Monday, October 5, 2015

What's been bugging me

Fall is my favorite season, and I love being outdoors. There are some seasonal traditions that I have pretended to enjoy over the years but can now admit annoyed me.

In grade school I followed the kids at lunch to the little confectionary across the street that served hamburgers fresh off the grill for a dime. They were yummy. But when I saw kids with "poms" for recess, I figured I'd spend my dime on one of those freaky fruits.

I hated opening them, and despised digging out the seeds. It seemed like too much work in order to suck the too-tangy juice out of a tiny seed. I tried them again and again. I even tried them in high school, and as an adult, but pomegranates and I never were a good match. I love pink grapefruit and green olives, so it wasn't the tang; it was the tediousness.

I'm not talking caramel apples, especially yummy Merb's Bionic apples dipped in a mixture of whipped cream and caramel, then rolled in nuts. The ones coated in chocolate after the caramel dip were my dream-come-true-fruit.


No, I'm talking about those sour Granny Smith apples that made me pucker IF I could bite through the red hot-cinnamon flavored hard candy shell. Talk about too much trouble. If I had wanted a sucker, I'd have bought a Tootsie Pop with a dab of chocolate in the center. Candy apples turned me against Granny Smiths. Golden Delicious apples are my favorite to this day.

It seems not one of our knives was ever sharp enough to penetrate the flesh of our large,
thick-skinned pumpkins. I fought a valiant battle every year and ended up with scars to prove it. Yanking the slimy guts, separating the seeds, washing and baking little reward for so much work. Allowing kids to participate (my own and my students) was memorable, messy, and made me crazy when I lifted the lids and revealed  mold growing a day later in my warm classroom.

I read a fun story every year about a mouse family that discovered a Jack-o-lantern and made it their home. Magazine articles claimed birds and squirrels would devour them as the weather grew colder. Nothing ate or inhabited our porch sitter. It sat there until it rotted and folded into itself. Then, I had to pitch old Oohey Gooey in the trash.

Are there things about the season that bug you? Oh let's not forget the no see 'em gnats that nibble my ankles in the evening until the first frost annihilates them.




Daisy said...

I agree wholeheartedly with you on all three of these things. I've never been particularly fond of jumping into a pile of leaves either, especially if I was the one who raked them up and will have to rake them again after they've been jumped in. And now I'm wishing for a caramel apple with chocolate and nuts! :-)

Sioux said...

Your sad jack-o-lantern description was hilarious.

Soon it will be winter... and hopefully with it, some snow days.

DUTA said...

Pity the pomegranate is messy to eat ,as it has so many medical benefits.
In my religion this red fruit with a crown has a place of honor It is a symbol of fertilty. On our crafts markets one can find pomegranates made of ceramics and clay, as well as drawings and pictures of the fruit.

Donna Volkenannt said...

Your post about hard candy apples brought back memories. Everyone made sure to stop at one woman's house on Halloween to get her candy apples. Yummy!

Val said...

I never had a pomegranate, only minded the pumpkin because of the slimy guts, but I despise those candy apples. They can pull a tooth right out of the socket!

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

The candy apples never did a thing for me either, Linda. I don't like anything that sticks to my teeth---not even gummy bears. Ugh. Pomegranates, now, that's another matter. I fill a big bowl with water and seed the pomegranate below the water, so it isn't messy, and then I eat the loose seeds with a spoon. Worth every second. Yum. :) The pumpkin carving is a 50/50. I didn't think much of it when I was a kid, but had fun with it when my own kids were growing up. As far as stuff about the season that bothers me, there isn't much, as autumn is my favorite season, but if I had to choose one thing I'd say it's the Christmas presents showing up before the first leaf has even fallen. Each season should have it's own season and not have to share.

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

Oops, not presents. I meant to say decorations.

K9friend said...

Fall is my absolute favorite season. I think the only thing that really annoys me about it is Halloween night. Oh, I don't mean the cute little kiddos that tentatively step on my porch dressed like Spiderman or Frozen characters. I mean the teenagers taller than I am who aren't even in costume standing at the door holding out a bag and snarling "Trick or Treat". They leave with a treat but I still worry about whether they'll "trick" up my house or yard anyway.

Critter Alley

Susan Sundwall said...

Candy apple hater raising her hand. The pomegranate craze hit when I was a kid, too. Mom wouldn't buy them so I had to beg a few seeds from others. Glad I did as they are a pain. Pumpkins. Hmmm. The smell of a fresh opened pumpkin brings all the Halloweens of my youth back in an instant. But clearing the guts is a chore I never relished and a carver I'm not! Great post, Linda.

Tammy said...

This post made me smile. There's a certain fall candle scent that I absolutely can't stand. Recently walked into Bath and Body Works and I think that odor singed my nose hairs, because that was all I could smell for hours.