Gourd Almighty

I’m not worthy! I’m not worthy!

I love fall.

I love the colorful leaves. I love the crisp chill in the air. I love not mowing the lawn. I love not sweating.

And boy-oh-boy do I love pumpkin spice. Muffins, donuts, lattes, and breakfast cereals. If someone sold a pumpkin spice sirloin steak, I’d fire up the grill. If there was a pumpkin spice can of Pledge, I’d never stop dusting. If there was pumpkin spice toilet paper, I’d wipe my hiney with rigor and keep my nose on alert for subsequent pumpkin spiced farts.

Such is my pumpkin spice addiction, that I find myself greeting each fall with elation.

And, almost immediately, this elation is replaced with a kind of hysteria.

I must buy pumpkin spice anything! In bulk! Because it’s only available for a limited time! Three months at most! I have to act now and act decisively before my perfect flavor is unceremoniously tossed aside in favor of stupid peppermint!

And is it just me, or do they keep bumping up that peppermint flavoring every year? It used to show up after Thanksgiving, but I’m almost positive that last year toothpase-inspired cappuccinos invaded the Starbuckses three days after Halloween. What’s up with that?

So my point is, I have to stock up on pumpkin spice! I have no time to lose! I need to be alert! I need to stay vigilant! I need another grocery cart!

What irks me about all of this is that pumpkin spice doesn’t need to be for a limited time. It’s not like anyone is marching out into autumnal fields and tapping ripe pumpkins for their pumpkin-spice-y goodness. The flavor is made in a lab. There’s nothing natural about it. It could be made all year round. But it isn’t made all year round because The Powers That Be want to create an artificial, urgent, seasonal demand.

And their evil plan works. I overbuy. To prepare for the future. If I start jonesing for pumpkin spice pancakes next June, I will be ready.

But here’s the thing about that. I never jones for pumpkin spice pancakes next June. Never ever. I have the pancake mix–boxes and boxes of mix–and from December on, it just sits there taking up valuable pantry space.

I don’t know why, but eating pumpkin spice in the summer feels weird to me. I can’t do it. I’ve tried. But it just doesn’t quite…work. It never has. I know this about myself. I’ve watched myself behave this way year after year. And yet, year after year, in a fit of panic, I buy pumpkin spice.

In bulk.

Because it’s only available for a limited time, you see. 

46 Replies to “Gourd Almighty”

  1. HA HA HA! So it YOU buying up all of the Pumpkin Spice!! I didn’t even notice! I never cared for any of that stuff. I like flavored coffee but not pumpkin stuff. I like pumpkin pie.. sort of. However it is not one of my favorites. Did I mention how good it is to see your blogs again?? YAH!

      1. I believe you just might have!! I did do a small story today for Friday Fictioneers. It is 100 words based on a photo, which can be quite challenging. This one was a bit melancholy. But that is where I am right now.. 🙂

  2. Yes, the marketing people have found their success in you. I snorted when you got to the point of pumpkin-spiced TP. Me? I hate pumpkin anything that doesn’t come from a real pumpkin. Call me a purist. Call me narrow-minded. Call me chem-phobic. I will continue to use real ground cinnamon, allspice, ginger, and cloves on sweet potatoes (orange but especially the white kind with honey) and make my pumpkin pies with real pumpkin and these fragrant spices…and my pumpkin bread and pumpkin oatmeal cookies and……and then everything that emanates from my pores will smell of real pumpkin spice, not the fake kind. Just ask our dog. She can tell the difference.

      1. You misunderstand me. I’m not saying dogs *can’t* eat pumpkin. I’m saying that *if* dogs eat pumpkin, there will be less pumpkin for *the rest of us*. And that is a bad thing indeed.

  3. Sooooo good to see your blogs again. They always make me smile. BUT! I’m on the no pumpkin spice side of the aisle. I don’t even like pumpkin pie. On the other hand, bring on the peppermint! Peppermint coffee, peppermint bark, peppermint candy canes to hang on the Christmas tree.

  4. Ha ha. I’m not a pumpkin-spicer, Mike. It usually comingles with lots of sugar, which makes it taboo. That said… pumpkin spice Pledge or toilet paper would be a game changer. Happy Autumn. Enjoy it while it lasts. 🙂

  5. Mike,
    This is one thing we agree on! I love pumpkin spice. I love the smell, the taste, the warm cozy feeling I get when I drink a pumpkin spice latte. As a child, I did not eat pumpkin pie. I don’t know why, I just thought it looked like orangey brown mush. I also didn’t eat potato salad but that’s another story. I’m guessing I ate the pumpkin pie as a last resort because the better pies were already gone. Turns out I love pumpkin pie! Which just means I have another temptation in the food game.
    I really think you should have a couple of contests to give away some of that pumpkin spiced hoard you are guarding. Or maybe you could just send it out randomly to your fans. I don’t think I have any pumpkin spice mix in my house.
    Hint, hint.
    Also, if they had pumpkin spice flavor year ’round, it wouldn’t feel as special as it does now. (I know, probably a lame excuse, but I really do believe it.)
    Lastly, Dairy Queen has a pumpkin pie blizzard that is pretty tasty.
    Signed,
    Your pumpkin loving friend.

  6. OK, sooooo…I’m guessing you somewhat enjoy pumpkin spice? lol

    The whole time I was reading I was thinking, “Hey, Mike, the Writer Fellow, you know you can BUY pumpkin spice and sprinkle it on your steak, right?” lol THEN I get to the “I won’t eat it in June” part and figured, yep, it’s a seasonal thing.

    SO many times over the years, when a holiday rolls around and very specific dishes and baked goods are made, we say, “You know, we CAN make this stuff at other times of the year!” lol Then you don’t really think of it until it rolls around again and if you do, you don’t want to necessarily go through the trouble. But I think it’s partially because it’s all tied into the same reason there’s holiday appeal (well, I don’t really “do” holidays anymore)—that it’s “something to look forward to”—and if you did it throughout the year, it takes away from that “special”-ness.k

    BUT, if you REALLY like it and want to sprinkle it in your coffee on occasion or on your steak (wondering how that would taste!)… 😀

  7. I’m so happy to see that you’re back! I’ve thought about you often – and especially on any pro-rodent (prodent, as you say) holidays. I love pumpkin spice, but in moderation, I guess. The pumpkin spice hand sanitizer at the library where I work nearly put me into a coma. But I’m with you all the way on the peppermint.

    1. Oh, Kath, I’ve been thinking about you, too! (And speaking of rodents, this time next year I’ll have a book out that promises to be the prodentest picture book in the history of ever!)

      I’m glad to learn that you are also pro-pumpkin (prumpkin). I always knew you were good people.

  8. I make homemade pumpkin spice once a year- cinnamon cloves ginger – for my homemade pumpkin pie. That is the only place for pumpkin spice in my humble (and wrong in your eyes/nose/stomach) opinion. No spice for the dog, who gets a tablespoon of pure pumpkin in his kibble every day. So… call me a purist. 🤗🎃🤗🎃

      1. Earl Grey tea,, hmmm

        On Tuesday, November 2, 2021, Hey, Look! A Writer Fellow! wrote:

        > roughwighting commented: “Does it include Earl Grey tea in there? With > foam? No coffee? If so I may consider it… [image: 😊]” >

  9. For me it has to be unadorned, unadulterated, roast pumpkin. Or pumpkin soup in winter. Guess that’s because I’m an Aussie and we don’t do the spiced pumpkin thing over here. 😁

    1. Morning Aussie.

      On Sunday, October 31, 2021, Hey, Look! A Writer Fellow! wrote:

      > Lyn commented: “For me it has to be unadorned, unadulterated, roast > pumpkin. Or pumpkin soup in winter. Guess that’s because I’m an Aussie and > we don’t do the spiced pumpkin thing over here. [image: 😁]” >

  10. My season starts with a Pumpkin Spice Blizzard from Dairy Queen. From there I will try pretty much anything Pumpkin Spice. I can right now reach out and grab a piece of freshly made Pumpkin Spice fudge or Pumpkin Spice coated pretzels. The one thing I can’t do is Pumpkin Spice coffee. It just doesn’t work for me. Enjoy the season, it’s November and that doesn’t give us much more time.

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