Monday, July 19, 2004
The First Sign of Fall ... IN JULY!!!
Here it is a little bit past mid-July, summer has not even been officially with us for a month yet, and today I saw the first sign of Autumn.
No, it was not a cold snap of weather that brought on multi colored leaves on a tree ---no, nothing like that--- it was a display of ginger-snaps at the local supermarket.
If you grew up anywhere around these parts, the familiar orange and black boxes of Irwin's Famous Spiced Wafers or Sweetzels Spiced Wafers was a sure sign that the lazy, hazy days were coming to an end.
When I was a boy, the boxes would appear in very early September or (rarely) late August and while the actual cookie it self was a favorite of mine and my friends, it would also strike a chord of fear in us, letting us know that school was going to be back in session shortly and our respite from academia was almost through. The first kid on the block that saw them would usually bring the subject up, rather gravely, while playing ball or trading comic books; "Hey, guess what I saw yesterday", he would say, "The Halloween Cookies are out."
The Halloween Cookies are out.
That's what we would call them, Halloween Cookies. Probably because of the orange and black boxes they came in and the fact that on October 31st half of the houses you went to for Trick or Treat; you'd be given handfuls of the spicy little things.
Today as I stood in the supermarket looking up at the display, I could not help but shake that old bittersweet memory of childhood. Though it has been a very long time since I sat in a class room, or traded comic books with my pals, or played stick ball; the sight of those cookies just made me feel like I was eight years old again. I wanted to run home and let somebody know what I'd seen, I wanted to break the news, even though it was coming really early this year...
...Hey, the Halloween Cookies are out.