Glory be! I spent last weekend just hanging out at home, taking advantage of the November hiatus between all the usual fall events and activities in these here parts. Sort of like taking a breath before things start gearing up again next week with the Festival of the Cranes, followed by Thanksgiving, the dreaded Black Friday craziness, and then the actual Christmas season, which we've been reminded of at Walmart ever since way before Halloween.
Yes, I had grand plans. You know, stuff like working on some projects, organizing the attic room, fiddling with some papers and being generally productive. I was bound and determined not to be the caricatured couch potato - awash in a sea of empty potato chip bags and candy wrappers from leftover trick-or-treat candy.
While I wasn’t all that sedentary, it was pretty close. After a couple of sessions of splitting some cedar and spruce for the woodstove and watching a couple of DVD movies, I made the mistake of logging onto YouTube, and that was all she wrote.
Since we don’t have regular TV at our house - it’s hard to pick up Albuquerque stations in Magdalena without a HAARP-like antenna array on the roof - I found I’ve been oblivious of all the important stuff in the world. Important stuff that can only be found on YouTube, like for instance, all the products you buy during PSE season - Pumpkin Spice Everything.
Don’t get me wrong, who doesn’t love that nutmeggy-cinnamony-gingery concoction that makes pumpkin pie so yummy? I mean, back when Starbuck’s first brought out their pumpkin lattes, it was new...different...orange. Much the same as the pumpkin ale I used to brew (with actual pumpkin rinds) a few years ago...weird but dee-licious.
But hey, pumpkin spice Spam? Pumpkin spice Pringles? Pumpkin spice hot wings sauce? And then there’s pumpkin seed (not peanut) brittle. Hmm, that doesn’t sound too bad.
This year the pumpkin spice craze has extended into the realm of non-edibles, like pumpkin spice pipe tobacco. Now you can carry the aroma around in your armpits with pumpkin spice latte deodorant (after showering with pumpkin spice body wash and before you put on your pumpkin spice-themed sneakers and apply pumpkin spice lip balm). Not only that, you transform your home into pumpkin spice heaven with pumpkin-colored wall paint and clean up with pumpkin spice all-purpose household cleaner. And don’t forget to put out your “If You Have Pumpkin Spice Anything, Come In” doormat.
I kid you not, as Jack Paar used to say, you can buy all of the above.
Strangely, there were no pumpkin spice jack-o-lanterns on Halloween. Just pumpkins.
But I digress. After watching YouTube for longer than I admit to, I learned that the earth is flat, and aliens built the pyramids. I learned that Marilyn Monroe, Elvis and James Dean were abducted by aliens. I learned that aliens are not only living among us, they are also living on the Moon, which, by the way, is hollow. I learned that some politicians are shape-shifting reptilian aliens in human form. Margaret Thatcher, Queen Elizabeth, George W. Bush, Henry Kissinger, Bill Clinton, Bob Hope, and Scooby-Doo were mentioned by name. Who'd a thunk it?
With all these conspiracy theories, I’m thinking that aliens are probably responsible for pumpkin spice.
Anyway, as is customary on the internet, one link links you to another site that links you to another and another, and I wound up watching a video on the Lost Adams Diggings.
The story comes from an account that describes how a man named Adams (simply, Adams) claimed to have discovered copious amounts of huge gold nuggets in a canyon somewhere in New Mexico in the 1860s. But before he and his miner friends could take the gold out of the mountains, Apaches happened along and killed all but Adams, who was found wandering around and delirious by some soldiers. Adams ended up moving to California, and about 20 years later decided he would come back to New Mexico to see if he could find the mine again. No luck.
Ever since then, stalwart treasure hunters have tried to find what he could not. True believers think it’s in the Gallinas or Datil mountains in Catron County to the Black Range west of T or C.
Or somewhere else.
Bob Eveleth, whose specialty is geology and mining, in particular, has collected umpteen articles and accounts of people who have searched for the Lost Adams Diggings.
For a different exercise in futility, you might sign a petition that’s been circulating on Twitter to abolish Daylight Savings Time at http://chng.it/5kMDXTzq.
In the meantime, I'm opting out of YouTube for a while. And if you're curious, pumpkin spice is mentioned 16 times in the above. Whoops, now 17.