The Thing That Wouldn’t Die
We bought this pumpkin, a few weeks before Halloween last year, partially as a festive holiday decoration, but partially because a cat psychic told us that our black cat Nigel, really likes them. Nigel did, once, many years ago, when he was a kitten, enjoy sharpening his claws, and sitting, on a large orange pumpkin, and looked adorable doing so. However, he has completely ignored subsequent pumpkins, including this one. Although this is not the first pumpkin Nigel has ignored since we talked to the cat psychic, certainly by now, Nigel has ignored this pumpkin longer than any pumpkin in his entire life.
I’ve done my best to ignore it as well, but the pumpkin has begun to get on my nerves. This pumpkin takes up a lot of precious real estate on our coffee table. Being round, you can’t set anything on top of it, and being bright orange, you can’t help but notice it. I’ve learned to work around it, keeping my coffee and magazines on the end table instead, although that’s getting a bit crowded with my bong and ash-tray there as well. When I spill bong-water on my American Craft magazine, I try not to blame the pumpkin.
For ten months now, this traffic cone of the vegetable kingdom has dominated my field of view. The pumpkin still seemed like a perfectly natural Thanksgiving decoration, and did not seem at all out of place, except that it got in the way of Thanksgiving dinner. We live in a very small place. Our coffee table also serves as our dinner table, so the pumpkin served as an over-sized centerpiece at our Thanksgiving feast.
By Christmas, the pumpkin seemed a little strange, but rather than buy a Christmas Tree, we just slapped a Santa’s hat on it. The cone-shaped red hat with fuzzy white, trim looked a little Christmasy, but it also kind of looked like we had Santa’s head on our coffee table.
For New Year’s Eve, I thought about hollowing out the pumpkin to use as an ice bucket for champagne, but we had eggnog with homemade blackberry brandy instead, which required no ice bucket. So, the pumpkin sat there through the winter. All winter the pumpkin sat between me and the wood-stove preventing me from seeing the fire within, unless I craned my neck, but we weren’t going to throw away a perfectly good pumpkin.
When Springtime came, we had no place to put a vase of wildflowers, because the pumpkin took up too much space.
We let it substitute for an Easter egg, although we’ve never celebrated Jesus based holidays in our household. This pumpkin constitutes the first time we ever had an Easter, or Christmas decoration in our home, but it only happened because we had this pumpkin left over from Halloween. Call us reluctant Christians, at least reluctant to throw away our Halloween pumpkin.
Now, its the middle of August, its 103 degrees. I’m melting, but that pumpkin is still as hard as a rock. We dusted it off again today. No soft spots. The great orange orb sits there on my coffee table, mocking me in the summer heat. “What are you still doing here?” I ask it. The heat is getting to me, I’m starting to lose it.
I’m afraid that if it somehow makes it to this Halloween, this pumpkin will somehow be rejuvenated, and last another whole year. I couldn’t take that. I’d have to move out. It’ll be me or the pumpkin if it comes to that. I can’t take it any more. I hope I never see another pumpkin for the rest of my life.