Groundhog Falls

HISTORY JUST KEEPS REPEATING ITSELF

After Mantle and Maris hit back-to-back home runs in 1961, Yogi Berra said “It’s déjà vu all over again”. That quote could have been the inspiration for the 1993 movie Groundhog Day, which was about a real -time entrapment in the time loop. In Groundhog Falls we are caught in a perpetual groundhog day and when our actions are less than reasoned we still keep repeating them.

Whether it’s the Groundhog Falls city commission, or the Groundhog Falls public school district, we can only escape the time-loop as Phil Connors did by altering the events of what becomes our past determined future.

When we build new schools on sites where previous structures have failed. When we build indoor swimming pools on sites where previous swimming pools have failed. We are destined to experience the same results.

When we ignore the wishes of neighboring property owners by attempting to build a new indoor recreation and aquatics facility in a historic passive park, we fail the trust of the residents in our city.

In the film, during the bowling alley scene, Phil asks two Punxsutawney residents if they understand what it is like to be stuck in a place where nothing they do matters.

When we protect the past by denial, we cannot effect change for the better. When we deny that cronyism doesn’t exist, or that the good-old-boy club is only an idea in Groundhog Falls, we stay trapped in the loop.

As Phil Connors learns, it was by giving up his felonious advantage of the time-loop and his starting to use it to benefit others, was he able to escape his personal purgatory.

The phrase “Groundhog Day” has become a common vernacular to reference a repetitive, unpleasant and monotonous situation, but Groundhog Day can be having the strength and knowledge to make a change when faced with the opportunity to repeat previous mistakes.

HAPPY GOUNDHOG DAY!

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Philip M. Faccendahttp://www.straymoose.com
Philip M. Faccenda is an AIA award-winning architect and planner. He is the Editor-in-Chief of E-City Beat.

1 COMMENT

  1. “When we ignore the wishes of neighboring property owners by attempting to build a new indoor recreation and aquatics facility in a historic passive park, we fail the trust of the residents in our city.”

    Could you please elaborate on what residents’ complaints are about this? I have only seen a couple comments that say this is wrong for the park without any clarification why this would be a detriment to the neighborhood. Please share what you’ve found because I truly want to understand what their perspective is.

    How are you defining passive? Lions Park has a pavilion, playground equipment, and tennis courts.

    Wouldn’t creating this facility on any of the other parks make them no longer a historic passive park?

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