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Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency Year Four: Case File No. 38-194

AMBER LOVE 01-FEB-2021 This work is supported by the generous backers who adore my cat stories at and they also get first access to what’s happening with my books and podcast.

Where We Left Off:

We found evidence that the trespassing mice living in the walls have been working out and bulking up.

Groundhog Day:

Tis the time of the year in Celtic tradition called Imbolc that turns the Wheel of the Year once more. In the United States and Canada, it’s when we leave our weather predictions up to large rodents — the prophetic groundhogs (title of my band). It’s been a mild winter with one major snowstorm We’re getting buried in our second major snowstorm and previously several wind storms ripped out trees. It was dark and gloomy most of the time making humans want to hibernate as much as the chipmunks. Think of all the things that the critters missed while they nestled in their winter nooks. An insurrection. Trump getting kicked off Twitter. Trump getting impeached again. Vaccination roll out. A New Year’s all celebrated online and TV. I think Taylor Swift released two albums. No, I haven’t heard them. Even my mayo-loving whiteness has a limit, it seems.

Guster Nabu and Oliver Winchester continued studying and collecting evidence. Gus wiped out several of our useful confidential informants. He believed they were close to betraying us. Humans made sure the birds were fed to build up the network of neutral flocks we can go to when we need intelligence on the Chipmunk mafia and the Blue Jay gang. Hawks hung around all winter too. They came closer than any hawks had before. I kept telling Gus to watch out because they might mistake him for a rabbit.

sign language for groundhog day

The movie Groundhog Day made Punxatawney Phil more famous, but there are many groundhog prophets out there. None of them live free. They are enslaved to humans. Or are they? Phil, Staten Island Chuck, Milltown Mel, Indiana’s Grubby and Hope, and other marmots live in captivity, but are cared for like rodent royalty. They only have to work one day out of the year. They get veterinary care, food, and shelter. But they do work for humans and can’t live free in the wild.

mayor bit by groundhog

These celebrations of rodent predictions have closely related lore in other parts of the world from Russia to Croatia. According to Wikipedia, the roots lie in Germany which is why the Pennsylvania Dutch tradition of Punxatawney Phil’s prognostications are so popular there.

Beaver Skull

At the Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency, some of us expected to study a local marmot closely when a predator delivered half of a body to the grotto. I had moved it to the body farm where it was suspiciously stolen. While I lost the opportunity to clean a groundhog skull and other parts, I managed to purchase a beaver skull from a horror show vendor, Blood Moon Oddities. I think they may have a lot of similarities.

Woodchuck (Groundhog) Skull as seen on SkullsUnlimited

Oliver confirmed that some places don’t have the same species of groundhog as we do. Germany’s original oracles of the atmospheric conditions were badgers. Dogs have been known to predict earthquakes and even human seizures. Felines are ready to get in on the action.

Feline Weather Predication Experiment:

Gus turns to hands-on experiments out in the environment; while, Oliver is open to some Sherlockian methods. Not opium, but the feline equivalent. The Oracles of Delphi sat over vapors of something trippy and enlightening. Oliver agreed to put some of his visionary hours to use to see if he, too, could tap into the Universe’s higher plane and glimpse the future of the damage caused by humanity to the climate. Will we even have Spring anymore? The planet is always heating and cooling plus at some point the Sun is going to die out. Yet, humans made everything worse.


Domestic feline, Professor Oliver Queen Winchester, is a willing participant and volunteers to consume a variety of catnip on January 28, 2021, the date of the Full Moon. The professor expects to tap into a higher plane of existence and will predict if New Jersey in the United States will experience an early spring (temperatures higher than average and no accumulation beyond flurries) or if winter will continue for six weeks after February 2, 2021.

Part of the scientific method is that the experiment can be replicated by other parties. After Oliver’s findings, we welcome other feline scientists and detectives to participate and submit their white papers.

ollie sleeping

Case Findings:

Some cats are willing participants in the pursuit of science while others are only interested in what effects them and their immediate loved ones personally. Professor Oliver Queen Winchester had no trouble achieving access to a higher plane. It took him approximately forty-three minutes to return “to earth” and allow the mood-altering substances to wear off. He reported that Spring will be early and short. We can expect heavy winds and rain more than snow.

Case Status: Pending until March 16 (6 weeks after Groundhog Day)

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