Every fall, around the beginning of September, the United States seems to collectively lose it’s mind over one very specific plant. No, not marijuana. Something much more sinister, more obsession worthy. People would kill for it. People would die for it. Pumpkin. Pumpkin spice, to be more precise. There’s only one little question.
Why do we like pumpkin spice so much? Is it good? Can you name more than five people who actually like pumpkin pie (without drowning it in whipped cream?) From all angles, our collective obsession with pumpkin spice just doesn’t make sense. I mean, what even IS a pumpkin spice?
Of course, pumpkin pie spice is a mix of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and maybe something else that I’m forgetting. However, pumpkin spice lattes (and other assorted pumpkin spice items) don’t taste like cinnamon. Pumpkin spice is arguably it’s own flavor, but why do we go so crazy over it every year?
My mom had two theories for me. One is that it’s a seasonal item, but then why pumpkin spice instead of apple cider or candy corn? Her other theory was that pumpkin pie is a nostalgic thing for a lot of people and that we subconsciously associate it with the holidays, and therefore with family. Again that raises the question though: why pumpkin pie and not something else?
It seems like it all started with the Starbucks pumpkin spice latte. An innocent enough invention, but from there it all seems to have gotten out of hand. From the infamous pumpkin spice latte came other food items such as pumpkin cheesecake and pasta sauce.
Somehow, the seasonal flavor has evolved to the point where pumpkin spice bleach and deodorant are now both things that actually exist. There was even a rumor last year that durex had come out with a pumpkin spice condom, and, while it turned out to be false, it was alarmingly believable. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live in a world where pumpkin spice condoms are just a fun fall treat.
So, although we may not know why pumpkin spice takes over society as a whole every fall, we can either deny the delicious yet confusing taste, or we can enjoy it. I have chosen to cautiously let pumpkin spice into my life while taking the necessary precautions. Just because I drink a latte doesn’t mean I have to trust the delicious evil.