I’m angry because pumpkin spice has been co-opted by those seeking a quick buck.
I’ll not stand on a box of Starbucks pumpkin spice mixture and preach to you about the sanctity of our precious orange substance. But at one time, pumpkin spice was something special, something seasonal, something sensational.
Every year, my friends and I would wait for the leaves to turn yellow, red, and yes, orange because we knew it meant the start of pumpkin spice season. Starbucks would bring out their PSL signs and stick them on their doors. That first sip of glorious PSL awaited me every fall. It was something people could savor. Together.
The country bonded over shared expectations during the turn of fall. We, as a nation, knew the pumpkin spice was on its way.
Then the food industry got a whiff of the spice. The greedy CEOs did not smell pumpkin spice. They smelled money. Okay, perhaps the greenbacks were orangebacks to them, but whatever the case, their capitalist taint spread like wildfire. Soon everybody, even the shitty 7-11 down the street had pumpkin spice latte. The rare and treasured now became commonplace.
The infection didn’t stop there. Food of every sort and stripe became pumpkin spiced. Pastries of all types found themselves tinted orange, coated orange. Ugh, so much pumpkin!
Inevitably, a backlash happened. PSL gained fame, and people of the internet found out that other people of the internet enjoyed PSLs. This, in turn, caused the internet to hate PSL. With smug richness, they would point and say “See, it is out of control! Other people like it, therefore I hate pumpkin spice latte!” Fans of PSL were derided worldwide for their loyalty. Shunned. Mocked.
Even John Oliver hates PSL.
These days, my stomach—thanks to all the madness—gurgles in anger and outrage when I think about putting some PSL in it. The world has ruined PSL for me.
I’ve moved on. I have a new obsession. Hummus. Oh yes, I will eat ALL the hummus.
I will become the hummus libertine!