You can take your pumpkin spice lattes and….

All you fall-lovers can go to hell. Happy Autumnal Equinox, you smug bastards.

All right, all right, enough of that. I’m baiting you and indulging myself – on purpose, of course. The truth, as ever, is more complicated.

My baiting indulgence and cruel cursing is rooted in a couple of factors. For one, I’ve noticed a sharp uptick this year, in particular, of social media posts gushing about the glories of fall and cool weather and, yes, pumpkin effing SPICE. Enough of an uptick to make me suspicious. I mean, this can’t be real, right? Did everyone get together on Memorial Day, without inviting me, and collectively decide that in 2016, everyone’s favorite season would be fall? I’m seriously confused. Is summer no longer awesome? In New Hampshire? Maybe it’s not exactly Maine or the Berkshires, but there are still people out there who come to live in New Hampshire just in the summertime – a lot of them coming to Peterborough, my base of operations, in particular. It’s that awesome – still. When did we decide we were going to ignore this?

I know I’m being a little dramatic, here. I recognize that perhaps I’m always cranky about the end of the summer, and that perhaps I’m even more cranky about it than usual this year. Why not? Awful as this year has been in many respects, I’m frankly having a great time.

And this summer treated me very kindly. It’s always great. I love the heat. I love the light. I love the fact that even those who would never acknowledge or admit it unconsciously adopt a more relaxed mindset for a few months, as though an ultra-low volume soundtrack were being broadcast in the minds even of all our middle managers, a sound track of reggae! I love swimming and ponds and oceans and woods and hiking and sweating and drinking outside.

I mean what did you do for your summer? I rocked hard, saw some shows, hung with some good people, stood face to face with some armed extremists in the street, read, hiked, discovered one of Monadnock’s secret places, had a number of really high-quality mystical experiences, and enjoyed the hell out of this forested region we all call home. So given that I don’t like change to begin with, or even under the best of circumstances, or even when it’s clearly necessary and for the best, it should make sense that I am highly resistant to the end of this wonderful, wild summer.

Your pro-fall posts are obnoxious, but what’s been bothering me really isn’t, in the end, about me being anti-fall but resisting the inevitable end of the summer, just as I intend to resist death! BWAHAHAHA!

But I actually love fall just as much as you do. Happy fall, for real. Happy equinox. This is a big time of the year. We should be partying for two weeks. We can’t do that in this society, and we’ve talked about that a million times over the last four years.

(Yeah, we just celebrated our four-year anniversary. Pretty cool. Thanks for all the good times and here’s to many more.)

But I urge you in the strongest possible terms to take joy and merriment during this time of transition in any way you can, by any means necessary. You don’t just deserve it, you need it. Not just pumpkins or lattes or ciders (lots of ciders, yeah), but really joyful feasting and merriment and dancing and connection with all those around you – and hopefully even with the sickly earth herself.

Even as you celebrate, you should be sure and reflect – it may be a joke but is not a falsehood that “fall is the most contemplative of seasons.” This is not the time of genesis or renewal. That comes later. What we have before us and around us and at our disposal now is the fruit of what we planted so many months ago, ready for the harvesting. What did you do in the beginning half of the year and how does that relate to what you see around you, what’s been produced, as of this moment? That’s how you know, that’s how you identify what the harvest of 2016 is, and when you know that, you can understand what you are going to do with it. What you plan to do with it right now, to relish and give thanks for this gift of continued life, and what do you plan to do to stash some away to hopefully survive the winter?

I’m not lying – fall is great. I love it when it cools off and I can wear long-sleeved shirts again. There’s a part of me (not the part I like the most, but still an important part) that actually is looking forward to the shorter days and longer nights.

Plus, right at midnight, I saw a meteor. Gotta be a sign. And I’m already pretty sure, based on what I know of my year, that my harvest is gonna be a pretty fun one. I hope yours is, too. I mean that sincerely, even if you’ve been posting terrible memes.

Happy equinox, my friends. Love and kisses and a deepened connection to the universe for you all :*

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