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November 24, 2017

Open Thread – Marmot Day

Here’s hoping all you Alaskans and honorary Alaskans alike had a Happy Marmot Day!  That’s right, we have Marmot Day, which replaced Groundhog Day. Groundhogs are marmots, but marmots are not necessarily groundhogs, and there are no groundhogs in the 49th state. It’s the third one in our state’s history. Marmot Day came about thanks to Senate Bill 58, sponsored by Senator Linda Menard of Wasilla.

Wikipedia explains it well.

Marmot Day’s Distinguished History

Senate Bill 58, sponsored by Sen. Linda Menard, R-Wasilla, was first introduced by the late Dr. Curtis Menard, Linda Menard’s husband and former state legislator. Concerned by the gradual decline of Alaska’s folk values, and worried that the 49th state would become a suburb ofHouston both culturally and economically[citation needed], Dr. Menard drew a line in the sand with his idea of creating Marmot Day in the 1990s. After getting stuck in a committee while politics was played, the controversial Marmot Day bill died in the legislature. Sen. Linda Menard reintroduced the bill for the 26th Alaska Legislature, and the bill passed by a Marmot’s whisker on the second to last day of the legislative session, and Sarah Palin signed it into law. As Senator Menard said, “By recognizing the marmot, our state [built] a tradition and legacy to be built on for future generations.”

I know you’re all dying to know what the marmot had to say about winter. To be perfectly honest, I have no idea whether he saw his shadow or not, but if he did, we’ll have at least six more weeks of winter. And if he didn’t, we’ll have at least six more weeks of winter.

It’s actually more like eleven weeks, but I don’t really want to think about that.



63 Responses to “Open Thread – Marmot Day”
  1. mike fom iowa says:

    Friend marmot has a mug only a predator could love. “Let’s do lunch,sayeth the mama grizzly.”

  2. Zyxomma says:

    I failed to mention how adorable that marmot photo is. Really.

  3. leenie17 says:

    Happy news!

    We gained another 257,000 jobs in January and the unemployment rate is down to 8.3%. That proves all the naysayers wrong who claimed that December’s job increases were due only to the holiday boost and the numbers would drop dramatically the following month.

    Unemployment among veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan has fallen from 15.2% to 9.1% over the last year.

    We’ve got a long way to go but the future is looking brighter, both for our country and for the reelection of President Obama.

  4. Zyxomma says:

    Have you heard? Roseanne Barr is running for the Green Party nomination for POTUS:

  5. thatcrowwoman says:

    What a week.
    That’s me there on the front seat of the emotional roller coaster,
    holding on for dear life.

    Crazy weather. (Can you un-spring Spring once it’s sprung?)
    Florida primaries and all the other political posturing.
    Another student lost, killed in a fiery pile-up on the highway.
    My cousin is up some and even eating a bit
    after his long-awaited kidney and pancreas transplant earlier this week;
    Daddy’s resting in cardiac care with 2 new stents tonight.

    *chanting softly* I am strong and brave and resilient.

    But for now I’m mostly tired, past punchy, and approaching comfortably numb.
    Thank goodness for the weekend.

    *Passing the wine and the challah and the honeybutter*
    Sweet shalom, y’all.

  6. carol says:

    OT. Again, Republican nut case opens mouth, inserts foot up to thigh, ignores any real scientific research and gets damn near everything wrong. And refuses to admit inaccuracy.
    Unfortunately, people who believe like he does will use his errors as factual and won’t look for any verification, because they believe what they believe, damn any one who doesn’t believe like they believe!

    • jimzmum says:

      Good grief!

    • beth. says:

      Maybe not so OT, carol…leastwise as it ties in with the big news of the day: SGK.

      You are absolutely correct when you say that some folks get things into their heads, won’t abide any correction and/or caveat to those notions, and present that dearly-held ‘information’ –constantly– as the G_d’s Honest Truth.

      Confession Time. My sister is a certifiable rwnj; there is no two ways about it. Although it pains me greatly to admit it, that is what she is. And as such, she, too, gets notions in her head that are unshakeable. Even her reading/hearing/experiencing *contrary* to what she’s glommed on to as a ‘truth’ –and acknowledging she agrees with the *correct* information!– she will revert to what she already ‘knew’ and will continue to spread *that* ‘information’ to all and sundry.

      For far too many /facepalm reasons to list here, she is *adamantly* against PP. One of the main reasons, however, is that she KNOWS women who have had an abortion have a much, Much greater chance of getting breast cancer than women who haven’t had one. She came across this ‘information’ and has incorporated it firmly into her litany against PP — it is from a small study done years ago, the veracity of which has since been severely questioned…indeed, the ‘results’ of which have been totally dismissed by anyone concerned about scientific methodology; accuracy in data collection, interpretation, and reporting; and plain old logic. To her, this dismissal makes no difference. She knows what she knows. And, she forcefully argues, since PP does provide abortions, for PP to say they are *also* concerned about women’s breast health, is an out-right lie.

      I would not be the least bit surprised if some on the SGKFoundation have the same ‘information’ as she does about the unquestionable, iron-clad ‘link’ between abortion and breast cancer; the ‘information’ is on pretty much every single anti-choice website there is. I would also not be surprised if the conservatives who’ve jumped on to support SGKF, even knew the foundation routinely granted money to PP for women’s breast health — once the defunding was announced, though, cons came out in droves.

      And yes, much to my utter disgust, my sister also pickets her local PP every Wednesday afternoon. beth.

      • benlomond2 says:

        beth… you could tick her off by accompanying her , but with an opposing view sign, and maybe walk counter direction ???

        • beth. says:

          Nah…I just gloat from afar. Her son’s friend gave her her first grandchild a couple months back…mustn’t talk about contraception, don’t you know — being as how 22-yo son wasn’t (and isn’t) married, and all, don’t you know. ..and seeing as how 19-yo girl wasn’t really to the “girlfriend” stage yet…more of just a good pal. And what is poor son to do now that girl is entitled to money every month for support of said grandchild. And what about son’s education…and girl’s education, how’re they ever going to get out of low-paying jobs without a solid education under their [respective] belts? Yeah, I just watch from afar and marvel at the shoe not fitting so well now that it’s been placed on her foot. Even more, though, I marvel that she *still* does not see how vital PP is to so many people — she is a prime example of the rwnj disconnect between whacko talking-points and stark reality. beth.

          • benlomond2 says:

            Wait !!!! this is sort of deja vu-ish….. Is she a Sarah Palin Fan, emulating her heroine’s life events ??

          • beth. says:

            Why, yes; yes, she is a Palin fan. And a Limbaugh fan. And a Beck fan. And a FOX fan. And an anything rwnj fan. Most of all, she emulates Sarah in the victimization department — she,too, and also, is the PERPETUAL victim! It drives the rest of the family crazy. Sad to say, but we all avoid her as much as is possible. beth.

    • Zyxomma says:

      No such thing as OT on an open thread. Anything goes (and usually does).

  7. Lacy Lady says:

    Looks some one is backtracking. I hope people don’t fall for it. She has S$%^# in her nest.

    Susan G. Komen for the Cure is backing down from its decision to cut off grants to Planned Parenthood. “We will continue to fund existing grants, including those of Planned Parenthood, and preserve their eligibility to apply for future grants, while maintaining the ability of our affiliates to make funding decisions that meet the needs of their communities,” the charity says in a statement. “It is our hope and we believe it is time for everyone involved to pause, slow down and reflect on how grants can most effectively and directly be administered without controversies that hurt the cause of women. We urge everyone who has participated in this conversation across the country over the last few days to help us move past this issue. We do not want our mission marred or affected by politics – anyone’s politics.”

    For more information…

    • OMG says:

      Good news but the entire episode left a sour taste in my mouth.

    • jimzmum says:

      Too late.

    • Leota2 says:

      They are still employing Handel and I think she will undercut PP next year. Evil teabagger that she is.

    • Yeah, after reading more about them and the people in charge, the bloom is sort of off that rose, as far as I’m concerned. I’d rather just donate my money directly to Planned Parenthood and to cancer research hospitals and centers – cut out the middle man. Hubby found that they are a 1.9 billion dollar a year “charity”. Wow. And there is just something wrong with Nancy whatsername getting almost half a million a year in salary. Wouldn’t her sister rather have had a good portion of that money go towards research instead of just to make Nancy rich?

    • thatcrowwoman says:

      too little
      too late
      Komen for the Con

  8. mike fom iowa says:

    El Marmotto is jammed tight to that rock. Could it be referred to as “marmot-laid”?

  9. jimzmum says:

    My first professional theatre role was playing Lenore the Marmot, in “Reynard the Fox”. Oddly enough, I looked quite a bit like that critter up there! Except with clothes. And a cute hat. And a broom. And shoes.

  10. mike fom iowa says:

    If I had to choose between Newtney or Romrich,I’d vote for the marmot. He/she looks better prepared to lead America than the rich,White rethuglicans who are sinking fast. More photogenic,too. Hair today,hairpiece tomorrow. Watch out for the Donald, little furry guy.You look better sprawled on a rock than you would sprawled atop a vast,wasteland of egotistical non-sense named Trump.

  11. beaglemom says:

    He’s really cute. I hope that Sarah Palin has not been wearing one on her head these last few years!

    OT but a pet peeve of mine today. On Jon Stewarts’ show the night before last he showed both Mitt and Newt celebrating their wins (?) in Florida. Mitt went on about all that goes on in the “faculty lounge” and Newt raved about how he would repeal all of Obama’s laws (?) that keep people from practicing their religion before attending any inaugural parties. I want the media, by which I mean real reporters, to ask Mitt what he means by what goes on in the faculty lounge or lounges of America and if he means to limit or eliminate the right to free speech and I want real reporters to ask Newt to specify what laws Obama has passed (?) that limit people’s freedom of religion. These clowns from the GOP clown car have been saying any and everything that pops into their otherwise empty minds and getting away with it. It’s about time that someone held them accountable. And they’re not nearly as cute as the marmot shown above.

    • OMG says:

      I don’t think that it’s Palin who we have to worry about as it looks like The Donald has a never ending supply of the little varmits for his headdress.

  12. OMG says:

    Better than expected job growth…unemployment DROPS to 8.3%! Go Obama!

  13. OMG says:

    It’s on its way and if the country does not wake up, it will be here wrapped in flag and carrying a cross. Take a look at another piece of lunacy that the far right, through religion, is attack…non other than those evil Girl Scouts!

    • Zyxomma says:

      They know exactly what they’re doing, don’t they? As a former girl scout, I welcome their attacks, but I’m an adult. I can take it. Not sure how the younger ones are handling it.

    • leenie17 says:

      Okay, let’s see what we’re supposed to be against:

      1. Planned Parenthood – provides free or low-cost birth control (and therefore prevents many unwanted pregnancies and, in turn, many abortions), provides basic health care for women who have no other access due to finances or geography, saves lives with cancer screenings and STD testing

      2. Girl Scouts – provides girls and young women with a program that helps develop life skills, confidence, social interaction, community service and personal values, and, of course, COOKIES!

      Yup…two terribly EEVULLL programs that no one should support!

      Ohhh, and while we’re at it, don’t forget to boycott those dastardly anti-Amuricun Muppets who promote the evils of soshalism!

    • mike fom iowa says:

      This nation needs an amendment that makes flag burning mandatory when flags are used for political or religious propaganda. Whoever is wrapped in the flag should consider themselves toast.

  14. WakeUpAmerica says:

    Isn’t it really six more weeks of winter and five weeks of pre-spring? 😉

  15. AKPetMom says:

    As I had posted in an earlier thread, the Marmot lives in alpine areas, in burrows, that are under 15-25 feet of snow this time of year. So most likely, the marmot did not see his or her shadow, unless they have oil lamps in their little burrows. I took my ex-boss, who is from the Bay area in CA, up to Hatcher Pass in early May 2006. We saw adult marmots and younguns’ emerging from a hole in a giant avalanche snowpile. It looked as if they had “dug out” a few weeks before, but still, there were two adults and 4 little ones running around a giant avalanche outfall with a little hole in the middle that was the entry to their hibernation cave. We had our birdwatching binocs with us and got a great view of this little furry family enjoying their emancipation from their “snow cave”, in May. Suffice it to say, we’ve got a lot more winter here in AK, but it’s the best part of winter when the sun is high and warm and the skiing is good.

    • COalmost Native says:

      We have marmots too (also) in the high Rockies, above timberline, but I didn’t know much about them; than,s for the info. We are getting slammed by a monster storm on the east side of the mountains- 12″ with more to come today. Marmots could be hibernating in my yard and I’d never know until this melts… 😉

      • Stay safe and warm. I’ve been in Colorado during those storms. In fact, my worst experience of driving in snow was when my mom and I tried to go home to Garden City from Longmont. By the time we got to Limon after hours of creeping along and not seeing anything except the back of the big truck I was following, we had to decide whether to turn around and go back. Nope – I-70 was closed behind us. We couldn’t get a room since they were all gone. Someone coming from the east came in the restaurant and said that it was clear just east of Limon. So we decided to try it – and it was dry and bare just about 10 miles east of Limon and all the way into southwest Kansas. Weirdest storm – and very scary trying to drive when you can’t see the road.

      • leenie17 says:

        I remember the year my sister lived in Denver and how she was amazed at the lack of snowplows. Having relocated from NH where the plows are out with the first falling flake, she saw shocked to find out that Denver usually just waits for the snow to melt. I can’t imagine what a mess it must be when you get that amount of snow in one fell swoop.

        As Pat said, stay safe and warm and you might want to take a lesson from the marmots…curl up somewhere nice and cozy and wait for the snow to go away!

    • Alaska Pi says:

      Somewhere I have a couple pictures of a marmot taken in July way up high on a local mountain.
      The lil doof was in what passed for a tree right at treeline on a ridge spine- 4 or 5 wind bent branches on a stick 3 feet high with a handful of needles on each branch.
      The marmot turned it’s back on we hikers in a I’m-invisible-if-I-can’t-see-you manner . It was as chubby as they can get in summer and it was quite a strain on that tree branch.
      We laughed until we almost cried over that “hidden” and silent whistle pig 🙂

  16. LA Brian says:

    So would a movie based on Marmot Day be based on some unfortunate Alaskan destined to repeat the same day electing the same inefffective/self-serving politician until they learn how to break the pattern?

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