It’s official. It’s here. The leaves are changing, the kiddies are trudging off to school, mornings are crisp and I’m miserable.
I hate fall.
When people tell me fall is their favorite season, I look at them wondering what sort of crazy meds they should be on. As I slowly back away from them I can’t help but respond, “What is there to like about it?”
First off, the whole leaf thing. Sure, if you live in the Northeast you get a brief blast of gorgeous red-hued leaves that draw tourists who will gladly clog your quaint country roads. Yes, in the Northwest (my neck of the woods), there are trees that put on this little display in a less gaudy form, but in reality the show is soon over and done.
And what happens to all that beauty everyone just last week was snapping countless photos of? That’s right, it’s covering your lawn you worked so hard to get healthy over the summer, it’s blocking storm drains causing lake-size puddles you need a raft to cross, and it’s turning into a brown mash in the roads making cornering on a bike next to impossible without falling flat on your face. So, the leaf thing is really just a big, ugly fiasco.
Which leads into another thing I hate about fall: It’s messy.
I’ve covered the leaf mess, but then there are all the vegetable gardens no one wants to give up on. Rather than admit defeat and chuck the tomato and zucchini plants in the compost, people leave them hanging on cages and trellises looking geriatric and sad. Please, put the poor things out of their misery!
But it’s not just the vegetables that look like hell. Flowering plants practically beg to be euthanized. The only thing that seems to keep growing is the grass, but you can never mow it because the lawn soaked from the rain and the sun no longer gets high enough to dry anything.
And that brings me to Reason I Hate Fall Number Three…
How can anyone delight in the fact that there is so little daylight? I like the sun. Yes, I’m an Oregon girl and appreciate a good rainstorm now and then, but the shorter daylight hours are just plain depressing, especially when many of the days are spent under a heavy cloud cover.
Fall as a favorite season? To whom? The makers of Prozac?
And statements of “I love the crisp mornings?” Do you know what those “crisp” mornings signal? They signal the end of the free solar energy you’ve been drying your sheets with for the past three or four months. They signal that you’re going to have to turn on the heat, which means you’ll then be whining about how expensive it is to heat your home. They signal that pretty soon it’s not going to be just the mornings that are “crisp” and you’ll be freezing your bum off all day as you complain about how cold it is.
In my opinion, mornings should be calm and quiet (except for singing birds). They should not be associated with the same word used to describe roasted chicken skin!
And with fall you can kiss the quiet summer mornings goodbye. Those kids who spent the summer sleeping until noon are now noisily tromping up the street at eight in the morning, dragging their skateboards behind them as they try to talk to each other over the music coming through their earbuds. Or, if you’re lucky like me, you may live on a school bus route and have giant yellow whales belch diesel fumes while racing at ten miles over the speed limit to get rid of their noisy cargo.
With the arrival of fall, gone are the nights of sleeping with the windows wide open. Now, I have to sneak the window open a crack while my husband brushes his teeth (I like fresh air, not man air) and wonder if three blankets will be enough. Gone are the months without a heating bill and wearing skirts and sandals without having goosebumps. Gone are the lazy days of sitting under the tree in the hammock (which is now buried under a pile leaves). Gone are the days of mud-free hikes and muck-free bike rides. Gone are the long, warm days of summer.
Fall is here. Wake me when it’s over.