Andrew Terefenko

Opinions Editor


I think pumpkins are kind of weird.

I don’t mean in that something-isn’t-quite-right way one might feel about dragonfruit or gooseberries. I mean in that fundamentally disturbing feeling I get from looking at them, touching them and eating things made from them. Right off the bat, I have trouble believing in any animal, vegetable or mineral that I can’t just eat raw.

Why are we so hung up on devoting a whole month to this orange phenomenon?

I feel there are so many other vegetables and fruits that deserve a month rather than these monstrous squashes. Why do we not devote all of April to apples? We can just as easily carve them, display them and smash them in the streets.

As a vegetable, it tries so hard to not be eaten, with its thick, hard shell and prickly stem. Then there is the weight of it all, with the average pumpkin clocking in just over ten pounds. That is an absurd amount of obstacles in the way of eating something we give so much attention to.

I understand that they are extremely plentiful in North America, and we didn’t have the squashes and gourds our European neighbours used for their carving traditions, but why did they inexplicably take over a holiday tradition?

On some level, I get it. They are pretty useful for carving scary faces into, but without fail, their lack of edibility leaves them to rot well into November, and in the case of particularly lazy seniors, compost into the ground by mid-February.

Of course, there is also the all-too-powerful temptation for rowdy youth to thrash them onto private property and cause their own brand of uncommonly common orange wrath and havoc. This would be far less or a problem if they were throwing something small, solid and delicious.

I am only pointing this all out because I am an advocate of vegetable and fruit fairness, in that we should give equal treatment to some of the lesser-prized veggies that equally deserve our thirty-day worship. Like rhubarbs, maybe, which are a vegetable equally resistant to being eaten without special care, and yet are just as questionably useless in a larger scheme of food.

So, I ask you, either cease pushing pumpkins on me all month long, or prepare everyone for a fun-filled November, heretofore known as Rhubarb Appreciation Month.


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