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Meet the Columnist

Columnist, Sheila Moss, is humor writer from  Tennessee. She writes  a weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny things that happen to everyone.

   She has written for  the Daily News of Kingsport,   Griffin Journal, Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books.  Her articles have appeared in numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.

    She is a former board member and past  Editor of  the Columnists.com, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for columnists. She is the Web Editor of Southern
Humorists.com
  and  a founder of the Southern Humorists writers' organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com

    To carry her weekly column in your newspaper, or to republish an article, please contact her. It's that easy. 

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Remembering Autumn....
 


Remembering Autumn

I want to go back to the autumn of my childhood. I want to see piles of pumpkins at roadside stands.  I want to drink apple cider that doesn't come in plastic jugs.  I want to feel the crisp air in the mornings as I walk to school. I want to see a hint of frost on the ground that tells me the season is changing.  I want to observe the glorious riot of color as trees try to outdo each other. I want to gather leaves in hues of red, orange, and yellow.

I want to visit a pumpkin farm and select an orange pumpkin to carve into a jack-o-lantern. I do not want to go the pumpkin farms that have turned into commercial enterprises with hayrides, corn mazes, and petting zoos. I believe the selection of a pumpkin should never be a secondary thing.  I do not believe that an artificial pumpkin from Walmart with a plastic smile that lasts forever can ever replace the real thing. 

I want to celebrate Halloween like it was in the time before it lost its innocence. I want to play pranks, soap windows, and ring doorbells and hide without ending up in Juvenile Court. I want to dress up like a gypsy or a scarecrow instead of a Disney princess or a superhero. I do not want to wear a store-bought costume where creativity isn't necessary and there is and endless selection of the same thing.

I want to go to a Halloween party in the high school gymnasium, bob for apples, take part in a cake walk, and enter a contest where the costumes that win are homemade. I want to be able to call a Halloween party a Halloween party instead of a harvest festival.  I want Halloween to be fun instead of being associated with evil.  I do not want to watch horror movies that are way too realistic in their depiction of guts, gore and death. I want to be afraid of imaginary spirits and to not even know that there is such a thing as devil worship. 

I want to go back to the time before razor blades in candy took the wind out of the sails of little goblins who run from door to door to trick or treat.  I want to return to popcorn balls and peppermint sticks.  I want to live in a world where candy is not eyed with suspicion, checked for tampering, and often thrown in the trash.  I want to live in a world where kids don't have to worry about falling victim to some sick person's idea of a joke. 

Some place in time I grew older and wiser and society became hardened.  What used to be fun is not any more. I want haunted houses where guts are actually spaghetti and spider webs are fish nets.  I don't want to go the houses of horror of the present where the depiction of violent death and untold evil is way too real and imagination is no longer challenged.   

I want October to be the way it used to be. I want the chrysanthemums to bloom and the trees to change from green to orange. I want to jump in piles of withered leaves. I want to go on a hayride, have a bonfire and roast wieners on a wire coat hanger.  I want to burn my marshmallow and eat it anyhow.  I want to have a jack-o-lantern on the doorstep with a real candle burning inside.

I want to know what happened to take the fun out of childhood and the innocent joy out of the fall season. I cannot help but believe that it is not fall that changed, but people.  Like the leaves of autumn, we have lost our youth, and now have only our memories to carry us backwards in time.  I want to go back to the
autumn of my childhood.


Copyright 2009 Sheila Moss

 
 



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