It’s Groundhog FOGcon Frog Day!

Today world-famous groundhog Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring. Given the vicious weather in much of the USA, maybe it's time we looked to a wiser creature to tell us what to expect.

We made our way to a small freshwater pond nearby to ask our animal mascot what was up. We found the amphibian meditatively sunning on a lotus leaf.

We explained our errand amidst a shower of splashes. At the other end of the pond, half a dozen kelpies and nymphs were tossing beach balls around, a number of which bounced toward us.

The FOGcon Frog said, "Scientifically speaking, there are six more weeks of winter or only six more weeks until spring, assuming that spring begins on the equinox and you're in the northern hemphishpere. Sorry, my tongue got tangled. Hemisphere."

We asked, "But will it be an early spring in San Francisco? What weather can we expect in March?"

"We already have cherry blossoms, and the crabapple trees are in flower. San Francisco’s notoriously variable climate features sun, fog, rain, and cool breezes—sometimes all at once. Thus our high frequency of rainbows. March is still the rainy season, but the average March high is 62, with a low of 49."

The frog (a particularly dignified one, with beautiful golden eyes) added, "But the solstice is not the important date. Do you realize that FOGcon is happening in just five weeks?"

"You're right. It runs from March 11 through 13."

"Better reserve your hotel rooms now, and don't forget to register," the frog advised. "Panels start on Friday morning, so travelers should arrive Thursday night."

Another beach ball sailed toward us. The frog leaped into the air and gave it a powerful kick. The Lady of the Lake, her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held aloft a sword from the bosom of the water, spearing the beach ball, which deflated with a hiss.

With a deep, resonant ribbit, the frog plopped back into the deep pool. In a moment the gleaming deep green head popped up to explain, "Strange women lying in ponds make superb goalies. It's water polo practice. They reported to spring training today."