Do you know why they have to drag poor old Punxatawny Phil out of his lair every year? It’s because he knows that the beginning of spring isn’t tied at all to whether or not he sees his shadow. Like all intelligent creatures, he realizes that spring begins the day that pitchers and catchers report for spring training.
But those nasty men in top hats and weird coats nevertheless haul him out by the scruff of his neck to stage their little weather charade. You can tell from their antiquated dress that even they recognize, in their heart of hearts, that the whole thing is a sham: meaningless, outdated, and entirely superseded by the National Pastime.
And don’t fall for any of that vernal equinox nonsense, either. Regardless of where the planet is or what angle the sun is at, spring begins on the day when pitchers and catchers report, which this year falls on February 11. I mean, come on: they don’t call it winter training — it’s SPRING training. Ergo, it must be spring.
So the next time you find yourself wondering when spring will begin, don’t go dragging any large rodents out of their dens. Just check the baseball calendar.