Opening Speech 2019

“IT WAS THE BEST OF TIMES, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of winter, it was the season of spring, it was the period of groundhogs, it was the period of ducks, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest groundhogs insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”

“There was a fat groundhog with a small jaw, on the knob of Punxsutawney; there was a fat groundhog with a small jaw, in the burrow of Manchester. In both cities, it was clearer than crystal to the groundhogs of the ground preserves of loaves and fishes, that things in general were settled for ever.”

It was the year of Our Lord two-thousand-and-fifteen. Renowned weather revelations were conceded to Punxsutawney at that favored period, yet, in the great state of Connecticut, the word was becoming loud and clear that groundhogs were inferior prognosticators.” These words that Charles Duckens wrote, describe the internal uprising of the angry farmers, in the town of Eastford, in degrees of latitude, 41.9, and degrees longitude, -72. It was in this certain town that the internal uprising of angry farmers, (Which, were apoplectic of these false predictions, given to them by the two fat groundhogs with small jaws,) decided to go against the ways of past to modern traditions, and find a new, and reliable predictor.

As the renowned orator Cicero deplored, “O tempora, o mores!” meaning, in the English tongue, “O the times, O the morals!” about a selfish and despicable uprising by a power-hungry would-be despot, we deplore “O the predictions, O the inaccuracy” of the groundhog.

The result of this confusion, and the only mollification the populace would accept, (turning away from various beasts, particularly the woodchuck,) was the following.

We are in the present locus, on the Second day of February, of anno domini two-thousand-and-nineteen, to present this more accurate and reliable prognosticator.

This predictor, being a member of the realm of birds, is of superior intelligence. This bird was not merely selected from a commonplace flock of anatines, but from the greatest of avians. This duck exceeds all other prognosticators, traditional and present. This duck has not only the most superior intelligence, but the most high, noble, and practical education, graduating from Stormy Heights Academy, the most high and superior school of weather erudition. The duck has overpassed any prognostication from groundhogs. This duck is willing to dictate verity. He stands above the knob of the groundhog, Phil, by name, and the burrow of the groundhog, Chuckles, by name. This duck upholds the characteristics of moral soundness, honesty, and caring; and will tell us the time that is to come, the season of Spring, or the season of Winter. The realm of the state of Connecticut and of the entire orb of the globe now can have an accurate and reliable prediction.

Although this duck may be terrific, we would like to give specific gratitude towards those who have helped transmogrify him into a celebriduck, including the board of selectmen, Jackie Dubois, Rob Torcellini, and Terri Cote; State Representative Pat Boyd, State Senator Dan Champagne; the local media, including Carol Davidge; and everybody who attends.

It is due time, on this Second of February, in anno domini, two-thousand-and-nineteen, for this inherently intellectually minded predictor to give his bodement. On this Day, the Second of February, we present the bird of birds, duck of ducks, prognosticator of prognosticators,

Scramble the Supreme!