The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

That’s what she said

3 min read

By Kaitlin Mayhew

Fall is here. The showering of cold rain I was caught in earlier on the way to class made me blissfully aware of that fact. And I’m not being sarcastic. I actually do like the rain, and since I had no specific attachment to the way my hair looked that day, or to the dryness of my outfit I was able to enjoy it all the more.

However, from a more commercial standpoint, fall came long ago, a month or so ago in fact.
What continues to surprise me each year is the amount of “fall” themed objects for purchase in stores. There is as much “fall” merchandise on the shelves as there are Christmas items in November.

Not to say that I don’t thoroughly adore it, or buy every pumpkin shaped candle or scented room spray I can afford.

But what makes something “autumn scented?”

It seems to me that anything with a vague cinnamon smell will pass. If that’s so then why not call it cinnamon?

Apparently they can charge two more dollars for the “autumn” scented moisturizing lotion than they can for its cinnamon counterpart.

The packaging is another inescapable lure these vendors use to attract poor unsuspecting customers.

It is always a colorful amalgamation of dulled orange, reds, and browns. And the display set up around them just makes them all the more alluring.

Bath and Body Works stores are particular offenders.

It seems as if the entire store changes with the season, but in a heavenly, commercial, and materialistic way.

I’ve bought more “Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin” lotion over the years before I ever stopped to ask myself whether or not I wnted my skin to be pumpkin scented.

Finaly, I have come to the conclusion that there are some things that just don’t need to smell like pumpkin. Skin, I believe, may be one of them.

And not just pumpkin, does anyone really want to walk by and have someone think, “Wow, they smell just like an autumn breeze?” I think not.

Food seems to be another sales market that thrives on autumn. All you have to do is flip on the Food Network to find out that it’s time for butternut squash soup, apple cider, and anything and everything pumpkin.

This, I do realize, came originally from necessity. In the days before imports and grocery stores, people had to cook with what was grown. And I do concede that it is a good idea to eat the food that’s in season. But do canned pumpkin and packets of turkey gravy ever really go out of season?
As much as I adore fall, and fall-like cuisine, I do wonder why it became faux pas to eat pumpkin pie in the spring.

The grocery stores seem to be part of the plot as well. Have you ever tried to find canned pumpkin or turkey broth off season? It is often very difficult.

In short, my advice for the season would be steer clear of the autumn perfumes but cash in on the room spray and stock up on the canned pumpkin while readily available!