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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

OPINION: Men’s Basketball just won’t back down
Abigail Taylor, Contributing writer • February 27, 2024

Pumped for pumpkin spice

Food Lion is one of many areas afflicted with the rise of pumpkin spice items.
Food Lion is one of many areas afflicted with the rise of pumpkin spice items.

By: Savanny Savath, Staff writer

Brace yourself. It is that time of year again when pumpkins embrace us like kudzu in the summer. There is something enticing about plants that are unattractive and impossible to get rid of. After all, orange is the new black. Pumpkins have returned for another season: bigger, spicier and less sorry.

These oversized, overripe oranges are invading every corner and stomach in the world. Not the carved pumpkins for Halloween because no one waits for an event where everyone dresses up as their authentic selves.

Some of the pumpkins hide in plain sight on the shelves, unbeknownst to citizens. A stand greets a customer at the local Food Lion. It is teeming with the words “pumpkin spice,” the forgotten member of the Spice Girls.

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The stand is small with pumpkin spice ground coffee, yogurt pretzels, Mini-Wheats cereal, popcorn, Keebler fudged stripes cookies, peanut brittle, tea, Fiber One bars, Coffee Mate creamer and Pop-Tarts. There are not many options here.

The customer travels to the other side of the store and beholds the monochromatic magnificence of another stand. The sides are stocked with Halloween candies that no one buys anymore.

The front part, however, contains the rest of the pumpkin spice treats that would make a regular customer of Starbucks jealous. Essential items like pumpkin spice marshmallows, Jell-O and doughnuts line the shelves.

“I see it is a marketing ploy,” says sophomore Torey Ballenger.

A ploy indeed. Pumpkins are squash but not squashed. Some pumpkins are mutilated with carvings, and their carcasses lie on front porches. They are not so spicy after all with hollow smiles in the glow of a burning pumpkin spice candle. They don’t mean jack.

At the local Starbucks, young men with infinity scarves line up and fall victim to the emblazoned orange drink that is the pumpkin spice latte. The barista rings up the order, the same order since fall began a few weeks ago.

The café also reeks of pumpkin flesh and pulp. It hovers above a young woman who uploads a picture of her pumpkin spice latte to Instagram. The caption includes multiple hashtags. Something about basic and white and pumpkin but there is no mention of orange.

Rest assured there is hope. Apples remain a large contender. Against the pumpkin spice is apple cider, especially apple cider vinegar. An apple a day keeps the pumpkins away.

However, for the next few months of fall, beware the pumpkin spice lattes in Starbucks, the pumpkin pie vodka at a friendly college party or the pumpkin muffins and cookies grandmothers slip onto your plate at pre-Thanksgiving, or Halloween as others call it.

Everything now is a trick or treat. Tread lightly. Order wisely.

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