Tonight’s unbearably strong impulse is to carve a pumpkin.
Fortunately, I possess no pumpkins. Cleanup is the bane of my existence, requiring far too much follow through to hold my interest. Late at night, it would have doubtless been forgotten. I would have wandered off, full of the smug satisfaction of a masterpiece completed, and leaving in my wake a gory mess of pumpkin guts, smeared across the tools and table to dry into a hard semi-permanent crust. Pumpkin chunks intended to become pie would desiccate on the table into a shanty town for my fruit fly population, seeds left in a bowl on the counter never to be roasted.
Despite knowing the likely outcome, It was all I could do to resist taking off at 10PM on a gourd-finding expedition. I was secretly hoping for an All Hallows Eve miracle. A horrible accident involving a pumpkin truck outside my door, or the pumpkin fairy magically manifesting in my kitchen and turning my common every day boring food items into carvable cucurbits. I even posted to facebook that someone should fetch me a pumpkin, knowing it would never happen but wishing that some intrepid enabler would hear my plea.
Instead of seeking out a pumpkin, I will placate the beast by posting photos of pumpkins from years past. These are examples of terrible ideas that turned out pretty okay, in the end.
2005 was the year that I decided five pumpkins was a fantastic number of pumpkins to carve. It started with a week of sketching, to make the perfect pumpkin plan. I carried a stack of drawings with me everywhere I went; work, dining out, to my parent’s house, and erased and redrew and traced furiously until I had my templates ready.
I can recall, about halfway through the last pumpkin, hand stained orange and cramping from hours of delicate carving with a flimsy blade on an awful plastic handle, thinking that there might be something wrong with me. But I absolutely could not rest until I had made one carving from each of my chosen templates.
The next few years were pretty tame, as far as pumpkin carving goes. I’d learned my lesson, it seemed, and avoided the Madness. I carved at my parent’s house so my mom would clean up after me, and stuck to one or two pumpkins only.
Then came 2008. Somehow my addlepated hampster-mind managed to cling to the idea that five pumpkins all at once was bad. But purchasing a brand new chisel set from one of my favorite stores, Harbor Freight, in order to carve pumpkins BETTER was a great idea. Sure, I’d never used a chisel and had no idea how. But that wasn’t going to stop me.
Fortunately, pumpkins are a very forgiving art form, and near-disaster was averted.