Dear Philadelphia: Where Are My Freaking Pumpkins!?

As the decorative gourds disappear, one by one, from my stoop, I slip deeper and deeper into madness. I need answers.

I’m only going to ask this once: Where are my pumpkins, Philadelphia?

I know where they used to be. At one point, they were lined up neatly on my steps, smallest to plumpest, as if ready to march off to their first day of pumpkin school. Others were nestled safe and sound in my window box, which as of October became a shrine to Decorative Gourd Season.

When the first one went missing, I brushed it off. It’s my first fall in South Philly proper — where the Halloween decorations went up in September and the Christmas lights are already twinkling — and I admittedly went a little overboard while trying to fit in with my neighbors. I could have easily miscounted my many pumpkins.

When the second one disappeared, I stayed positive. Maybe someone walking by recognized my pumpkin’s potential and brought it home to help it live out its wildest pumpkin dreams. Perhaps my pumpkin was in a better place, living a life I couldn’t provide. If he was transformed into an award-winning pie or a first-prize jack-o’-lantern, I could have moved on in the name of “If you love something, let it go.”

But when I woke up one morning to a mere three surviving pumpkins, rage set in.

Maybe I’ll ask again: Where in unholy hell are my pumpkins, Philadelphia?

I realize that pumpkins are not valuable or even particularly useful. They’re nothing more than hyped-up squash, cheap and readily available. But this is no comfort – rather, this is exactly why I need answers, and I need answers soon.

When my purse was swiped off the bar in Old City a couple weeks ago, I was upset, yes, But at the same time, I understood the situation perfectly. Someone saw a hot pink faux-fur clutch and thought, “Only a unicorn stripper would carry that. I bet there’s cash and drugs in there.” (Hope you’re enjoying that $7 and Whole Foods reward card, buddy.)

Similarly, I know why my car was broken into a couple summers ago. Someone spotted what looked like a bag on the passenger seat and thought, “We’re well into the 21st century. Surely this must be a briefcase, not a binder full of live Dave Matthews Band CDs.” (How’s that 45-minute Two Step treating you, friend?) When I handed over the couple hundred dollars to replace my window, at least I did so while understanding the world I was living in.

This is not the case today. Today, I have no idea why anyone would want my 3-for-$5 ShopRite pumpkins. The way I see it, at this point, there are only two acceptable explanations:

  1. Deeming Mischief Night too predictable, neighborhood kids have hidden them somewhere while they wait for the perfect time to smash them in the street, thus continuing a time-honored Philadelphia tradition. It would be messy, sure, but so goes it with the circle of life.
  1. A family of squirrels has converted them into tiny little pumpkin condos to spend their tiny little winters in. When they roast their tiny little chestnuts over their tiny little fires, they will think of me fondly as they smoke their tiny little pipes.

Yeah, I’m not buying it either. So perhaps I’ll ask one more time: Where the fucking fuck are my fucking pumpkins, Philadelphia?

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Previously: 383 Pounds of Cocaine Found in Shipment of Decorative Gourds