Arrow-right Camera

Color Scheme

Subscribe now

This column reflects the opinion of the writer. Learn about the differences between a news story and an opinion column.

The Slice: ‘Marmot Day’ casts a big shadow

Imagine that someone intended to remake the movie “Groundhog Day.”

What if the new version were set in Spokane and featured a weatherwise marmot? How else would it differ from the 1993 original?

A few guesses.

1. Punxsutawney Phil would become Spokane Annie.

2. The calendar would not actually get stuck. It would just seem like it’s the same day over and over.

3. The TV crew would be from Seattle, which would explain why the lead character, Phil Connors, isn’t thrilled to be here. At first, anyway.

4. Instead of admonishing Annie to not “drive angry,” Phil would ask the sassy marmot to stop texting behind the wheel.

5. In the snowball fight – Phil and Rita vs. the local youngsters – the Spokane kids would eventually beat up the visitors, rob them and steal their van.

6. The insurance salesman character would be replaced by a GU basketball fan know-it-all.

7. An angry developer, the first in Spokane history to be denied a building permit, would try to poison Annie.

8. Instead of piano lessons, Phil would learn to speak Russian.

9. Instead of a bachelor auction, there would be antics surrounding sperm donation at a Spokane reproductive health clinic.

10. Instead of the bit where he starts with “When Chekhov saw the long winter …,” Phil Connors would recite a passage from Jess Walter’s “Citizen Vince.”

11. Gobbler’s Knob would be replaced by Riverfront Park.

12. The thing where Larry the cameraman loathes Phil “the talent” Connors, that would not change.

13. The radio deejays we hear would be Dave, Ken and Molly.

14. The visiting news crew would rent a car after the van gets stolen only to see it towed from in front of their Browne’s Addition B&B because it was parked on a snow plow route.

15. When Spokane Annie attacks a fetching KREM reporter, Phil Connors rescues the woman and they meet cute.

Got your own screenplay tweaks to suggest? Send them to The Slice and there might be a coveted reporter’s notebook in it for you.

Today’s Slice question: What was your luckiest genetic break?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email The Slice Blog at refuses to go away.

More from this author