Niagara Gazette

February 1, 2014

LETTERS FROM THE ISLAND: Song's a sure sign of spring fever

By Doug and Polly Smith
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — Dear Mainland Diggers — So how are things on your planet? Over here, delirium has set in. With Groundhog Day just around the corner (if we could see that far), a melody from yesteryear kept swirling around in Doug’s head.

The title: “Mister Sandman,” by the girl group Chordettes, number one on the charts in 1954, orchestrated by Archie Bleyer, who was to radio superstar Arthur Godfrey as Doc Severinsen was to Johnny Carson. Inasmuch as it endured long enough to be trashed by heavy metallics 45 years later, after making the soundtrack of movies as varied as “Uncle Buck” and “Eight Heads in a Duffel Bag,” it might still be familiar to those younger than we are, a substantial majority of the population.

Here, then, with apologies to original lyricist Pat Ballard, “Mister Sandman” updated for current weather conditions:

Mister Groundhog, bring us some spring

We’re all so weary of hibernating.

As you emerge to look over the meadow

Everybody’s hoping you don’t see your shadow ...

Groundhog, we are so cold

We’ll all look like you, before we get old

If you stay out we’ll crown you king

Mister Groundhog, bring us some spring!

Mister Groundhog, stay with us now,

Don’t fear that shadow, it’s only a plow

If you decide to vacate your hovel

We’ll have precipitation we don’t have to shovel.

Groundhog, freezin’ our beaks

We can not survive for another six weeks

Please do not cringe while we all sing,

Mister Groundhog, bring us some spring!

Mister Groundhog, bring us s-spring,

Excuse the stutter, we’re all shivering

Bring us temperatures we hardly remember,

We could even tolerate the last November

Mister Groundhog, we’re counting on you

For Farenheits above thirty-two

So please provide the yang to our cold ying

Mister Groundhog, bring us

Please, please, please

Mister Groundhog, bring us some spring.

Come visit. Bring sheet music. And earmuffs.

Polly and Doug E-mail pollyndoug@hotmail.com