In England, We Call It Autumn

This, apparently, is a decorative gourd.


The bleak grey skies, rapidly cooling weather and the incessant rain did tip me off, I must admit. But I was only certain that fall (I’ll stick with autumn, thank you very much) was really upon us when I read this amusing piece by Colin Nissan in McSweeney’s, trumpeting the return of “decorative gourd season”.

He writes:

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to get my hands on some fucking gourds and arrange them in a horn-shaped basket on my dining room table. That shit is going to look so seasonal. I’m about to head up to the attic right now to find that wicker fucker, dust it off, and jam it with an insanely ornate assortment of shellacked vegetables. When my guests come over it’s gonna be like, BLAMMO! Check out my shellacked decorative vegetables, assholes. Guess what season it is—fucking fall. There’s a nip in the air and my house is full of mutant fucking squash.

I may even throw some multi-colored leaves into the mix, all haphazard like a crisp October breeze just blew through and fucked that shit up. Then I’m going to get to work on making a beautiful fucking gourd necklace for myself. People are going to be like, “Aren’t those gourds straining your neck?” And I’m just going to thread another gourd onto my necklace without breaking their gaze and quietly reply, “It’s fall, fuckfaces. You’re either ready to reap this freaky-assed harvest or you’re not.”

I’m glad that someone is expressing excitement about the change of season, albeit satirically. From Semi-Partisan Sam’s perch in London, autumn tends to involve more desperate winter coat purchasing and wondering why only one radiator in the goddamn apartment seems to be working than dusting off seasonal decorations and festooning the place with harvest vegetables and fallen leaves. But to each their own. I assume that autumn enthusiasts must live in places that actually experience a reliably hot and enduring summer every year.

Of course, unlike the United States (which has Halloween and Thanksgiving to look forward to in terms of autumnal – sorry, fall – celebrations) we here in Britain jump straight from summer to Christmas. Indeed, the speed at which the charcoal and barbecue accessories are swept from the supermarket shelves to make room for Christmas ornaments and mince pies with an expiration date in early November is quite astonishing. *

* and unwelcome for those of us who like to continue grilling outside right through the deep midwinter.

Now on sale in our local superstore. In September.
Now on sale in our local superstore. In September.


So, here’s wishing a happy fall or Christmas season (depending where you live) to my readers.

In September.


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