County. P F raised the ceremonial jug and took one big swig. By the end of the swig, the jug was empty. P F was one heck of a swigger. In his youth, he had swigged the swig that was heard round the world. Both then and now P F fell over sideways.
Before you could say, I left my heart in San Francisco”, the town was going hog wild. B S drank. Corncob Jones drank. Barbara Ann Butt (and all the other Buttskies) drank. Pretty soon there was drinking in the street. And on the sidewalks. And in Sam ‘N’ Ella’s. It was one heck of a Get-a-Snort Day. By sunset, all the denizens of Podunk County had passed out in Weazel Sneeze.
It was indeed an auspicious beginning of Mayor P F Sneeze’s reign as mayor. Little did he know that he was not going to be given the time to enjoy it.
Chapter 5 Next Wednesday: The Shopping Spree to End all Shopping Sprees.