The haunting return of pumpkin spice

The leaves are still green, but pumpkin spice lattes are here and Hobby Lobby is probably setting up its Christmas decorations. 

As of Aug. 30, Starbucks has re-released its signature pumpkin spice drinks that are a staple of stereotypical white female culture. Yet, they might be onto something. 

With the addition of Starbucks in the Centennial Student Union at Minnesota State University, Mankato, students have had a chance to test out the craze, myself included. Now, I am a serious connoisseur of coffee and an obsessor over the Special-K Pumpkin Spice cereal, so I have some qualifications to be gauging the drink. In fact, I light pumpkin candles year round and have a fantastic pumpkin bread recipe at home. 

I ordered a hot latte, cupped the drink in my hands, took a sip … And concluded that I might just be in love with anything pumpkin. 

Pumpkin spice is not just about the flavor; it is about the fall experience. It is about roaming spirit Halloween, and purchasing a can of bubble-gum pink hair spray just because you want to know how you’d look with that color. It is about wearing a blanket with holes for your eyes to class. It is about free candy, because there is nothing a college student loves more than free food. 

The scent of pumpkin spice can trigger a sense of nostalgia when students jumped in  piles of leaves  and poured over Halloween costume magazines. 

Frankly, simply the aesthetic of a scarf, a beanie and a pumpkin spice latte are the serotonin boost students may need in the midst of getting back into the swing of school. A coffee break with friends can be an easy activity to sneak in between classes that still allows students to cry over their textbook later that night. 

Additionally, lattes provide the caffeine students need to make up for the lack of sleep the previous night and prevent students from yawning so often in class. The lack of yawning can be a great way to impress teachers in those tough 8 a.m. lectures. 

Don’t let the spooky truth that pumpkin spice flavoring may not even include actual pumpkin deflate the joy. Although the drink may be a stereotype, keep in mind that things that are popular are usually popular for a reason, and drink on. Indulge in pumpkin spice air fresheners, energy drinks and yogurts. 

The flavor is not around all season, so jump on the bandwagon as it drives through a cornfield and soak up those autumn college days that students can look back on. Might as well burn through those dining dollars on the biggest craze of the season: pumpkin spice.

Header Photo: Starbucks’ new location on campus makes it easier for students to participate in sharing the pumpkin spice experience and nostalgia this season – students can buy a drink for friends or snap a photo to flex. (Dylan Engel/The Reporter)

Write to Lilly Schmidt at Lillian.Schmidt@mnsu.edu

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