What If Life Could Be A Do-Over? Happy Groundhog Day!
Cranky retiree imagines what might be the results of some do-overs
By Bill Kalmar, Retiree
Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow today, which means six more weeks of winter
Feb. 2, 2012 - Novelist Rose Tremain is quoted as saying: “Life is not a dress rehearsal”. Accordingly there are no
second rounds – we get one chance – one moment – and consequently there is no looking back at what could have been. Sounds pretty depressing
doesn’t it? But what if you could go back with the knowledge of what went wrong and repeat the day or the event. That would be neat!
In that regard, each year at this time we are treated to one of my favorite movies, namely, “Groundhog Day”. It is the
story of egocentric weatherman Phil Connors played convincingly by Bill Murray. During a hated assignment in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
covering the annual Groundhog Day event, Connors finds himself repeating the same day over and over again. In fact, background information on
the movie indicates that his repeating the same day covers a ten year period.
After a complicated series of indulging in tricking people with the knowledge he has amassed on their backgrounds and the
events of the day, he begins to re-examine his life and his priorities. Ultimately he uses the information to improve himself. Wonder what the
outcome would be if we could go back and perform a do-over in some of life’s events just like Phil Connors.
As such, here are what might be the results of some do-overs:
● The movie “Saving Private Ryan” wins the Oscar instead of the dreadful “Shakespeare In Love” movie which is the most
forgettable movie ever made.
● President Abraham Lincoln decides not to attend the comedy “Our American Cousin” at the Ford Theater and instead
goes for a new stove hat fitting.
● Wall Street decides that what happens in Europe does not affect our American economy and thus the Dow Jones Index
sets a new record closing at 20,000!
● Doctors conclude that beef does not adversely impact cholesterol. Big Mac sales quadruple!
● Allowing drilling off the coast of Florida reveals massive oil reserves. Gasoline drops to $1.25 a gallon!
● Former Hertz Rent A Car spokesperson, O.J. Simpson, while on the way to his ex-wife’s home, is broadsided by a Hertz
● United States Army officer George Custer decides not to join the Calvary and instead becomes a spokesperson for the
Arrow Shirt Company.
● At the last minute, Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company, decides not to name his son Edsel and thus the
automotive world is changed forever!
● Roman General Julius Caesar decides he dislikes salads and fires the chef who thought naming a salad after him was
● Colonel Harland Sanders decides to operate a fleet of shrimp fishing boats. Chickens worldwide celebrate!
● Oprah decides to liquidate all her holdings and buys a car for every eligible driver in the United States.
● The United States Congress concludes that their low approval rating is embarrassing and thus all resign. As a
result, the economy and market explode to new high levels as the United States experiences an unheard of unemployment rate of 1%. Housing
returns to normal levels – food prices drop substantially. The departure of an oafish, obtuse, opaque group of legislatures excites the
country and foretells years of growth and new job opportunities!
● In a last ditch effort to increase efficiency and cash flow the United States Postal Service announces the
reinstitution of the Pony Express. Evidently horse riders are able to traverse the various routes much quicker and the equines can then be
rented out on Sunday for parades and pony rides and petting zoos.
● Refusing an apple from the devil, Eve changes the outcome of the world. There is no longer a need for the Ten
Commandments. World peace with sound, friendly interactions between all countries becomes the norm.
● And finally, Punxsutawney Phil announces his retirement disclosing that his yearly role will be assumed by NBC
weatherman Willard Scott. As such, Scott joins Weight Watchers in order to fit into the groundhog’s cage.
So there you have it – a world devoid of war and crime where peace and thriving economies are the new standards. Vestiges
of previous problems vanish overnight. Now if we could just perform a vanishing act on the Kardashians!
L Bill Kalmar is retired in Lake Orion, Michigan,
and is the former Director of the Michigan Quality Council. He is a
frequent contributor to SeniorJournal.com. His opinions are his own.
Aug. 1, 2005 - Many senior citizens approach their
golden years and retirement with trepidation. Not me. I retired two years
ago after forty years in the business world and am now looking forward to my
next forty years in a lifestyle filled with excitement, fulfillment and a
schedule of my own making. Each day is a new adventure and I’m ecstatic to
be going along for the ride! Read