NEW IBERIA, LA – Today marks the traditional Groundhog Day across the U.S., in which millions of people decide to ignore our advances in billion-dollar early weather detection systems, and take a glorified rat’s winter-weather prediction as gospel. A tradition that somehow continues to thrive and that many look forward to each year.

Local celebrity ‘Cajun Groundhog’ (a.k.a. nutria) Pierre C. Shadeaux claimed this morning that “he never saw his shadow” meaning an early Spring is in order for the area. However just an hour later, Pierre marred the event with huge controversy, by confessing that he has actually been registered as legally blind for the past five years.

Speaking exclusively to The Daily Crawfish, Pierre explained that a combination of pressure and money spurred him on to deceive the local public.

“It’s been real tough”, Pierre confessed, “I can’t begin to explain how terrible I feel for not coming clean about all of this earlier. My eyesight has never been great, and around 2009 it began to deteriorate pretty badly. By 2010 I couldn’t see much at all, and became legally registered as blind. It was just something that spiraled way out of control. People are serious about this superstitious crap, and it was just something that I felt that I couldn’t give up easily.”

And he also explained that dollar signs also had an influence.

“Truth be told, it’s also a super easy gig”, he said, “They pay to stand there and pretend that I did or didn’t see my shadow. And let me tell you, they pay well. Real well. Anyone would be stupid to turn down maximum cash for minimal work, regardless of whether they could see or not. But I guess the guilt caught up with me.”

Pierre also outlined his plans for the future.

“Obviously I’m not going to get my contract renewed so it’s time to pass the reigns on to someone else. Honestly, I just kind of want to lie low. I’m going to keep claiming my disability and just live life at a slower pace. Maybe build a nice garden with a wooden swing chair. Nice flower bed. Couple of hummingbird feeders. Compost bins. You know, all that jazz.”

And has he learned his lesson?

“Thankfully nobody has decided to press charges against me for fraud or anything, but I’ve definitely learned my lesson, yes. I’m super embarrassed and I can only apologize to the public.”

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