So, I’m sitting there at the kitchen table paying some monthly bills and I’m thinking, “Wait, didn’t I do this just last week?” Then the next thing you know my wife wants to bring the Halloween stuff down from the attic room and I’m thinking, “Wait, didn’t we do Halloween just a three or four months ago?” It’s tempus fugit all over again.

Somebody once said one of the keys to happiness is having something to look forward to, but my problem is all the things I look forward to seem to whiz by while I’m looking forward to the next thing.

Anyhow, here we are getting well into October, the month that always evokes in me a bit of mystery and yes, apprehension, like change is in the air. I’ve got five words that sum up this month for me: propane, firewood, layers, longhandles, and clodhoppers. Give me those and I will be OK.

Wait, I think I left out the most important one: pumpkin, as in pumpkin spice. Apparently, our (that’s the collective our) fondness for that particular orange gourd goes on unabated, and I was wondering what new products they will add pumpkin spice to this year. In addition to the things carried over from last year, you can now buy pumpkin spice Jello pudding, pumpkin hot cocoa mix, pumpkin Kahlua, pumpkin Bobo bars, pumpkin hand soap, pumpkin Cheerios and Frosted Flakes, pumpkin coffee creamer, pumpkin caramel corn, pumpkin waffle mix, pumpkin butter, pumpkin apple cider, pumpkin Pringles, and finally something we’ve all been waiting for: pumpkin spice Trident chewing gum, to give you pumpkin spice breath.

Oh, and now there’s a pumpkin spice shampoo, “Gee Your Hair Smells Pumpkiny.”

No thanks. Incidentally, while I was showering the other day I wondered that if I shampooed my facial hair, would my beard be soft and silky and smell of lavender?

While we’re on the subject, if a skunk can scare away predators simply with a bad smell, could we use one of our human odors to the same effect?

But I digress.

Getting back to words, I just read that Merriam Webster’s Official Scrabble Players Dictionary has added 300 new words you can use to out-clever your opponents in that maddening game. As of now, if you ever wanted to use words such as twerk, qapik, bibimbap, zen, ok, yowza or ew in the triple point square be my guest. And zomboid is now legal in Scrabble, just in time for Halloween.

I don’t know if you got Monday off for Columbus Day, but in the real world the 526th anniversary of the Niña, Pinta and Santa Maria making landfall in the Western Hemisphere is tomorrow, October 12. But that doesn’t give federal workers a Monday off, so…

Back when I was in grade school we were led to believe that people of those times thought the world was flat and Columbus would fall off the end of the world. But nay, sailors and import/export people of the day already knew the earth was round like a globe, which makes me wonder about the people here in the 21st century that still think the earth is flat as a pancake. But that’s another kettle of fish.

Anyway, some places in our United States have started to honor Native American culture instead. I read somewhere on the internet that Alaska, Vermont, South Dakota, Alabama and Hawaii have gone ahead and dropped it, and picked up Indigenous People Day or something similar. Here in New Mexico that includes the cities of Santa Fe and Albuquerque. So far Columbus, Ohio, hasn’t changed, but its neighboring city, Cincinnati, which is named for a Roman statesman, has.

I’m starting to confuse myself.

Of course, being indigenous is what it’s all about up at the Alamo rez, and the folks there have a celebration every October called Indian Days. If you didn’t get too tuckered out after Oktoberfest and Socorrofest last weekend, take the 30 mile drive up from Magdalena to the reservation this weekend. There’s a parade, Indian market, pow wow, traditional Navajo singing and drumming and dancing, lots of food, arts and crafts and the Miss Alamo Indian Pageant.

I always enjoy the drive up to Alamo, which sits in a little valley surrounded by mountains and hills and buttes.

If you’ve never been, the time to go is during Indian Days, especially this Saturday morning when the big parade winds down Highway 169, all the way from the campground to the Chapter House. There are some great photo ops and if you play your cards right, there just may well be some mutton and frybread with your name on it. Good eats all over Walter’s Park.

I’m just wondering if they’ll have pumpkin spice frybread.