There was a slow onset. Mitch and I were at some friends' apartment, and it was clean and cozy. Some festive leaves and a birdhouse awaited us at the threshold. And this should register somewhere from neutral to nice in my brain, but instead I had an irrational reaction to it. WE'RE DOING THIS NOW? I thought angrily.
This couple, they have framed photographs of vegetables in their kitchen. Glossy ones, cut out of magazines, and put behind glass. You can't tell me that someone has a sentimental attachment to plums, that the memory of sweet potatoes helps get them through their day. No. This is all-out, 100% decoration. They have a "Eat, Drink, and Be Merry" plaque hung unironically. And the worst part about all of it? IT'S FUCKING NICE!
Pumpkin-smelling candles! Little paper pennants in gold and eggplant!
I asked Mitch in the car ride home, what he thought of the fall decour, and he said, "It made me feel really comfortable." "WHY DON'T YOU MARRY THEM THEN?" I replied. Fine times.
The thing about it is that I'm not like that, and I'm okay with myself. I grew up in a house that had the nice decorations. People have actually hired my mom to decorate their houses. So my parents' house does pretty good in the decorative festivities. I picked up a lot of things from my mom, but the interior decorating wasn't one of them. My mom rides her bike across states, builds art installations, and helps old and hurt people learn how to walk again. I'll take some of that, please.
It's odd, though, how I feel like we all need to be doing the same thing, that the way other people live their lives has a bearing on mine. Human empathy, probably. But it's too bad that I can't just leave the nice people's gourds alone.
I figure it's a good time for this.