Harold Ramis Responds to the Wolf Gnards

Harold Ramis

In a Heeb Magazine exclusive, writer/director/(dare I add Ghostbuster) Harold Ramis responded to Wolf Gnards. Yes, that's right--this is not a typo--Harold Ramis responded to your friendly neighborhood Wolf Gnards. Of course, he responded to Heeb which got the link from Tony Hawk who followed the Bill Murray Digg parade, but in the roundest of ways Harold Ramis responded to the Gnards.

As you may or may not know, Digg picked up my article on the amount of time Bill Murray spent trapped in Groundhog Day. Which in turn caused a series of computers to explode with my hosting service. But if anything good came out of this, I can, at least, say I made Harold Ramis blink. Not just blink, but email. Take out his laptop, open up Outlook, and type a brief paragraph.

Harold Ramis emailed the Heeb offices with this message:

"I think the 10-year estimate is too short. It takes at least 10 years to get good at anything, and alloting for the down time and misguided years he spent, it had to be more like 30 or 40 yearsā€¦ People [like the blogger] have way too much time on their hands. They could be learning to play the piano or speak French or sculpt."

I 100% agree with him. When I thought of charting Groundhog Day, I thought it would come out to be 100+ years. It could take Phil any number of years to learn any of the things he mastered. Instead I had to work with the average, and I was surprised at how quickly his feats could be accomplished. 8 years, 8 months, and 16 days is more or less the minimum amount of time he needed.

What Ramis said in those ellipses the world may never know. It was probably something like, "That being said Wolf Gnards is as sexy as he is witty, a virtual playground of ungodly delights."

Now as to Heeb calling me a spaz and Ramis alluding to the fact that certain spazoids may need to get a life, let me remind everyone that they took the time to respond to a spaz. What's lower on the totem poll? The geek or the geek who feels the need to correct geeks?

  • Sean
    Comment from: Sean
    08/21/09 @ 12:25:11 pm

    Haha! Well played! I believe the answer to your final question is obvious, but I’ll state it anyways. Clearly the geek correcting the geek is geekier. I also think your math is better than is, so here’s a geek protecting another geek from a third geeks geeking. I’ve outgeeked you all.

  • Miss Cellania
    Comment from: Miss Cellania
    08/25/09 @ 05:25:14 pm

    Let’s be honest. There is no one geekier than a man who would write a story about a meteorologist stuck in a time loop.

    Which, come to think of it, is both of you. But he did it first.

  • whoa
    Comment from: whoa
    01/02/10 @ 12:17:33 am

    We’ve all done this before. The sad part is that tomorrow you’ll have forgotten everything.

  • Tyrone
    Comment from: Tyrone
    04/11/10 @ 09:11:02 am

    I’d say the biggest get is I, since I apparently feel the need to comment on this 7 months after the fact……

  • Thelonious
    Comment from: Thelonious
    06/15/10 @ 01:20:36 pm

    In any case, deciding that he ought to learn to play the piano, etc. rather than pick up the floozy in the bar, rob the bank, etc. could easily take 10+ years (maybe 40, 50, 80…)

  • cars
    Comment from: cars
    08/13/10 @ 05:44:19 am

    thanx for posting, love it as hell

  • freek
    Comment from: freek
    08/31/10 @ 11:11:17 pm

    Let’s be clear: when it comes to geekiness, the geek being corrected is the geek lower on the totem pole. And the all the OGs (original geeks) out there will recognize that I needed to correct your spelling, thus putting me above you on the geek totem pole.

  • freek
    Comment from: freek
    08/31/10 @ 11:12:19 pm

    PS: Score! A direct hit.

  • P90X
    Comment from: P90X
    10/28/10 @ 09:58:59 pm

    Hmm i want to know more about wolf:)

  • t3st3r6uy
    Comment from: t3st3r6uy
    02/02/11 @ 07:07:24 pm

    I have no real contribution, but I think it’s extra geeky to comment about all this on Groundhog Day.
    The movie is being played on an endless loop on Encore today, in an inspired piece of marketing

  • six pack
    Comment from: six pack
    02/10/11 @ 01:56:46 pm

    Groundhog Day is one of my favorite comedy. Bill Murray is fantastic. Thanks for your post

  • freestone Wilson
    Comment from: freestone Wilson
    02/16/11 @ 08:04:58 am


    I saw this movie just a few weeks ago, on February 2nd, of course. I loved it, one of my favorite movies.
    I, myself, side with the myth of G day, the Clue is the “6 more weeks of winter” that comes with G day. this is 6 more weeks of winter times 7 days.

    His Price, at the auction, was $339.88
    there is to me another Clue here.
    3 + 39 = 42.
    Hidden in this all is the number of days Jesus spends on earth after crucifixion plus the “3″ that he spends in hell preaching.
    His “Second Coming” [accepting him as your personal Guide/savior, will “redo” your life “right"!]

    Thus after his years of depression, suicides, he has some Spiritual Experience which then afterward accelerates his learning as he then has a Purpose.

    freestone wilson

  • green tea frenzy
    Comment from: green tea frenzy
    05/16/11 @ 04:47:54 pm

    I didn’t like Ghostbuster very much. On the other hand, Groundhog Day is one of the finest comedy ever.

  • trilastin
    Comment from: trilastin
    06/01/11 @ 11:58:23 pm

    Hi there,

    nice work, please keep writing. i have added this page as bookmark.


  • Eve Montz
    Comment from: Eve Montz
    09/19/11 @ 12:27:16 am

    Classic show ghosbusters. Reminds me of the old times. I always watch that with my friends at home with my mom cooking a popcorn for us.

  • Lucas
    Comment from: Lucas
    01/01/12 @ 04:33:43 pm

    Addendum to previous response on How Long Does Bill murray spend in groundHog Day?
    Murray is in a closed time-like Universe, with a 24-hour boundary condition. As the boundary is time-like and determined by the speed of light, therefore, Murray’s GroundHog day Universe has a maximal boundary diameter of 2.592x10 to the power of 13 metres or 2.592x10 to the power of 10 kilometres. A
    microcosm within a set of multiple universes.

  • MetalStorm
    Comment from: MetalStorm
    02/08/12 @ 04:56:26 am

    I’ve read tons of calculations, speculations and time aproachs about this movie so I must tell there are for me only two facts:

    1. All humans have more or less capabilities than others to learn some skills, and it took more and less time dependind the people of course (so we don’t care that Phil’s time break-out and how much he was spending in time to learn all that stuff folks).

    2. Finally and more important that is only a movie just no more, and as I used to say “this is Hollywood” and in the Hollywood world everything could happen, also the impossible comes reality so natural as you are reading this post.

    Greetings for everybody here.

  • Marko
    Comment from: Marko
    02/08/12 @ 01:12:37 pm

    Actually, the lesson wasn’t how long did Bill Murray’s character spend, but how long will you spend? How long do you spend each of your groundhog days becoming a better person? A minute, an hour? How long have you spent in the past year? Are you better this year over last? The take-away is the important thing.

  • Marvel's The Avengers DVD
    Comment from: Marvel's The Avengers DVD
    06/06/12 @ 08:59:40 pm

    Harold Ramis is a comedy icon… most of the people on here have mentioned, Ghostbusters, yes a classic. But what about Stripes? now that my favorite.

  • dating with Latina beauties
    Comment from: dating with Latina beauties
    06/15/12 @ 09:41:57 am

    The passage of time is symmetrical and loops in on itself.) Perhaps, the solution or set of solutions requires the combination of non-linear mathematics coupled with an ontological temporal approach (Philosophy of Time), eg; Dummet’s dancing chiefs and drums. Or whether time is symetrical and/or asymetrical. Check out the book Asymmetries in Time.

  • Ed Clark
    Comment from: Ed Clark
    01/14/13 @ 01:52:24 am

    Odd that “Groundhog Day” was originally released on February 12th, 1993, INSTEAD of February 2nd.
    Also, 20 year anniversary is this February 12, 2013.
    BUT, here’s my question: To celebrate the movie, do we watch it (party, anyone?) on February 2nd this year, OR February 12th? ;)


  • Rob Britt
    Comment from: Rob Britt
    02/02/13 @ 05:56:39 am

    I thought it was interesting that out of 41 comments only one (now two) were made on Groundhog day. Who is surfing the web for Groundhog Day trivia/factoids on anything other than Feb 2? Or maybe some folks were looking for Bill Murray trivia (born 9/21/50) or Harold Ramis factoids (born 11/21/44) Some were probably regular Gnards readers I guess…

    Comment from: FeRDNYC
    02/02/13 @ 05:57:16 pm

    @Rob Britt: Also, a f!@#load of the comments on this post ā€” easily half, maybe more ā€” are spam, as evidenced by the commercial-site links associated with the poster’s “name".

    (Yes, even the ones that are on-topic and seemingly interested in the post content; online advertisers have long since realized that their links are more likely to sneak by sites’ automated and manual policing, if they’re merely the spammy payload to an ostensibly-topical message. Besides, they have to get past the CAPTCHA somehow. So, now in addition to automated spambot-spam, we get human spam left by some poor schmuck who’s paid to pretend they’re interested in whatever conversation they’re targeting. Besides, what do people THINK those shady “Make $$$ at home using only your computer!” ‘job’ listings in the back of local Pennysavers and other fishwrap really involve?)

    …Point is, the spammers really weren’t surfing the web for Groundhog Day anything, merely trolling for open-commenting sites that’ll display whatever link they’re being paid to disseminate. They could wander by absolutely any day, and (clearly) do.

  • Scifibookguy
    Comment from: Scifibookguy
    02/02/13 @ 09:30:20 pm

    It seems to me that some professions were left out of the original estimate. These include Doctor (how else could he read the old man’s chart?) and speaking Italian (as evidenced by his speaking Italian to the guy outside his room at the top of the stairs). Also, it takes much longer than 3 years to become an expert pianist, at 30-60 minutes per day.

    I remember reading an article that put the amount of time at 70-some years, and it made sense.

  • Rob
    Comment from: Rob
    05/02/13 @ 02:17:35 pm

    Thanks Cracked for getting me here. This was a good read.

  • Hobbits
    Comment from: Hobbits
    05/03/13 @ 09:17:02 am

    I’ve watched this movie dozens of times and never seems to change. I wonder if I am in…no, couldn’t possibly happen to me.

    I actually have seen this movie a number of times and I am of the belief that several hundred years have passed. We know that he spent an extraordinary amount of his first entry into a causality loop being a jerk and short sighted. As he matures, he learns not only the skills we see in the movie but the history and habits of nearly every person in the city (security guards, homeless people, insurance salesman, people’s driving patterns, dining times, tree falling, ice chainsaw events, people choking, whipping out a lighter for a smoker, fixing backs, counseling couples, etc., etc., etc.)

    The time it would take to master all these skills are in range of Ramis’ estimate but to be as smooth as he is in all of them would take considerable more time as it would require you continue to practice all the previously learned skill learned while mastering a new one to remain proficient. Couple this with actively remembering the events of every person and activity within the city would take a vast amount of time. Ultimately, I think 200 - 250 years would be an accurate estimate. However, such an event would like cause someone to go mad over time.

    One comment on the film that has always bothered me is the ending. She falls for him, everyone likes him, and he is truly a better person. However, only one day has passed for all but Murray so if you thought he was a jerk at 9 am it isn’t likely you are going to clear out your checkbook that evening to spend the night with him or for people to so fondly remember you.

  • wolpak
    Comment from: wolpak
    02/24/14 @ 11:02:29 am


  • Daniel
    Comment from: Daniel
    04/20/14 @ 03:42:06 am

    Agree with Hobbit on this…
    The last day doesn’t make sense. Phil has to basically at least talk to everyone in town before the party. That’s besides accomplishing the various tasks. Why would he need to see his piano teacher once his acquired the skill and why is she saying ‘I’m his teacher’ if he’s only showed up once with full competency?
    The one that is the most telling is being the ‘Doctor’. Assuming that he doesn’t have any medical skills, he would have to learn everything from scratch with only the resources available within town (remember the storm). Not only would he have the become a very knowledgeable doctor, but would have to come up with a miracle cure, after all, the old man was not only cured during that day but went thru a major transformation ( cleaned-up, and at the party with family ). I’d say the doctor bit alone, teaching yourself thru gleaning information and learning on your own thru trail and error would take an eternity. That is why I’m saying that 8 years is not enough, more likely a few HUNDRED.

  • Andrew
    Comment from: Andrew
    12/23/14 @ 04:21:28 pm

    It’s a totem POLE. People didn’t, like, call totems at home and ask them to answer a series of questions about current events.

  • Annie B.
    Comment from: Annie B.
    01/28/16 @ 04:24:31 am

    In all these calculations there are several factors left out of consideration, that would shorten his time severely. First of all, it is possible, even likely, that he is sarcastic because humans seem very dumb to him….ie he’s a savant or at the very least exceedingly bright. Secondly, he doesn’t have to become truly proficient in some things, just learn the specific act he needs, like the music pieces or the diagnosis. And finally, once you are proficient in a couple of languages the rest come easier. It fits his personality that everything comes easy and he is proficient in making things LOOK easy before this starts. And of course, knowing what is going to happen makes many feats a piece of cake….

  • Brian Bennett
    Comment from: Brian Bennett
    02/02/16 @ 05:15:58 am

    It took exactly 1 hour and 42 minutes, start to finish.