Happy February, friends.
Hey, we're another day closer to spring.
We're also one day away from Groundhog Day. And one day further removed from the State of Union address.
Alas. They kind of feel similar, right? No matter what you are hoping for, you almost always feel disappointed.
No matter what the numbers or shadows tell us, the future is still dark and cold.
Tuesday night, as Donald Trump walked to the podium to deliver his first State of the Union speech, the divide was clear.
There were folks booing the president. There were folks sitting in protest when he walked into the room. There were folks Democratic leaders were begging not to walk out in protest.
There also were folks waiting giddily to stand and applaud if the president tossed out a "knock-knock" joke. Those happy to give a double thumbs-up to Trump for mentioning their name and content listening to 80 or so minutes of a billionaire delivering a book report.
Speech aside, sides aside, segues aside, the State of the Union was as much about the lack of unity in our current union as anything else.
It's understandable in a lot of ways. The State of the Union is the biggest political and passive-aggressive tug-of-war ever. Purposeful sitters. Passionate clappers. It's part of the mix.
This one, though, felt different, even beyond the expectation of something surreal.
Tuesday in the House Chamber there was an air of angst and uneasiness. There was divide as Trump talked of union, and while each side is glad to point the finger at the other, here's the question we should all be asking sooner rather than later:
Who is going to be the one to accept the charge of fixing the lack of unity in our union rather than pointing at the other side of the aisle?
Because for all the fair stones thrown at each side, it's the avalanche that loses a fair majority of us wanting a winning plan rather than winning the argument. (And Trump haters should know this: Early returns had almost 50 percent of the viewing public approving of the State of the Union speech.)
So, maybe we should put our faith in Chattanooga Carl on Friday. He's the Tennessee Aquarium groundhog who on Friday will take center stage and make his call about the next six weeks of weather.
Could it be that easy? Carl sees his shadow and goes to the left. Carl is cool and all is right.
Nah, that won't work. Paul Barys would be all bent out of shape.
Contact Jay Greeson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6343.