Did "FoamE Day" Overshadow "Groundhog Day" (and the Superbowl) This Year?
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 2014, EASTLAKE, OH: Today, thousands of onlookers and media from around the country descended on Punxsutawney Pennsylvania to witness Punxsutawney Phil, groundhog and world-famous weather prognosticator, emerge from his burrow. Legend has it, if he sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. If he doesn‘t see his shadow, we will see an early spring. Video cameras rolled, photos flashed, and the crowd applauded as Phil emerged at about 7:30 am. But when he saw his shadow, prophesying six more weeks of an already long winter, a chorus of boos rang out so loud that it shook the snow from the shivering trees. Phil could be heard muttering under his frozen breath, "Don‘t shoot the messenger"—which would have been illegal, anyway. It‘s open season on groundhogs all year in Pennsylvania—EXCEPT Sundays! Phil may have dodged a bullet this year.
Meanwhile, about 180 miles away in Eastlake Ohio, a smaller but no less significant sighting was occurring. The first Sunday of every February is "FoamE Day", on which our own personification of Premium Foam insulation, FoamE, emerges from the side of a home and also predicts the coming of Spring. The event was attended by the city‘s local access channel, a couple of passersby on their way to the convenient store, the neighbor‘s kids who were out playing in the snow, several of our installers, the homeowners, and this blogger. In addition, a family on their way to church stopped the car to find out what the commotion was all about.
Whereas the groundhog spends the winter hibernating deep in his burrow after fattening up in the fall, foam insulation spends the winter nestled in wall cavities after being injected through small holes in the home‘s exterior. In homes with vinyl siding, for example, a piece of siding is removed, small holes drilled into the wood surface between each wall cavity, and the liquid foam material injected into each cavity where it hardens into a highly energy efficient Styrofoam-like material. A plug is then inserted into the wood to close the opening and the vinyl siding replaced.
In February, the groundhog awakes from his sleep and drowsily surfaces to survey his surroundings for food availability and potential mates—then goes back to hibernating. On the other hand, FoamE pokes his body out of one of the holes in the side of a home (after a USA Insulation installer has temporarily removed a piece of vinyl siding and the wood plug).
FoamE‘s emergence was greeted with a small smattering of applause and an ear-bending "Eek! It‘s a monster, mommy!" from a child in the back seat of the car. FoamE yawned, proceeded to sniff around a bit, then licked his index finger and held it up to gage the wind. Note that while Punxsutawney Phil‘s forecast is determined solely by whether the sun shines or not, FoamE, with his extraordinary thermal, moisture and flame resistant properties, bases his predictions on more scientific factors such as dew point, temperature (Celsius), and relative humidity.
The crowd fell silent. Then FoamE held up 46 fingers (not all at once, mind you—and since
FoamE has only 8 fingers, the activity took much longer than anticipated). This meant that Spring would arrive in 46 days! This blogger, calendar in hand, made the quick calculation. According to FoamE, Spring would begin on March 20th! Bingo! Indeed, according to all astronomical calculations, Spring WILL start on March 20th! I lifted my head to give FoamE a big thumbs up but he was already back in his cavity, the hole plugged, and the siding in the process of being replaced. No sign of FoamE‘s appearance remained. And the crowd had dispersed.
The kids were having a snowball fight. The car headed off to church. The local access camerawoman hurriedly packed her camera and tripod and headed to the station to edit the footage for the 24-hour "‘FoamE Day‘ Marathon". And the homeowners, shivering from the cold, scurried back into their home where it was it was quite comfy cozy—thanks to FoamE.
Next year at this time I will return to where the action REALLY is—Eastlake, Ohio, home of FoamE. After all, FoamE has been spot on 100% of the time when predicting the arrival of Spring. Punxsutawney Phil, on the other hand, gets it right only one every three years. It looks like on this particular Sunday in February, FoamE overshadowed the celebrated groundhog. (And, for that matter, the Superbowl as well).